6 May 2020

Issue 157

Welcome to the May edition of Landwrap for 2020.

Since the announcement of Government response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve been working to maintain as many services as possible. Although it has been challenging, it’s also heartening to see how well everyone across the property system has adapted to working remotely. The safety and wellbeing of both LINZ staff and our customers has been a paramount focus throughout.

We’ve already put in place a number of arrangements to ensure our customers can continue to access our Landonline services with minimal disruption. This includes bringing forward the release of Landonline Web Search, allowing more concurrent users under existing licensing arrangements and supporting the renewal of digital certificates.  As we move through Alert Levels, we’ll continue to review and improve our processes to make your work easier.

It’s very encouraging to see the positive progress made in fighting COVID-19 and that the country has now been moved into Level 3. We are continuing to engage with the New Zealand Law Society, Auckland District Law Society, Survey and Spatial New Zealand and others on issues affecting conveyancing, land registration and surveying. Even though we are still mostly working from home, Alert Level 3 conditions mean we are now able to safely access LINZ offices to start handling mail and processing paper-based transactions.

We’ve provided more detailed guidance on our website and will continue to update that page as we work to deliver services to you.

Thank you for your ongoing support and patience.

Removing a user from your Landonline Account

You no longer need to have your system manager disassociate the user. Simply have the trusted contact or the departing user complete the Remove Individuals form and we will take care of the rest for you.

Please note we can only accept requests for removal from the trusted contact for your account or the departing user, and there must be no outstanding work, including draft or open requests, in the users workspace.

Should you require any assistance when completing the form, please contact Customer Support on 0800 665 463.

Add a user or change your details

Remove Individuals form

Information for practitioners during COVID-19 restrictions

We have published some information to assist practitioners while working remotely, including safe protocols for verifying client identity, witnessing, and signing documents:

Our COVID-19 page has further information on:

  • Land registration matters
  • Withholding landownership details
  • Guidance from the Ministry of Justice on property sales and settlements, and signing and witnessing enduring powers of attorney
  • Digital certificates and security

Cadastral Survey Dataset Processing Times

Under Alert Level 4 surveyors continued to lodge CSDs at about the usual rate, highlighting the benefit of having Landonline available through the web.  The rate has started declining and was about 15% below normal in the first week under Alert Level 3. 

While most of our staff are able to work from home, we are not able to validate as many CSDs as normal.  As a consequence, processing times have drawn out, particularly for the more complex surveys which can now take up to 20 days.  Information on current processing times can be found on the Landonline homepage.

If we encounter any datasets that are unable to be processed due to the environment we are working under, which could include exceptionally large or complex datasets, LINZ staff will contact you to discuss.

Exception requests

Exception requests are made by surveyors when Landonline is preventing the submission of a cadastral survey dataset.  While there are challenges to our staff, some of whom are working on small laptop monitors, the processing of a reducing number of exception requests continues.  

Landonline requests

There are a multitude of Landonline requests (survey), which we are receiving in similar numbers to before we entered Alert Level 4.   This will mean some complex requests are taking longer than would normally be expected.

Request manual copy

Request manual copy is a service to obtain a LINZ document that is not available as an image in Landonline.  Obtaining access to documents stored on-site and off-site has recommenced under Alert Level 3.  Even though the number of staff working on-site is limited LINZ will do its best to keep response time to a minimum.  If the document you request isn’t available then one of our Centre Support Officers will contact you.

Archives NZ

Most Deeds Records are held by Archives NZ.  They have recently reopened limited services, however at this stage we believe that won’t include providing images of Deeds Records.  Many Deeds Indexes have been imaged and are searchable.  Information about searching is available on the Archway “Searching” webpage.

Improving guidance on Unit developments for surveyors

During the recent Cadastral Survey Rules review consultation, we received feedback regarding the guidance in the KnowledgeBase. We have started responding to this feedback by merging and updating guidance from the Surveyor-General, Landonline and Operation teams to create a one-stop shop of information for surveyors undertaking unit developments. 

When you search for material on Units the number of articles will be much reduced, making it easier to find the most relevant material.

With time we will also reduce the filters in the KnowledgeBase search, so you only have to search under ‘Surveyor-General’s guidelines’ to find relevant survey information.

Assistant Surveyor-General Lloyd McGarvey says ‘we know that finding the right information in our KnowledgeBase can be challenging.  The ‘super’ article on Unit plans is a glimpse into the level of material that we want to provide on a range of topics in conjunction with the new Cadastral Survey Rules 2020. We have released this prototype and are interested to hear your feedback on the structure, layout and accessibility you might have.’

Feedback on the unit guidance should be sent to SGRulesreview@linz.govt.nz before 1 June 2020.

Media enquiries

Email: media@linz.govt.nz or phone: 027 566 5251