Provident Fund

Kitto J had to consider the expression “provident, benefit or superannuation fund” in Mahoney v Commissioner of Taxation (Cth) (1967) 41 ALJR 232. He said at (232):

“…each of the three descriptive words “provident” , “benefit” and “superannuation” must be taken to have connoted a purpose narrower than the purpose of conferring benefits, in a completely general sense, upon employees….All that need be recognised is that just as “provident” and “superannuation”/i> both refer to the provision of a particular kind of benefit – in one case a provision against contemplated contingencies, and in the other case a provision, to arise on an employee’s retirement or death or other cessation of employment, of a subvention for him or his estate or persons towards whom he may have stood in some kind of relation commonly giving rise to a legal or moral responsibility – so “benefit” must have meant a benefit, not in the general sense, but characterised by some specific purpose. A funeral benefit is a familiar example”.

The term “provident fund” was more common in the first half of the twentieth century and generally referred to a pension fund.

For example Singapore established the “Central Provident Fund” under the Central Provident Fund Act in 1955 (“CPF Act”)

More information of this Provident Fund can be found

http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/journals/JATax/2000/22.html

Thai, Lang in “Analysis of the Central Provident Fund in Singapore: Should Australia Improve on its Superannuation Guarantee Scheme?” [2000] JlATax 22; (2000) 3(5) Journal of Australian Taxation 359, noted:

The “Maxwell-type” fraud has not yet occurred in Australia, but some action should be taken to prevent such a problem occurring. {PJM Klumpes, “Maxwell and the Accountability of Superannuation Schemes in Australia: A Critical Review of Law Reform” (1993) 21 Australian Business Law Review 194, 197. See also A Freiberg, “Bang Bang Maxwell’s Silver Hammer? Superannuation Crime in the 1990s” (1996) 24 Australian Business Law Review 217, for a list of the relatively important fraud cases which have been documented in the press.