Referee guideline for nominee customs broker licence applications

These guidelines are to assist referees in preparing their references for nominee customs broker licence applicants, and should be provided by applicants to their selected referees.

Wherever possible an applicant should seek to obtain references from persons who are licensed customs brokers and have directly supervised them in their performance of duties relevant to the functions of a customs broker.

It is recommended that before submitting an application, the individual has a detailed discussion with their supervising customs broker(s) and seek their honest views on whether or not they think the individual is sufficiently experienced. That is, not just asking the supervisor/referee if they think the individual is doing their current job well, but specifically discussing whether or not they think the potential applicant is ready to take on the role, responsibilities and obligations of a licensed nominee customs broker performing the activities involved at the level expected of a licensed nominee customs broker working under direct supervision.

It is also recommended that referees read the Acquired Experience section and Nominee Application Checklist contained in the Guidelines for completing a nominee customs broker licence application. This is to give referees a clear picture of the information sought in relation to this vital part of the application.

What to address in the reference

When preparing a written reference in support of an application for a nominee customs brokers licence, referees are asked to address the following matters:

  • that the referee has read and understood this Guideline
  • that the referee has reviewed the applicant's completed Statement of Acquired Experience
  • that the referee has reviewed the applicant's completed Acquired experience self-assessment (183KB PDF)
  • whether or not the referee agrees that both the Statement and checklist are fair and accurate representations of the applicant's experience and expertise
  • the period during which they have supervised the applicant
  • the nature of the duties performed by the applicant under their supervision
  • the extent, depth and complexity of such duties
  • the expertise and capability demonstrated by the applicant while performing those duties
  • any further developmental needs of the applicant
  • whether or not - and why - in their opinion the applicant has the requisite acquired experience to be a licensed nominee customs broker
  • that the referee is a licensed customs broker, their current licence number and the original date of grant. If the referee is not a licensed customs broker, an explanation is needed of the basis on which they believe they can comment on whether or not the applicant has enough acquired experience to equip them to be a licensed nominee customs broker.

Referees are required to sign and date the reference, and provide their name and contact details.

False or misleading information

Applicants and referees are reminded that, under section 136.1 of the Schedule to the Criminal Code Act 1995, it is an offence punishable by imprisonment for up to 12 months to knowingly make a statement in connection with a licence application that is false or misleading (or that omits a matter without which the statement is misleading).

Additionally, it is an offence punishable by imprisonment for up to 6 months to make a statement in connection with a licence application recklessly as to whether or not it is false or misleading or omits a matter that renders it misleading.