Centrelink Customer Reference Number (CRN)

A Customer Reference Number (CRN) helps us identify your Centrelink record.

What is a CRN

A CRN is 9 numbers and ends with a letter. For example: 123 456 789A.

We give you a CRN when you prove your identity with us. It helps us identify your Centrelink record.

Your CRN stays the same for all Centrelink payments and services. We don’t delete your CRN, even if you stop getting a payment from us. This means you’ll have one if you got a payment from us as a child.

You need your CRN when you do any of these:

How to know if you have a CRN

You’ll have a CRN if you’ve:

  • proven your identity with us in the past
  • ever got a Centrelink payment or service.

Where you can find your CRN

You’ll find your CRN on letters we’ve sent you or on your concession card, if you have one.

If you can’t find it or don’t know if you have one, you’ll need to prove your identity with us. Follow the steps to get a CRN and we’ll check our records.

How to get a CRN

You only need a CRN if you want to claim Centrelink payments or services.

The quickest way to get a CRN is with myGov. To start you need a myGov account. If you don’t have one, you can create one. Once you’ve created your myGov account, follow these steps to prove your identity online and get a CRN.

  1. Sign in to myGov.
  2. Select Apply for support in the Government support for Coronavirus alert.
  3. Select I need a CRN.
  4. Follow the prompts to enter your identity details to prove who you are.

    You’ll need one of these documents:

    • Australian birth certificate
    • Australian citizenship certificate
    • current Australian passport
    • Australian visa.

    You’ll also need one of these documents:

  5. Enter details from your Medicare card.
  6. Enter some personal details.

    myGov will share this information with us to check if you have a CRN. If we find a CRN record, you need to answer some questions to make sure the record is yours. If we don’t find a CRN, we’ll give you one.

  7. Your new Centrelink online account will link to your myGov account.
  8. You’re now ready to claim a Centrelink payment using your Centrelink online account through myGov. Before you can submit your claim, you’ll need to visit a service centre to complete our identity requirements. You’ll need to give us an acceptable photo identity document, as well as any other documents we may ask for.

If you can’t get a CRN online, you can call us to prove your identity over the phone. We can then give you a CRN and the information you need to claim a payment.

What a Customer Access Number (CAN) is

We may have given you a Customer Access Number (CAN) to identify you. We don’t issue CAN’s any more, but we can still use it to recognise your record. It may also be the same number as your CRN.

If your CAN and CRN are different numbers you should use your:

If you already have an online account, you can use your CAN and password to link it to myGov. Just sign in to myGov and follow the prompts to link Centrelink, and enter your CAN and password when asked.

Page last updated: 10 December 2021