Land Information New Zealand (LINZ) has published an interim guideline to assist practitioners who are, for the time being, unable to interact with their clients other than by remote means of communication.
The interim guideline sets out requirements for remote verification of client identity and the legal framework and required standards for the use of electronic signatures.
LINZ says the interim guideline is intended to be an interim supplement to the Authority and Identity Requirements for E-Dealing Standard (LINZS20018) and Guideline (LINZG20775) 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," LINZ says.
"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."