Registered foreign company
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What are your obligations as a foreign company in Australia?

A foreign company intending to carry on a business in Australia is generally required to register with ASIC as a ‘Registered Foreign Company’.

Registered foreign companies have the following ongoing obligations:

  • Maintain a registered office in Australia- which is open every business day from at least 10 am to 12 pm and 2 pm to 4 pm.
  • Have a representative of the company present at the registered office whenever it is open.
  • Display the company’s name and place of origin outside every place of business that is open to the public.
  • Display the company’s name and ARBN on all public documents. This includes negotiable instruments published or signed in the jurisdiction.
  • Appoint a local agent – the local agent is responsible for any obligations the company must meet and may be liable for any breaches or penalties.
  • Lodge an annual return at least once every calendar year and within one month after the date of the annual general meeting (AGM).
  • Lodge financial statements with ASIC at least once every calendar year.’
  • Notify ASIC of certain changes, including amendments to its constitution or any other lodged documents; its directors (including changes to the powers of Australian resident directors); and/or its local agent.

Steps to register a foreign company in Australia are:

  • Ensure the name you wish to register is available.
  • Complete ASIC Form 402 (Application for registration as a foreign company).
  • Include supporting documents.’
  • Lodge Form 402 with the fee and supporting documents with ASIC.
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