What is the ABR?
All businesses with an ABN are listed on the ABR.
What’s on the ABR?
The information available on the ABR is limited as follows:
- Entity Name – The name of the entity,
- ABN Status – Active or not + history of dates,
- Entity Type – Company; trust; individual; or partnership,
- GST Status – Active or not + history of dates,
- Main Business Location – State and postcode only,
- Business Name – Direct link to ASIC’s business names register where appropriate,
- ASIC Registrations – Direct link to ASIC for corporate registrations if applicable.
Business names were to be removed from the ABR in November 2018. The November 2018 deadline has been extended to October 2023. Accordingly, where applicable, associated business names will no longer show on the ABR after October 2023.
How to update the ABR?
A change to ABN or GST status will automatically update the ABR. ABN holders can update details on the ABR directly. Alternatively, most accountants/registered tax agents can register or update ABN’s and associated details.
Why check the ABR?
Although the amount of information on the ABR is limited, it can reveal important information about businesses as follows:
- For suppliers with a valid ABN, you can also how long it has been operating;
- If a supplier is a Pty Ltd company, you can link directly to ASIC’s register to check their corporate status.
- Where a supplier charges GST, you can check their GST status. Accordingly, a supplier who is not GST registered could be overcharging on their invoice.
- When a supplier is not GST registered, you can not claim a GST credit from that invoice.
The ABN Lookup served over 1.1 billion searches in the ten months before this post. Accordingly, the ABR can be a useful tool.