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Currency Act 1965

Authoritative Version
  • - C2007C00565
  • In force - Superseded Version
  • View Series
Act No. 95 of 1965 as amended, taking into account amendments up to Act No. 154 of 2007
An Act relating to Currency, Coinage and Legal Tender
Administered by: Treasury
Registered 28 Sep 2007
Start Date 24 Sep 2007
End Date 09 Dec 2015

Currency Act 1965

Act No. 95 of 1965 as amended

This compilation was prepared on 27 September 2007
taking into account amendments up to Act No. 154 of 2007

The text of any of those amendments not in force
on that date is appended in the Notes section

The operation of amendments that have been incorporated may be
affected by application provisions that are set out in the Notes section

Prepared by the Office of Legislative Drafting and Publishing,
Attorney‑General’s Department, Canberra

  

  

  


Contents

Part I—Preliminary                                                                                                              1

1............ Short title [see Note 1]........................................................................ 1

2............ Commencement [see Note 1].............................................................. 1

4............ Interpretation....................................................................................... 1

5............ Extension to external Territories.......................................................... 1

6............ Act to bind Crown.............................................................................. 1

Part II—Currency                                                                                                                 2

7............ Repeal................................................................................................. 2

8............ Monetary unit and denominations of money....................................... 2

9............ Transactions to be in Australian currency........................................... 2

10.......... References to previous currency to be construed as references to currency under this Act      3

11.......... Payments to be made in currency under this Act................................. 4

12.......... Forms.................................................................................................. 5

Part III—Coinage                                                                                                                  6

13.......... Standard composition of coins............................................................ 6

13A....... Standard weight, design and dimension of coins................................ 7

14.......... Treasurer may issue coins................................................................... 7

14A....... Issue price of coins of certain denominations...................................... 7

15.......... Treasurer may issue coins under repealed Acts for limited time.......... 8

Part IV—Legal tender                                                                                                        9

16.......... Legal tender......................................................................................... 9

17.......... Coins called in not legal tender............................................................ 9

Part V—Transitional provisions                                                                                 10

18.......... Transactions may be in previous currency during transition period.. 10

19.......... Payments during and after transition period...................................... 10

20.......... Concurrent legal tender..................................................................... 11

21.......... Duration of section 18....................................................................... 13

Part VI—Miscellaneous                                                                                                    14

22.......... Prohibition of other than official coins.............................................. 14

23.......... Coins may be called in...................................................................... 14

24.......... Certain days to be non‑business days for purposes of Bills of Exchange Act          14

25.......... Special provision with respect to certain cheques.............................. 14

26.......... Regulations....................................................................................... 15

Schedule—Standard compositions of coins                                                          16

Notes                                                                                                                                             17


An Act relating to Currency, Coinage and Legal Tender

Part IPreliminary

1  Short title [see Note 1]

                   This Act may be cited as the Currency Act 1965.

2  Commencement [see Note 1]

             (1)  Part I and section 24 shall come into operation on the date on which this Act receives the Royal Assent.

             (2)  The remaining provisions of this Act shall come into operation on 14 February 1966.

4  Interpretation

             (1)  In this Act, unless the contrary intention appears:

Australia includes all the Territories to which this Act extends by virtue of section 5.

the repealed Acts means the Acts repealed by this Act.

             (2)  In this Act, unless the contrary intention appears, a reference to coins made and issued under this Act shall be read as a reference to coins made and issued under the Currency Act 1965 or under that Act as amended and in force at any time.

5  Extension to external Territories

                   This Act extends to all the external Territories.

6  Act to bind Crown

                   This Act binds the Crown in right of the Commonwealth, of each of the States and of the Northern Territory.


 

Part IICurrency

7  Repeal

                   The following Acts are repealed:

                            Coinage Act 1909;

                            Coinage Act 1936;

                            Coinage Act 1947.

8  Monetary unit and denominations of money

             (1)  The monetary unit, or unit of currency, of Australia is the dollar.

             (2)  The denominations of money in the currency of Australia are the dollar and the cent.

             (3)  A cent is one‑hundredth part of a dollar.

             (4)  The equivalent in the currency provided for by this Act of One sovereign or pound in the currency provided for by the repealed Acts is Two dollars, the like equivalent of One shilling is Ten cents and the like equivalent of One penny is five‑sixths of a cent.

9  Transactions to be in Australian currency

             (1)  Subject to this section, every sale, every bill of exchange or promissory note, every security for money, and every other contract, agreement, deed, instrument, transaction, dealing, matter or thing relating to money, or involving the payment of, or a liability to pay, money, that is made, executed, entered into or done, shall, unless it is made, executed, entered into or done according to the currency of some country other than Australia, be made, executed, entered into or done according to the currency of Australia provided for by this Act.

             (2)  Nothing in this section operates so as to invalidate a will or other testamentary instrument.

10  References to previous currency to be construed as references to currency under this Act

             (1)  Subject to this section:

                     (a)  a reference in a law of the Commonwealth;

                     (b)  a reference in a bill of exchange, promissory note, security for money, contract or agreement (whether the contract or agreement is in writing or not), deed or other instrument; and

                     (c)  a reference in any other manner (not being a reference in a law other than a law of the Commonwealth);

to an amount of money in the currency provided for by the repealed Acts shall, unless the context is such that it would be inappropriate or the contrary intention appears, be construed as a reference to a corresponding amount of money in the currency provided for by this Act, calculated on the basis of the equivalents specified in subsection (4) of section 8.

             (2)  Where such a reference as is mentioned in subsection (1) is to a percentage or other proportion expressed in terms of money, the reference shall be construed as a reference to an equivalent percentage or proportion expressed in terms of money in the currency provided for by this Act.

             (3)  Where such a reference as is mentioned in subsection (1) (not being a reference in a law of the Commonwealth) is to the amount of a payment payable periodically (not being a payment for the remuneration of an employee, whether the remuneration is by way of salary, wages, commission or otherwise) and that amount is an amount of pounds, shillings and pence, pounds and pence, shillings and pence or pence, the corresponding amount in the currency provided for by this Act shall be calculated on the basis that an amount of pence specified in the first column of the table in subsection (3) of section 11 corresponds to the amount of cents specified in the second column of that table opposite to that amount of pence.

             (4)  For the purposes of this section:

law of the Commonwealth means:

                     (a)  an Act;

                     (b)  an instrument (including regulations or rules or an industrial award, order, determination or agreement or similar instrument) having effect by virtue of an Act;

                     (c)  an Ordinance of a Territory and any other law in force in a Territory;

                     (d)  an instrument (including regulations or rules or an industrial award, order, determination or agreement or similar instrument) having effect by virtue of such an Ordinance or law; and

                     (e)  an instrument having effect by virtue of any such regulations or rules as are mentioned in paragraph (b) or (d).

Territory means a Territory in which this Act applies or to which this Act extends.

11  Payments to be made in currency under this Act

             (1)  Every payment that is made shall, unless it is made according to the currency of some country other than Australia, be made according to the currency of Australia provided for by this Act.

             (2)  For the purpose of making a payment that was payable before 14 February 1966, but is not made until on or after that date, the amount of money in the currency provided for by this Act that corresponds to an amount of money in the currency provided for by the repealed Acts is, subject to subsection (3), an amount calculated on the basis of the equivalents specified in subsection (4) of section 8.

             (3)  For the purposes of subsection (2), where the amount of money in the currency provided for by the repealed Acts is an amount of pounds, shillings and pence, pounds and pence, shillings and pence or pence, the corresponding amount in the currency provided for by this Act shall be calculated on the basis that an amount of pence specified in the first column of the following table corresponds to the amount of cents specified in the second column of that table opposite to that amount of pence:

TABLE

First Column

Second Column

Amount of pence

Amount of cents

1

1

2

2

3

2

4

3

5

4

6

5

7

6

8

7

9

8

10

8

11

9

12  Forms

                   Where a law of the Commonwealth as defined by subsection (4) of section 10, being a law passed or made before 14 February 1966, contains a form that refers to an amount of money in the currency provided for by the repealed Acts, or provides for an amount of money to be specified in that currency, a person using the form may fill it in in such a manner as to set forth the equivalent of that amount in the currency provided for by this Act.


 

Part IIICoinage

13  Standard composition of coins

             (1)  Subject to paragraph (2)(a), the standard composition of the coins of the denominations specified in the Schedule is as specified in the Schedule.

             (2)  The Treasurer may, by legislative instrument, determine that this Act is to have effect, on and after a day specified in the determination, as if:

                     (a)  a reference in the Schedule, opposite to the denomination of a coin, to the standard composition of coins of that denomination were a reference to such other standard composition as is specified in the determination; or

                     (b)  there were included in the Schedule a reference to a denomination of money specified in the determination and there were specified in the Schedule opposite to that denomination, as the standard composition of coins of that denomination, the standard composition that is specified in the determination.

             (3)  Where a determination is made for the purposes of paragraph (2)(a), then, on and after the day specified in the determination and while the determination remains in force, there is taken to be specified in the Schedule, opposite to the denomination mentioned in the determination, such other standard composition as is mentioned in the determination instead of, or in addition to, the standard composition that is, or is taken to be, specified in the Schedule immediately before that day.

             (4)  Where a determination is made for the purposes of paragraph (2)(b), then, on and after the day specified in the determination and while the determination remains in force:

                     (a)  the denomination of money specified in the determination is taken to be specified in the Schedule; and

                     (b)  the standard composition specified in the determination is taken to be specified in the Schedule opposite to that denomination.

             (5)  The Treasurer may specify in a determination more than one standard composition in relation to a coin of a particular denomination.

13A  Standard weight, design and dimension of coins

             (1)  The Treasurer may, by legislative instrument, determine, on and after a day specified in the determination, the standard weight, the allowable variation from that standard weight, the design and the dimensions of a coin whose denomination is specified, or taken to be specified, in the Schedule.

             (2)  The Treasurer may specify in a determination more than one standard weight, design or set of dimensions, in relation to a coin of a particular denomination.

             (3)  Where the Treasurer specifies in a determination more than one standard weight in respect of a coin of a particular denomination, the Treasurer must specify in that determination an allowable variation in respect of each such standard weight.

14  Treasurer may issue coins

             (1)  The Treasurer may cause to be made and issued coins of the denominations of money specified, or taken to be specified, in the Schedule.

             (2)  A coin so made and issued:

                     (a)  must be of a standard composition specified, or taken to be specified, in the Schedule in relation to that coin; and

                     (b)  must be of a standard weight, and of a design and dimensions, determined, by signed instrument, by the Treasurer.

             (3)  Despite subsection (2), in the making of a coin, a variation from a standard weight applicable to the coin is allowable as determined, by signed instrument, by the Treasurer.

14A  Issue price of coins of certain denominations

             (1)  Coins:

                     (a)  of a denomination of $5 or more; or

                     (b)  whose standard composition consists of, or includes, gold, silver or platinum;

shall be issued at prices:

                     (c)  determined, in writing, by the Treasurer; or

                     (d)  calculated in accordance with a method determined, in writing, by the Treasurer.

             (2)  The Treasurer may, either generally or as otherwise provided by the instrument of delegation, by writing signed by him or her, delegate to a person all or any of his or her powers under subsection (1).

             (3)  A power so delegated, when exercised by the delegate, shall be deemed to have been exercised by the Treasurer.

             (4)  A delegation under this section does not prevent the exercise by the Treasurer of the power or powers so delegated.

             (5)  Where the Treasurer has delegated a power to a person under this section, the Treasurer may give directions to that person with respect to the exercise of that power and the power shall not be exercised by the delegate otherwise than in accordance with any such directions.

15  Treasurer may issue coins under repealed Acts for limited time

                   Notwithstanding the repeal effected by section 7, the Treasurer may, until a date to be fixed by Proclamation as the date on and after which this section shall cease to be in force, continue to cause to be made and issued coins in accordance with the repealed Acts.


 

Part IVLegal tender

16  Legal tender

             (1)  A tender of payment of money is a legal tender if it is made in coins that are made and issued under this Act and are of current weight:

                     (a)  in the case of coins of the denomination of Five cents, Ten cents, Twenty cents or Fifty cents or coins of 2 or more of those denominations—for payment of an amount not exceeding $5 but for no greater amount;

                     (b)  in the case of coins of the denomination of One cent or Two cents or coins of both of those denominations—for payment of an amount not exceeding 20 cents but for no greater amount;

                     (c)  in the case of coins of a denomination greater than Fifty cents but less than Ten dollars—for payment of an amount not exceeding 10 times the face value of a coin of the denomination concerned but for no greater amount;

                     (d)  in the case of coins of the denomination of Ten dollars—for payment of an amount not exceeding $100 but for no greater amount; and

                     (e)  in the case of coins of another denomination—for payment of any amount.

             (2)  For the purposes of subsection (1), a coin shall be deemed to be not of current weight if it has become diminished in weight by wear or otherwise so as to be of less weight than the weight prescribed as the least current weight of that coin.

17  Coins called in not legal tender

                   The references to coins in subsection (1) of section 16 do not include references to coins that have been called in in pursuance of this Act.


 

Part VTransitional provisions

18  Transactions may be in previous currency during transition period

             (1)  Notwithstanding the provisions of Part II, a payment, a sale or a security for money, or any other contract, agreement, deed, instrument, transaction, dealing, matter or thing relating to money, or involving the payment of, or a liability to pay, money (but not including a bill of exchange or promissory note), that is made, executed, entered into or done may be made, executed, entered into or done according to the currency provided for by the repealed Acts.

             (2)  Section 10 does not, before the date fixed by Proclamation in pursuance of section 21, apply in relation to:

                     (a)  a reference to an amount of money in the currency provided for by the repealed Acts in a security for money, contract, agreement, deed or other instrument executed or entered into in pursuance of subsection (1); or

                     (b)  a reference in any other manner to an amount of money in the currency provided for by the repealed Acts, being a reference made in pursuance of subsection (1).

19  Payments during and after transition period

             (1)  For the purpose of making, in the currency provided for by this Act, a payment:

                     (a)  that is payable in pursuance of, under or by virtue of a sale or a security for money, or any other contract, agreement, deed, instrument, transaction, dealing, matter or thing made, executed, entered into or done in pursuance of subsection (1) of section 18; and

                     (b)  that:

                              (i)  is made by a bill of exchange or promissory note; or

                             (ii)  is not so made but was payable before the date fixed in pursuance of section 21 and is not made until after that date;

the amount of money in the currency provided for by this Act that corresponds to an amount of money in the currency provided for by the repealed Acts is, subject to subsection (2), an amount calculated on the basis of the equivalents specified in subsection (4) of section 8.

             (2)  Subsection (3) of section 11 has effect for the purposes of subsection (1) of this section and so has effect as if the reference in that first‑mentioned subsection to subsection (2) of section 11 were a reference to subsection (1) of this section.

20  Concurrent legal tender

             (1)  This section has effect notwithstanding section 16.

             (2)  A tender of payment of money is a legal tender if it is made in coins that are made and issued under this Act and are of current weight:

                     (a)  in the case of coins of the denomination of Five cents, Ten cents, Twenty cents or Fifty cents—for payment of an amount not exceeding Two pounds ten shillings but for no greater amount; and

                     (b)  in the case of any other coins—for payment of an amount not exceeding Two shillings but for no greater amount.

             (3)  A tender of payment of money is a legal tender if it is made in coins that are referred to in the repealed Acts and are of current weight:

                     (a)  in the case of bronze coins—for payment of an amount not exceeding Twenty cents or Two shillings but for no greater amounts; and

                     (b)  in the case of any other coins—for payment of an amount not exceeding Five dollars or Two pounds ten shillings but for no greater amount.

             (4)  A tender of payment of money is a legal tender if it is made partly in coins that are referred to in the repealed Acts and are of current weight and partly in coins that are made and issued under this Act and are of current weight:

                     (a)  in the case of a tender partly in coins (other than bronze coins) referred to in the repealed Acts and partly in coins of the denomination of Five cents, Ten cents, Twenty cents or Fifty cents made and issued under this Act—for payment of an amount not exceeding Five dollars or Two pounds ten shillings but for no greater amount; and

                     (b)  in the case of any other coins—for payment of an amount not exceeding Twenty cents or Two shillings but for no greater amount.

             (5)  Subject to subsection (7) and notwithstanding the preceding provisions of this section, several coins of one or more of the denominations of Threepence, One penny or One half‑penny of a value of Sixpence, One shilling, One shilling and sixpence or Two shillings are a legal tender for the payment of an amount of Five cents, Ten cents, Fifteen cents or Twenty cents respectively, but a coin, or a number of coins, of any of those denominations is not otherwise a legal tender for the payment of an amount of money in the currency provided for by this Act.

             (6)  Subject to subsection (7) and notwithstanding the preceding provisions of this section, for the purpose of making, before the date fixed in pursuance of section 21, a payment that is referred to in paragraph (a) of subsection (1) of section 19, several coins of either or both of the denominations of Two cents and One cent of a value of Five cents, Ten cents, Fifteen cents or Twenty cents are a legal tender for the payment of an amount of Sixpence, One shilling, One shilling and sixpence or Two shillings respectively, but a coin, or a number of coins, of any of those denominations is not otherwise a legal tender for the payment of an amount of money in the currency provided for by the repealed Acts.

             (7)  Subsections (5) and (6) do not apply in relation to a payment for the remuneration of an employee whether the remuneration is by way of salary, wages, commission or otherwise.

             (8)  For the purposes of this section, the value of a coin of the denomination specified in the first column of the following table shall be taken to be equivalent to the value of the coin of the denomination specified in the second column of that table opposite to the description of the first‑mentioned coin:

TABLE

First Column

Second Column

Coins under the repealed Acts

Coins under this Act

Crown

Fifty cents

Florin

Twenty cents

Shilling

Ten cents

Sixpence

Five cents

             (9)  For the purposes of this section, a coin shall be deemed to be not of current weight if it has become diminished in weight by wear or otherwise so as to be of less weight than the weight prescribed as the least current weight of that coin.

           (10)  The references to coins in subsections (2), (3), (4), (5) and (6) do not include references to coins that have been called in in pursuance of this Act or the repealed Acts.

21  Duration of section 18

                   Upon a date to be fixed by Proclamation, subsection (1) of section 18 of this Act shall be deemed to be repealed and section 8 of the Acts Interpretation Act 1901‑1964 shall be deemed to apply as if that subsection had been repealed by an Act other than this Act.


 

Part VIMiscellaneous

22  Prohibition of other than official coins

                   A person shall not make or issue a piece of gold, silver, copper, nickel, bronze or of any other material, whether metal or otherwise, of any value, other than a coin made or issued under the repealed Acts or under this Act or a British coin as defined by the repealed Acts, as a token for money or as purporting that the holder is entitled to demand any value denoted on it.

Penalty:  One hundred dollars.

23  Coins may be called in

             (1)  The Governor‑General may, by Proclamation, call in any coins issued under this Act or the repealed Acts before a date specified in the Proclamation.

             (2)  A Proclamation under subsection (1) has effect from such date as is specified in the Proclamation for the purpose.

24  Certain days to be non‑business days for purposes of Bills of Exchange Act

             (1)  Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (3) of section 98 of the Bills of Exchange Act 1909‑1958, 10, 11 and 12 February 1966 are non‑business days for the purposes of that Act.

             (2)  Notwithstanding any provision of the Bills of Exchange Act 1909‑1958, a cheque may be presented for payment by a banker (including the banker on whom that cheque is drawn) on any of the days referred to in subsection (1).

25  Special provision with respect to certain cheques

                   A cheque dated on or after 14 February 1966 shall be deemed to have been drawn before that date if there is written upon the cheque a certificate by a banker that the cheque was drawn before that date but the cheque shall not, by reason only of the certificate, be taken to be a stale cheque.

26  Regulations

                   The Governor‑General may make regulations, not inconsistent with this Act, prescribing all matters that are required or permitted by this Act to be prescribed or are necessary or convenient to be prescribed for carrying out or giving effect to this Act.


ScheduleStandard compositions of coins

  

Sections 13 and 14

Denomination of Coin

Standard Composition

Two hundred dollars......................................

11/12ths gold and 1/12th other metal

One hundred dollars.......................................

11/12ths gold and 1/12th other metal

Fifty dollars.....................................................

11/12ths gold and 1/12th other metal

Twenty‑five dollars........................................

11/12ths gold and 1/12th other metal

Ten dollars.......................................................

92.5% silver and 7.5% other metal

Fifty cents........................................................

Copper and nickel

Twenty cents...................................................

Copper and nickel

Ten cents..........................................................

Copper and nickel

Five cents.........................................................

Copper and nickel

Two cents.........................................................

Copper, tin and zinc

One cent...........................................................

Copper, tin and zinc


Notes to the Currency Act 1965

Note 1

The Currency Act 1965 as shown in this compilation comprises Act No. 95, 1965 amended as indicated in the Tables below.

Table of Acts

Act

Number
and year

Date
of Assent

Date of commencement

Application, saving or transitional provisions

Currency Act 1965

95, 1965

10 Dec 1965

Part I and s. 24: Royal Assent
Remainder: 14 Feb 1966

 

Currency Act 1969

4, 1969

8 Apr 1969

8 Apr 1969

Statute Law Revision Act 1973

216, 1973

19 Dec 1973

31 Dec 1973

S. 9(1)

as amended by

 

 

 

 

Statute Law Revision Act 1974

20, 1974

25 July 1974

31 Dec 1973

Currency Amendment Act 1980

17, 1980

23 Apr 1980

23 Apr 1980

Currency Amendment Act 1981

11, 1981

25 Mar 1981

25 Mar 1981

Statute Law (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1987

141, 1987

18 Dec 1987

S. 3: Royal Assent

S. 5(1)

Financial Legislation Amendment Act 1992

11, 1992

13 Mar 1992

13 Mar 1992

S. 6

Statute Law Revision Act 1996

43, 1996

25 Oct 1996

Schedule 5 (items 47, 48): Royal Assent

Financial Sector Legislation Amendment (Simplifying Regulation and Review) Act 2007

154, 2007

24 Sept 2007

Schedule 4 (items 31–34): Royal Assent


Table of Amendments

ad. = added or inserted     am. = amended     rep. = repealed     rs. = repealed and substituted

Provision affected

How affected

Part I

 

S. 2......................................

am. No. 17, 1980

S. 3......................................

rep. No. 216, 1973

Ss. 4, 5................................

am. No. 216, 1973; No. 17, 1980

S. 6......................................

am. No. 17, 1980

Part II

 

S. 10....................................

am. No. 216, 1973 (as am. by No. 20, 1974); No. 17, 1980

Ss. 11, 12............................

am. No. 17, 1980

Part III

 

S. 13....................................

am. No. 11, 1981; No. 141, 1987

 

rs. No. 11, 1992

 

am. No. 154, 2007

S. 13A.................................

ad. No. 11, 1992

 

am. No. 154, 2007

S. 14....................................

am. No. 4, 1969; No. 17, 1980; No. 11, 1981; No. 141, 1987; No. 11, 1992

S. 14A.................................

ad. No. 17, 1980

 

am. No. 11, 1981; No. 141, 1987; No. 43, 1996

S. 15....................................

am. No. 17, 1980

Part IV

 

S. 16....................................

am. No. 17, 1980; No. 11, 1981

S. 17....................................

am. No. 17, 1980

Part V

 

Ss. 18–20............................

am. No. 17, 1980

Part VI

 

Ss. 23–25............................

am. No. 17, 1980

Schedule

 

Heading to Schedule........

rs. No. 17, 1980

The Schedule....................

am. No. 4, 1969

Schedule............................

am. No. 17, 1980; No. 11, 1981