The Australian Business Number (ABN) is a crucial 11-digit identifier assigned by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) to businesses operating within Australia. Canceling your ABN is necessary when you cease trading or no longer meet the requirements for holding an ABN.

To help you cancel your ABN correctly, we’ve prepared a detailed guide on how to cancel your ABN correctly. Read on!

Understanding ABN

An Australian Business Number, or ABN, is an 11-digit identifier issued by the Australian Government to businesses. This number plays a crucial role in identifying your business for government and business-to-business interactions.

Your ABN is critical for running your business effectively and staying compliant. You would require your ABN for processing different kinds of business functions, like:

  • Ordering, paying, and invoicing
  • Avoiding PAYG payments tax
  • Getting energy grant credits
  • Claiming GST credits
  • Purchasing an AU domain name

If you are unaware of your ABN number, you can find it on the website (ABN lookup). You simply need to enter some critical details about your credentials, and you will have your ABN displayed on the site.

Adding your ABN: Australian Business Number | SAcommunity - Connecting Up  Australia


Reasons to Cancel Your ABN

There are important reasons why you might consider canceling your Australian Business Number (ABN):

  • If you are closing your business permanently, it’s essential to cancel your ABN within 28 days of ceasing operations.
  • Canceling your ABN is necessary if you are making significant changes to your business structure or operations that no longer require an ABN.

In this regard, make sure you understand the process and considerations involved in canceling your ABN correctly. Also, ensure that you fulfill any outstanding tax obligations before canceling your ABN to avoid potential penalties or legal issues in the future.

Step-by-Step Process of Australian Business Number Cancellation

Here’s a step-by-step procedure on how to cancel your ABN:

Step 1: Identify the Requirement to Cancel Your ABN

The first step is to decide whether you should cancel your ABN or not.

You should cancel your ABN if:

  • You have sold or closed down your existing business
  • Your business is no longer operational in or connected to Australia
  • You plan to transfer ownership or sell it to a family member.
  • You have modified your business structure; for example, you have changed it from a sole proprietorship to a partnership. This is required as your ownership, legal, and taxation responsibilities change too. So, you must cancel your old ABN and get a new one.

Checking your ABR details online | ABR


It’s important to note that canceling your ABN is a serious decision that should be made after careful consideration of your business circumstances and legal obligations. So make sure you understand the implications and follow the correct steps for cancellation.

Step 2: Settle All Obligations

Remember that your ABN is not just an ordinary number, it is a critical link between your business and the government.

Government agencies like the Australian Taxation Office or ATO, refer to the ABN number for business tax compliances. So, before you disconnect the link, you must settle all outstanding matters with these agencies.

You must:

  • Submit all kinds of activity statements
  • Remove tax registrations like GST, luxury car tax, wine equalization tax, and fuel tax credits
  • File pending income tax returns and pay taxes you owe
  • Settle all GST payments and close your PayG account. If you cancel your ABN without closing your PAYG account, the Australian Business Register may inquire about unpaid employee tax withholdings.

You must carry on with the ABN cancellation process only after such formalities are done. This will result in the termination of any authorized relationships with myGovID linked to your ABN, which will eventually impact your access to critical digital services.


Step 3: Choose the Best Way to Cancel Your ABN

If you wish to cancel your ABN, you must notify the ABR. This should be done within a month (exactly 28 days of stopping business operations). If you’ve made any other changes to your business, you must update the details with the ABR within the same timeframe.

There are various ways in which you can cancel your ABN:

Cancel your ABN digitally

  • The quickest method is to use myGovID. Ensure your myGovID is linked to your ABN. Visit to cancel your registration online.
  • Alternatively, if you prefer assistance from experts, you can engage services from reputable providers like Crazy Domains.


Cancel your ABN Using your phone

If you are authorized to update ABN details and have your Tax File Number ready for identity verification, you can call the ABR to cancel your ABN. You can call between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. Monday through Friday. You can also speak to a tax expert for guidance.

Whatever method you choose, you must submit important forms with the ATO, including the “Application to Cancel Registration” form (NAT 2955).

If online cancellation isn’t feasible, you can call the ABR, lodge a form, or ask your tax agent. Before canceling your ABN, ensure all your obligations to government agencies are met.


Step 4: Change Your Records after Cancellation

After canceling your ABN, make sure that the changes are projected in government records.

Here’s what you need to do:

  • Modify your business records to reflect the cancellation.
  • Wait for confirmation from the ATO that your ABN cancellation has been processed successfully.
  • After receiving the confirmation, you can be sure that the ABN has been canceled.
  • After canceling your ABN, you can still apply to reactivate it.

Step 5: Reactivate Your ABN If Required

If you want to restart your business, you can reactivate your canceled ABN. You will have to go through a similar application process as when you first applied for your ABN.



Wrapping Up

Canceling your ABN is not just a formality; it is a critical action that should be taken when closing or changing your business. It involves careful consideration and several important actions to ensure compliance with government regulations.

Before deciding to cancel your ABN, assess various factors. Fulfill your obligations and save your business from the de-activation hassle. If you don’t follow the prescribed procedure, the ATO can cancel your ABN, harming your business reputation.

So, first, assess whether canceling your ABN is necessary. Then, follow the step-by-step process efficiently and adhere to regulatory norms.

Getting in touch with the professional team at Crazy Domains will help you with solutions related to ABN cancellation. The experts will help you keep your business compliant and ensure a smooth transition during the cancellation process.

Head over to their site for further details!