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An Overview of the Conveyancing Act

The Conveyancing Licensing Act program specifies the requirements needed for conveyancers, professionals who do conveyancing work, including the legal task of document preparation or advice counseling regarding matters of a property, to become certified.


The act was created to provide regulation to conveyancers’ licensing. It lays down the obligations of conveyancers and the rules and requirements for getting a license. The department in charge of accrediting conveyancers is the Office of Fair Trading.


The applicant should be 18 years old and above and should hold a law degree or have completed a sanctioned course in conveyancing. In addition, the applicant should have practical training equivalent to one year and should have professional indemnity insurance policy coverage. These are just several of the requirements needed to become a licensed conveyancer.


Conveyancing Acts in Various States


In New South Wales, conveyancers are regulated by the Conveyancers Licensing Regulation 2006 and the Conveyancers Licensing Act 2003. In accordance with the regulation and legislation mentioned above, all conveyors should have a license in order to practice. Licensed conveyancing professionals are in charge of overseeing work being performed.


In the Northern Territory, the Agents Licensing Act governs the licensing of conveyancers. The license allows conveyancing professionals to conduct business and carry out such work, but one can make a particular endorsement when applying, so that he can provide other services, like mortgages, leases, sales of businesses, and restrictive covenants and encumbrances.


The Conveyancers Act 1994 is the act that governs conveyancing agents in South Australia, and all conveyancers in the state should be registered. The individual should have the required experience and/or qualifications in order to be registered. There are good character and insurance requirements as well.


South Australia conveyancers are governed by the Conveyancers Act 1994, and in order to conduct business, a person should be registered. He should possess the required experience and/or qualifications. Moreover, there are good character and insurance requirements.


Prior to June 30, 2008, conveyancing agents in Victoria do not need to become licensed in order to perform conveyancing work. Introduced in July 1, 2008, The Conveyancers Act 2006 requires conveyancers to be licensed under the Business Licensing Authority before they can perform conveyancing work, but an incorporated legal practice or Australian legal practitioner is exempted from this act. The applicant should have the appropriate experience and/or educational qualifications and deposit-taking prerequisites in order for a license to be issued.


The requirements for licensing in Tasmania under the Coveyancing Act 2004 are vastly similar to that of Victoria’s, but were introduced much earlier. In order to acquire a license, you should have the required experience and/or qualifications or be a certified legal practitioner. Submitting a bankruptcy and criminal record report is also required.


Conveyancing work in Western Australia is carried out by settlement agents, the term used in place of conveyancer. Becoming a settlement agent requires a person to acquire a Settlement Agent’s License, which is issued by the Department of Consumer and Employment Affairs, and should have two years of accumulated practical experience in conveyancing and finished an accredited conveyancing program.


In Queensland and ACT, they do not presently have any acts that enable conveyancing agents to do business autonomously. All work related to conveyancing is carried out by a conveyancer or a legal practitioner employed in a law office.

Conveyancing Australia is an impartial website providing useful information to Australians considering employing the services of conveyancers. As the purchase or sale of property is a relatively infrequent event there is much confusion over when a conveyancer is needed, why and what benefits we as profession have to offer.
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Conveyancing – The Governing Body and its Divisions

Conveyancers provide expert services to people who want to buy or sell a property, and the Australian Institute of Conveyancers, or AIC, is the top national organization that represents and supports the conveyancing occupation in Australia. The main goals of AIC in all the five territories and states represented are as follow:


·         To offer a high level of continuing personal development and education through the CPC (Certified Practicing Conveyancer) course

·         To provide members with a significant and current information flow

·         To develop valuable business opportunities service providers and supporting partners

·         To assist individuals who want to enter the real estate market find licensed conveyancers to assist with their property transaction


The Australian Institute of Conveyancers has divisional agents in Western Australia, South Australia, Northern Territory, South Wales, Tasmania, and Victoria, as well as a relationship with the New Zealand Society of Conveyancers. It is regulated by a national committee that has created an excellent 3-year strategic program to improve the profile, as well as shared recognition of this line of work, covering a number of legislative problems among jurisdictions; compliance with the policy of the national competition; and an outline for National Occupational Licensing.


The Australian Council is AIC’s governing body, and its responsibility is to represent the conveyancing profession’s views, supervise the operational tasks of the Australian Institute of Conveyancers, as it puts the strategic measures into practice, and then lay down policies, which is reviewed on a yearly basis to accomplish the mission and execute the goals specified in the constitution. The Australian Council examines the problems and environment effect on conveyancers all over Australia and creates strategic responses and initiatives to develop the vision of AIC of a national occupation of conveyancing agents.


Members of the Australian Institute of Conveyancers


South Australia, Western Australia, Victoria, Tasmania, Northern Territory, and New South Wales are the AIC members. AIC’s individual conveyancer and conveyancing-related firm membership is via their state division. Territory and state governments are in charge of issuing conveyancing license, and the requirements for licensing vary from one jurisdiction to another.


New South Wales Division


The Association of Property Conveyancers, which later became AIC’s NSW Division, was created by an unregulated conveyancing group to petition for the licensing of professional conveyancing agents. The number of these professionals has been fast rising since the Conveyancers Licensing Act 1992 was passed and the job permitted under the Conveyancers Licensing Act 1995 has increased.


Northern Territory Division


The AIC’s NT Division was established by Jeff Hockley in 1993.


South Australia Division


Most work that involves conveyancing in South Australia is carried out by Conveyancers Act 1994 registered licensed conveyancers. Since 1923, there have been groups that represent professional conveyancers. In 1973, the Landbrokers Society of South Australia was established, and later became AIC’s SA Division.


Tasmania Division


In 2004, the Tasmanian Government passed the Conveyancing Act. AIC’s Tasmanian Division was formed after the AGM of the Australian Institute of Coveyancers in 2008.


Victoria Division


Established in 1989, the VCA (Victorian Conveyancers’ Association) was established in 1989. It was in 1991 that the organization was incorporated, with rules to supervise and uphold superior ethics and professional service standards among autonomous non-lawyer conveyancing agents. In 1997, it became AIC’s Victorian Division.


Western Australia Division


The Settlement Agents Association in WA was incorporated in 1978. It was in 1995 that the SAA was recognized as AIC’s WA Division.


 Conveyancing Australia is an impartial website providing useful information to Australians considering employing the services of conveyancers. As the purchase or sale of property is a relatively infrequent event there is much confusion over when a conveyancer is needed, why and what benefits we as profession have to offer.

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Which Conveyancer to Use?

Solicitors used to be the ones who took on conveyancing jobs in Australia, but that has now changed. Nowadays, there are conveyancers who are experts in the field of property law and are licensed to provide assistance to sellers and buyers with all kinds of property deals. Although the main goal of most individuals who are looking to buy or sell their property is to save money, there are many other crucial factors to take into account when determining whether to go for a conveyancer or a solicitor for a conveyancing task.


The Advantages of Hiring a Conveyancer


Buying a property is one of the biggest decisions most people will ever make, and the transfer’s legal facets are complicated and overwhelming, which is why it is not recommended to try and tackle the entire process on your own. Hiring a licensed conveyancing professional will help you avoid headaches, as well as the stressful and costly mistakes that you may possible encounter later on. It is easier to enjoy the sale or new purchase of a property when the complex intricacies of the transition’s legal facets are competently dealt with.


Experience. If this is your first time buying a home and requires First Home Owner Grant (FHOG) access, a conveyancer is equipped to help you in this aspect. Similarly, if you are selling or buying a commercial property for leasing purposes, you should search for a conveyancer who has the experience to handle this kind of transaction. Find out what kinds of transactions with properties he has dealt previously, and be precise about what you are searching for.


Qualifications. There are countless of conveyancers that you will find when you do a search on the internet, but you need to look for someone who not only has many years of experience in the conveyancing field, but who is also accredited, qualified, and licensed to perform the work. It is recommended to ask the conveyancer if he is affiliated with the Conveyancing Institute of Australia.  You should choose a conveyancer who is an AIC (Australian Institute of Conveyancers) member to ensure that you would be getting a professional with high standards of work ethic.  You can likewise check with your area’s Fair Trading office about the conveyancer’s qualifications by asking for his license number.


In general, majority of conveyancers are graduates of universities, with education in property law, or have vocational qualifications and experience in the field.


Money’s worth. Check online for usual conveyancing fees, so that you will have an idea as to what is standard and what is not. Make sure that the quoted rates that the licensed professional you are planning to hire is within that range.


Accountability. Be wary if the conveyancer declines to give a job quote, as he may be hiding something. Make sure that the conveyancer outlines everything in writing, so that you will not be hit with unjustifiable charges later on.


Record management. Find out whether the conveyancer you have initially spoken with will be the one managing your account. If not, check who the point person will be.

Conveyancing Australia is an impartial website providing useful information to Australians considering employing the services of conveyancers. As the purchase or sale of property is a relatively infrequent event there is much confusion over when a conveyancer is needed, why and what benefits we as profession have to offer.

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The Difference between a Lawyer and Conveyancer

One of the most difficult choices to make after you have made a decision to sell your property is choosing between a conveyancing lawyer and a conveyancer, both of which have their own advantages and disadvantages.


So, what is the difference between the two? Conveyancers are licensed non-lawyers qualified to carry out a portion of the legal work related to a property transaction, provided that it does not exceed conveyancing work stipulated in the Conveyancers Act 2006.


Conveyancing lawyers, on the other hand, are lawyers whose primary field of expertise is conveyancing. Unlike conveyancers, who can only perform conveyancing work, conveyancing lawyers are capable of conducting all legal work related with conveyancing, as well provide counsel on matters associated with property law, like probate, wills, estate planning, property law-related disputes, and family court matters. Conveyancers cannot provide clients with legal counsel about a real estate or buyers’ agent’s conduct, like dummy bidding, misrepresentation, underquote or overquote-related criminal deceptions, etc., and should refer clients to a licensed lawyer.


So, in reality, conveyancing lawyers provide full coverage with regard to property law and conveyancing, while licensed conveyancers would need to refer clients to a lawyer should the matter is beyond what they are allowed to practice legally.


Professionals in the property market, including conveyancers openly admit that conveyancing lawyers offer the most complete type of legal representation in property conveyancing deals.


Conveyancing Lawyer versus Conveyancer – Who is Cheaper?


In general, licensed conveyancers offer their services at a much lower rate as opposed to conveyancing lawyers, but the overall cost once the entire property buying or selling process is complete may be way off as to what was first quoted to the client, particularly if it involves legal issues and the conveyancer needed to refer the client to a conveyancing lawyer.


It is highly recommended that you do a thorough research on the conveyancer or conveyancing agency you are planning to employ and understand as much as you can regarding your property or the property you want to purchase and the possible legal consequences.


Conveyancing Lawyer versus Conveyancer – Who Has the Upper Hand?


Professional indemnity (PI) insurance covers a licensed individual for neglect or carelessness in the execution of professional work, and conveyancing lawyers carry such as coverage for everything they do on behalf of the client, while conveyancers are only covered for work involving conveyancing transactions.


Moreover, conveyancing lawyers have access to barristers and senior lawyers. The former are lawyers whose full-time responsibility is to assist clients when court representation is needed. Barristers work in a similar way as medical professionals, and clients cannot just employ a barrister’s service if no expert referral has been made by a licensed lawyer. It is the responsibility of the lawyer to recognize the legal matters occurring from a client’s issue and to give the barrister an outline of the issue, who will then give professional counsel if the problem should go to court or be handled by other methods.


The only means for a conveyancer’s client to have access to a barrister’s services is to have the client employ a qualified lawyer, turning the conveyancer into a costly middleman. So, it would be right from the start for the client to employ a conveyancing lawyer.

Conveyancing Australia is an impartial website providing useful information to Australians considering employing the services of conveyancers. As the purchase or sale of property is a relatively infrequent event there is much confusion over when a conveyancer is needed, why and what benefits we as profession have to offer.

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