Technical Agent Nomination Process Changes

About the agent nomination process

The ATO have introduced an agent nomination process which is a new requirement to help ensure only your authorised tax agent, BAS agent or payroll service provider can access your accounts and act on your behalf for your tax and super affairs.

This process only applies when you change an agent or change the authorisations you give your existing agent.

Technical Agent Nomination Process Changes

How to know if this process applies to you

Effective from 13 November 2023, the agent nomination process will apply to all types of entities with an ABN excluding sole traders. This includes entity types such as:

  • companies including strata title bodies
  • partnerships
  • trusts
  • not-for-profits
  • joint ventures
  • cooperatives
  • self-managed super funds (SMSFs)
  • APRA-regulated superannuation funds.

The ATO have already rolled out the agent nomination process to the following:

  • Public and multinational businesses who are part of the Top 100 and Top 1,000 – effective from 19 June 2022.
  • Most public and multinational businesses – effective from 13 December 2022.
  • Businesses in our Top 500 privately-owned wealthy groups, where that group has a significant level of ownership – effective from 13 December 2022.
  • Government entities – effective from 24 February 2023.

The new requirement does not currently apply to individual taxpayers or sole traders.

Why the ATO are making this change

The security of your tax and super information is very important. The security and fraud environment is shifting and unfortunately, we’re seeing increasing attempts to commit identity theft and fraud. That’s why they are changing the process for how agents access your information.

While they recognise this change may require more time and effort, it’s important that we work together to strengthen the security of our online services to help protect your information.

As registered agents, we have digital access to our clients’ tax information as well as functionality that allows us to lodge returns and forms through the ATO’s online services. To get this access, we must first connect to you as our client in the ATO’s online services.

The ATO are introducing a step where they’ll ask you to securely nominate your registered agent when you change:

  • to a new registered agent
  • the authorisations you give your existing registered agent.

Only when you’ve done this will we be able to connect to you as our client and access your information. Importantly, you can have confidence that only your nominated agent will:

  • have access to your information
  • perform tasks on your behalf, such as lodging your tax return.

By completing the agent nomination process through online services:

  • we, as registered agents, can be confident it’s truly you
  • the ATO can be confident that the actions we take are truly on your behalf.

When to complete the nomination process

You only need to nominate an agent if the change applies to you and you’re either:

  • engaging a new registered tax or BAS agent, or payroll service provider to represent you
  • changing the authorisation of an existing agent (for example, they start representing you for a new obligation, such as income tax or a new entity in your group).

If you’re already represented by our firm and you don’t make changes, you don’t need to do anything.

What you need to do

You need to nominate us as your registered agent in Online services for business before we can access your account and act on your behalf.

To nominate your agent, follow these client-to-agent linking steps. They will lead you through the nomination process and help you set up Online services for business if you have not done so already.

If you need support, you can contact the ATO on 13 28 66 or our office. Unfortunately, we are unable to do the agent nomination process on your behalf in online services. However, we can help you understand what to do.

Notifying your agent

Once you’ve submitted your nomination, please notify our office that we are authorised to add your business or organisation as a client or add additional tax accounts.

We have 28 calendar days to add you as a client before the nomination expires.

Unfortunately, as tax agents, we will not receive an automated system notification about the nomination, so it’s important you advise us when it’s been submitted.