With more security and fraud-related scams targeting vulnerabilities and attempting to commit identity theft and fraud, the ATO has changed the process for how tax agents can access your information.
From 13 November 2023, there’s a new process to nominate your tax agent, which anyone with an ABN will need to go through. A new requirement for those with ABNs, the agent nomination process has been implemented to ensure that only your authorised tax agent, BAS agent or payroll service will be able to access your accounts and act on your behalf for tax and super-related matters.
This process only applies when you change an agent or change the authorisations you give your existing agent. Only when you’ve done this will your registered agent be able to connect to you as their client and access your information.
Importantly, you can have confidence that only your nominated agent will:
- have access to your information
- perform tasks on your behalf, such as lodging your tax return.
By completing the agent nomination process through online services:
- your registered agent can be confident it’s truly you
- the ATO can be confident that the actions your registered agent takes are truly on your behalf.
The agent nomination process will apply to all types of entities with an ABN excluding sole traders. This includes entity types such as:
- companies including strata title bodies
- joint ventures
- self-managed super funds (SMSFs)
- APRA-regulated superannuation funds.
The ATO had already rolled out the agent nomination process to the following:
- Public and multinational businesses who are part of the Top 100 and Top 1,000 – effective from 19 June 2022.
- Most public and multinational businesses – effective from 13 December 2022.
- Businesses in our Top 500 privately-owned wealthy groups, where that group has a significant level of ownership – effective from 13 December 2022.
- Government entities – effective from 24 February 2023.
The new requirement does not currently apply to individual taxpayers or sole traders.
What Do You Have To Do?
You need to nominate your registered agent via the ATO’s Online services for business before they can access your account and act on your behalf.
If you need support, you can contact the ATO or your registered agent. Please note, however that your registered agent can’t do the agent nomination process on your behalf in online services. However, they can help you understand what to do.