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My daughter has been tricked by the Ad that came up first in google when she went to apply for a TFN.

She has entered details and paid money to taxfilenumber.org to get a TFN.

I'm feeling really anoyed and stupid.

Does anyone know anything about this site? The ABN and ACN indicate it should be a registered tax agent and hopefully is still a pathway to get the TFN and we just have to suck up the loss of money.

I have blocked the credit card for the moment to be sure. Any words of wisdom? or experience with this sort of thing?

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ATO Certified

Moderator

Replies 1

Hi @chrissy49,

 

Thanks for getting in contact to check this with us, we’re sorry to hear about your daughter's experience. We have looked into it and we can confirm this tax agent is registered with the Tax Practitioners Board and is a legitimate tax agent. If you don’t receive your Tax File Number or have concerns regarding your daughter’s personal details you can lodge a complaint with the Tax Practitioners Board and they can investigate further.

 

Tax file numbers are available for free through the ATO however tax professionals are also able to provide this service to their clients at a cost.  

 

Please let us know if you have any other questions or concerns. Thanks @NateH

15 REPLIES 15

Community Manager

Replies 0

Hi @chrissy49 

 

I’m sorry to hear this was a confusing experience for your daughter. 

 

I personally haven’t heard of this service before, so I will need to look into it further tomorrow. We’ll be back in touch tomorrow. 

 

In the meantime hopefully someone in the Community can share their experiences. 

 

 

Best answer

ATO Certified

Moderator

Replies 1

Hi @chrissy49,

 

Thanks for getting in contact to check this with us, we’re sorry to hear about your daughter's experience. We have looked into it and we can confirm this tax agent is registered with the Tax Practitioners Board and is a legitimate tax agent. If you don’t receive your Tax File Number or have concerns regarding your daughter’s personal details you can lodge a complaint with the Tax Practitioners Board and they can investigate further.

 

Tax file numbers are available for free through the ATO however tax professionals are also able to provide this service to their clients at a cost.  

 

Please let us know if you have any other questions or concerns. Thanks @NateH

Initiate

Replies 0

While taxfilenumber.org may be run by a legitimate tax agent, the site is designed  to take advantage of and exploit people unaware of the official free TFN application process. 

 

The site and their google ad placement is deceptive and implies that they are part of the official process to apply for a TFN and charge $99 for something that you can do for free. 

 

Their home page says they offer the below:

Once submitted, your application will be analized (sic!) by a dedicated tax agent. If the provided information matches the official requirements, you may expect to receive your Tax File Number within fourteen working days.

 

You don’t receive a taxfile number from them, you get emailed a PDF application from Auspost that you can get for free yourself.  They offer nothing to the process that you cant do your self.

 

The transaction is done in Bulgarian  - not exactly the hallmarks of a legitimate AU operation.

 

I hesitate to use the word scam but that site should most definitely not have any endorsement from an “ATO certified” contributor.

Community Support

Replies 1

Hi @Astraea,

 

Thanks for providing your feedback.

 

When we mark a response as 'ATO-Certified', it means that response provided contains the best possible information to answer the question, it's clear and easy to read and contains useful links to content on our website.

 

We don't endorse taxfilenumber.org, as an individual can apply for a TFN directly with us free of charge. We're just letting readers know that the site is registered with the Tax Practitioners Board and what they can do if they don’t receive their TFN within the standard time frame.

 

Thanks for getting touch, JodieH.

 

Initiate

Replies 0

Thanks  JodieH

 

I appreciate and understand that response simply states the facts correctly and remains neutral however the 'ATO-Certified' answer is out of context to the situation and gives tacit approval to what could possibly be described a scam.

 

If someone has an existing tax agent and asked them for help applying for a TFN then the  'ATO-Certified' response would be highly appropriate and being charged for such a service would be fair.

 

This isn’t what’s happening here. The context of taxfilenumber.org business model is to appear to be an official channel to apply for a TFN and to charge for a free service.

  •  They appear number 1 in the paid google results when searching for “Apply for Tax File Number”
  • Everything about their site gives the impression they are part of an official TFN application process
  • They charge people $99 for something that can be done in 2 minutes for free.
  • Transactions are taken from you credit card in Bulgarian currency

 

Nothing they do is actual illegal (maybe) but I strongly feel that the ATO should not give any inferred approval of them.

Moderator

Replies 0

Hi @Astraea,

 

When certifying our answer we are signalling that the agent in question was registered with the Tax Practitioners Board as the original poster was concerned about their daughter’s personal information and their financial details being compromised.

 

If you are concerned about the practices of this tax agent then a complaint can be lodged with the Tax Practitioners Board which is the regulatory authority for tax agents.

 

Thanks, NateH

 

Newbie

Replies 3

The website is taxfilenumber.org or TFN Australia. The telephone goes straight to msg bank. They have not replied to numerous emails regarding this mistake. Frustrated!

Community Manager

Replies 2

Hi @Jodie_nugent,

 

We have commented on your other post.

 

Thanks

 

KylieS

Newbie

Replies 1

Hi. I'm wondering - Is the ATO talking with the ACCC about this online ATN "industry"?  My own daughter was today charged money by this company for a TFN, thinking it was free. I am her carer for Centrelink: she is very vulnerable. I want to get her money back, but, no phone number for a registered tax agent? That's odd. On a site that doesn’t offer tax agent services, just TFNs for money. Three of the parent company's five business names strongly suggest a focus on providing TFNs for money. Another appears inactive.

TFN charging sites are at the top when you google "tax file number". Look at the structure and content of the sites and follow the processes for getting a TFN while reading what the ACCC says about "False or misleading statements" [link below]. Price info, terms & conditions, fine print, overall (in)accurate impression: many potential issues, something is not right! And my daughter's  transaction processed offshore, not AU but BLG (Bulgaria?) by an Australian company registered in NSW while itsT&Cs say Queensland law applies to transactions? Thanks.      https://www.accc.gov.au/business/advertising-promoting-your-business/false-or-misleading-statements

 

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