If you’re thinking of starting a self managed superannuation fund (an SMSF) in 2023, you need to be aware of the recent changes made by the ATO on fund registration, and the application of the Director ID regime to funds with corporate trustees.
Previously, after an SMSF was established and trustees were appointed, the trustees had 60 days to register the SMSF with the ATO by applying for an Australian Business Number through the Australian Business Register. That application included a section where bank account details of the SMSF could be added, along with other information such as the fund’s Tax File Number.
Due to the recent explosion in fraudulent schemes targeting SMSFs, this feature has been removed in a bid to protect the retirement savings of Australians. New SMSFs will now need to provide the ATO with their bank account details after the SMSF registration process, using the online portal for businesses, via phone, or through a registered tax agent.
If you’re contemplating starting an SMSF with a corporate trustee, you’ll also need to ensure the directors of the corporate trustee apply for Director IDs before their appointment is made through Australian Business Registry Services (ABRS). The Director ID is a unique 15-digit identifier that will follow each individual through their business life and was introduced as a part of a suite of measures to combat phoenixing and other illegal activities. The process is free, simple, online and only requires individuals to confirm their identity. Every individual must apply for their own Director ID, and no one else can apply on their behalf.