Friday 29th April 2022 from 9am

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PPSR Legal Advice – How Do I Check the Personal Property Securities Register? – Commercial Law


SO, you’ve finally decided to buy that dream boat, jet ski or Ute … you’re probably thinking ‘I wonder if that boat is on the Personal Property Securities Register?’

If not, you should be!

The Personal Property Securities Register is a national online register that can provide information to help protect you as a consumer when you are buying personal property such as cars, boats or artworks.

If you check the Personal Property Securities Register before you buy, you can find out if the personal property you are buying has a security interest attached to it.

This is important because if you buy property subject to a security interest, it is possible that the person or entity with the security interest will repossess it.

The Personal Property Securities Register operates under The Personal Property Act 2009 (Cth) (PPSA).

Developed for securing real property that is not real-estate, the PPSA allows anyone with a beneficial interest in real property to become a secured party.

A secured party can be a lender, retention of title suppliers, lessor or an owner (to name a few types).

To become a secured party you must register your interest in the property on the Personal Property Securities Register website, for a stipulated or non stipulated amount of time.

If you are buying any type of motor vehicle privately you should conduct a search of the Personal Property Securities Register to check that there is no money owing on the vehicle.

Motor vehicles include cars, trucks, tractors, motorbikes, trailers, caravans, or any vehicle capable of travelling at more than 10 km/h that has a total motor power of more than 200 W.

If your search shows there is debt registered on the Personal Property Securities Register for the vehicle you are buying and you then choose to buy or lease the vehicle, if the seller stops making payments, there is a real chance the finance company listed on the Personal Property Securities Register can turn up on your doorstep and take the motor vehicle away.

It is the same for a watercraft or any other type of items that can be secured under a Personal Property Securities Register.

Items that can be secured under a Personal Property Securities Register:

  • Livestock, recommended for any stock that is not registered on your own property;
  • Leased items from hire companies like fridges and machinery.
  • All Present and After Acquired property (ALLPAAP) can be secured over assets of a business, typically undertaken by business lenders should there be a default on a loan.
  • Any item that can be identified with a VIN, HIN (Hull identification number), aircraft, and aircraft parts.
  • Intellectual property that is identified by a patent or design number.
  • Items on a lease to buy arrangements.

Before you:

  • purchase valuable goods (more than $5000) from a private seller;
  • provide credit to a person or organisation;
  • invest in, with or through a person or organisation;

You should check whether the goods, person or organisation have any existing security interests against them by searching the Personal Property Securities Register.

Search by:

What can go wrong?

The most common problem  occurs as result of a client not checking whether the property they are buying, through a private sale, is encumbered under the Personal Property Securities Register.

Recently, Attwood Marshall Lawyers helped a woman to resolve a dispute with a car dealership, lender, and her ex partner, after a vehicle she tried to trade in was repossessed by a lender.

She did not check the Personal Property Securities Register for that vehicle, before trading it in. Without this check she did not realise there was a business loan secured against it by her ex partner. The loan defaulted after the trade in, and the financier seized the car from the motor dealer.

How can a lawyer help with the Personal Property Securities Register?

  1. Attwood Marshall Lawyers can help to resolve disputes over assets and financing, if a search reveals your property is encumbered.
  2. We can provide you with reliable advice if you are unsure about how to interpret a Personal Property Securities Register report.
  3. We can help by registering and releasing charges on property for you.
  4. For a small fee, we can help you to check the Personal Property Securities Register.

Contact us:

If you would like more information please contact our Commercial Litigation Department Manager, Amanda Heather on direct line 07 5506 8245, email or free call 1800 621 071.

We have an experienced dedicated Commercial Litigation team to assist you with Personal Property Securities Register checks and disputes.

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