Queensland Law Society

Significant changes to the witnessing requirements for Titles Registry documents

The Natural Resources and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2019 (Qld) was recently passed and introduces amendments to sections 162 of the Land Titles Act 1994 (Qld) and 311 of the Land Act 1994 (Qld).

The amendments impose obligations on witnesses of Land Registry documents including:

  • taking reasonable steps to verify the identity of an individual and to ensure the individual is the person entitled to sign the document;
  • requiring the witness to keep a written record of the steps they took or certain other evidence for 7 years; and
  • allowing the Registrar to ask the witness to advise the Registrar of the steps taken by the witness and to produce evidence kept by the witness (unless the witness has a reasonable excuse).[1]

The amendments will become law on a date to be fixed later this year. The Registrar has advised that revised practice requirements and additional guidance will be available in July.

Mark Illidge

Practice Support Solicitor

QLS Ethics and Practice Centre

[1] Natural Resources and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2019 (Qld) s 90.