Australian Business Registry Services Engages with Directors to Apply for Identification Numbers

By: Jim Bulling and Laura McFadzean

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) through the Australian Business Registry Services (ABRS) is actively engaging with directors who have not yet obtained a director identification number (DIN).

A DIN is a unique identifier which prevents the use of false or fraudulent director identities, makes it easier for regulators to trace directors’ relationships with companies, and helps to identify and eliminate directors’ involvement in illegal activity.

Persons are required to obtain a DIN prior to becoming a director of a company, registered Australian body, or registered foreign company carrying on a business under the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) (Corporations Act).

The deadlines for directors to obtain a DIN were as follows:

  • Directors appointed prior to 1 November 2021 were required to apply for a DIN by 30 November 2022;
  • Directors appointed between 1 November 2021 and 4 April 2022 were required to apply for a DIN within 28 days from their appointment date; and
  • All directors appointed after 5 April 2022 were and are required to apply for a DIN prior to their appointment.

ASIC and ABRS have indicated that they will be chasing directors who have not yet applied for a DIN, with penalties for a failure to do so being a maximum of $1,375,000.

Those directors without a DIN must ensure they apply to ABRS for a DIN either online or by phone. Alternatively, both persons living in Australia and living overseas can apply for a DIN via paper application.

Finally we note that companies are not exposed to penalties in respect of directors not having a DIN or not applying for a DIN.

If you have any queries relating to how you can comply with these requirements, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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