Tax File Number (TFN) – What is it?

The TFN is a unique and personal 9-digit number issued by the Australian authorities. This number allows you to be registered with the Australian Tax Office (ATO). It is an important part of your tax and super records as well as your identity, so keep it secure. You must provide this number to your employer in order to work legally in Australia.

The number does not change and is assigned for life (it does not matter whether you change your name, visa, address, move interstate or go overseas, etc). You don’t have to have a TFN, but without one you pay more tax. You also won’t be able to apply for government benefits, lodge your tax return electronically or get an Australian business number (ABN).

How to get a TFN?

The TFN can be obtained by applying online at the Australian Tax Office (ATO) website. It is free of cost. Following your request, you will receive a reference number that you can use while waiting to receive your final TFN. It will be sent within 28 days to the postal address provided in your application.

ATO Website :

What are the Documents required for the application?

  • your passport;
  • a postal address in Australia;
  • an Australian telephone number;
  • a valid email address.

To apply for a TFN will depend on your circumstances: (choose appropriate option)

Now you must fill out the form online

Once the ATO has processed your application, they will send a TFN notification letter to the Australian postal address you have provided.