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Governance Institute calls for simplified business registers

Governance Institute has again called for the introduction of Director Identification Numbers (DIN), and extend it to company secretaries not only directors, in its submission on the Commonwealth Registers Bill 2018 and the Treasury Laws Amendment (Registries Modernisation and other Measures) Bill 2018 (the draft bills).

‘Failure to include company secretaries in the DIN regime will mean that there is a missing piece of the puzzle when it comes to company registers,’ says Meegan George, Acting Chief Executive at Governance Institute.

‘Company secretaries are frequently those with primary responsibility for dealing and communicating with ASIC and interacting with business registries. So it makes sense for company secretaries to have their identities verified and to be given a DIN,’ continued Ms George.

Governance Institute has also called for the time period in which a new director or company secretary has to apply for a DIN to be extended from the current period of 28 days to a period of 60 days.

‘The requirement to apply for a DIN is a new obligation which will take time for people to understand, particularly if you’re taking on the role of director for the very first time. The time for new directors to apply for a DIN is particularly short when compared to the 15-month period given for existing directors to apply,’ said Meegan George.

Governance Institute has been involved in consultation with Government and urges them to continue to work closely with stakeholders.

‘Business registers are an important part of Australia’s business infrastructure yet our members report significant inefficiencies and costs for users. Engagement on the practical aspects of modernising business registers would be very valuable to improve the user experience to support businesses in an evolving digital economy,’ concluded Meegan George.

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