Are you an Australian citizen or a visitor looking to apply for a tax file number, commonly known as a TFN? Whether you’re navigating the process online or through paper, we’ve got you covered. If you’re an Australian citizen with an Australian passport and you’re 15 years old or older, you’re eligible to apply for a TFN using your myGovID. For Australian residents of all ages who don’t have an Australian passport, applying for a TFN is straightforward. If you’re a foreign passport holder, a permanent migrant or a temporary visitor living in Australia, you too can easily apply for a TFN even if you’re living outside of Australia but earning income within the country applying for a TFN is crucial to claim a refund of tax withheld.
Overview of Tax File Number (TFN)
A tax file number is your personal reference number in the superannuation and tax system. You can apply for TFN for free. Your tax file number is:
- a unique 9-digit number
- vital part of your identity
- It is yours for life – even if you change your name or job, or move interstate, you keep your TFN.
Where Can You Find Your TFN?
If you already possess a TFN, you can find it:
- in the ATO app or if you have a myGov account linked to it, you can find it on your ATO online account
- when you receive an income tax notice of assessment (NOA)
- on some of the letters the ATO sends you
- on the income statement from your employer
- on your superannuation account statement
If you have a professional tax return accountant, you can also seek help from them for your TFN.
What If You Don’t have a TFN?
You are allowed to apply for TFN at any age. However, if you use myGovID to apply for TFN, then you must be 15 years old or above, and you must have a passport. If you don’t have a TFN, a financial institution or your employer may withhold more tax from payments they make to you. If you don’t possess a TFN, you:
- can’t apply for government benefits, such as JobSeeker
- can’t file online your tax return
- are not allowed to apply for an Australian Business Number (ABN).
When Can You Get Your TFN?
Generally, you get your tax file number within 28 days after ATO receives your completed application and all required identity documents. The ATO will send your tax file number to the postal address or email address you mentioned on your application, based on how you apply.
Keep Your Personal Details and TFN Safe
Keep your identity safe by maintaining and keeping all your details secure, including your tax file number. Someone only needs basic information, such as date of birth, name, myGov details, address, or TFN to commit identity scams. Therefore, it is suggested to disclose your TFN to organisations that need it for legal purposes, such as:
- the ATO, when you discuss your tax records
- your employer when you are about to start work
- your financial institution or bank
- other government agencies to get scheme benefits
- your superannuation fund
- your university.
Your Tax File Number (TFN) is a crucial piece of information required when filing a tax return. It is essential to keep it secure as it can be used by fraudsters to steal your identity. Avoid storing it on a piece of paper in your wallet or saving it on your mobile phone. Even sending it via text or filling it in an online form is not entirely secure. To ensure maximum safety, it’s recommended that you complete a TFN declaration form when providing it to your employer. Moreover, various accounting firms in Melbourne deal with TFNs, so you can reach an accounting firm to ask them to apply for a TFN for you.
Many of you may find it difficult and time-consuming to apply for TFN, right? However, you don’t need to worry about it as you can seek help from Reliable Melbourne Accountants to apply for TFN on your behalf.