A Little Homesick
The Graduate Escape


Moving to Australia: TFN / Tax File Number

Everyone and everything that pays tax in Australia needs a tax file number. It's super easy to apply for and will help stop you being over-taxed by the government.

Anyone hoping to work in Australia will need to apply for their tax file number. I'm not sure how best to explain it other than it being kind of like a national insurance name and kind of like a taxation code. Basically, it helps the government ascertain how much to tax you and blah blah blah. Sorry, I did try to research it properly but it all went over my head. 

In simple terms: you'll need to give every employer your tax file number or you're going to be taxed an insane amount (kind of like emergency tax in the UK if you don't have your p60 or p45 handy).

How to apply?

Head on over to the Australian Taxation Office and fill out the correct form. It'll only take about 15 minutes to do and the questions aren't very . . . taxing eh eh eh

When to apply?

You can only apply once you're in Australia. I did try and be an Organised Olivia and apply before but it wouldn't let me. The site looks you up on the system and sees when you entered Australia, so no being a Sneaky Susan! You can, however, apply as soon as you enter the country - I applied for mine having been here only a few hours.

When will it arrive?

I've heard reports that your TFN will either arrive very quickly or very slowly. Some people say a week or two, others say weeks. I've been waiting for mine for a week so I'll keep you posted!

You'll also need an address for the card to be sent to. I'm sure most hostels will be happy for you to put their address, but you can always give the taxation office a ring if you move or the number doesn't arrive.

Tomorrow's exciting topic? The medicare card! If there's anything in particular you want to know about RE: moving to Australia, let me know in the comments below :)