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Law Council of Australia


Modernising document execution

2 August 2023

The Law Council recently made a submission to the Attorney-General’s Department in response to its consultation on proposed reforms to the execution of Commonwealth statutory declarations.

In its submission, the Law Council supported the continued modernisation of arrangements for the execution of legal instruments and welcomed the Department’s proposal to concurrently enable the execution of statutory declarations through paper-based, electronic and digital methods. The submission provided feedback on each of these methods while emphasising the importance of the available execution pathways accommodating the needs and limitations of parties at the time that a Commonwealth statutory declaration may be required. The Law Council expressed that measures must be included to reduce opportunities for fraud and abuse in the utilisation of new methodologies.

This submission was informed by input from the Law Institute of Victoria, the Law Society of New South Wales and the Queensland Law Society, with additional guidance provided by Executive members of the Law Council’s Business Law Section. The Law Council is grateful for each contribution.

The Law Council will monitor the progress of these reforms, noting they are being proposed in the context of continued work to modernise and harmonise execution requirements for statutory declarations and deeds across Australian jurisdictions.



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