Such poor customer service
My husband is recently self employed & phoned First state super to clarify how much he could put in before the end of the financial year to achieve the 25.000 cap.Even with 2 phone calls , customer service was very poor . They could not give simple information but kept insisting that we should check our balance on the online service. Will definitely be moving our super to a company who employ well trained staff who are more helpful.
I had been with First State Super for about 7 years when, due to a permanent injury I had to stop working, so I applied for TPD. I provided all the documentation they asked for and met their criteria. I kept copies of everything. They were good to deal with and from start to finish my successful claim was concluded in 5 months.
Do not Trust this Super Fund
I am a member of this super fund for a while now as on the time I join there was no choice? One time around $15000 went out of my account in a jiffy and upon contacted them, they simply said "oh market is very volatile" Now recently again I lost $7000 but did not bother to call them as I already know their answer. Anyway this is not the reason for the review. The actual reason for this review is to WARN people who are with this fund and unfortunately they have TPD or Income Protection insurance.
I lodge a TPD claim in July 2019, was told it wi...
First State Super the big improver.
I think First State Super have really lifted their game over the last few years.
It's all relative as they may not be perfect but compared to some of the other Industry funds,e.g. Hostplus , they are brilliant in comparison.
They also have a great app,easy to deal with,low fees and are helpful.
Don't Do It!
I have been with FSS for over 5 years. In that time I became a single mother and my income dropped to nothing, my account becoming inactive meant that the ATO claimed the funds eventually closing the account.
I recently applied for the early release of my super due to the covid 19 situation and the financial hardship that followed. Because I'd been with the fund for so long I reopened a new account with them to process my claim for early super release. I instructed the ATO to send the funds to my new account number and applied for the super ...release with the same details. FSS closed my new account before the super reached it and I opened another one as soon as I noticed. Finally the funds arrived in my account so I waited for my early release to come through eventually emailing them only to be told they rejected the ATO's decision because the account had been closed. They advised me to reapply for the release with the new details through the ATO which I'm not permitted to do as I can't apply more than once in 12 months. FSS have made this a lengthy and inconvenient process for a struggling single parent with no compassion or admittance of fault by them. They are prepared to bend the rules to accept my money from the ATO but not bend that same rule to release the money to me. I will never deal with them again.
If you want to make a complaint you can’t make it as part of the call you have made for service support or assistance. A separate email needs to be sent. First state super then respond I cryptic emails that don’t help or address you’re circumstances. When you call to seek further advice staff refer you back to the email that is not clear. If I was to make an educated this happens because staff do not understand what has been sent out themselves. I would not recommend this super fund to any one based off service.
Happy with there performance
I opened a first state super account approx 10 years ago when i was unable to salary sacrifice to my SASS account .
After reading some of the reviews on this site about low returns and high fees i got my last 3 annual statements out 2016/2017 in growth fund the yearly fees $95.00..investment earnings aprox 12.3%........2017/2018 in growth fund yearly fees $109.00 rate of return 10.1%..............2018/2019 in growth fund fees $121.61 return 7.8% this is an average of over 10% P/A...so as far as the insurance side of things fortunately i have never needed to claim but as far as the fees and returns and the customer phone service which again i have only used 2 or 3 times i am happy with there performance.......
Warning: you need to know this
I have FSS, including life insurance and terminal illness benefit.
You must have an enduring power of attorney (EPA) in place to claim terminal illness benefit. If you have no EPA in place and cannot communicate or fill in a form, they will not allow you to claim.
I was in a coma with terminal heart failure documented by the surgeon. I was therefore unable to speak to request the forms, or access the website and print them off. I miraculously survived, but now need a heart transplant and can’t work. My wife and the hospital social worker trie...d to speak with FSS (and my retail fund) but they refused to answer even very general/ hypothetical questions of “what if”. Now I can’t work until 6-12 months post transplant. The terminal illness benefit would have cleared our debts and helped greatly. Interestingly enough, my contact at FSS doesn’t have an EPA either, even though she works in the very industry that has this discriminatory practice. Update: my contact at FSS Super believes that there “needs to be some compassion” in cases like mine. The phone call was recorded by FSS. I don’t blame the poor frontline staff at FSS. They aren’t making the decisions about this, and have been very pleasant and professional. This case will end up going to the Board of Trustee’s (we’ll see if they have any compassion or empathy, as their frontline staff obviously do) and, potentially, the AFCA Ombudsman. Please be aware of this so you don’t fall down the same loophole. I’ve been interviewed about my whole experience with terminal illness, both in an online HR publication and a national radio broadcast. Now my union is interested in raising awareness of this loophole. Even if FSS are not shamed into action in my case, I can still raise awareness.
I was with them for ten 9 years and left
My only advice to anyone who has bothered to read this, is leave and leave ASAP.
I was with FSS for 9 years with very average returns and high fees. I left approx 1 year ago to a fund with lower fees and higher returns and its paying off big time. Examine the fees and the returns and you will be disappointed even with the 'high growth' option.
I am taking far less risk now and getting better returns than their high growth.
TPD and Customer service
I've been with them for 16 years. I see they have no problem deducting their fees, but submit a TPD claim and try following up. Good luck!! I've been nothing but nice and screwed around from the start. They never answer the phone or reply to email. Promise to update and never call back. Not once.
I was going to say that maybe you have to actually die for something to happen, but i read a previous review and even that seems unlikely.
On a positive note, they are polite but it's at the stage where being nice is pointless.
I'm just going to ring them 10 times a day until they are as annoyed as me.
I hope they don't expect my business following this matter. FSS are no better than their bottom dwelling insurer.
Non existent support in progressing an insurance claim.
My Lawyer first submitted an insurance claim to First State Super nearly 18 months ago. I understand that TAL (the insurer) will do virtually anything to delay, deny and dispute claims but First State Super provided no support at all and made no effort to progress the claim, which is still stalled. First State Super don't help, support or advocate for their members through this process at all. I don't know if other superannuation companies are any better but they couldn't be any worse. If you have insurance products with First State Super and you are in the unfortunate experience where you need to claim, you can expect similar treatment. This is why I changed my superannuation. I would advise you do the same.
Worse returns than the All Ords Index
Compared my super performance with the All Ords and it consistently does worse! What's the point of paying fees if their advisors can't even beat the All Ords Index!?
Their online platform is a whole other issue. In this digital age it is extrutiatingly painful to fill out forms for what should be self service.
Poor Customer Service.
It has been almost two weeks since I have requested to merge two of my accounts and I am still waiting to hear from First State Super to complete my request. I can imagine what will be kind of customer service I can expect when it can be something more serious. Luckily, It has not been long for me since my employers started my account & I think it is time I look for super with better service. I am sure they would look into my open request to investigate further, FYI it is ticket No: 157049.
Disability Insurance shameful time frames
Please people be aware that when you really need your insurance you will be in for a long wait, I am 14 months in and still no decision. Documents sent to wrong insurers, requests not actioned with myself having to call weekly to make sure the claim is progressing, 3 weeks to send a document from one insurer to another insurer. I have a lawyer but hasn't made a bit of difference. Im now facing eviction from my home because I can't pay my mortgage. No regulatory body to look at how fund handles claim until a decision is made seems wrong to me. Please if anyone else is in same position please email me. This is not fair and certainly not ethical.
Highway robbery, they will steal all your money until there is nothing left
I have been with this fund for 3 years and they continually charge fees until there is nothing left in my account. They are poorly investing money also as it has made little returns. I cancelled the un needed insurance and they started it back up again just because they could. Stay away and switch funds as soon as you can.
Income stream balance heading in the right direction!
I've been in the income stream phase of my super since 2014. I have always taken the minimum amount out each month and although the sharemarket has had some instability over this time I note that I now have more money in my account now than when I first entered retirement. This was certainly not my expectation. I'm happy with their performance.
They poorly invest my money and still charge.
Very unhappy with performance to date. Paid all year only to be in the red at end of year. Very poor investment choices and NO accountability . Customer service very lackluster with the attitude of we have your money so too bad! Literally would have been better off putting my money under my mattress
An incredibly stressful experience
I was with FSS for many years (approx. 15), paying also for Income Protection for over 10 years. I placed a claim as I had unfortunately fallen ill only to find that FSS refused to pay, leaving me struggling for the 2 years I was entitled for payment. They showed no concern that I was in hardship and had to use my super early to survive - leaving me now with no super.
It was a dreadful time as I was not only refused payment but also made to wait approximately 18 months whilst TAL and Metlife passed the claim from one to the other to assess. This experience was totally unexpected and extremely stressful.
July 2018-Dec 2018 = $90 profit.
What a poor performing Super Fund between June-Dec 2018. Thousands were contributed and made only $90 in 6 months. FSS is a joke and has not been performing well in recent times. I have no confidence in them anymore. They are losing MY money. Time to switch.
Questions & Answers
Why is First State Super changing its name? I checked on abn and see new name of aware! how do they feel this is a good use of members money especially in this climate. how much is this costing us 10 million? why dont members get a choice how there money is spent
First State Super A.First State Super
Thank you for your question.
Currently we're managing two brands under the First State Super banner - First State Super (our super fund), StatePlus (our advice business) - and we merged with VicSuper in July this year, meaning we now have a third brand to support.
As we look to the future, we've thought about the need to create a single brand. The name, Aware Super, was chosen in consultation with many of our members and unifies our member base, clearly representing who we are and the members we serve.
One recognisable brand is more cost-effective to build and support over time. We are very conscious of our responsibility to spend our members' funds prudently. By consolidating under one brand, we're able to amplify our impact and achieve greater economies of scale.
In addition, many of our members have spoken to us about the confusion of First State Super with many other brands that sound similar (such as First Super, Colonial First State and State Super). So we felt it was important to have a name that was clear, recognisable and best represented who we are and our intent.
Aware Super celebrates and honours the spirit and actions of all our members. The extraordinary Australians, who we are proud to serve. It also demonstrates our ongoing commitment to action and impact – for our members, their communities and the world we live in.
For more information, please visit our website: https://firststatesuper.com.au/blog/first-state-super-is-changing-its-name-to-aware-super
If you would like to discuss this in more detail, please feel free to call our Service Centre on 1300 650 873, or send us an email at email@example.com
Is TAL the insurer for First State Super (as claimed by FSS) or are they just contracted to make recommendations to FSS’s Board of Trustees for life insurance claims, including terminal illness and total permanent disability (as claimed by TAL)??? Just want to know the legal/contractual relationship between TAL, FSS and myself.
First State Super A.First State Super
Thanks for your message.
First State Super’s death, total and permanent disablement and income protection insurance is offered to First State Super members under insurance policies issued to the trustee by TAL Life Limited ABN 70 050 109 450, AFSL 237848 (the insurer).
The insurance cover provided is subject to the terms and conditions contained in the insurance policies (policies) issued to the trustee by the insurer.
The insurance information provided in the Member Booklet and Member Booklet Supplement available on our website is based on the policies issued by the insurer, and information provided by the insurer about the operation of the policies.
The terms and conditions of the policies prevail over any inconsistent information in the Member Booklet (Product Disclosure Statement) and our Member Booklet Supplement.
Insurance benefits will only become payable if the insurer accepts the relevant claim. Payment of any approved claim will be made by the insurer to the trustee and any insured benefit and any account balance can only be paid to a member by the trustee when a condition of release under the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act 1993 (Cth) is met.
If you would like to discuss your insurance cover with us, feel free to call our service centre on 1300 650 873.
Ok. Your “insurer” denies being the “insurer” for terminal illness benefit. Instead they claimed to be there to make a “recommendation” which the trustees would then accept or reject. I may even have it in an email, but was definitely told this on the phone.
Inconsistent advice to your members
First State Super A.First State Super
We want to ensure you that we are continuing to work in hopes of finding a resolution to your concerns.
With any updates of your particular case, a representative of the fund will be in contact with you and will continue to assist you moving forward.
We appreciate your patience, and thank you for allowing us to investigate this further.
How often does the Board of Trustees meet to decide if individual life insurance claims will be paid out for terminal illness benefit and total and permanent disability? When is the next time these individual cases will be discussed? I have emailed and received no reply for over a week.
First State Super A.First State Super
Thanks for your enquiry.
A representative of the Fund Trustee has previously been in touch with you regarding the complaint on your claim. Our representative will be in touch with you before the end of this week to assist you further with your concerns.
We do appreciate your patience while we continue to investigate this for you, and endeavor to provide you with an update shortly.
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