myGov: an explainer

I’m hearing a lot about "myGov" and how you need to register for it. What is myGov, do I need to register and why would I choose to do so?

In recent months, the federal government’s online portal “myGov” has been getting plenty of airtime in the media, with the primary driver being the introduction of the new “Single Touch Payroll” system. The myGov portal is the government’s way of bringing day to day interactions with the government into the modern era, and allows Australians to interact with the government online rather than using traditional means such as face to face contact, telephone calls and the lodgement of paper forms.

By registering for myGov, you can access services from a range of government agencies including:

  • Australian JobSearch
  • Australian Taxation Office (including lodgement of your tax return if preparing yourself)
  • Centrelink
  • Child Support
  • Department of Veterans' Affairs
  • HousingVic Online Services
  • Medicare
  • My Aged Care
  • My Health Record
  • National Disability Insurance Scheme
  • National Redress Scheme
  • State Revenue Office Victoria

To register you’ll just need to go to http://my.gov.au and follow the prompts to create an account. In order to complete this process, you’ll need to be able to provide information to verify your identity, and once registered you’ll then need to use two-factor authentication to sign in. This essentially means that as well as a username and password, you’ll also need a unique code from your smartphone to verify your identity.

Once registered, you can then choose to link up whichever government services are relevant to you, with some of the most common being the ATO, Centrelink (including Family Tax Benefit) and Medicare. While myGov doesn’t replace all interactions with the various government agencies, each agency is continually expanding the capabilities of the site and the tasks that you can complete through it.

While the service has been available for a number of years now, many taxpayers are yet to sign up. It is expected registrations will increase dramatically going forward as annual PAYG Payment Summaries are phased out in favour of the new “Income Statements” under the Single Touch Payroll changes. These income statements will only be available via myGov or by using a tax agent to prepare an income tax return, so if you haven’t yet registered and are planning on taking care of your own return then you might want to register today.

If you’d like to discuss myGov and how to get started, please contact your Findex adviser.