and Eliza Sinclair
achieved an outstanding result for pro bono client referred by the Cancer Council.
Our client, David, was diagnosed with a terminal illness in 2019, and sought Colin Biggers & Paisley's assistance with accessing his superannuation in June 2021. David and his partner Susan had ceased paid employment due to David's diagnosis, and had been receiving carer support payments as their only source of income. To assist with payment of medical bills and living expenses, David and Susan were referred to us for advice on accessing an early release of his superannuation and whether there were any other benefits available to a patient living with a terminal illness.
Application for early withdrawal of superannuation
advised David and Susan on the various options available to them and whether David would meet the relevant criteria under each. They also advised on his eligibility for any further insurance benefits attaching to his schedule.
A claim was lodged for the early release of David's superannuation balance with the attached insurance benefits on the grounds that David has less than 24 months to live. The claim was required to be substantiated by specialist reports to verify that he was terminally ill, and eligible for the early release of super. After many long calls to AustralianSuper (most of the time spent on hold), the claim was finally lodged.
On 14 October 2021, Australian Super confirmed that David's claim had been approved, and he was to be paid a lump sum payment upwards of $250,000 into his nominated bank account, which was inclusive of his super balance. Pleasingly, they also accepted our claim for the attached insurance benefit which was an additional lump sum payment of $30,000. David and Susan are thrilled with the result and are relieved that this financial pressure is no longer weighing on them.
Laura Muir, Cancer Council Pro Bono Referral Service manager commented on the outcome that Tim and Eliza achieved:
Thank you for sharing this excellent, and life-changing outcome. When I consider the client’s circumstances at the time of referral, I can’t even imagine the relief they would have felt receiving a lump sum of this kind. Please pass along our sincere thanks, as always, to the staff who worked on this matter.
Well done to Tim and Eliza for their fantastic work on this matter and assisting to take away some of the financial stress that David and Susan were under. They will now be in a better financial position for the remainder of David's life.
*names have been changed