A one-off, 12-month amnesty period for historical underpayment of the superannuation guarantee has been announced by the government, foreshadowing tougher penalties once the Single Touch Payroll regime kicks in fully next year.

The amnesty will set aside employer penalties for late payment that are normally paid to the government, with employers needing to pay all super that is owed to their employees, including the rate of nominal interest.

Subject to the passage of legislation, the amnesty will run from 24 May 2018 to 23 May 2019 and will allow:

• catch-up payments to be tax-deductible

• the penalties that normally apply to late payments to be waived

• the administration component of the SG charge to be waived.

The amnesty does not apply to Superannuation Guarantee payments due after 1 April 2018.