30 November Director ID deadline

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Update as at 14 November 2022:  The ATO has ditched the November ID deadline for resigned directors following criticism that it cast the net too wide. These included directors who would have been required to comply despite no longer acting in the role of a company officer, nor holding any intention to do in future.

The deadline for existing directors of Australian companies is still 30 November 2022.


About DINs

Australia’s Director Identification Number (DIN) regime came into effect on 1 November 2021 and will require Australian resident and non-resident directors to register for a Director identification number (Director ID).

A Director ID is a 15 digit identifier that, once issued, will remain with you for life regardless of whether you stop being a director, change companies, change your name or move overseas.

The DIN is managed by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) but created through the Australian Business Registry Services (ABRS).

For those concerned about their privacy, the Director ID will not be searchable by the public and will not be disclosed without the consent of the Director.

Important to note: Directors need to apply for their own director ID (no one can do it on your behalf) and there is no cost to apply. Failure to apply for a Director ID on time can result in fines of up to $1,100,000.


Who needs a director ID?

All directors of a company, registered Australian body, registered foreign company or Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander corporation will need a Director ID. This includes directors of a corporate trustee of self-managed super funds (SMSF).


Why have Director IDs been introduced?

Shareholders, employees, creditors, consumers, external administrators, and regulators are entitled to know the names and certain details of the directors of a company.

By having the Director ID system it:

  • prevents the use of false or fraudulent director identities
  • make it easier for external administrators and regulators to trace directors’ relationships with companies over time
  • identifies and eliminates director involvement in unlawful activity, such as illegal phoenix activity.


What do directors need to do right now?

1.  New Directors
Since 5 April 2022, new directors have been required to apply for a Director ID before appointment as a director.

2.  Existing Directors
Existing company directors are required to apply for a Director ID by 30 November 2022.


What happens if I don’t obtain an ID?

If you are required to obtain a director ID but don’t, a criminal penalty of up to $13,200 might apply or a civil penalty of up to $1,100,000. Where an individual has deliberately applied for multiple IDs or misrepresented the director ID, the criminal penalty escalates to $26,640 and up to one year in prison.


How to apply for a Director ID

To apply for a Director ID, you will need to verify your identity and ensure that this information matches the records held by the ATO.

Step 1:

If you don’t already have one, register for a myGovID (view instructions on how to set this up)

Step 2:

Gather the following documents to verify your identity

  • Your TFN (an individual Australian tax file number)
  • Your residential address, as recorded by the ATO
  • Be prepared to answer two questions from ANY of the following options based on details / records available to ABRS. These might include:
    • The BSB number of a bank account you receive an income tax refund in, or that has earned interest in the last two years.
    • The date of issue (dd/mm/yyyy format) and reference number (no spaces) from a notice of assessment (NOA) issued by the ATO in the last five years.
    • The member account number (it may be up to 16 characters) and super fund’s Australian business number (ABN) of a superannuation account statement from the last five years.
    • Your investment reference number from a dividend statement from the last two years.
    • The gross income in whole dollars from a PAYG payment summary issued in the last two years.
    • Use the taxable income in whole dollars from a Centrelink payment summary issued in the last two years. If your myGov account is linked to Services Australia, you can log in and access the details online.
Step 3:

Complete your application on the ABRS website.

Step 4:

Let your accountant know your Director ID number.

For overseas directors, the process to obtain a director ID can be onerous as applications cannot be made online. In addition to the paper application form, you will need copies of one primary and one secondary identity document (or primary identity documents) certified by notaries public or at an Australian embassy.


Need an extension?

If you need an extension, as soon as possible contact the Australian Business Registry service on 13 62 50 (+61 2 6216 3440 outside of Australia). Your identity will need to be established so have your documentation ready. You can also apply for an extension using the paper form (https://www.abrs.gov.au/sites/default/files/2021-10/Application_for_an_extension_of_time_to_apply_for_a_director_ID.pdf)


Further help:

If we can assist you with the application process or with any questions you have about the regime, please do not hesitate to contact us.


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