ABN’s and ACNC Status for Playgroups

Playgroup WA Statement 

Attention Playgroups with an active ABN, are you aware of the changes in reporting requirements? From the 2023-24 income year, non-charitable not-for-profits (including Playgroups) with an active ABN need to lodge an annual return. 

Not sure if you have an ABN? Your playgroup could have an ABN without knowing it, if a previous committee member made the application. The ATO has sent out advice to ABN holders, however this will go to the original authorised user, so some groups may not be aware of their obligations. We suggest all groups do an online search here to check if their group has an ABN registered in their name: https://abr.business.gov.au/ 

From the 1st July 2024, non-charitable not-for-profit groups with a registered ABN need to lodge an annual self-review return to the Australian Tax Department confirming their income tax exemption status. Incorporated groups that are eligible for ACNC Registration are expected to complete registration with the ACNC.  

Playgroups who hold an ABN will be required to do one of three actions: 

  1. Cancel their ABN 
  2. Apply for ACNC status (only eligible if already an Incorporated group) 
  3. Submit the annual self-review return to the ATO each year. 

If you hold an ABN and are NOT Incorporated, we strongly recommend that you consider the purpose for holding your ABN and whether your group requires it.  

There may be different reasons for having an ABN as an unincorporated group for example: 

  1. Some banks may have required it to open an account. 
  2. Playgroups may have been undertaking a wider range of activities when the ABN was applied for. 
  3. Some fundraising activities and grant activities require an ABN. 

The most common reason for having an ABN appears to be the type of bank account a playgroup holds. Playgroups do have the option of changing accounts or banks if this is the case. 

Please note that Playgroup WA can auspice many activities such as grants, that require an ABN. 

Playgroups that are operating a range of activities may wish to seek independent financial advice about their options. 

To assist playgroups to make the decision about which action to take, the Australian Tax Office has provided the following advice on their website:  


Or you can contact the ATO’s Not-for-profit Infoline on 1300 130 248. 8:00 am to 6:00 pm Monday to Friday AEST 

Actions Required: 

Playgroup WA is in discussion with ACNC about a streamlined registration process for incorporated playgroups. We will provide updates as received. 



The ATO’s 45-minute webinar New reporting requirements for not-for-profits outlines everything you need to know to get ready to lodge your NFP self-review return from 1 July.  


For any further information, questions or concerns, contact the ATO Not-for-profit Infoline on 1300 130 248 or visit the ATO website