The court views superannuation as a financial resource rather than as actual property because people who are members of a superannuation fund are not generally entitled to any benefits until they retire. A person who has looked after children has usually made an indirect contribution to the build-up of the superannuation entitlement during the marriage, but the court has limited power to order direct payments to the non-member partner.
Instead, as the policy holder will be getting money in the future, the court may order that the other person receive a greater share of the present property, in recognition of indirect contributions to the superannuation.
New legislation regarding the division of superannuation will commence in late 2002. The legislation provides a method for calculating the value of an entitlement and the proportions to be allocated between the parties. This may involve the splitting of a superannuation interest between a member of a superannuation scheme and their non-member spouse.
Due to the uncertainty of the new legislation, it is advisable to seek specific legal advice about your particular circumstances.