The ATO has introduced a new client-agent linking system as part of measures designed to reduce the risk of fraud and identity theft. This means that before a registered BAS agent such as On The Money Bookkeepers Melbourne can act on your behalf, you’ll need to authorise us via the ATO online services for business platform.
In 2022, the ATO trialled asystem to link business owners and registered agents using the ATO online platform. The system has now been rolled out to most businesses, although sole traders are exempt from this new process.
Under the previous system, agents could connect a business to their ATO registered agent online serviceswithout necessarily getting authority form a business owner. The new system requires business owners to nominate a specific agent, before that agent can act on their behalf.
There should be no change to existing client links; if we already act on your behalf, then you do not need to do anything.
The new system applies from 13 November 2023, when business owners engage a new BAS or tax agent.
This new security measure means it will be harder for hackers or fraudsters to link to your ATO account, lodge fake GST or tax refunds, or steal your identity through details held in the ATO platform. The extra constraints put the responsibility on the business owner to specifically nominate an agent rather than an agent being able to link to a client without their knowledge.
Client-Agent Linking Process
The process requires business owners to have an ATO online services for business account. Business owners must complete an agent nomination form in their ATO account. Once the business owner has completed the nomination, they must notify the agent, who has 28 days to accept the nomination and link the business to their ATO online services account.
While the system increases cybersecurity, we understand that this new process may burden some business owners unfamiliar with the ATO online services for business platform.
If you are already familiar with the ATO business platform, you should find the new process relatively easy.
As the business owner must initiate the new process, we are sorry to say we cannot help with this process. If you need help with the ATO online services for business, you’ll need to contact the ATO online services help directly.
Business Owner Steps
- Set up your digital identity with myGovID.
- Link your myGovID to your ABN using the Relationship Authorisation Manager (RAM).
- Authorise others to act on your behalf if needed.
- Log in to ATO online services for business.
- Go to Profile > Agent details > Add.
- In the search field, find your chosen registered agent using their registration number or by entering the exact name of the agent as per their myGovID.
- If you’re linking with us, On The Money Bookkeeping Pty Ltd BAS Agent registration number is 24602974.
- Nominate the agent and submit.
- Contact the agent immediately to let them know you have nominated them.
- Always sign out of your ATO online services account when finished!
- Check the ATO Agent Nomination Process for more details.
On The Money Registered BAS Agents Liaising with the ATO on Your Behalf
Once your business is linked with our OTM Bookkeepers Melbourne BAS agent registration, we can act on your behalf with the ATO for all lodgements and activity statement services, including Single Touch Payroll and Taxable Payments Annual Reports.
As registered tax professionals, we still need to verify the identity of a new client before we accept an engagement. This process is required by both the ATO and the Tax Practitioners Board; however, the new client-agent linking process satisfies this requirement.
Once we are linked to your business, we’ll be able to check the status of lodgements, update registrations, organise payment plans and edit any contact or financial institution details as needed. We can communicate with the ATO on your behalf about any matters relevant to ABN activity, saving you the trouble.
Contact us if you have any questions about the new process. We look forward to working with you!
For more details, check the ATO information.