Tuesday, May 25, 2010

I'm an Administrative Bungle


I was a bit of a snot box on Monday so did what any self-respecting Australian public servant would do and took a sickie. I thought whilst testing Mr Kleenex's Eucalyptus tissues, I might as well finally get my passport application in and my income tax return completed.
 
I've had all my tax papers together for some time but the hours I work make it difficult to get to an agent so decided I'd do it myself online. However, because I was made redundant in the last financial year, I've got a rather odd group certificate that I can't load on the online form.

Looks like I'll have to fork out for an accountant after all. How I'm going to get there between the hours of 6pm and 6am I do not know.  Plus someone told me that they fine you $110 a day for each day late. That can't be right! I'm now 4 days late! (God sound like a pregnant teenager).

Then, I made an appointment to go up to my local  Post Office for an interview and to lodge my passport application but . . oh yeah  . . thanks Ross you silly vet, you signed the back of the photo with your own name you twit and didn't fill in the guarantor page! BLAH. Fortunately you didn't sign all the photos so I now have to find another guarantor. 


I am blessed to be surrounded by friends who are teachers. These apparently are indeed 'allowed' guarantors (along with my local pharmacist who doesn't know me from a bar of soap) for a passport application so that shouldn't be too much of a problem.

The visit however wasn't entirely wasted since apparently, much like many marriages, my Marriage Certificate is no longer valid! How did that happen?

Apparently if you have a Marriage Certificate that's more than 10 years old, you have to apply for an updated certificate. I think it probably has more information on it like your waist size when you fitted into your wedding dress 30 years ago just to remind you of the fact that everything is now heading south . . but no worries.

You just log into their website, fill in the form and fax it through with a credit card payment for $65! Yes I said "sixty five dollars" WTF?

I already have a marriage certificate! Pity about the husband, he carked it 20 years ago . . . and now I have to get another . .erm certificate, not husband, although I'm not adverse to that if there are any takers? 

The irony is that to change my name back to my maiden name by Deed Poll only costs $35 . . now just how much do I like my Married name?

At least I don't have to go through the wedding bit!

Is 11:28 am too early for a drinky poo?


www.toothpastefordinner.com

31 comments:

lakeviewer said...

Oh My! They get you on all counts. So sorry. Hope you get some teacher to vouch for you, and an updated whatever to get your passport re=assigned. Ouch.

I wonder how it works in other countries. It would be fun to find out.

Roy said...

Yikes! Tangled up in bureaucracy! Nope, not too early for a drinky-poo at all. In fact, here it's time for a nightcap.

JeffScape said...

Well, shit.

Keep the married name, you... you know you'll regret later if you change it. :P

Ronda Laveen said...

It's always about the $$$ isn't it? They have more ways to twist it out of us than not. $110 fine per day? Those guys REALLY want their money. Hope you get it all straightened out. I've never heard of having to get a new marriage cert.

Gledwood said...

Have a Sambuca. I just found out that was Anita Pallenberg's favourite drink ...

... hang on, Sambuca is ANISEED. YEURGH!... Liquid nausea! But doesn't it sound nice!

On second thoughts, make that a margarita. I still don't know what margaritas actually are, though I do know they're what American ladies quaff when they're after a good time...

I am toasting you with a white cyder (at 7.5% alcohol and 75p a half litre, the cheapest thing in the shop and I hate it my favourite drink is punch), it's 6:46am so I beat you by five hours!

http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/2008/feb/24/1

Gledwood said...

... and my clock is 4 mins slow. Is it really 3:50pm your end.... you know half of my heart is in Sydney Australia because that's where I have more known relations than anywhere else.

I thought I was going to have to go through that teacher/doctor/magistrate malarkey when I last renewed mine... thankfully not, but I am starting to see Aussie buearocracy (how do you spell that?) as even sillier than ours. An OUTDATED marriage?! And they still expect you to live in some la-la-land where "pillars of the community" vouch for you. You know years ago they never ever checked, which meant you could probably get five passports each under five names if you wanted them...

if I were you I would go to the pharmacist ... just hope the guy's not tired enough write "Imperial Leather... Camay... or Dove (contains a quarter moisturiser)..." on the back...

River said...

Yikes, there's a fee for everything! i wonder why reverting to your maiden name is cheaper than just changing your name? It's the same paperwork, isn't it? I changed my name by deed poll about a dozen years ago, since I didn't want to carry my divorced husband's name and also didn't want to go back to my maiden name, which is Polish and has 9 consonants and one vowel, right at the end. I chose a name by opening the phone book at random (several times because the first few openings were all Smith)and picking one where there were only four others listed. The cost was somewhere in the vicinity of $100.

nick said...

Bureaucracy, bureaucracy, it drives me nuts sometimes. You have to renew your marriage certificate? Bonkers. No such nonsense in the UK, once you're married, that's it. Just another tax opportunity I guess.

Tom said...

i really don't get the marriage certificate thing...that is insane that you have to update your marriage every ten years. pah! No doubt you'll have to reup your birth certificate soon, also....reminds me, i still need my city dog licsence for the Toby--would hate for him to be arrested.

Alan Burnett said...

Half eleven in the morning where you are is half eleven at night where I am. Just imagine you are here with us and it certainly isn't too early : indeed it is almost indecently late. And it seems that you are in need of a drink.

sandy said...

omg I'm trying to clear a nondescript traffic sitation $200.00

Mim said...

so...if I move to Australia and allow my marriage certificate to expire is that an automatic divorce?

Hmmm......

Grannymar said...

I have never heard of updating a marriage certificate. Next they will introduce certificates of widowhood! Scrap that Fast, or they will have another reason to relieve us of our money! :(

laughingwolf said...

truckload of inanities you face down under :(

Vagabonde said...

I thought French bureaucracy was bad, but yours sounds worse. Did not know you had to have someone to vouch for you – here if you have a birth certificate or your citizenship papers, 2 photos, some money, you are able to get a passport in 3 weeks, and renewing is even easier. Good think you are starting early though.

Isabella Golightly said...

So, good news and bad news. On the tax front, they only fine you if you owe them money & you've been tardy in submitting your return. Don't stress about being days or weeks late, if you use an Agent, you can pretty much leave it months. I haven't done mine for last year yet! (And I know this because... the best man at our wedding is also our accountant. Cause and effect? God I hope not!).

Bad news? I can't even find our marriage certificate. Now you've got me worried. At least I know where the Best Man lives so he can vouch for me! Good luck with all that crap.

Janice said...

Go for it! Afterall, it's 5 o'clock somewhere. Cheers...

California Girl said...

Dammit! Janice stole my comment...really!

Hilarious bit on bureaucracy and fees. What a friggin' time they put us all through and for what? I have been putting off getting a passport because of all the "steps" involved, not to mention the money, honey. It's ridiculous. Besides, my last passport, circa 1985, has an absolutely FABULOUS photo of moi and I don't want to turn it in.

00dozo said...

Having worked for an LLB (aka Lousy Little Bastard, aka lawyer), I know all to well about bureaucracy. Ha! Co-inkidikly, I am also in the process of renewing my passport! Oy! Life's toils.

Well, to ease your pains, so to speak, I have a distraction for you ... come visit my place, there awaits the distraction.

And I hope you get well soon!

Babysis said...

Ah....now see I signed my Doctor's boss's passport.....am I a pillar of the community? I think not, but I've worked with her 4 days a week for 4 years....I also signed her husbands....dont know him too well. As for the marriage cert...WTF exactly! On the tax - I know people who havent put tax returns in for years and havent paid a fine!
I'll sign your passport!....Dr Lou
do you think that would work??

Why arent Plumbers allowed to sign passports - are they criminals? I have always wondered why that is....

Pam said...

Plumbers aren't allowed to sign passports because it makes them feel drained, and gives them the s#!ts. Last time a plumber signed a passport it put a spanner in the works.

Kath Lockett said...

I'd just go in there with a handful of sodden, heavily-filled tissues and hiss, "Get my paperwork done NOW or these get rubbed in your face."

Dare ya!

kj said...

why o why must there be so many chores of life? post offices and tax accountants and pharmacies and groceries and even shoe shops!

you are a good sport. i love how good naturedly you complain. :)

have fun, hells. paris awaits...

Lorna Lilo said...

I could never work out if I was being certified or certifiable.

kylie said...

at 11.30 yesterday, just when you were writing this, i could have done with a good stiff drink myself so imagine i joined you :)

unstranger said...

I don't know how you Ozzies put up with such crap. If I was you I'd want to sue the Prime Minister and all his cronies.
And I thought Ireland was bad!

Darlene said...

OMG I never heard of updating your marriage certificate. It the guy kicks the bucket there is a record of that and if you get a divorce there is a record of that. Why can't these records be synchronized?

Crap, crap, crap.

Kate said...

Money money money.... they're all after it.... its no wonder I don't have any!
I had to get a new marriage certificate too - to prove my kids were who they are when applying for an Irish passport.... crazy - they'd already got a British one and that was hard work... big brother needs to know everything about everyone!!!

lettuce said...

thats ridiculous.

bloody stoooopid.
merits drinky poos almost any time.

Sarah Lulu said...

Ohh I'm doing the passport thing too!
AND I had the marriage certificate problem.
AND I changed my name.
AND I sorta inserted a hippy name back in the 70's without an documentation and now it's sort of messed everything up!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Bimbimbie said...

Bureaucrats are probably under the illusion that marriages only last 7.5 years ... a marriage certificate is a marriage certificate and what the flipping 'eck it's an Australian one too*!*