What is a Director Identification Number (director ID) and do I need one?

What is a Director Identification Number (director ID) and do I need one?

November 2021

You may have heard about the new rules which require directors of Australian companies to obtain a Director Identification Number (director ID). The new requirement to obtain a director ID also applies to individuals who have an SMSF with a corporate trustee. All directors of your corporate trustee will need to apply for their own director ID by the prescribed deadline.

This document provides some important information about Director Identification Numbers, including how to apply for a director ID and by when.

An application for a director ID must be made individually and only by those who are applying for the director ID. As you are required to prove your identity as part of the process, no one else can apply for director IDs on your behalf.

If, after reading this document, there is anything that you are unsure about, we encourage you to contact an SMSF Specialist to discuss your specific circumstances in more detail.


What is a Director Identification Number?

A Director Identification Number is a unique identifier that directors need to apply for, like a tax file number. If you are a director of multiple companies, you are only required to have one director ID that will be used across all companies. You will keep your director ID forever even if you change companies, resign altogether from your director role(s), change your name, or move overseas.


Why do I need a Director Identification Number?

As part of the Government’s Digital Business Plan, it is rolling out a Modernising Business Registers program which includes the introduction of Director Identification Numbers. The main purpose is to prevent the use of false or fraudulent director identities as well as to improve the efficiency of the system by making it easier to meet registration obligations and trace director activity and relationships. By improving the integrity and security of business data it is expected to reduce the risk of unlawful activity.

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