Cruelty Free Super

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Cruelty Free Super describes itself as Australia’s only vegan super fund.

It says it does not invest in any companies that profit from the exploitation and harm of animals and people. Instead, it invests in areas it sees as making a positive impact on the world, such as renewable energy, sustainable products, and innovative technologies.

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Types of Cruelty Free Super accounts

Cruelty Free Super offers one super product which is invested using a ‘growth’ investment strategy.

There are several features available to Cruelty Free Super members including:

  • Opt-in death cover, death and total permanent disability, and income protection.
  • Online account access.
  • Real-person customer service.
  • Help finding lost super and combining your other super accounts.
  • ‘Baby bump’ fee refund – Cruelty Free Super says it will refund your membership fee when you are working less than 10 hours per week in the year after a new baby comes into your care.
  • Cruelty Free Super advertises that it has no performance fees, entry or exit fees, but other costs, like an annual membership fee, do apply.

Eligibility to join Cruelty Free Super

According to the ATO, generally in order to be eligible to receive super you must be able to satisfy the following criteria:

  • You must be an Australian resident
  • You must be over 18 years of age
  • You must be earning at least $450 before tax per month from an employer

If you are under the age of 18, but earning more than $450 before tax per month, you may need to be working more than 30 hours per week to qualify for super.

Cruelty Free Super does not specify any additional criteria for those looking to become a member of its fund.

How to join Cruelty Free Super

If you satisfy all of the above eligibility criteria, then you can apply to join Cruelty Free Super. You can sign up for a Cruelty Free Super account online (Cruelty Free Super says it will take less than two minutes). Cruelty Free Super advises that you will need your Tax File Number on hand.

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Cruelty Free Super FAQs

Yes, Cruelty Free Super has a dedicated online portal for its super fund members. Here you can update your details, check contributions and request rollovers.

The money in your Cruelty Free Super account is invested by your super fund. Your super will be invested in a growth option. Cruelty Free Super says it aims to invest in a diverse mix of assets with 70% in growth assets (like shares and property) and 30% in defensive assets (like fixed interest and cash).

When choosing how to invest your retirement savings, it is important to take into account factors including your investment time frames and goals, and your personal risk tolerance for market fluctuations.

According to Cruelty Free Super, it does not invest in industries harmful to animals and people. It says it does not invest in companies engaged in the following activities:

  • Animal cruelty
  • Intensive agriculture
  • Tobacco
  • Environmental destruction
  • Live animal export
  • Fossil fuels
  • Gambling
  • Social harm

Instead, Cruelty Free Super invests in industries it sees as making a positive impact in the world, such as:

  • Renewable energy
  • Cruelty free healthcare and wellbeing
  • Sustainable products
  • Production of healthy foods
  • Recycling
  • Efficient transport
  • Community finance
  • Social wellbeing

Yes, Cruelty Free Super offers an account transfer service for members who have super in other funds. Cruelty Free Super also helps members find lost super.

It’s important to check with your old super funds for information regarding costs such as exit fees and any insurance cover you may lose if you switch super funds. If you have any questions or concerns about the rollover process, get in contact with Cruelty Free Super.

Be sure to check your statement carefully, paying close attention to information including:

  • Personal details are up-to-date
  • Nominated beneficiaries are up-to-date
  • Tax File Number (TFN) is recorded
  • Super contributions from employer and/or your voluntary contributions are correct
  • Investment asset class choices are appropriate for your life stage
  • Amount paid in fees for the year is not too high
  • Insurance in super is still adequate coverage for your needs
  • Super is consolidated, after checking whether there is insurance or any other benefits attached to the account you may lose and you’re comfortable to do so
  • The big picture – are you happy with your super fund overall?

Cruelty Free Super was founded in 2009 with the mission of bringing animal welfare issues to the areas of retirement planning, savings and investment. Cruelty Free Super says it is Australia’s only vegan super fund because it has zero investments in companies involved in using or exploiting animals for food, testing, entertainment or export. It also avoids investments in sectors it says are harmful such as detention centres, fossil fuels, tobacco and weapons. Instead, Cruelty Free Super invests in what it describes as positive industries such as education, recycling and renewable energy. At the time of writing, Cruelty Free Super says it has over 1,200 members.

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Written by: Tamika Seeto | Last updated: April 9, 2019