South Australia, a state with a rich history in conveyancing.
South Australia can claim to be the birthplace of modern conveyancing with three notable initiatives over a hundred years ago. In 1841 South Australia established an office for the registration of deeds. This was a world first. Never before had individuals been able to view the deeds showing the title of land. Sir Robert Torrens, South Australia's third Premier, introduced the Real Property Act in 1857. The Act established a new government guaranteed system of land transfer through one document recordrd at a single registry. This simplified the existing requirements and allowed ownership to be easily identified through the registration of a certificate of title. Security of title and ease of transfer were the dual principles of Sir Robert's system. The Torrens' model is now used throughout Australia and has been adopted in New Zealand, England, Canada and the United States.
The expertise of specialist conveyancers was also recognised at the time in South Australia, another first for the state. Whilst conveyancing work was traditionally undertaken by solicitors, South Australia led the way with its recognition of non-solicitor conveyancers. Today, non-solicitor conveyancers are highly qualified, tertiary educated professionals who have chosen to specialise in conveyancing work. In South Australia, the majority of conveyancing work is now undertaken by registered (non-solicitor) conveyancers.
Interestingly, Sir Robert Torrens was a layman, not a lawyer. This may have influenced his desire to simplify the law and his willingness to recognise non-solicitor conveyancers.
Australian Institute of Conveyancers Member (AIC)
The Australian Institute of Conveyancers is the peak body representing the conveyancing profession across the country. The Institute is governed by an honorary council drawn from each state; the councils of each state division are elected by their members.
Nationally, the AIC represents some 1500 members; here in South Australia we have almost 350 members. This membership is your guarantee of ethical conduct, expert advice and professional service. Members are fully qualified and legally registered, they are subject to a Code of Conduct, and carry professional indemnity insurance to protect you, the consumer.
AIC Members must meet rigorous registration requirements and undertake continuing professional development, to keep up with the ever changing countless rules and regulations governing property transfers in this state.