Director Identification Number (DIN)

The new Australian Business Registry Service is slowly taking over the responsibilities of the Australian Business Register (ABR) and some of those of the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC). The first step in this process is to introduce a unified Director Identification System from 1 November 2021.

With so many affected, we thought it best to offer a quick guide to this latest Gordian Knot.

Scope

All directors of Australian registered companies and Foreign companies registered in Australia will need to comply with these rules.

Due date for obtaining a DIN

Your deadline for obtaining a DIN depends on when you were/are appointed as director.

DIN application steps – Local Directors

1. Set up myGovID, with a standard or strong identity strength.

2. Log on to the ABRS website to submit an application.

3. Provide the following personal information as part of the application:

  • TFN
  • Residential address matching ATO records
  • Information from 2 of the following documents to verify identity:
    • bank account details (BSB & account number) of an account that earned interest in the past 2 years or received an income tax refund
    • an ATO notice of assessment (date of issue & reference number) issued in the past 5 years
    • super account details (member account number & superfund’s ABN) of a fund in which contributions were made in the past 12 months
    • a dividend statement (investment reference number) issued in the past 2 years
    • a Centrelink payment summary (taxable income) issued in the past 2 years
    • PAYG payment summary or Income Statement (gross income) issued in the past 2 years

There is also an option to apply by phone or paper.

DIN application steps – Foreign Directors

Foreign directors will in all likelihood be unable to supply the above.

Instead, they will need to apply using a paper form.

Included with this form, they will need to supply two documents, at least one of which is a primary document:

These documents will need to be:

  • Where not in English, translated using a translation service authorised by the local Australian embassy.
  • Where not originals, certified by a notary public or local Australian embassy.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander corporations

Special rules apply for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander corporations. Please contact us directly if you need assistance in this area.

Failure to register

If directors fail to comply with this new registration, we understand that, at the time of this factsheet, they are exposing themselves to maximum penalties of $13,320 (criminal) and $1,050,000 (civil).

Other details

An individual that is not acting as a director for 12 months could see their DIN deactivated.

Directors’ DINs will only be linked to companies from 2023.

Help!

As this is a personal identity check, we are generally unable to liaise with the ABRS on your behalf.

However, we can assist Local Directors by providing information we have access to, and Foreign Directors by reviewing documents before incurring certification/translation costs and mailing out.

Please contact your local Accru advisor if you need any further guidance.

About the Author
Will has over a decade of experience in chartered accounting practice with specialised expertise in taxation consulting. Working with both large international clients and small-to-medium businesses across a wide range of industries, including IT consulting, construction and childcare, he is known for his excellent analytical skills and ability to utilise business intelligence software.
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