A large suite of legislation was recently introduced and passed by the House of Representatives in order to consolidate and modernise the sprawl of business registers under a single unified regime. At least 35 separate registers will be brought under the new scheme initially, with more sure to follow, including important registers such as the Australian Business Register, the ACN Register and the Business Names Register among others. This legislation now awaits approval in the Senate and Royal Assent and will have an effective date being the date of Royal Assent.
Alongside this modernisation effort the legislation also implements the long-expected ‘Director Identification Number’ (DIN) requirement. First announced on 12 September 2017 and broadly supported across the parliament, the introduction of a DIN is targeted at improving the tracking and management of Directors’ and director relationships across companies.
The DIN will be unique to a director, and will be required to be provided alongside their appointment to be a Director of a company. They therefore must apply for their DIN prior to their appointment. While a DIN may be cancelled by request or if unused for some time, should the person again require a DIN the same DIN will reactivate. For existing directors, a year-long transition period applies and, during the transition period, new directors will also have up to 28 days post-appointment to apply for their DIN.
On its introduction, the DIN requirement applies only to appointed directors and active alternate directors. However, the law allows for registrar to extend the requirement to ‘any other officers’. Such an extension could be utilised to include secretaries, administrators, receivers or liquidators into the DIN system and also could be used to capture de facto or shadow directors.
The Director Identification Number continues the governments push towards greater transparency and accountability amongst company directors. With bipartisan support, it is likely the legislation will have an uneventful journey towards royal assent.
If you wish to discuss any potential impact of the above legislation, please contact our office.
Date of Issue: 24 February 2020 Author: Hayden Gaffel & Noé Vicca
Disclaimer: The contents herein are intended for general information only and should not be construed as legal or accounting advice. Vicca Chartered Accountants Brisbane bears no responsibility for any loss that might occur from reliance on information contained in this publication. Please do not reproduce, transmit or distribute the contents herein in any form without prior permission from Vicca Chartered Accountants, Taxation Accountants Brisbane Australia.