Property Exchange Australia (PEXA) (owned by government
agencies and a number of financial institutions), will in due
course enable lawyers, licenced conveyancers, regulated financiers
and government authorities (called 'subscribers') to lodge
data with the titles offices in each Australian state and territory
electronically, replacing paper documents.
E-conveyancing is essentially a process for settlement,
stamping and lodgement of property transactions electronically in a
Functionally e-conveyancing in some ways can be better
described as "e-settlements". The whole conveyancing
transaction will not be electronic, only the settlement part
including the electronic transfer of monies. This will mean that
the old practice of the parties' representatives each
physically attending a settlement where bank cheques and documents
are exchanged will no longer be required.
National laws for e-conveyancing are in place and "model
participation rules" have been introduced which set out
creating documents in an electronic environment
settling transactions in real time and for value
arranging for stamp duty to be paid
lodging and registering documents at the applicable titles
simultaneous notification to authorities like council, water
and land tax
Lawyers, conveyancers, financial institutions and government
authorities need to sign a participation agreement to be authorised
to join in e-conveyancing.
The four parties usually involved in a conveyancing transaction
(vendor outgoing, bank, purchaser and incoming bank) will need to
participate and be authorised to use the system before a
transaction can be completed electronically.
IMPLEMENTATION AUSTRALIA WIDE
E-conveyancing will be introduced in various states and
territories progressively over the next 2 years.
New South Wales is the first state in which fully functional
e-conveyancing (lodgement of documents and complete financial
settlement electronically) is being trialled in a few select
In early 2015 Victoria will go "live" with fully
functional e-conveyancing. Queensland will then follow and other
states and territories progressively after that.
Trust accounts need to be established and relationships between
participants and PEXA documented. IT systems need to link one with
the other and authority needs to be given to PEXA to debit the bank
accounts of participants.
All participants need to be verified and identified and give
authority to transact. New verification of identity requirements
(VOI) are being introduced progressively and can include production
of a passport and a drivers licence or other appropriate forms of
The old "manual" conveyancing system will continue to
be available for the time being and apply particularly where the
representative of one or other party is not a PEXA subscriber.
HUNT & HUNT AND E-CONVEYANCING
Hunt & Hunt has recently signed a participation agreement
with PEXA and we are investigating ways of satisfying the new
requirements for VOI.
Hunt & Hunt clients, whether developers, financial
institutions or private clients will benefit from our close
relationship with PEXA and understanding of the new e-conveyancing
regime. We are participating in the piloting of the scheme in
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