As conveyancers and lawyers across NSW find themselves subject to random eConveyancing audits, we help explore some of the issues and what you can do to avoid them.

The top two areas where practitioners struggle to meet their regulatory obligations are when filling out the Client Authorisation Form and verifying a client’s identity.

As of July 2019, an analysis of ‘unsatisfactory’ results published by the Office of the Registrar General shows where errors commonly occur.

Client Authorisation makes up 62% of total mistakes and Verification of Identity (VOI) is responsible for 15%.

The good news is that compliance in these areas, is easy to achieve – here are six tips for completing Client Authorisations:

1. Use the correct legal name

Check the name and capacity of the person/s signing are accurate. For example, if the client name is a Pty Ltd company, the person signing the form would be described as ‘Director’.
This person also requires a VOI.

2. Be aware of rules for Standing Authorities

For developer clients, it’s common to use Standing Authorities. Where the developer has used multiple entities for different lots, ensure you hold a separate CA for each entity.

3. Check there are no blanks

No fields should be left unfilled. Common errors are leaving off your firm’s details, not ticking all the type/s of authorised dealings and not using the correct date.

4. Use the latest form

The latest CA has the details and signatures contained on one A4 page. Make sure your firm is using the current version of the Client Authorisation Form.

5. Retain an electronic copy

There is no requirement to retain an original wet inked signed CA – refer to MPR Guidance Note #1. Keeping an electronic copy is enough to satisfy the seven-year record retention. It also supports NSW firms going paperless.

6. Undertake Verification of Identity at the same time

Take reasonable steps to ensure the person signing the CA is your client or client representative. To achieve this, ARNECC recommends that VOI occurs when the client signs the CA – refer to MPR Guidance Note #1.

Improve workflow and satisfy auditors with ZipID

Conveyancers and lawyers who have adopted ZipID have found it to be an efficient way to develop professional and secure processes around Client Authorisation and VOI. Don’t risk errors
and non-compliance through manual handling or by using Identity Agents that don’t consistently deliver. ZipID generates consistent and compliant reports every time, guaranteed.

ZipID’s Mobile App turns your mobile phone or tablet into a secure, on-rails compliance tool. No ID documents are stored on your phone.

ZipID Agency Service offers your clients the convenience of completing all the documentation at their home or work with one of our trained mobile representatives.

All our Reports are guaranteed. For any errors we make, we’ll refund your client and do it again for FREE.

To find out more, contact the ZipID friendly customer service team at [email protected] or 1300 073 744.