Indian Drivers Licence Verification in New South Wales

WARNING: from January 2015, VFS has changed its requirements and will no longer accept documents that have been authenticated. Documents must now be stamped with an APOSTILLE from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Is your name different on your Indian Drivers Licence and your Indian Passport?

Have you noticed that (normal) things that happen overseas often don't make sense in Australia?

Take names for example. In our experience, it's quite common for names to be written differently or even spelt differently in other countries depending on their language (or languages) and naming conventions. Non-English names when 'translated' into English especially when translated phonetically can be spelt differently or rearranged differently.

However, unlike in other countries which have some sort of compulsory national identifying number, in Australia most people identify by their full legal name, their date of birth and their residential address. Therefore, ensuring that each detail in your name, including spelling must match exactly is extremely important. Any inconsistencies generally need to be explained, rectified or otherwise cause all kinds of problems - especially when it comes to legal or financial matters. In Australia, if your name is different, then you are a different person.

Over the years, we've helped many clients who have to deal with this issue, especially when it comes to their Indian Drivers Licence. It appears Indian authorities implement their own naming conventions when recording names on the driving licence. Since those naming conventions differ from Australia, whenever these clients attempt to 'convert' their licence, they face a number of problems.

  1. They need to prove that they have a drivers licence from another country and that they have driving experience.
  2. They need to show that they are the one and the same person as the person who had that licence and that driving experience.

In cases where their name on their passport, being their primary form of identification in Australia, and the name on their Indian Drivers Licence is the same (especially where the Indian driving authority is recognised by the Australian driving authority), then the process is quite simple. In cases where the name appearing on their passport and their Indian Drivers Licence is different, then that's where we get involved.

Clients faced with this situation have 2 options. One option involves obtaining some form of proof from a court in India, which in most cases is extremely inconvenient and relatively expensive, and the other option involved evidence provided by a notary public - that's what we do.

We help our clients by verifying their identity, but more important confirming that they are the one and the same person as to the people who appear in the passport and the Indian Drivers Licence. We also arrange for the authentication with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), which is a necessary step in the process otherwise it won't be accepted by VFS / the Indian Consulate.

We're not involved in the entire process, but rather just focused on our main area of expertise is the preparation of the notary certificate/affidavit and the authentication with DFAT. Once those steps are completed, the remainder of the VFS application can be completed and submitted to VFS.

To obtain a quote on our notary public services for India, please visit

Get quote to notarise Indian documents


This blog is supported and maintained by . Phang Legal is a leading provider of notary public services in Sydney. With offices conveniently located in Parramatta, Phang Legal supports and services the Indian community across Sydney with readily available and easily accessible notary public services at highly competitive rates.

For more information regarding notary public services for documents going to India, view our notary publications at

Frequently asked questions regarding our notary public services can also be found at

For Hindi to English translation services by NAATI accredited translators, see

Ern Phang
Notary Public

Ern Phang is the solicitor director of Phang Legal and a notary public. Ern regularly writes about his experiences as a notary public, including the kinds of problems and solutions that his clients face when sending documents to India.

IMPORTANT: the information in this article is correct at the time of publication, however the law constantly changes. This means you should always refer to the most recent articles because we try to update this blog on a regular basis with the most current information.