If you were thinking of moving from New Zealand to Australia to work as forklift operator, the first question that you may ask is your forklift certification valid in Australia.
Since both of these countries have different standards when it comes for forklift training and operator licensing, you cannot use your New Zealand forklift certificate in Australia.
Everything is different in Australia, from training course topics, license classifications, registered training organizations, to the amount of the course you will be paying. You may have to pay twice the amount of forklift training course you paid in New Zealand, but the qualification you will gain is definitely worth for the money you invested.
In Australia, driving forklift is considered as high risk work and in order you to perform such job, you need a HRW license. While in New Zealand, you have to apply for Forklift endorsement in your driver’s license in order for you to be able to drive the equipment in public places or roads. There is no such requirement if you will be working Australia.
Complete an LF or LO course, get assessed by WorkSafe evaluator to receive your certificate and apply for HRW licence will be the basic steps in getting your High Risk Work License. The HRW license is valid anywhere else in Australia and can be used to apply for forklift job in a territory or state of the country.
Your New Zealand Forklift Certificate Will Form Part of Recognition of Prior Learning
When applying for forklift license and you want your prior experience be credited or recognized by the evaluator, you need to submit enough proof showing your experience as being a forklift operator in New Zealand.
New Zealand forklift licence that you are holding right now and previous work experience and operational skill such as employment or training certificate can be accepted to become qualifications of a Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) procedure in Australia.
When you are applying for RPL, ask to your registered training organization (RTO) about your option about availing this before you enroll for forklift training course with them.
The second option you can take is to call the Department of Education and Training, Their phone number is 1300 369 935 to talk about different options you can take.
The application cost for RPL is $100 when applied to a government subsidized organization while for non-government institution such as in privately owned RTO, the cost may vary because the cost will have to be approved first by the company manager prior to accepting your application.
Requirements and Process in Applying for Forklift License in Australia
Please take note, the steps and the documentary requirements will differ depending on the territory/state you are situated in Australia.
Here are basic steps in applying for HRW licence (such as forklift licence) in Australia:
- Assess what forklift licence you should get before enrolling for forklift driving course. There are two licence classifications you can apply for in Australia – it is either an LF or LO licence.
- Find a training provider where you can enroll for course. In Australia, training provider is called a registered training organization (RTO).
- When enrolled for a course, you must accomplish and complete the classroom training and pratice driving.
- Schedule for a theory test and practical assessment. Ask your RTO about the booking. Usually, booking for assessment has to be done 5 days in advance.
- When you are successful taking the theory test and practical assessment done by the accredited evaluator, you will receive your assessment summary AS1 form and tax invoice from the assessor and certificate of attainment from your RTO. You will need these to apply for HRW licence. These documents have a 60-day validity in which you need to lodge your application for HRW licence.
- Bring the requirements together with your payment to the nearest Australia Post or Customer Service Centre. Your application for HRW licence will be process and it will be mailed to your registered address. I would like to remind you to take a copy of your AS1 form submitting the requirements, the AS1 form will serve as your interim licence while you are waiting for your photographic HRW licence to arrive.
Here are the basic requirements when applying for forklift training course and applying for HRW licence:
- The minimum age of student is 18. You cannot be accepted and issued with licence if you are below the minimum age.
- In Australia, since English is the primary language, you need to demonstrate your understanding in both written and verbal communication.
- You need to attain 100 points of ID. For every identification (e.g: passport, birth certificate, etc) you will present, you will receive equivalent points. For more information about proof of identification, check this out.
- Application fee. The cost of application will vary depending where you are in Australia.
To Conclude This
Your New Zealand forklift licence cannot be valid and therefore cannot be accepted in Australia. You still have to go through the usual process of taking the forklift training course, pass the classroom test and get a satisfactory practical assessment. Since forklift operation is classified as a high risk work, you need to apply for HRW licence.
The process may take some time, effort and a small investment but the advantage of having a forklift certificate is worth everything you put in it.
By Danny Cornelissen (http://www.portpictures.nl) [Attribution], via Wikimedia Commons