Replacing lost or destroyed documents
Below is a list of personal documents that you may need to replace after a natural disaster such as a bushfire or flood.
- Birth, death, marriage and change of name certificates
Replacement certificates can be ordered from the Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages online or by telephone 131 882.
There have been online scams involving private companies that charge fees for downloading Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages forms. These forms are freely available at the Births, Deaths and Marriages website above. The scams also require you to provide financial and personal information for the purpose of credit card and identity fraud. For further information see this Scamwatch article on Scam birth, death and marriage certificate websites.
- Medicare cards
Replacement medicare cards can be ordered from your medicare online account, through MyGov, through the general inquiries line 132 011, by post (with proof of identity) or by visiting your local Medicare office (with proof of identity).
For more information about the options, see the Department of Human Services website.
- Driver’s licence
There are different procedures in South Australia depending on whether a photograph is required.
If you know your licence number and don't require a new photograph, a replacement can be ordered online through EzyReg. If you can't apply online, then you should attend a service centre, complete an application for replacement driver's licence form and provide proof of your identity. If you're unable to attend a service centre, you may need to request a licence photo kit.
For more information, telephone 13 10 84 or see the South Australian Government website.
- Insurance documents
It is not necessary to have all your documents on hand in order to initiate an insurance claim as many insurance companies keep records electronically. The Insurance Council of Australia has a disaster hotline (telephone: 1800 734 621) to help people who are unsure what insurer they are with and with general questions about the claims process. Most insurance companies have 24 hour call centres. For more information see the Insurance Council of Australia's disaster response website.
- Tenancy agreement
A tenancy agreement continues even if the document recording the agreement has been destroyed. Landlords are required to keep a copy of these agreements up to 2 years from the date of termination. If their copy has also been destroyed a new document can be created to record the agreement.