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Immigration and ATO to share tax file numbers

Immigration and ATO to share tax file numbers

Belinda Wright discusses new legislation which will mean even greater scrutiny of a foreign worker’s right to be employed in Australia.

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Director, Immigration Services

KPMG Australia

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New legislation will mean even greater scrutiny of a foreign worker’s right to be employed in Australia.

Employers should be aware of the changes, which have the ability to identify sponsors who breach their obligations and visa holders who do not comply with their visa conditions.

The Migration and Other Legislation Amendment (Enhanced Integrity) Bill 2017 received Royal Assent on 31 August 2018, which allows the Department of Home Affairs (“Department”) to verify the tax file number (TFN) of an applicant, visa holder or former visa holder with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).

While the ATO and the Department have already begun a large-scale data-matching program to identify non-complying visa holders, the latest legislation change allows for greater data sharing between the two organisations and for the Department to collect and use TFN information.

Specifically, the Department can request TFNs from an individual and disclose this information to the ATO.

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