From November 2021, company directors in Australia will need to begin applying for a director identification (ID) number. This is a unique identifier given by the Australian Business Registry Services (ABRS)
A director ID is a unique identifier that a director will apply for once and keep forever – which will help prevent the use of false or fraudulent director identities.
How director ID works
A director ID is a 15-digit identifier given to a director (or someone who intends to become a director) who has verified their identity with us.
A director ID:
- starts with 036, which is the 3-digit country code for Australia under International Standard ISO 3166
- ends with an 11-digit number and one ‘check’ digit for error detection.
Directors need to apply for their own director ID. It’s free to apply.
Directors will only ever have one director ID. They’ll keep it forever even if they:
- change companies
- stop being a director
- change their name
- move interstate or overseas.
Why you need a director ID
Shareholders, employees, creditors, consumers, external administrators and regulators are entitled to know the names and certain details of the directors of a company.
All directors are required by law to verify their identity with us before receiving a director ID. This is important because it will help to:
- prevent the use of false or fraudulent director identities
- make it easier for external administrators and regulators to trace directors’ relationships with companies over time
- identify and eliminate director involvement in unlawful activity, such as illegal phoenix activity.
Illegal phoenix activity is when a company is liquidated, wound up or abandoned to avoid paying its debts. A new company is then started to continue the same business activities without the debt. When this happens:
- employees miss out on wages, superannuation and entitlements
- suppliers or sub-contractors are left unpaid
- other businesses are put at a competitive disadvantage
- the community misses out on revenue that could have contributed to community services.
Who needs a director ID
You need a director ID if you’re an eligible officer of:
- a company, a registered Australian body or a registered foreign company under the Corporations Act 2001 (Corporations Act)
- an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander corporation registered under the Corporations (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander) Act 2006 (CATSI Act).
An eligible officer is a person who is appointed as:
- a director
- an alternate director who is acting in that capacity.
You must apply for your own director ID to verify your identity. No one can apply on your behalf.
When you need to apply
You can apply for a director ID now.
If you’re planning on becoming a director, you can apply before you’re appointeCorporations Act directors
When you must apply for your director ID depends on the date you become a director:
|Date you become a director||Date you must apply|
|On or before 31 October 2021||By 30 November 2022|
|Between 1 November 2021 and 4 April 2022||Within 28 days of appointment|
|From 5 April 2022||Before appointment|
How to apply
You can find further details on how to apply for your Director ID at the Australian Business Registry Services website: Director identification number | Australian Business Registry Services (ABRS)
If you have any questions or would like to discuss this further, please contact our office via email email@example.com, alternatively our phone number if 07 5532 1733.