Wanting to spend time with her family rather than work, cancer victim Donna Penny says they have to sell their house because she has been refused her superannuation.
Wanting to spend time with her family rather than work, cancer victim Donna Penny says they have to sell their house because she has been refused her superannuation. Warren Lynam

Appalled Slipper vows to take up super battle for dying mum

PETER Slipper says he wants to take up the cause of a Sunshine Coast cancer patient who has been told she cannot access her superannuation.

The Member for Fisher said he was "appalled" by the case of Warana woman Donna Penny.

The mother of two was given one to five years to live after a recurrence of cancer which she thought she had kicked.

The dental nurse was hoping to spend her remaining time with her family, but was told she could not access her fund.

Under federal legislation, someone with a terminal illness can apply to their superannuation fund trustee to have their benefits released early. However, only on the provision they have been given less than 12 months to live.

She now fears she will have to sell her family home.

Mr Slipper acknowledged there were reasons why residents could not access superannuation at will, but was seeking a meeting with Mrs Penny to take up her case.

"I'm appalled by the reported situation and I'll do whatever I can to help," Mr Slipper told The Daily.

"I'm happy to ring the minister personally to make sure justice is done and she is treated fairly."

People with terminal illnesses who do not satisfy conditions for the

release of funds due to their life expectancy can access benefits on the basis of permanent incapacity or other compassionate grounds, such as to meet medical expenses.

In August last year, then superannuation minister Bill Shorten promised a review of legislation, including a proposal to allow people suffering terminal diseases to access funds 12 months sooner.

Yesterday a spokesman for Minister Assisting for Financial Services and Superannuation, David Bradbury, did not respond directly to questions about whether the government was still considering a review.

"The government will continue to monitor the policy settings to ensure they are appropriate," he said.



Splendour's questions answered

Splendour's questions answered

Festival Q & A, hosted by Tony Jones, hits big topics.

A blues alchemy

A blues alchemy

Ben Harper and Charlie Musselwhite produce a Splendour special

Splendour from the sky: rescue chopper shares festival view

Splendour from the sky: rescue chopper shares festival view

Splendour punters might have been concerned by rescue chopper

Local Partners