Your Tax File Number - Everything you need to know

Author : Karen Sanders
Publish Date : 2021-04-07 09:37:09

Your Tax File Number - Everything you need to know

What is a tax file number?

A tax file number - sometimes abbreviated to TFN - is a unique ID number that you receive from the government. It is used for your tax returns, benefits and retirement plans. You will also need it to apply for an Australian Business Number and to complete a bank account application.

Keep it safe!

Your 9-digit TFN is unique to you, so you should not let anyone else use it. It's very private. There is generally no reason to ever show anyone your tax file number, except in a few cases that we'll cover below.

Keeping your tax file number safe is very important as it could be used in the wrong hands to commit identity theft or fraud on your behalf.

Your TFN is a bit like your driver's license - it's yours and it's private. Don't lose it, and don't let other people have it.

When do I need a tax file number?

You need a tax file number as soon as you start a job. Better register for it before actually starting your new job so that you can pass the number on to your new employer on the first day. Your employer could tax you at a higher rate than you should be if you didn't give it to him.

Tax number declaration form

Each new employer will give you a tax file number declaration form to fill out when you start. In this form you provide your TFN to your employer. It also asks about your residency status and other tax-related questions. Your employer uses this information to calculate how much tax you will have to pay.

NOTE: Make sure to select "Yes" to the question "Do you want to claim the tax-free threshold from the payer?"

You are entitled to a tax-free allowance of $ 18,200 each year. If you don't check the box, you end up paying more tax than you should.

More than one job?

It's important to understand that you can only claim this tax-free threshold amount from one employer in any given year! If you claim it with multiple employers, you won't pay enough tax during the year and can get a tax bill that you have to pay back during the tax time!

Do I need a tax file number for anything else?

There are a few other instances where you may need your tax file number. The most common are:

When you need government benefits or benefits such as family tax benefit and other Centrelink payments.

If you need to open a new bank account.

Apply for an Australian Business Number.

Visit Also: Tax Agent in Craigieburn

How do I request a tax file number? What is TFN's application process?

You can apply for a tax file number online at the government's myGov website or in person at a post office.

You can also ask your tax agent to file a TFN application for you.

There are no costs if you submit the application yourself. Once processed, you will receive it by post, so make sure to provide a correct and secure mailing address.

How long does it take to get a TFN?

The ATO must notify you within 10 days of your filing, but it can take up to 28 days to receive your tax file number.

How do I find my tax file number?

Over time, people lose track of where they put the original letter they received. It is often buried in the safe place under the stairs, in the back of the filing cabinet or may end up in a chest after a move. Fortunately, there are other ways to find it:

If you are using, simply log in to your account, open any tax return and you will see your tax file number at the top of the form.

Other ways to find your TFN:

The letter with assessment notice that you will receive from the ATO as soon as you have submitted your tax return.

Superannuation Statements

Your payslips

Ask your employer

Contact your bank

Contact the ATO

What to do if my TFN is lost or stolen?

Has someone stolen or seen your TFN? Then contact the ATO as soon as possible.

As we mentioned earlier; your number is unique to you and it is very private. If you think it was revealed to someone else or somehow stolen, don't hang around and just forget about it. It could put you in debt, or worse.

My tax agent has asked me to email my tax file number. Is that good?

The short answer is NO! The long answer is NEVER!

Under no circumstances should your tax agent ask you to send your TFN by e-mail. Nor should they ask you to fax it to them or write the number down anywhere. If you see them doing this, call them immediately. It is a very bad practice and it puts your privacy in mind sail. Why? Because if someone ever gains access to your email or the other person's email - even years later - they can find your TFN and use it to try to scam you.

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