New Zealand: Authority and Identity Requirements and Electronic Signing of Documents Interim Guideline 2020 – LINZ OP G 01247

The response to COVID-19 has introduced new challenges for practitioners in meeting the requirements of the Authority and Identity Requirements for E-Dealing Standard (LINZS20018) and Guideline (LINZG20775) due to remote working and self-isolation of both practitioners and their clients.

Document Status: Current
Document Number: 01247
Regulatory Area: Land titles
Document Type: Guideline
Published date: 30 March 2020

This interim guideline has been developed to assist practitioners who are, for the time being, unable to interact with their clients other than by remote means of communication.  It sets out requirements for remote verification of client identity and the legal framework and required standards for the use of electronic signatures.  This interim guideline is intended to be an interim supplement to the above Standard and the Guideline while the restrictions related to COVID-19 persist. The requirements of the Standard and Guideline continue to apply, but they have been modified in the ways described in the interim guideline. It is intended only as a guide to how practitioners may meet LINZ standards while COVID-19 restrictions apply.  In deciding whether or not a property transaction can proceed in the current environment practitioners and their clients must, of course, consider the implications of COVID-19 restrictions for the other aspects of the transaction, including whether or not settlement should be deferred.  Practitioners should follow relevant advice and guidance published by the Property Law Section of the New Zealand Law Society in that regard.

This interim guideline will continue to have effect until it is revoked and notice of its revocation is published on LINZ’s website.