The ATO will not penalise around 700,000 company directors who have yet to apply for a director identification number (director ID) if they do so by an extended deadline of 14 December.
In a statement on the ATO’s website today, Australian Business Registry Services (ABRS) commissioner of taxation and registrar Chris Jordan said ABRS would apply a “pragmatic compliance approach” to directors who miss the 30 November deadline but apply by 14 December.
“The ABRS will not apply compliance resources to determine whether individuals met their director ID obligations by 30 November 2022 if they apply for a director ID by 14 December 2022,” Jordan said.
He also gave an update on the number of directors who have applied for a director ID, noting a sharp increase from the 1.4 million applications recorded by 23 November.
“Over 1.8 million directors have now applied for their director ID, with almost 78,000 directors applying in one day alone on 29 November 2022,” he said.
“With the total director population in Australia estimated to be more than 2.5 million, this means around 700,000 directors still need to apply.
“Whilst penalties or offences can apply, the community can expect ABRS to take a reasonable approach to support people to apply.”
ABRS, which is an agency of the ATO, and the government have been active in encouraging directors to apply for a director ID, with the latter launching an awareness campaign in late October and ABRS reminding directors of the need to meet the 30 November deadline.
An extension was expected in some quarters and ABRS has already offered an extension to 31 January 2023 where someone was unable to apply due to system unavailability or had been unable to contact ABRS by phone but information about this extension appears to have been removed from the ABRS website.
In mid-November, ABRS changed the requirement for former directors, stating they would not be required to obtain a director ID if they have ceased all directorships before 1 December 2023.