The PPSR and priorities

The PPS Register is an online register of security interests held in personal property[1].

Secured parties such as financiers and other lenders can register their security interests on the PPS Register. It is also be possible to search the PPS Register for details of security interests.

The PPS Registrar has responsibility for functions under the Personal Property Securities Act 2009 (Cth) including the administration of the PPS Register. The functions of the PPS Registrar and the operation of the PPS Register are supported by the Personal Property Securities Service.

Default priority rules

Registration on the PPS Register is a form of perfection under the PPS Act. The most common form of perfection[2] under the PPS Act will be by registration.

Perfection by registration has two main benefits for a secured party. Firstly it defines the priority status the security interest has relative to other security interests in the collateral. Secondly it ensures their security interest survives the bankruptcy or insolvency [3] of the grantor, the person that receives assistance to acquire the collateral.

The effect of registration upon the priority of security interests is demonstrated through the default priority rules under the PPS Act. These rules provide that:

  • a perfected security interest takes priority over an unperfected security interest
  • priority between two or more perfected security interests is determined in favour of an earlier perfected security interest over a later one, and
  • priority between two or more unperfected security interests is determined in favour of an earlier attached security interest over a later one[4] .

These rules operate on a default basis and are subject to more specific priority rules throughout the PPS Act. For example, there are specific rules that apply to purchase money security interests. For more information, visit the information sheet about purchase money security interests[5].

Making a registration

On receiving an application in the approved form, the PPS Registrar may enter a security interest onto the PPS Register[6].

The application must consist of a financing statement. The financing statement[7] contains the particulars of parties to the transaction, the collateral and the security interest. For certain collateral the grantor’s details will not be entered for privacy reasons[8].

On the registration of the financing statement the PPS Registrar issues a verification statement[9] to the secured party. The verification statement can be relied upon by the secured party to prove their registration. The secured party must give a notice of the verification statement[10] to the grantor.

A person with an interest in collateral that has had a security interest registered against it may demand[11] the secured party remove the registration if the collateral does not secure an amount owed to the secured party. The secured party may amend or remove the registration. If they do not do so within five business days[12] the person that gave the demand can apply in the approved form[13] to the PPS Registrar and require that the registration be amended or remove[14] . If the secured party disagrees with the demand[15] they may seek a court order that to the effect that the demand was not valid.

Searching the PPS Register

A person may search the PPS Register for details of a registration or security interests registered against a particular grantor.

If the grantor being searched against is an individual rather than a company the search must be for a purpose authorised[16] by the PPS Act. These purposes have been drafted to ensure privacy requirements are complied with. Breach of these authorised search purposes is a civil[17] and criminal offence[18].

The search certificate will contain details of the parties and the class of collateral the security interest has been registered against.


The fees for registration and search of the PPS Register are determined by the Attorney-General[19] for Australia. Costs are determined on a cost recovery basis. The Australian Government will make no profit from the PPS Register.


  1. At a general level personal property is all forms property other than real estate. See section 10 PPS Act
  2. See fact sheet : Personal property securities - PPSR overview
  3. See fact sheet : Receivership, administration and liquidation
  4. Section 55, PPS Act
  5. See fact sheet : Purchase money security interests 
  6. Section 150, PPS Act
  7. Section 153, PPS Act
  8. Regulation 3.2, PPS Regulations, provides that motor vehicles, watercraft and aircraft must be described by vehicle identification number or other unique identifier if the property is not held by the grantor for business purposes. Also see section 10, PPS Act, definition of consumer property.
  9. Section 156, PPS Act
  10. Section 157, PPS Act
  11. Section 178, PPS Act
  12. Section 179, PPS Act
  13. Section 180, PPS Act
  14. Section 181, PPS Act
  15. Section 182, PPS Act
  16. Section 172, PPS Act
  17. Section 172(3), PPS Act
  18. See part 7.4, Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth)
  19. Section 190, PPS Act

Please note: This fact sheet provides general information about PPS reform and does not constitute legal advice. You should seek legal or other professional advice to consider the application of the PPS Act to your individual circumstances.