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What is a Director ID


A director identification number (Director ID) is an identifier given to a director (or someone who intends to become a director) who has verified their identity with the Registrar of Australian Business Registry Services (ABRS). Director ID numbers are a unique identifier you will keep forever. It will help to prevent the use of false or fraudulent director identities.


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 the ABRS 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.

How to Apply for your Director ID

You need to apply for your own director ID. It’s free to apply. The fastest way to do this is online using the myGovID app to log into ABRS online. When people must apply for their director ID depends on when they first become a director.

  • Intending new directors must apply before being appointed.

  • Directors appointed on or before 31 October 2021 have until 30 November 2022 to apply.

  • New directors appointed for the first time between 1 November 2021 and 4 April 2022 had 28 days from their appointment to apply.


Visit the ABRS website for more information on who needs to apply, when and how.


Step 1 – Set up myGovID


For more information on setting up myGovID check out this blog - myGov ID & Relationship Authorisation Manager


To set up a myGovID with a Standard identity strength, you’ll need at least 2 of the following Australian identity documents that verify your identity:

  • driver’s licence or learner’s permit

  • passport (not more than 3 years expired)

  • birth certificate

  • citizenship certificate

  • Medicare card

  • visa (using your foreign passport)

  • ImmiCard.

Step 2 – Gather your documents

In addition to your myGovID, to apply online for your director ID, you will need to have information the ATO knows about you. This information must relate to you, personally, rather than to the company, registered Australian body, or registered foreign company of which you are a director.

You will need:

  • your tax file number (TFN)

  • your residential address as held by the ATO

  • information from 2 documents to verify your identity.

Examples of the documents you can use include:

  • bank account details

  • an ATO notice of assessment

  • APRA fund account details

  • a dividend statement

  • a Centrelink payment summary

  • a PAYG payment summary (this is different to your income statement or your PAYG instalment activity statement).

Your accountant should have copies of the above information, feel free to contact us and we can provide you with the requested information.


Step 3 – Complete your application

Log into ABRS online using your myGovID




We recommend you use Google Chrome or Firefox to complete your application.


How to apply if you can't get a myGovID

If you can’t set up a myGovID with at least a Standard identity strength, or you don’t have the required Australian identity documents to apply online, how you apply depends on where you currently reside.

​If You Live in Australia

​If you currently live in Australia, phone the ABRS on 13 62 50 to apply for a director ID. To apply by phone, you’ll be asked to verify your identity. You’ll need:

  • your tax file number (TFN) (optional)

  • your residential address as held by the ATO

  • answers to 2 questions based on details they know about you

  • a primary and secondary Australian identity document.

Live outside of Australia

​If you currently reside outside Australia, you can apply using a paper application form – Application for a director identification number (NAT 75433, PDF 651KB).


In addition to completing the form, you’ll also need to provide certified copies of your documents that verify your identify.


Do not send the ABRS the originals as they will not be returned.

Should you have any questions or require any assistance then please do not hesitate to contact the Cheesman Applegarth team by phone on 07 4638 1100 or by email admin@applegarth.com.au.

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