A spouse contribution is an after-tax contribution to a superannuation account held in your spouse's name. In other words you're investing money into your spouse's super account rather than your own.
You can make spouse contributions for your spouse at any time before their 65th birthday, regardless of whether or not they are working. Between age 65 and 70 your spouse has to have worked at least 40 hours in a period of 30 consecutive days in the relevant financial year to be able to receive your contributions. You can't make spouse contributions for a spouse aged 70 or over.
A spouse includes a de facto partner of the same or opposite sex. Both you and your spouse must also be Australian residents at the time the contributions are made.
As the contributor, you can get a tax rebate up to $540 per financial year. You get the full tax rebate if:
- you contribute at least $3,000 to your spouse's account; and
- their assessable income plus reportable fringe benefits plus reportable employer super contributions is less than $37,000 for the year.
If you contribute less than $3,000, the rebate will be equivalent to 18% of your contributions.
If your spouse's relevant income is higher than $37,000, the rebate reduces until it cuts out when your spouse's income reaches $40,000.
You can find more details about eligibility on the ATO website.