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Client Agent Linking in Online Services

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What is Client Agent Linking?

Client Agent Linking is an ATO initiative intended to improve security over client identity and limit OSFA (Online Services for Agents) fraud by agents, their employees, and other authorised persons. From November 13, 2023, if you want to engage a new BAS or Tax agent to act on your behalf, you will need to nominate them in your Online Services for Business. This is known as “Client-Agent Linking”.

Why is Secure Client Agent Linking Important?

The intended outcome of this new process is to reduce fraud and identity theft and improve data security. By strengthening the security of this process, all parties involved – including you, your agent, and the ATO, can have confidence that you, the client, and not a fraudulent person, have authorised an agent to act on your behalf. 

Rollout of Client Agent Linking Process

The ATO has implemented a phased rollout of the client-to-agent linking process. The following businesses and organisations are currently included in the rollout or will be soon:

  1. Public and multinational businesses who are part of the Top 100 and Top 1,000 – effective from 19 June 2022.
  2. Most public and multinational businesses – effective from 13 December 2022.
  3. Businesses in the Top 500 privately-owned wealthy groups, where that group has a significant level of ownership of the business – effective from 13 December 2022.
  4. Government entities – effective from 24 February 2023.
  5. All types of entities with an Australian Business Number (ABN) excluding sole traders – effective from 13 November 2023.

Please note that the client-to-agent linking process does not currently apply to individual taxpayers. However, from 13 November 2023, it will apply to all types of entities with an ABN, excluding sole traders.

Nominating a New Agent

When you intend to do either of the following, you need to nominate or link the agent. 

  1. Engage a new tax or BAS agent, or payroll service provider to represent you.
  2. Provide extra authorisation to your existing authorised agent, such as representing you for a new obligation like activity statements or a new entity in your group.

You can do this by using the new agent nomination feature in Online Services for Business (see the steps below).

Once you complete the agent nomination, you must let your agent know that you have nominated them as he/she will not receive any notification from the ATO. The agent will have 28 calendar days to add you to his/her client list in Online Services for Agents or Practice Software.

Steps to Nominate a New Agent

  1. From the Online Services for Business home page:
  2. Select Profile, then Agent details at the Agent nominations feature, and select Add
  3. On the Nominate agent screen, go to Search for an agent
  4. Type your agent’s (or payroll service provider’s) registered agent number (RAN) or practice name and select Search
  5. Select the agent you want to nominate (if multiple results are returned, select the correct agent)
  6. Check that the agent’s details are correct
  7. Complete the declaration by selecting Submit. You’ll now see your agent’s details listed under Agent Nominations.
  8. Let your agent know that you have nominated them!
  1. How to nominate an agent in online services for business (download)
  2. The agent nomination process explained
  3. Troubleshooting guide for agents
  4. How to set up myGovID
  5. Online services for businesses
  6. Relationship Authorisation Manager (RAM)
  7. Link your myGovID to your ABN
  8. For agents – think before you link!


The Client-to-Agent linking process strengthens security measures for you and your business, agents, and the ATO. It not only protects your business but also safeguards your sensitive information from fraudulent attempts and uses in identity theft. By following the steps to link to a new agent, you can embrace a more secure digital landscape for your business and your agent/s.

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