Selling your property Think before you go overseas


Congratulations, you have found a purchaser to buy your property. You’re thinking, that’s great, the hard work is done, now to go overseas for a holiday as your solicitor / conveyancer has it all under control. Just before you do, you might want to consider the following.

As you may or may not be aware, on 1 July 2012, Landgate introduced the practice of verification of identification (VOI), with full compliance by 2 January 2013. The VOI practice was designed to reduce fraud as a result of identity theft and other improper dealings with land.

If you are overseas when it comes to performing VOI for the purposes of transferring land, it can often prove to be difficult, as well as costly to attend at an Australian Consular Office.

Further, there are associated costs to have your signature witnessed and certifying a copy of a document or part of a document. For example, in the UK, the respective costs are $AUD 20 per signature witnessed and $AUD 30 per certified document.

If that isn’t enough, you will also need to bring to the Australian Consular Office the following current and original documents:

  • A rates notice issued by the local authority for the property (or a letter from the relevant local authority stating the name of the land owner(s) as recorded on the local authority records; and  

  • A passport (or a birth certificate will be accepted if a passport has not been issued); and

  • A driver’s licence (or other equivalent photographic identification issued by a government body).

Unfortunately, you have no choice but to attend at an Australian Consular Office for the purposes of signing and performing the VOI as required by Landgate. If you fail to do so, settlement will not proceed and any delay outside the usual 3 day grace period could attract penalty interest.

You should always discuss any overseas travel plans with your solicitor / conveyancer prior to leaving so arrangements can be made in advance to sign the transfer of land document and complete VOI. That way you can enjoy your overseas holiday safe in the knowledge that settlement can proceed on time.

For further information contact Murfett Legal by emailing one of the following directors:

Jason De Silva (Director):     [email protected]
Kelly Parker  (Director):       [email protected]
Peter Broun  (Director):       [email protected]

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