Purported Closure of Defined Benefit Fund

The occupational pension trust established on the 23 December 1913 is a Defined Benefit superannuation fund, where the benefit is determined by a formula in the “governing rules” of the Fund, as compared to a Defined Contribution superannuation fund where benefits are determined by contributions and the investment return in these contributions.

In a Defined Benefit superannuation fund the assets are held in a common asset pool and not in the names of individual members as is the case in a Defined Contribution (Accumulation) fund.

Members were advised of the purported closure of the Defined Benefit Fund to new members in the Annual Report to members for the year ending 30 June 1988.

The Defined Benefit Fund was purportedly closed to new members on 30 November 1997. The name of the Fund had been changed from the Elders IXL Superannuation Fund to the Foster’s Brewing Group Superannuation Fund in 1990.

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New employees were advised that they would be “enrolled” in a new Accumulation Fund, however care must be taken when the terms of a Defined Benefit Fund are amended to establish an Accumulation sub-fund.

If the amending instrument is not properly executed, then the purported Accumulation sub-fund may not have been lawfully established.

Such as the case in Briggs v Gleeds (Head Office) [2014] EWCH 1178 (Ch)

More information on this case can be found Here.

A document described on its face as a “Resolution” and dated 18 June 1998 purports to establish an accumulation sub-fund. This document bears the signature of Geoffrey Cohen who was the Chairman of the purported corporate Trustee.

Cohen was banned by APRA for his conduct in the collapse of HIH Insurance Ltd.


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This tab updated on 26 September 2015