Insights / November 22nd, 2021

Calling all directors – Applications are open for Director Identification Numbers

In an effort to improve traceability of directors across multiple entities, and to discourage instances of director misconduct, the Director Identification Number (DIN) regime has been introduced for all directors governed by the Corporations Act 2001(Cth) (Corporations Act) and the Corporations (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander) Act 2006(Cth) (CATSI Act).

The DIN regime requires that all directors apply for a DIN before being appointed as a director. For directors appointed before the commencement of the DIN regime, they must apply within the transitional application period.

DIN applications opened on 1 November 2021 and currently extend to all directors including alternate directors, directors of registered foreign companies, and directors of charities registered under the Corporations Act.

What is a DIN?

A DIN is a unique 15-digit identifier specific to a director. Directors will keep their DIN forever and must provide them to each entity in which they are appointed as a director.

DINs will be used to facilitate monitoring of director activities, especially across multiple entities, and to discourage director misconduct. DINs will also assist in protecting the privacy of directors by allowing them to publish their DINs on public registers instead of their personal information.

How and when do I need to apply?

From 1 November 2021, applications for DINs are available via the Australian Business Registry Services website at https://www.abrs.gov.au/.

Prospective directors may apply up to 12 months before they expect to be appointed. DINs will be revoked, however, if by the end of the 12 months the person has not been appointed as a director.

Penalties for Non-compliance

Directors who fail to obtain a DIN within the applicable time frame may receive an infringement notice or penalties up to $11.1 million.

Penalties may also apply where a director provides a false DIN, intentionally applies for multiple DINs, or is actively involved in committing any of these offences.

If you have any questions or require assistance with any corporate governance matters, contact us and someone from our Corporate team will get back to you.

This publication has been prepared for general guidance on matters of interest only and does not constitute professional legal advice. You should not act upon the information contained in this publication without obtaining specific professional legal advice. No representation or warranty (express or implied) is given as to the accuracy or completeness of the information contained in this publication and to the extent permitted by law, Cowell Clarke does not accept or assume any liability, responsibility or duty of care for any consequences of you or anyone else acting or refraining to act in relation on the information contained in this publication or for any decision based on it.

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