I can’t find my tax file number! What should I do? That’s what Monzi’s here to explain. Read on for our comprehensive guide to understanding the importance of your tax file number and how you can find it today. It’s as easy as can be. Let’s go.
Please note, certain ideas and products presented in this article may not be offered by Monzi nor the lenders we work with. This article presents only general information. Consider seeking professional financial, taxation, legal or other advice to check how the information and ideas presented on this website relate to your unique circumstances.
What is a tax file number?
A tax file number (TFN) is a unique sequence of digits issued by the Australian Taxation Office that can be used to identify you for tax and superannuation purposes. Generally, your TFN will be eight or nine digits and will remain with you for life. In other words, it doesn’t matter if you take a job overseas, change your school, change your name or find a new job, your TFN will always remain the same.
Generally speaking, your tax file number may be required when you start a new job, lodge a tax return or open a new superannuation account. However, as it is yours, you should keep it private. Disclose your TFN to only those who need it. That way, you can avoid any potential misuse.
In addition to this, TFNs aren’t just issued to individuals. Instead, they are necessary for all tax-paying entities. As a result, if you are looking to start a business, then you may need to apply for a separate TFN. Similarly, trusts and super funds will also have their own TFNs.
While that covers the basics, we still need to investigate how you can locate your tax file number if you lose it. Read on as Monzi digs deep into TFNs to cover the information that you need to know.
Why do I need a tax file number?
You need a tax file number for many reasons. Firstly, it enables you to lodge your tax return online. In addition to this, without a TFN, you may pay more tax, while you may also be unable to apply for government benefits.
This list could go on, however, the key point to take away is that you need a tax file number to make your life easier. Applying is simple and there are no downsides if you are a tax-paying, Australian citizen who intends to work in this country. TFNs are issued for identification purposes and remain with you for life. As a result, if you do not have one, then it might be time to apply.
How do I apply for a tax file number?
Applying for a TFN is easy.
Firstly, complete the online form and print the summary. From there, head to your nearest participating Australia Post outlet for an interview. Make sure that you take your summary and proof of identity documents (e.g. licence, passport, etc.). Once your interview is complete, sign off on your application and your TFN should be processed and sent to you within a month. Easy, right?
However, if there is not a participating Australia Post outlet in your area and you are a Services Australia customer, then you can apply there instead. If neither of these options is available to you, then you can potentially apply via mail. With this, though, you must provide certified copies of your identification documents.
Finally, note that the process outlined above is for Australian residents. If you are currently an Australian citizen living outside the country, a foreign passport holder or a permanent migrant, then the process may vary. Do your research to determine what you need to do.
What happens if I don’t have a tax file number?
Not having a TFN can create issues for you.
Firstly, if you start a job and do not have a TFN, then your tax will be deducted at the maximum rate, regardless of your income. In Australia, the maximum rate is over 45%. While you can claim this back when you lodge your annual tax return, having a TFN makes your life much easier.
In addition to this, if you do not have a TFN, then you may not be able to access certain benefits or assistance offered by the Australian government. For instance, if you would like to apply for HECS-HELP, you must have a TFN. If you do not, then you cannot defer the costs of tertiary study, meaning you must pay upfront.
Given this, you should have a tax file number. Applying is not difficult and it will save you a tremendous amount of trouble. Moreover, once you have a number, you have it for life. So, you only need to apply once.
I can’t find my tax file number: help!
There’s no need to panic. Locating your missing TFN shouldn’t be too difficult. Moreover, there are a few different ways that you can find it. See below as Monzi outlines your options:
Find my TFN at home
The first place to look for your missing TFN is your home. In short, it may be listed on a number of different documents. So, if your filing process is up to scratch, it shouldn’t take more than a few minutes. As a guide, your TFN may be listed on documents including:
- The initial letter informing you of your TFN
- Income Tax Notice of Assessment
- Letters from the ATO
- Payment summaries or income statements
- Your superannuation account statement
No luck? That’s OK. There are still other ways that you can find your TFN. Read on.
Do you have a MyGov account? Finding your TFN should be a breeze. Just log in and, if you haven’t already, link your account to the ATO online services. From there, you should be able to find it in your profile. For most of us, this will be the simplest way to do it. Especially if you already have an account established and linked to the ATO.
Over the phone
If you don’t have a MyGov account, then your final option will be to call the ATO on 13 28 61. With this, you may need to answer a few identifying questions to confirm that you are who you say you are. Assuming you answer the questions correctly, they can let you know what your TFN is. However, if you have lodged a tax return in the past with an accountant, then you may call them too. They should have your details on record and may be able to provide you with your missing TFN.
How much does a TFN cost?
If you are an Australian resident, you can apply for a TFN at no cost. Just prepare the necessary documents and head to your nearest, participating Australian Post location. Alternatively, apply via one of the other channels (e.g. via post). From there, your application will be processed and you should receive your TFN within a month.
Once you receive your TFN notification letter with your number, keep it somewhere safe. That way, you can access it anytime that you need it. If you do not receive a notification letter within 28 days, then you may need to contact the ATO.
Do I need to re-apply if I can’t find my tax file number?
If you’re trying to find your TFN but aren’t having any luck, then you must note that you shouldn’t apply for a new one. Instead, your TFN is issued for life. In other words, it won’t change and you won’t be issued a new one, even if you submit an application.
Given this, your only option is to find your tax file number. To do this, follow the steps we’ve outlined earlier. While it may be a hassle, locating your TFN shouldn’t be too difficult. Either log onto MyGov or contact the ATO directly. Alternatively, you may have your initial TFN notification letter hidden somewhere around your house.
How old do I need to be to apply?
In Australia, you can apply at any age. In other words, you don’t need to be an adult. You’re free to apply at any time after birth. However, the age at which you apply may affect how you go about it.
As a guide, if you are over 16 years of age, then you must personally sign the application form. If you are aged between 13 and 15, you or your parent/guardian can sign. Finally, if the applicant is under 12, then a parent or guardian must sign the application on their behalf.
Does my business need a tax file number?
As a business, you must have a tax file number. This is because TFNs are compulsory for all taxpaying entities in Australia. As a result, if you’re just starting out, then applying should be at the top of your to-do list.
The advantage of applying for a TFN for your business is that you can complete the process online. Just ensure that you can provide the following details:
- Business locations
- ABN or ACN
- Business activity
- Business associates and their details
- Authorised contacts
- Tax agent registration number
Note that the ATO may require additional details other than those listed above. This is simply a quick list of the key details that you may need to provide.
What about if I’m a sole trader?
No, if you are a sole trader, then you do not need a separate TFN for your business. This is because you are a single taxpaying entity. In other words, your business doesn’t pay tax. Instead, you will report all income and expenses when you lodge your personal tax return. As a result, there is no need for you to have a separate TFN as a sole trader.
However, if you are a sole trader and are looking to transition into establishing a business, then you will need to apply for a separate TFN. If you are unsure, don’t be afraid to reach out to a business advisor or taxation professional. They should be able to outline whether or not you need a TFN.
What’s the difference between a TFN and an ABN?
If you are setting up a business, then you need to apply for an ABN and a TFN. With this, each will serve a different purpose.
Firstly, an ABN or Australian Business Number is issued to all registered businesses in Australia. In essence, it’s an easy way to identify businesses and will typically be printed on official documents (e.g. invoices). Similar to a TFN, it will allow your business to connect with government departments and agencies without too much hassle (e.g. ATO).
On the other hand, as we’ve already covered, a tax file number is a unique code that the ATO will use to identify all tax-paying entities within Australia. With this, a TFN may be issued to both businesses and individuals.
Given this, do your research to determine how you can apply for an ABN and TFN for your business. If you fail to do so, then there may be consequences. Generally, you must have an ABN if your GST turnover exceeds $75,000 annually.
Find my tax file number: how can I avoid losing it?
If you’re constantly trying to find your lost tax file number, then it’s time to get organised. In short, that’s the easiest way to avoid the hassle of trying to locate your missing sequence. Your TFN is an essential piece of information, so it’s crucial that you can locate it quickly.
With this, one easy thing to do is set up a private document file. As a guide, it may contain your passport, birth certificate, TFN notification letter, income tax notice of assessments and any other sensitive documents. Put it somewhere safe and that way, when you need to provide your TFN to a new employer or super fund, you’ll know exactly where to find it.
Finally, keep in mind that you shouldn’t keep your TFN written down in your iPhone notes or on your computer. If your TFN falls into the wrong hands, then it may potentially be used for fraudulent purposes. As a result, it’s usually better to keep it locked away in a file with your other important documents.
Do I need a TFN for a HECS-HELP application?
If you’re looking to access fee help to cover your tertiary education costs, then you must have a TFN. From there, you can complete a HECS-HELP form that should be provided by your university. If approved, you won’t have to pay anything upfront. Instead, you will begin to repay the cost of your studies once your income exceeds the minimum threshold.
If you do not have a TFN, then you have two options. Firstly, you could pay for the full cost of your studies upfront. Obviously, for most students, this will be unmanageable. On the other hand, you could apply for a TFN. It’s quick, easy and will likely be necessary if you’re looking for a job anyway.
Who can ask for my TFN?
There are a limited number of agencies and organisations who may need your TFN. In most cases, this will either be for superannuation or taxation reasons. As a guide, this may include:
- The ATO
- Your employer
- Your superfund
- Banks and financial institutions
- Services Australia (e.g. Centrelink or Medicare)
If an agency, individual or organisation that is not listed above asks for your TFN, then it may be wise to contact the ATO. They should be able to outline who can and who can’t request your TFN. If providing your TFN is not necessary, then you should not share it.
Do I have to provide my tax file number?
If your employer, a government department or your bank asks for your TFN, then you are not forced to provide it. However, if you don’t, then you must understand that there may be financial consequences.
As we’ve already covered, if you do not give your employer your TFN, then you will be taxed at the maximum rate. However, in addition to this, failing to provide your TFN may limit your ability to access certain government benefits and programs. For instance, your TFN is necessary if you are looking to access fee help when undertaking tertiary education.
Given this, if you are unwilling to share your TFN, ensure you consider any potential costs or consequences. If you are dealing with a reputable organisation or a government department, then you should have little reason not to share your TFN. Typically, these entities will require your TFN for a reason.
When can my TFN not be used?
Your TFN is a way for the ATO to identify you. Moreover, it may be required by super funds or your employer. However, your TFN cannot be used to confirm your identity in other situations.
To make this clearer, individuals or organisations cannot use your tax file number to verify your identity if you are looking to rent or buy a home. Similarly, it can’t be used when you’re trying to open an account with a bank or financial institution. Instead, they’ll need to use your birth certificate, licence or other such documents.
If an organisation asks for your TFN and you don’t feel that it is necessary, check with the ATO. Call them on 13 28 61 and they should be able to let you know when your TFN will and won’t be necessary.
What do I do if my TFN has been misused or stolen?
If you believe that your TFN has been misused or mishandled by an individual or organisation, then contact them and submit a complaint. If you do not hear back within 30 days or are dissatisfied with their answer, you may be able to lodge a privacy complaint with the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner. This department acts as an independent regulator for privacy matters and aims to uphold your right to have your personal information protected.
On the other hand, if your TFN has been stolen (e.g. identity theft), then you must contact the Australian Taxation Office. With this, their client support centre may assist you in getting your identity back and will monitor suspicious activity on your account. Unfortunately, this situation is not uncommon, so contact them ASAP if you discover that theft has occurred.
Find lost super with my tax file number
Do you have some super that you can’t locate? While it may not be much, it’s always best to try and find it. After all, when you retire, you want to have a significant super balance that you can use to get by.
With this, one easy way to locate your missing super will be to contact the ATO. You can contact the Super Search Line on 13 28 65. From there, you will need to provide some key personal details to verify your identity. This will include not only your name and date of birth but also your tax file number too. As a result, if you can’t find your tax file number, you won’t be able to make the call.
In any case, lost super in Australia totals over $10 billion. As a result, it’s wise to try and find any that you’ve lost.
Can Monzi find my tax file number?
Unfortunately, we cannot. That’s something that you must do yourself. That’s why we’ve provided this handy guide with all the information that you may need to know. Now, it’s up to you to go and locate that missing TFN. In most cases, it shouldn’t be too difficult.
In any case, what Monzi may offer instead is a quick lender-finder service for Aussies borrowers. With this, if you need a personal loan today but want to avoid the stress of finding a lender, let Monzi do the heavy lifting.
Apply today and we could match you with an available lender from our network in just 60 minutes. With loan amounts ranging from $300 to $10,000, there could be an option to suit your needs. Best of all, Monzi is 100% online, meaning you can apply anywhere, anytime. We’re always ready to hear from you.
Get started with Monzi now.
What are personal loans?
To put it simply, personal loans allow you to borrow money while your costs are divided into even repayments over a fixed period. As a guide, terms may range from 12 to 24 months, while you may have the option to choose between weekly, fortnightly or monthly repayments. As a result, they may be one option if you’re in a financial bind.
That said, you must recognise that borrowing money won’t be free. Instead, lenders charge fees and interest which they will add on top of your principal loan amount. As a result, you often must repay considerably more than what you initially borrowed.
In any case, if you need a personal loan online, then Monzi could be here to help. Apply today from $300 to $10,000. We may be able to match you with a lender before you know it. Let’s go.
Do I need my tax file number to apply for a personal loan?
When you apply with Monzi, you must provide a handful of personal details. However, your TFN won’t be necessary. In most cases, the required details will relate to your current financial situation. Lenders will use this information to assess your loan application and determine your outcome.
Given this, before you begin, make sure that you can provide the following:
- Personal information (e.g. name, date of birth, licence)
- Online bank details
- Income details
- Estimates of your current expenses (e.g. rent, food, etc.)
- The amount you wish to borrow and your preferred repayment term (if applicable).
- Your reason for applying
- Any other information that may be relevant (e.g. MyGov details)
Note that if you fail to supply any of the necessary details, then your application may be delayed or may not progress. As a result, it often pays to be prepared.
How do I apply?
When you need cash today, Monzi might make it easy for you. To apply, all you need to do is follow these simple steps:
- Use Monzi’s loan slider to select your cash amount and repayment term.
- Follow the easy instructions to complete Monzi’s online application form.
- Let Monzi take the lead as we attempt to match you with an available lender from our network.
- Stay by your phone because we’ll be in touch. If we successfully match you with a lender, then we will pass your application onto them and they will take over.
Keep in mind that we cannot guarantee if your application will be successful. Lenders are bound by responsible lending legislation that means they cannot offer loans with guaranteed approval. Instead, they must assess all applications to determine if the borrower is suitable for credit.
While we aren’t tax experts, Monzi can make it a breeze to find a lender online. However, if you have any questions about what our service entails, then you’re welcome to get in touch. Email us today at email@example.com and we’ll do our best to get back to you ASAP. Ultimately, we want you to be comfortable, confident and well-informed before you dive into an application. Reach out today.
However, note that Monzi is not a lender. Moreover, we cannot provide advice regarding your tax situation or tax file number. Given this, if your questions relate to something outside the scope of Monzi’s lender-finder service, then you may need to contact a relevant organisation (e.g. Australian Taxation Office) directly.
Find my tax file number and Monzi
At Monzi, we aim to help Aussies whenever we can. Through this guide, we may have provided useful tips that you can use to locate your missing TFN. However, that’s not all the help that we can provide. If you need fast cash loans, then our lender-finder service might be your first port of call.
Apply for instant cash loans from $300 to $10,000 now. Avoid the hassle of finding a lender yourself. Monzi could do the work for you and connect you with a lender in just 60 minutes. Hit “Apply Now” or scroll up to Monzi’s loan slider to begin your application now.