Proving your identity
Proof of your identity is essential when dealing with Roads and Maritime Services for many of our products and services. While our requirements may seem strict, they’re necessary to protect your identity and privacy, and to ensure the accuracy and integrity of our records.
What you need to provide
To prove who you are to Roads and Maritime, you’ll need to provide:
- A NSW photo driver/rider licence or NSW Photo Card that is current, or has expired within the last two years (provided it’s not recorded as lost, stolen or destroyed). General boat and Personal Watercraft driving licences are not acceptable
- Two documents – one from List 1 and one from List 2.
Important: In all cases, your identity documents must be originals. Copies and certified copies are not acceptable.
If you’re providing documents from List 1 and List 2, your name should be the same on both documents. If they’re different, see Changing your personal details. Your gender (if shown) should also be the same on both documents.
One of your proof of identity documents should show your signature.
If it doesn’t, you’ll need to provide a statement from one of the following people witnessing your signature:
- Your employer
- Bank manager
- School principal
- Accompanying parent or guardian.
Our application forms generally include a section for the witness to complete, if necessary. You can also download a Witness Letter.
If you are applying for a replacement licence or NSW Photo Card and can’t provide acceptable proof of identity documents, you’ll need to provide a reference statement.
This needs to be from someone who is aged 18 years or older and has known you for at least 12 months, and who holds a current NSW licence or NSW Photo Card. We may contact your referee to confirm their statement.
Our application forms generally include a section for the referee to complete, if necessary.
Important: Your List 1 document must show your full name, and the day, month and year of your birth. Roads and Maritime may verify any document with the issuing authority.
Documents must be original. Copies and certified copies are not acceptable.
The List 1 documents are:
- An Australian full birth certificate showing parental details issued by a Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriage. Historic Certificates issued in 1987 and 1988 are also acceptable.
- Commemorative certificates are not acceptable. A standard Birth Certificate is issued with a Commemorative Certificate as a package, this is the only certificate accepted. See the Births, Deaths and Marriages website for information
- An overseas birth certificate showing parental details, provided a passport or an official Australian travel document is also shown
- A current Australian passport or one that expired within the last two years. Validation with the Australian Passport Office may be required for passports issued within the last two years. Passports that have been cancelled for any reason, are not accepted
- The following travel documents issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade:
- A current Certificate of Identity
- A current Document of Identity
- A current Titre de Voyage
- A current overseas passport. Passports that have been cancelled for any reason, are not accepted
- An Australian naturalisation or citizenship document, issued by the Australian Government
- The following documents issued by the Australian Government:
- A Document for Travel to Australia (up to five years from the date of issue on the accompanying visa)
- Evidence of Immigration Status (EIS) ImmiCard
- Permanent Resident Evidence (PRE) ImmiCard*
- Residence Determination ImmiCard (RDI)*
- Australian Migration Status (AMS) ImmiCard
*From 1 July 2017 the Australian Government stopped issuing PRE and RDI ImmiCards. Cards issued before 1 July 2017 will be accepted.
- A Roads and Maritime issued NSW photo driver licence or NSW Photo Card that has been expired more than two years, but less than five years. The licence must display a card number and not have been revoked or reported as lost, stolen or destroyed
- A current photo driver licence from another Australian state or territory, or one that expired within the last two years. If your interstate licence shows your middle name(s) as initial(s), you’ll require another supporting List 1 or List 2 document that shows your full name
- A current photo identity card for the NSW Police Force, excluding civilian staff or family
- A current consular photo identity card, issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
Important: Your List 2 document must show at least your family name and your first given name in full. It should also match your List 1 document. See List 2 name differences for more information.
Documents must be original. Copies and certified copies are not acceptable.
The List 2 documents are:
- A current green or blue Medicare card, Pensioner Concession Card, Department of Veterans' Affairs entitlement card or any other current entitlement card issued by the Australian Government
- A current plastic credit card or account card issued by a bank, building society credit union, American Express or Diners Club International, showing your name and signature
- A passbook or account statement or letter up to 12 months old, issued by a bank, building society, credit union, American Express or Diners Club International, as long as it includes the following:
- Customer's family name and first given name in full
- Account number or account type
- Financial institute letterhead or financial institute branch stamp.
- A telephone, gas or electricity bill up to 12 months old
- A water rates, council rates or land valuation notice up to 12 months old
- A current student identity card displaying your photograph, issued by an Australian secondary school, TAFE or university. Where a student identity card has an issue date but no expiry date, it may be accepted up to two years from the date of issue
- Evidence of enrolment at an Australian secondary school, TAFE or university up to 12 months old, on the institution's letterhead and showing your name
- A current Mobility Parking Scheme (MPS) permit issued by Roads and Maritime, with or without a photo
- A current Roads and Maritime issued NSW photo Firearm, Security Industry or Commercial Agents and Private Inquiry Agents operator licence
- A current photo identity card for the Australian Defence Force, excluding civilian staff or family.
If there are differences between the names shown on your List 1 and List 2 documents, see the following table. In all cases, if your List 2 document shows initials, the initials need to match your full name(s) as shown on your List 1 document.
|List 2 document||Acceptable or not?|
|Showing your first name as an initial||Only acceptable as proof of NSW residential address|
|Showing both your first and middle names as initials||Only acceptable as proof of NSW residential address|
|Showing your middle name(s) as initial(s)||Acceptable as a List 2 document or as proof of NSW residential address|
|Not showing your middle name(s)||Acceptable as a List 2 document or as proof of NSW residential address|
|Showing additional name(s), or initial(s) not shown on your List 1 document||Not acceptable|
Documents not in English
If any of your identity documents are not written in English, you’ll need to provide an official translation.
Translations are only acceptable if they’re from:
- Multicultural NSW (previously Community Relations Commission of NSW). Visit the MNSW website for more information
- The Free Translating Service provided by the Department of Social Services (DSS). The free translation service is only available to eligible people. Visit the DSS website for more information.
Translations obtained through any other means are not acceptable.
Proof of identity for organisations
If you’re dealing with Roads and Maritime on behalf of an organisation, for example to register a vehicle in a company name, the Director or an authorised delegate must complete the relevant application form, provide their own proof of identity, and:
- Complete and sign the Representative’s Authority section on the Application form OR
- Provide a letter of authorisation on company letterhead, AND
- Provide proof that the company or organisation is a legal entity by providing evidence of its Australian Company Number (ACN):
- Certificate of Registration for a company
- Current Company Extract
- Certificate of Registration on Change of Name
- Printed extract from the Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC) website.
Please contact Roads and Maritime by calling 13 22 13 for more information about proof of identity requirements for other types of organisations.
Why do I need to prove who I am?
Protecting your identity is important for you and for Roads and Maritime. Because licences and NSW Photo Cards are used by many individuals and groups as a reliable form of identification, we have to ensure the integrity of these cards is protected.
Identity fraud is one of the fastest growing crimes in Australia, costing the Australian community billions of dollars every year. Someone could steal your identity and use it for fraudulent purposes. Examples include:
- Financial fraud, taking out loans with a false identity
- Immigration fraud, including people smuggling and undetected movement of criminals between countries
- Unlawful use of licences, leading to traffic offences and demerit points being incorrectly assigned to you
We’ve worked closely with the NSW Police and other relevant agencies on our proof of identity arrangements. While the arrangements may seem strict, they’re necessary to protect your identity and privacy, as well as the driver licensing system.
More information about identity fraud
- The Australian Government: Protecting Your Identity. This information is also available in a number of community languages
- NSW Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages: Safeguard Your Identity
- NSW Police: Fraud prevention.
When you’ll be asked to prove your identity
Roads and Maritime will ask you to prove your identity:
- When you apply to obtain, renew or replace any NSW-issued card with a photo on it:
- Driver and rider licences
- NSW Photo Cards
- Mobility Parking Scheme cards
- Driving Instructor licences
- Firearms, security industry and CAPI licences
- If you request a new vehicle registration, or transfer registration into your name
- When you apply for special number plates, and for other number plate related transactions
- When applying for an E-toll tag.
Identity protection measures
In addition to our stringent proof of identity requirements, Roads and Maritime also has a number of other measures in place to help protect you from identity fraud:
- Comparison of photo images, using facial recognition technology
- Significant security features on licences and other photo cards
- Recording licences and other photo cards reported as lost, stolen or destroyed when an application for replacement is made
- Referral of difficult or suspicious customer identification cases to a specialist unit
- Validation of key proof of identity documents with the issuing authorities, where appropriate.
In a small number of cases, the checks we make may take a number of days. If this applies to you, you’ll be advised as soon as enquiries are completed.
Concerned you’re a victim of identity fraud?
If you believe that somebody may have stolen your identity, we can place a restriction on your Roads and Maritime records, so that full proof of identity is required by anyone attempting to do business with us in your name. Call us on 13 22 13 for assistance.