VIC – HENDRY building surveyors advise building owners and property managers to be aware of the basics behind the issuing of an occupancy permit (certificate of occupancy) for a building: The Building Act 1993, Building Regulations 2006 and the Building Code of Australia all have a hand in determining what goes into an occupancy permit issued by the building surveyor. What is an Occupancy Permit? An occupancy permit (Certificate of Occupancy) is a statutory document issued under the Building Act 1993 and the Building Regulations 2006.

When it is issued it is not a legal document that states your building complies with all the provisions of the Building Act 1993, Building Regulations 2006, Building Code of Australia or even the relevant Australian Standards. It is a permit to allow occupation of a building or part of a building to a specific classification(s), where the building surveyor is satisfied that the building is suitable for occupation relative to health and safety concerns.

When must an occupancy permit/Certificate of Occupancy be issued under the building regulations?

The Building Regulations 2006 states:

1001 Application of Part

(1) This Part applies to all buildings and places of public entertainment

(2) An occupancy permit is not required for –

(a) a Class 10 building; or
(b) an alteration to a Class 2 or 3 building.

Basically except for Class 10 buildings (non-habitable structures) and alterations within a single dwelling or flat/ apartment, an occupancy permit is required for all other classifications under Clause A3.1 Principals of Classifications under the Building Code of Australia.

Building Legislation Table

Refer to our Building Legislation table for further information on the building regulations process including building orders.

Fire Safety Compliance: Essential Safety Measures

Refer to our Essential Safety Measures Identification table for further information on individual Essential Safety Measures including fire door inspections.

Further Advice

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