How to Transfer a Business Name?

How to Transfer a Business Name?

Friday, August 27, 2021

how to transfer a business name

There are plenty of reasons why you might need to know how to transfer a business name with a transfer number. Whether you’ve sold your small business, bought an existing business, you’re adding or removing a partner from the business or you’re switching your structure from a sole trader to a company, you’ll need to transfer the business name to match the appropriate ABNs.

So, here we have a brief overview of the basics of how to transfer a business name. Let’s get started.

Can a business name be transferred?

Yes, a business name can be transferred from one ABN to another using a simple process through ASIC Connect.

A few reasons why you might need to transfer business name registration include:

  • The person or organisation who holds your business name changes
  • You have sold your business
  • You have bought a business
  • You’re passing on the name of your business to a friend or family member
  • You’re forming a partnership under your current business name by adding an additional ABN to the business name
  • One of your partners has left the business and is being replaced 
  • A partner in a joint venture has left the business while two or more partners remain
  • A partner in a joint venture has left the business while only one partner remains
  • You want to change your business structure from a sole trader to a company

In all of the above cases, you’ll need to transfer your business name to the appropriate ABN(s). 

However, if your business name is under a partnership structure and your business allows for the change of partners, you may not need to transfer the business name. Instead, you can complete an “add/remove partner” transaction and use the “change holder details” feature when you update your partnership name.

change ownership of business name

How much does it cost to transfer a business name?

For the new business owner, it costs $37 to register the business name under their ABN for one year and $88 to register the business name for three years.

There is no cost to the former owner of a business name to make the transfer. However, the new business owner will need to essentially re-register the business name under their ABN which costs the same as registering a business name from scratch.

Keep in mind, you can register a business name and pay for the registration fee later by using the ‘Pay Later’ option. You will then receive an invoice which is sent to your email address and will be payable at a later date.

How do I transfer a business name to a new ABN?

To change ownership of business name, you’ll need to go through a two-step process via ASIC Connect involving both the current owner and new owner of the business.

Firstly, the current owner needs to submit a transfer request.
Secondly, the new owner uses this transfer number to make a new business name registration.

How To Transfer A Business Name:

Step 1: The current owner needs to submit a transfer request. To do so, you’ll need to:

  1. Go to the ASIC Connect website and log into or create your account.
  2. Use your ASIC Key to link your business name.
  3. Select the tab for ‘Lodgements & Notifications’ and double-check that your business email address is correct as you will need it to complete the transfer.
  4. Select the business name you’d like to transfer.
  5. Select ‘Cancel/Transfer’ as the transaction you’d like to complete and select ‘Go’.
  6. Select ‘I would like to transfer the business name’ and select ‘Next’.
  7. Review your selections.
  8. Complete your declarations.
  9. Review your confirmation.

Within 24 hours after completing these steps, you’ll receive an email with a 13-digit transfer number. This is the number you’ll give to the new business owner as they’ll need it to register the business name under their ABN. Then, after 28 days, your ownership of the business name will have been cancelled and transferred to the new owner.

Step 2: The next step in the process of how to transfer business name to new owner happens when the new owner uses this transfer number to make a new business name registration.

how do I register a business with a transfer number

How do I register a business name with a transfer number?

To register a business name with a transfer number, you’ll need to obtain the business name transfer number from the previous owner and start a business name registration through ASIC Connect.

How to Register a Business Name with a Transfer Number

You can make a transfer of registration of business name using a transfer number by following these steps:

  1. Go to the ASIC Connect website and log into or create your account.
  2. Select the tab for ‘Licences & Registrations’, select ‘Business Name Registration’ from the drop-down and select ‘Go’.
  3. Tick the box to show that you’ve read the ‘Things to be aware of’ information and select ‘Get Started’.
  4. Select either an ABN or ABN registration number to begin the process, enter the relevant information and select ‘Next’.
  5. Enter the business name that is being transferred and select ‘Check Availability’.
  6. At this stage, enter the transfer number you received from the previous owner.
  7. Select the registration period you prefer (either one year or three years) and select ‘Next’.
  8. Enter the new business name owner details and select ‘Next’.
  9. Provide an address to serve as the principal place of business or edit the existing address listed.
  10. Read the eligibility criteria and tick the appropriate boxes. 
  11. Review your submission and select ‘Submit’.
  12. Read the declaration and agree to the terms by ticking the boxes.
  13. Submit payment either by credit card or BPAY.
  14. Review your confirmation.

How to Transfer a Business Name from a Sole Trader to a Company

Going from a sole trader to a company can benefit small businesses in terms of tax brackets and benefits. To do so, you should complete a business name transfer using the same steps listed above as laid out by the ASIC. 

When you start a company, you’ll receive a new ABN that’s separate from your sole trader ABN. Therefore, the process is the same as transferring your business name from one ABN to another, although your business structure behind the scenes may have barely changed.

Keep in mind, you may want to cancel your sole trader ABN if you’ve made the transfer from a sole trader to a company.

how to transfer a business name from a sole trader to a company

All in all, it’s not all that complicated to figure out how to transfer a business name, especially considering the easy step-by-step process offered by ASIC Connect. It only requires a few simple steps to be completed by the former owner and the new owner.

To learn more about registering a business name and getting your small business off the ground, check out more of our business-related articles.

At Physio Inq, we have over 15 years’ experience in helping our Pinq Business Partners source, purchase and run Physiotherapy businesses. There’s a reason why we Physio Inq won Franchise Network of the Year in 2020. Click to read more.

Contact us today to learn more! Reach out to our Pinq Partner Cultivator, James Appleton on james.a@physioinq.com.au or by phone on 0419 137 400.

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