Keeping your Australian Business Number (ABN) details updated is more important than ever in today’s fast-paced business environment. This guide will explain why it’s important to keep your ABN details up to date, what you can and can’t change, and a step-by-step process to make sure your business stays legal. Let’s get started!
Why Should You Update Your ABN Details?
You may be wondering why it’s so important to update your ABN details. In the end, how often do you really change things like your email address or business address? In reality, even small changes can have big effects on your business, both officially and in terms of how it works.
- Legal Compliance: Maintaining compliance with Australian law is one of the most important reasons to update your ABN details. The Taxation Administration Act 1953 states that failing to update your details within 28 days can carry significant fines.
- Credibility of Your Business: Updating Your ABN Details Improves Your Company’s Credibility. Information that is too old can cause you to miss out on chances and hurt your image. Imagine a possible customer trying to get in touch with you through an old email address. If they can’t reach you, you could miss out on important business opportunities
- Efficiency in operations: From billing to formal paperwork, having accurate ABN details speeds up many business processes. Knowing more recent details will save you time because you won’t have to fix mistakes or deal with problems that come up because of old knowledge.
- Communication: These days, it’s important for businesses to be able to talk to each other clearly. If you keep your contact information up to date, you’ll be sure to get important notices, law changes, and other details that are important to running your business.
- Financial Transactions: Out-of-date banking details can cause payments to be delayed or money to be lost. Making sure that your financial information is up to date lowers the chance of these kinds of problems happening.
What ABN Details You Can and Can’t Update
For efficient business management, it’s essential to know what changes you can and can’t make to your ABN details. Some details are simple to update, but others might need more work or not be possible at all. Let’s get into the details.
- Addresses and Contact Information: It’s simple to update business details such as your ABN address, email address, and other contact information. These are simple changes that can be made online through the Relationship Authorization Manager (RAM) of the ABR.
- Structure of Your Business: It’s more difficult to change the structure of your business, like going from being a single trader to a company. Depending on the type of change, you may need to cancel your current ABN and apply for a new one.
- Industry code and main activities: The current topic of your business can be reflected in these, so update them. But changes that happen a lot might be a red flag that the officials should look into further.
- Public or Private Status: Another element that can be changed is the Public or Private Status, but it’s important to know what the legal effects of this change would be. For example, when a business goes from being private to public, it has to follow a different set of rules and laws.
- Details That Can’t Be Changed: Once they’re set, some details, like your initial registration date and some tax-related information, can’t be changed. For these, you should talk to a lawyer to find out what your choices are.
How to Update Your ABN Details: A Step-by-Step Guide
Now that you know why it’s important to keep your ABN details up to date and what you can and can’t change, let’s go over the steps to update your ABN details. In recent years, the process has been sped up, which makes it easier than ever to keep the information about your business correct.
- Setting up myGovID: To update your ABN details via RAM, you’ll first need a myGovID. Download the myGovID app, verify your identity with official documents, and you’re set. This digital ID allows secure access to various government services, including ABN updates.
- Link Your Business to RAM: The next step is to connect your business to the Relationship Authorization Manager (RAM) after setting up your Google Government ID. Right now, you can do this by calling the ATO and proving who you are, generally with your Tax File Number (TFN).
- Principal Authority: The Principal Authority is the only one who can connect the business to RAM. Someone with this role runs the business. They could be a sole trader, a company director, or a qualified individual partner mentioned on the ABN.
- Updating Your Details: You can update your ABN details after adding your business in RAM. The changes happen right away, so make sure you check everything twice before sending it in.
- Alternative Methods: You can update your ABN details by calling the ABR or sending a form if you don’t want to use RAM. But it might take longer for these ways to work to make the changes.
As we’ve seen, updating your ABN details is an important part of having a successful business in Australia. Keeping your ABN details updated is important for a number of reasons, including staying out of trouble with the law and making sure that business runs smoothly.