Business Licensing Authority

On this page:

Update

The Business Licensing Authority website has now merged with the Consumer Affairs Victoria website.

Jurisdictional arrangements for licensing remain the same, however all of your licensing and regulation information is now available in the one location on the Consumer Affairs Victoria website.

You can access this information via the following links:

Who we are

Victoria's Business Licensing Authority (BLA) provides licences to businesses that need one to operate lawfully.

In performing our role, we balance the interests of business, consumers and the public.

The BLA and Consumer Affairs Victoria share office space and work together closely.

The BLA is an independent regulator within the Victorian Government's Justice portfolio, operating under the Business Licensing Authority Act 1998.

We license and register:

  • conveyancers
  • estate agents
  • motor car traders
  • owners corporation managers
  • second-hand dealers and pawnbrokers
  • sex work service providers
  • travel agents

The Business Licensing Act 1998 requires that the Governor in Council appoints BLA members, who must be legal practitioners with at least five years experience.

The BLA Registrar and staff from the Licensing branch of Consumer Affairs Victoria also support the BLA’s work.

What we do

Each member of the Business Licensing Authority (BLA) makes decisions about licence and registration applications. The Chairperson directs our operations and is accountable for the BLA’s performance.

It is our job to ensure applications are dealt with fairly, efficiently and legally. We must balance minimising the regulatory burden against consumer protection issues.

We make our decisions based on information collected from the applicant, other statutory agencies and our own inquiries. We don’t hold formal hearings or hear oral evidence.

On a day-to-day basis we:

  • determine licence-related applications for relevant occupations and businesses
  • provide accessible and transparent information about licensing and registration criteria and procedures
  • maintain accessible public registers of all registrants and licensees
  • impose and review conditions and restrictions on new and existing licensees and registrants as appropriate
  • refer matters to the Director of Consumer Affairs Victoria or Victoria Police for investigation.

The Registrar:

  • maintains our public registers
  • manages our compliance with Freedom of Information and privacy legislation
  • manages appeals against our decisions.

Values and principles

We operate according to the principles of the:

  • Public Administration Act 2004
  • Council of Australian Government's principles of best practice regulation

Better business regulation principles in the Victorian Guide to Regulation, covering:

  • accountability
  • transparency
  • effectiveness
  • efficiency
  • fairness.

Compliance and enforcement

The two agencies responsible for compliance and enforcement in relation to business licensing and registration are:

Consumer Affairs Victoria:

  • provides information about applicants to us
  • monitors compliance and carries out investigations and enforcement
  • engages and educates licensees and registrants.
  • provides criminal record checks and detailed reports to us

Victoria Police:

  • investigates and enforces the law against illegal sex work service providers

VCAT

The jurisdiction of the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) is to:

  • hear appeals about our decisions
  • hear disciplinary proceedings initiated by Consumer Affairs Victoria or Victoria Police against licensees and registrants.

Annual overview

The legislation governing the Business Licensing Authority (BLA) does not require an annual report to be produced. However, in the interests of transparency and accountability, the BLA prepares an overview each year.

The overview provides key data on our core licensing and registration business, together with a description of the strategies and priorities that the BLA has pursued during the reporting year.

Contact us

Telephone

1300 135 452

Interpreter service

131 450

For advice and information in languages other than English, call 131 450 and say the English name of your language. Then ask the interpreter to call 1300 135 452.

In person

Victorian Consumer & Business Centre
113 Exhibition Street
Melbourne VIC 3000

Business hours

9:00 am to 5:00 pm
Monday to Friday
(except public holidays)

Fax

03 8684 0600

Email

bla@justice.vic.gov.au

Post

Registrar
Business Licensing Authority
Box 322B
GPO Melbourne VIC 3001
Australia

Information and privacy

View our Information and privacy - Business Licensing Authority page.

Complaints

View the Consumer Affairs Victoria Make a complaint page.

Last updated: 15/09/2014

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