InFocus April 2019 - Volume 28 Issue 3

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ASIC registered agent compliance program – are you meeting your obligations?

In October 2018, ASIC introduced terms and conditions to the registration of ASIC registered agents. The ASIC Registered Agent Terms & Conditions (T&Cs) govern use of ASIC registry services. They describe the rights and responsibilities of being a registered agent and include:

  • eligibility criteria to be a registered agent
  • grounds on which ASIC may cancel a registered agent status
  • requirements around lodging documents and lodging online, and 
  • expectations of registered agents lodging on behalf of a company

New registered agents are required to accept the terms and conditions when applying.

When we introduced the T&Cs we had an existing population of over 27,000 agents. Throughout a transition period:

  • over 21,000 registered agents have read and accepted the T&Cs
  • over 5,000 registered agents have had their agent status cancelled, many initiated by ASIC due to lack of lodgement activity.

A compliance program is now underway to identify agents who do not meet the requirements outlined in the T&Cs. We have commenced targeted cancellation of registered agents who do not meet their obligations under the T&Cs, or who are ineligible to be an agent under our new framework.

For more information about the T&Cs, visit our website.

If you have a question about the T&Cs, send it to

Answers to our common business names questions

Can I change my business name after it's registered?

Unfortunately, you can't change a business name once it is registered.

It doesn't matter how big or small the change is, you will need to register a new business name and cancel the old one.

Find out how to register a new business name.

Can I change the holder of my business name?

Yes, you can change the holder of a business name once it’s registered.

To change the holder of a business name, you must complete a business name transfer. You cannot change the holder of a business name by updating the holder details.

To complete a business name transfer, you will need to:

  • log in to your ASIC Connect account and make sure your business name is linked to the account.
  • once you’re logged in, select the 'Lodgements & Notifications' tab at the top of the screen.
  • then select the radio button next to the business name you wish to transfer and select 'Cancel/Transfer Business Name' to start the transaction.

Follow the step by step guide on our website.

After completing this transaction, a transfer number will be sent to the business email address.

If no email is recorded, we will send the transfer number to the address for service of documents.

You will need to provide this number to the new business name owner, so they can register the business name.

Additional business name owners (including partners and any other representatives recorded on the Business Name Register) will also receive notification of the business name transfer.

Unsolicited communications with ASIC Registry customers

A reminder to ASIC Registered Agents and private service providers (PSP) that where you send mail to business name holders, offering your services in exchange for a service fee, you must comply with the relevant laws.

These include, but are not limited to;

It must be extremely clear that this communication is not from ASIC.

We do not endorse any type of unsolicited contact with business name holders by third parties (private service/corporate support providers, agents etc).

If we are concerned that any conduct is misleading or in breach of our terms and conditions or the relevant laws, we may take action to suspend or terminate access to our services.

ASIC Registry's quality management system recertified

Recently ASIC Registry's quality management system was recertified (under the ISO9001:2015 standard). The achievement reflects our ongoing commitment to improve our services for you.

ASIC Registry uses the standard to demonstrate our ability to provide products and services that meet customer and regulatory requirements.

These products and services have:

1. a strong customer focus,

2. an eye on process improvement, and;

3. a sound understanding of the value in documenting all interactions.

The certification audit was conducted in February 2019 by Bureau Veritas - a global leader in inspection, quality and testing services.

Rosanne Bell, Executive Director remarked:

“This recertification is an important milestone for Registry, as it supports our ongoing commitment to quality customer service and improving how we work. We are proud that our quality management system is benchmarked against an internationally recognised standard.”

Industry funding update

ASIC has published details on how it allocated its regulatory costs for the 2017-18 financial year, as well as estimated levies for next year as part of its draft Cost Recovery Implementation Statement (CRIS).

The CRIS is a detailed document that outlines the actual expenses ASIC incurred in the 2017–18 financial year, with an explanation of any cost variances.

To help industry plan, it also includes a forecast of how ASIC will allocate its regulatory costs to each subsector in the 2018-19 financial year.

Industry are able to provide feedback on the CRIS up until 26 April 2019 which ASIC will consider before publishing the final CRIS in May 2019.

The indicative levies published in the CRIS are based on ASIC's budgeted regulatory costs and the amounts are likely to change when ASIC’s regulatory costs are known and published in December 2019.

Industry funding invoices to recover ASIC’s 2018-19 financial year regulatory costs will be issued in January 2020. 

Links we like

Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) to accept financial complaints dating back to 1 January 2008 –

On 20 February 2019, The Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) welcomed the Government’s announcement to extend AFCA’s remit to review eligible financial complaints dating back to 1 January 2008.

For more information

Consumers and small business can lodge a complaint with AFCA online at, via email at or by phone 1800 931 678

Phoenix taskforce –

The Phoenix Taskforce provides a whole-of-government approach to combatting illegal phoenix activity.
We are a part of the Phoenix Taskforce, which comprises 33 other Federal, State and Territory government agencies, including the ATO, Department of Jobs and Small Business, and the Fair Work Ombudsman.

Watch the ATO’s video and find out more about the Phoenix taskforce here

Single touch payroll (STP) –

STP changes the way employers report their employees' tax and super information to the ATO.

Read more

Personal Property Securities Register (PPSR) business guide booklet –

An important guide for businesses, their accountants, financial advisers and lawyers.

Read the business guide

Last updated: 16/05/2019 10:44