TFN’s and Junior Workers

Home/Blog/TFN’s and Junior Workers

TFN’s and Junior Workers

Generally all adults have a Tax File Number (TFN), but what happens when you employ a junior?  Getting a TFN can be a bit of an onerous business and most 15 year olds don’t have one as soon as they decide to get a job.

The government advises that if you pay someone without a TFN or ABN you are required to take 46.5% Withholding out of their payment – what a pain and for a 15 on base wages, a lot of hassle for little money.

The good news is there is a special code you can enter into your payroll program for to keep things simple:

If you have a new payee who hasn’t given you a tfn declaration but 28 days hasn’t passed, use the code 111 111 111 (but keep watch on the 28 days!)

If Your payee is under 18 and earns less than $350 per week, $700 per fortnight or $1517 per month, simply use the code 333 333 333

If your payee is an Australian Government pensioner payee, use code 444 444 444

This will allow you to process payroll without having to worry about withholding tax pending the TFN application.

Now getting a tfn, that’s another matter entirely but according to the ATO it’s quite simple:

  1. Complete their online order form
  2. Print the summary which includes your application reference number and take it to a participating Australia post retail outlet for an interview (check this website to find participating outlets: )
  3. Take along your proof of identity documents, sign the form and Australia Post sends it to the ATO.

Apparently you can also do the same thing at Department of Human Services (Centrelink) or Department of Veterans Affairs offices as well.

I was always under the impression that High School offices played some role in this too but according to the ATO website that isn’t true. Who knows?

Photo via