ABRS’ Loom­ing Direc­tor ID Dead­line – Apply before 30 Novem­ber 2022

The 30 Novem­ber dead­line for exist­ing direc­tors to apply for a direc­tor iden­ti­fi­ca­tion num­ber (Direc­tor ID) is creep­ing clos­er – don’t get caught by ASIC penal­ties and make sure you apply in time. 

In June 2020, the Aus­tralian Gov­ern­ment intro­duced changes to the Cor­po­ra­tions Act 2001 (Cth) requir­ing all exist­ing and new direc­tors to apply for a Direc­tor ID. All exist­ing direc­tors have until 30 Novem­ber 2022, and intend­ing direc­tors must apply pri­or to being appointed. 

What is a Direc­tor ID?

A Direc­tor ID is a unique 15-dig­it iden­ti­fi­er giv­en to a direc­tor that they will apply for once and keep for­ev­er. It has been cre­at­ed to help pre­vent the use of false or fraud­u­lent direc­tor iden­ti­ties and help reg­u­la­tors trace direc­tor rela­tion­ships over time. 

A Direc­tor ID will not change even if a direc­tor changes com­pa­nies, stops being a direc­tor, changes their name or moves residences.

Who needs a Direc­tor ID?

All com­pa­ny direc­tors are required to have a Direc­tor ID. This includes direc­tors of a com­pa­ny, reg­is­tered Aus­tralian body, reg­is­tered for­eign com­pa­ny or Abo­rig­i­nal and Tor­res Strait Islander corporation. 

For direc­tors of an Abo­rig­i­nal and Tor­res Strait Islander cor­po­ra­tion reg­is­tered under the Cor­po­ra­tions (Abo­rig­i­nal and Tor­res Strait Islander) Act 2006 who became direc­tors on or before 31 Octo­ber 2022, the dead­line to apply for a Direc­tor ID is extend­ed to 30 Novem­ber 2023. How­ev­er, those becom­ing direc­tors from 1 Novem­ber 2022 and onwards must apply before appointment.

What if a direc­tor does not comply?

There are a num­ber of Direc­tor ID offences set out in the Cor­po­ra­tions Act 2001, includ­ing:

  • sec­tion 1272C – fail­ing to have a direc­tor ID when required;
  • sec­tion 1272D – fail­ing to apply for a direc­tor ID when direct­ed by the Registrar;
  • sec­tion 1272G – apply­ing for mul­ti­ple direc­tor IDs; and
  • sec­tion 1272H – mis­rep­re­sent­ing a direc­tor ID.

Each of these offences car­ry a max­i­mum civ­il penal­ty of $1,100,000 and pos­si­ble crim­i­nal penal­ties of fines, impris­on­ment or both. 

How to apply? 

Each direc­tor must apply for their own Direc­tor ID to ensure the indi­vid­u­al’s iden­ti­ty can be ver­i­fied. To apply go to the Aus­tralian Busi­ness Reg­istry Ser­vices (ABRS) web­site at https://​www​.abrs​.gov​.au/​d​i​r​e​c​t​o​r​-​i​d​e​n​t​i​f​i​c​a​t​i​o​n​-​n​umber.

Don’t risk late penal­ties and get on top of Direc­tor ID require­ments well before the deadline.

Need help?

Con­tact Swaab’s Cor­po­rate and Com­mer­cial team if you require any assis­tance with Direc­tor IDs, under­stand­ing your oblig­a­tions as a direc­tor gen­er­al­ly or com­pa­ny sec­re­tar­i­al ser­vices in Australia.