To avoid delays, please complete the form correctly and attach all necessary documents. The average processing time last quarter was 42 days.
When your application is lodged and you have paid the relevant fees, you will receive an acknowledgement letter and a receipt.
If your application is successful, you will receive an approval certificate.
Once you are approved, you should familiarise yourself with your ongoing obligations and licensing requirements. For more information, view Running your business – sex work service providers.
The sex work licensing system will be repealed in December 2023. After this time brothel managers will no longer be required to be approved by the BLA. More information is available at Decriminalising sex work in Victoria.
When considering your application, the Business Licensing Authority (BLA) may require you to provide further information. The BLA may refuse your application if you do not provide this within a reasonable timeframe.
Change of information
If any change occurs in the information you have provided in your licence application, you must notify the BLA in writing within 10 days of becoming aware of the change.
Withdrawing your application
You can withdraw your application in writing before the BLA reaches a decision.
Sharing your information
The BLA conducts probity checks when considering an application, including a detailed credit history check.
The BLA may provide details of your application to the:
- Chief Commissioner of Victoria Police
- Director of Consumer Affairs Victoria.
The Chief Commissioner must make any enquiries they consider appropriate and report the results to the BLA. The Director of Consumer Affairs Victoria may report to the BLA on any matter they consider relevant to the application.
The BLA may also:
- conduct any other enquiries
- seek advice and information on the application from any other source.
The BLA understands the sensitivities surrounding personal information in the sex work industry and is very careful to respect privacy and confidentiality.
You can request access to your personal information by contacting us. Subject to the requirements of the Sex Work Act 1994, in exceptional circumstances you may apply to have public access to your personal information restricted.
The BLA is committed to responsible and fair handling of personal information consistent with the Privacy and Data Protection Act 2014 and its obligations under the Business Licensing Authority Act 1998. For privacy information, view Information and privacy - BLA.
Spent convictions schemes
Spent convictions schemes apply to convictions or findings of guilt for offences under Commonwealth laws and the laws of some states and territories. Generally, a ‘spent conviction’ under these schemes is a conviction or finding of guilt for a Commonwealth, territory, state or foreign offence where it is 10 years or more since the date of that conviction or finding of guilt (or five years for juvenile offenders) and the offender was not sentenced to imprisonment for more than 30 months (or six months in some states) and has not re-offended during that period.
Under these schemes a person with a spent conviction is not required to disclose that conviction or finding of guilt to any authority within the jurisdiction to which the scheme applies, and those authorities are prohibited from disclosing information about a spent conviction without the consent of the person concerned.
For more information, view the Spent convictions page.
Refusal of application
The BLA must refuse an application if it is not satisfied about the matters mentioned above.
The BLA can also refuse a brothel manager application when the applicant fails to provide information it requires to properly assess the application.
Conditions on your approval
The BLA can impose conditions or restrictions on a brothel manager approval, effective from when the approval is issued or at any time while it is current.
In deciding whether to impose a condition or restriction, the BLA may take into account any request or suggestion made by the Director of Consumer Affairs Victoria or by the Chief Commissioner of Police.
The BLA will consider imposing conditions or restrictions to:
- ensure the approval does not undermine the purposes of the Act
- tailor the approval to the circumstances of the applicant, their associates and the brothel at which they intend to work.
You can apply to the BLA to have your approval conditions varied.
If you do not comply with the conditions, the BLA may refer a breach to the Director of Consumer Affairs Victoria or Victoria Police for investigation. In serious circumstances, Consumer Affairs Victoria may initiate disciplinary action in the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT), which may result in cancelling or suspending an approval, imposing further conditions, or imposing a fine.
Photo identity card
The BLA issues a photo identity card to all approved managers and licensed sex work service providers. You must carry this card at all times while working at the brothel.
You must provide the BLA with two recent colour passport photos and certified proof of identity with your application, to enable them to produce your identity card.