Registering a business and other admin tasks
After all the excitement of deciding to start a business, you’ll have some paperwork to do. These first tasks as a business owner won’t be the most fun, but they’ll help keep you out of trouble with the law.
How to register a business with the government
You have a few official steps to walk through before you’re in business:
Register a business name
Unless you’re trading under your personal name, you’ll need to register a business name. You can do this through the Business Registration Service.
Get an Australian Business Number (ABN)
An ABN is a quick way to identify your business to the government and the tax office. Put it on your invoices to ensure customers don’t withhold pay-as-you-go tax from the amount they pay you. You can apply for an ABN through the Business Registration Service.
Apply for licences and permits
You may need special authority for certain business activities, such as running a business from home or employing people. Some industries have very specific requirements. Find out what you need from the Australian Business Licence and Information Service.
Where to get help
If you’re unsure of your obligations to the government, there are people who can help. Look for industry associations for your type of business, search around for a Chamber of Commerce and other local business advocacy groups, find businesses like yours and ask the owners what regulations they have to comply with, or simply speak to a local accountant.