@KazVB asked a great question this morning about how the conduct a VOI for overseas clients, so I thought I'd do a dedicated post on it.
ARNECC has released an updated Guidance Note 2 (19/01/2016) offering more specific guidelines on how to deal with VOI for overseas clients. For clarity - the only safe harbour verification is schedule 8, which is unlikely to be achieved for an overseas client, so you need to rely on reasonable steps here.
We've studied the detail and note there are 4 simple steps to get your overseas client verified.
1. Instruct your client to make a booking at the nearest embassy or consulate to have their ID documents certified.
3. The Australian embassy or consulate will conduct the interview and complete the following steps:
Prepare and endorse copies of the original ID documents
Witness the CA Form (if required)
Complete, sign and date the Witness Certification
4. Your client will then need to send the certified ID documents to you directly (the Australian embassy or consulate won’t do that for you). We recommend you consider options for secure transmittal of this identity information.
If you have any concerns about the authenticity of the ID documents you receive from your client, ARNECC recommend contacting the officer listed on the Witnessing Certification to have the details of their appointment with your client confirmed by emailing <firstname>.<surname>@dfat.gov.au or firstname.lastname@example.org if you can’t reach the individual.
If you have more questions about VOI please feel free to get in touch with me or tag me in your post.