On December 12, 2023

Business Information Sheet – myGovID, RAM, and Client–Agent Linking

myGovID, RAM, and Client–Agent Linking

How to set up myGovID, a business in Relationship Authorisation Manager(RAM) and authorise a Tax or BAS Agent to work with the ATO.

Client–Agent Linking: What Business Owners Need to Do

Note: If a Business is seeking to appoint a new Agent, follow this process. If a business continues to work with their existing Agent/s, they should not need to do the following.

Starting from the 13th of November 2023, all entities possessing an Australian Business Number (ABN), except for sole traders, will have to nominate a new Tax or BAS Agent in ATO Online Services for Business before that Agent is allowed to access ATO information. Nothing should change or be required for existing Agents.

For those who are already using Online Services for Business, log in and make an agent selection through the agent details tab and follow the instructions below.

If the business is new to Online Services, there are additional steps to follow (see below). This includes obtaining a myGovID to establish the owners personal digital identity and to access the system.

Using ATO Online Services to Nominate an Agent


ICB recommends printing out the linking steps from the link below:
See Online services for business – Client-agent linking steps

Getting Started in Online Services for Business (OSfB)

Getting started on OSfB requires creating a personal digital identity (myGovID).

Then the appropriate Individuals in the business need to be authorised representatives, which can be managed using the Relationship Authorisation Manager (RAM).

What is myGovID?

  • myGovID is the Australian Government’s Digital Identity app.
  • myGovID is used to access various government online services, like myGov and Online Services for Business.


Setting up myGovID – Step by Step

  1. Download the myGovID app from the App Store or Google Play Store.
  2. Enter personal details, including name, date of birth, and personal email address.
  3. Choose identity strength, which can be basic, standard, or strong.
  4. Provide the required proof of identity documents.

What is RAM?

The Relationship Authorisation Manager (RAM) allows entities to manage who can act on their behalf when interacting with various government online services and agencies.

Linking to a Business in RAM

To access services on behalf of a business, one needs to link their myGovID to the business’s Australian business number (ABN) in RAM. The process depends on the individual’s role within the business.

The principal authority (as listed in the ABN register) is the first to link the business in RAM, and once this link is established, others can be authorised to act on the business’s behalf.

The principal authority requires a myGovID with a strong identity.

Setting up RAM – Step by Step

  1. myGovID Login: Create or log in to myGovID.
  2. Access RAM: Visit info.authorisationmanager.gov.au and log in using the myGovID credentials.
  3. Add Your Business: Inside RAM, the user is required to add their business by providing the Australian Business Number (ABN) or Australian Company Number (ACN) and other business details.
  4. Link Authorising Representatives: Once the business is added, individuals or entities can be linked as authorising representatives.
  5. Select the Appropriate Permissions: The user needs to specify the permissions or tasks that these representatives are authorised to perform on behalf of the business.
  6. Submit the Request: After setting up the permissions, the user submits the request. RAM then notifies the linked representatives, and they must accept the authorisation.
  7. Manage Your Linked Representatives: At any point, the user can use RAM to add, remove, or modify authorising representatives.
  8. Notification and Approval Process: Linked representatives receive a notification via email or SMS and must accept the authorisation request. Once they accept, the process is complete.


If an ABN is unable to be found in RAM after using the “Link my business” option:

  • The information in the Australian Business Register (ABR) isn’t up to date. For example, the business name might not match the name in myGovID, or the individual is not listed as the responsible person for the business. To fix this, get in touch with the ABR.
  • If an ABN is linked to a trust, charity, non-profit, or government entity, the individual might not be listed as an individual associate in the ABR. In this case, contact RAM support to connect the ABN.
  • In cases requiring “Strong Identity Strength”, the primary authority, as listed in the Australian Business Register (ABR) for the ABN, must possess a myGovID with “Strong” strength to establish the link with the ABN using RAM. If achieving this “Strong” strength is not feasible, the user is advised to contact RAM support for assistance. Support can be sought by visiting RAM’s Help: Managing business links page.

How to Nominate an Agent Using OSfB

Tax or BAS Agent should advise business owners of the following:

  • Their registered agent number (RAN) and practice name.
    This information will assist the business owner in locating the agent within OSfB.

Clients and Business Owners will see the new agent nomination feature in OSfB, and must nominate their agent before the agent can add the client to their client list. If a business is already represented by an agent and they don’t make changes, they won’t need to do anything.

Once a nomination has been submitted, notify the nominated agent that:

  • They are authorised to add your business or organisation as a client, or add additional tax accounts.
  • The nomination is active for 28 calendar days.

Important Note:
The agent authorised will not receive a notification about the nomination, so it’s crucial that all business owners advise their nominated agent when the nomination has been submitted. The best advice would be to send a screenshot via email.

For more information on linking instructions, see the ATO website:

A Note About Online Services for Agents (OSfA)

Tax Agents and BAS Agents can both be in OSfA for the same client, but BAS Agents often get removed.

Tax Agents primarily focus on income tax matters, while BAS Agents specialise in assisting with the lodgement of BAS and other related reporting requirements for businesses. Both agents can be authorised to act on behalf of a client in the Online Services for Agents (OSfA) system.

While Tax Agents have the authority to manage access to the OSfA system for their clients, it’s crucial for them to be aware of the implications of removing an appointed BAS Agent. Encourage the Tax Agent to be cautious and ensure that they do not inadvertently remove the BAS Agent’s access.

If the Tax Agent inadvertently removes the BAS Agent, then the nomination process will need to be redone.

What’s the Problem?

If a Tax Agent mistakenly removes an appointed BAS Agent from the OSfA system, it can have significant consequences. When Tax Agents keep removing a BAS Agent’s client from the BAS Agent’s client list with the ATO OSfA, the BAS Agent does not then have access to that client and cannot submit BAS, STP reports and other reports to the ATO, nor gain access through the OSfA.

What’s the Solution?

Tax Agents should be appointed to the “Income Tax” account, and that gives them access to everything. The Tax Agent does not need to appoint themself to the Activity Statement Account. This is a double-up. When a BAS Agent is appointed to the Activity Statement Account, it does not limit any aspect of what the Tax Agent can do. It gives a BAS Agent access to the features that are appropriate for BAS Agents.

Using Agent Access to OSfB

In certain scenarios, the BAS Agent may find it necessary to access the business owner’s Online Services for Business (OSfB). This access is primarily needed for obtaining SGC Statements. To facilitate this, business owners have the option to designate you as an authorised user of their OSfB account.

To initiate this process, business owners should log in to their OSfB account and follow the steps provided below.

Important: ICB suggests that BAS Agents should have their “user” profile within OSfB for that business removed at the earliest suitable opportunity.

Note: BAS Agents will then receive a message to accept the appointment as a user in their entity.

© The Institute of Certified Bookkeepers

  • By Jennifer Lawrence  0 Comments