ABN Overview

 Introduction to ABN

ABN stands for Australian Business Number. It is a unique 11-digit identification number that gives recognition of your business to the government and other communities. This 11-digit number is used for tax and other business activities.

 Purpose of an ABN

You can have a unique identification in Australian government records by having an Australian Business Number registration which makes your business and identity more reliable and trustworthy in records of ATO and community. Here are some common areas where an ABN is used


It can help the government to streamline and track taxation. You can claim back certain taxes from ATO by having an Australian Business Number such as GST credits.


By having an 11-digit unique number you can get special identification as you are registered and recognized in government records.


It helps to track your business and income so it increases the chances to make your business more trustworthy in industry and community.

Government privileges

By having an Australian Business Number, you might become eligible for different government grants and benefits by fulfilling certain criteria set by the government.


It is also important for performing some business activities such as buying an Australian domain will require an Australian Business Number for registration.

Applying for ABN

You can apply for an Australian Business Number by visiting the official website of the Australian Business Register (ABR) and applying for an ABN registration form. It will ask you for your personal and professional information. Make sure to add the correct information. Otherwise, your application will be rejected. Submit the form after completion. You will get a reference number from ABR.

Approval of ABN

Usually, it takes about 20 business days for the approval of the Australian Business Number, but it varies if checked manually. You can track your progress of application by visiting the website of ABR. Once your ABN is approved, you will receive an email from ABR, or an official approval letter will be delivered to you by post.

An overview for applying ABN

Once you get an Australian Business Number, you are eligible to apply for other business registrations such as GST. To calculate GST on any product or sale you can use this simple GST calculator which can be helpful in your business activity.

Rejection of Australian Business Number

ABR will inform you if your application is rejected via post and give you a refusal number. It will also mention the reason for rejection and other options available for you.

 Charges for ABN registration

ABN registration is free of cost if you fulfill your application by yourself by visiting the official site of the Australian Business Register (ABR). On the other hand, if you hire an agent, then it will cost you the service fee accordingly. 

Canceling of Australian Business Number

You must cancel your ABN if your business is closed or your business has changed its partnership. You must keep your ABN information up to date.


You can leave your business income section empty if you are earning nothing. But you may need to cancel your Australian Business Number if your business is not earning money in the long run or you have closed your business.

ABN is the part of the GST system. You need an ABN to register your GST. You can apply for an ABN and after approval, register yourself for GST.

You might need an ABN if you are carrying out business activity in Australia. If your business or company is included in any type of tax zone, then you must have an ABN regardless of your residency in Australia. But if you are not linked with any kind of business in Australia then you may not need an ABN.