Sex Work Service Provider's Licence - Victoria

Service summary

You will require this licence if you intend to operate or have a financial interest in a brothel or escort agency in Victoria. When you apply for a sex work service provider's licence, you must specify whether you will be operating a brothel, an escort agency or both. Any person with a financial interest in the business will need to be licensed.

A brothel is a business premises where sexual services (sex work) are offered for payment or reward. Brothels must have a planning permit issued by the local council to operate. Only licensed sex work service providers can apply for a planning permit, unless they are exempt under the Act.

Escort agencies provide clients with escorts for the purpose of sexual services (sex work). Escort agencies arrange meetings at a place other than their place of business.

Service type

Licence

A licence defines the need to obtain recognition / certification and registration to undertake a certain business activity.

Eligibility requirements

To be eligible for this licence, you must:

  • Apply as an individual or partnership (a licence cannot be held by a company or other body corporate);
  • Be at least 18 years of age;
  • Be a suitable person to trade as a sex work service provider;
  • Not have been found guilty or convicted of an indictable offence in the last five years (or have an individual or body corporate associate convicted);
  • Not have had a sex work service provider's licence cancelled in the last five years;
  • Not be insolvent under administration; or
  • Not be a represented person within the meaning of the Guardianship and Administration Act 1986.
In addition, the Authority considers the following before granting this licence:

  • Are you and any associates of good repute, taking into account character, honesty and integrity;
  • Are you able to obtain adequate financial resources to ensure the business' financial viability;
  • Have you sufficient ability to establish and maintain a successful business;
  • Can you ensure employees' occupational health and safety and comply with prescribed requirements or restrictions set out in a licence; and
  • Your proposed business structure so your associates, whether individuals or bodies corporate, can be readily identified.
Check with your local council regarding individual planning permit requirements. If you intend to operate the business as a partnership, each member of the partnership is required to be individually licensed.

Ongoing requirements

It is an ongoing requirement of this licence that you lodge an annual statement with an annual licence fee in the six weeks before the anniversary of the date you became licensed as a sex work service provider.

Brothels must be personally supervised by a licensee or an approved manager on the premises at all times when they are open for business.

Various signage and other requirements must be adhered to at all times.

Various offences are liable for prosecution under current legislation. Please ensure you are compliant with all national, state and local laws relevant to your business.

Duration

Licences are ongoing until suspended, cancelled or surrendered.

Fees

 TypeAmountDescription
ApplyApplication$6,385.60

Brothel. Fees for 2016-17.

Licence$3,259.50

First year licence fee. Fees for 2015-16.

Licence

Annual licence fee. Please consult the responsible agency for information on fees to be submitted with your application.

Application$3,192.80Escort agency. Fees for 2016-17.
Application$6,385.60Brothel and escort agency. Fees for 2016-17.
VaryVariation$1,597.90

Apply to have conditions or restrictions varied or revoked. Fees for 2016-17.

Application

Apply

Please lodge all forms and additional information directly with the Authority. You will need to specify on the application form whether you are applying for a sex work service provider's licence to run a brothel, an escort agency, or both. If your application is accepted, you will then be required to attend an interview, where you will be tested on your knowledge of the relevant legislation.


Approval time

The time taken to process an application will vary according to individual applications.

Administering agency

Business Licensing Authority

Act(s) name

Sex Work Act 1994 (Victoria)

Regulation(s) name

Sex Work Regulations 2016 (Victoria)

Contact details

Registrar
Business Licensing Authority


Operating address:
113 Exhibition Street
Melbourne, Victoria 3000
Mailing address:
GPO BOX 322B
Melbourne, Victoria 3001

Phone:

1300135452

Fax:

03 86840600
bla@justice.vic.gov.au

Website:

http://www.consumer.vic.gov.au/bla Opens in a new browser window

Supporting information

Disclaimer

The information contained on the Australian Business Licence and Information Service (ABLIS) web site, or via packages or other sources is intended for general guidance only.

To the full extent permitted by law, the Federal, State, Territory and Local Governments make no representations or warranties (expressed or implied) in relation to the information, including its accuracy, currency or completeness.

The business information provided does not constitute professional or legal advice, nor is the use of any third party resource an endorsement of the information contained, the associated organisation, product or service. It is recommended that you obtain appropriate professional and /or independent legal advice to ensure that the material provided here is relevant to your particular circumstances.

To the full extent permitted by law the Federal, State, Territory and Local Governments, their employees and agents do not accept any liability for any reason, including without limitation, liability in negligence, to any person for the general information which is provided herein, or in respect of anything, including the consequences of anything done, or not done, by any such person in whole or partial reliance upon the information.