What insurance do I need?

As a registered building practitioner, you must have the appropriate insurance for your registration category/class. The Building Practitioners Board (BPB) requires evidence you have insurance or are eligible to purchase insurance (in some cases) before it can grant your application for registration or renew your registration.

If the BPB learns that you are no longer covered by the required insurance, it must suspend your registration.

There are three types of insurance for registered building practitioners.

Domestic building insurance

If you undertake domestic building work worth more than $16,000, then you need domestic building insurance that will cover costs up to $300,000 to fix structural defects for six years, and non-structural defects for two years.

Before taking a deposit or any money, building practitioners must provide their client with (1) a copy of the policy and (2) a certificate of currency covering the client's property.

Domestic building insurance covers the client if, before work is complete, the practitioner:

  • is deceased
  • is declared insolvent
  • disappears.

It covers costs up to $300,000 to fix structural defects for six years, and non-structural defects for two years.

In all other cases, it is up to the building practitioner to fix or complete works, or to pay any costs awarded.

Domestic builders must provide evidence that they are eligible to purchase domestic building insurance when they renew their registration. This is usually in the form of a 'Certificate of Eligibility to purchase domestic building insurance', which is prepared by your insurer. 

To learn the insurance policy that you need, see:

For more information on Domestic Building insurance, visit the Victorian Managed Insurance Authority (VMIA) website.

Professional indemnity insurance

You need professional indemnity insurance for registration in any of the following building practitioner categories and classes:

  • Building Surveyor (Unlimited)
  • Building Surveyor (Limited)
  • Building Inspector (Unlimited)
  • Building Inspector (Limited)
  • Quantity Surveyor
  • Engineer (Civil, Mechanical, Electrical and Fire Safety classes)
  • Draftsperson (Building Design) (Architectural, Interior and Services classes)

Professional indemnity insurance covers the practitioner against legal liability resulting from any claim made during the period of insurance.

A building practitioner seeking registration renewal is required to show evidence of their professional indemnity insurance before the BPB can grant their application. They must ensure they have insurance cover for all work carried out under their registration category/class until at least the date of the anniversary of their registration.

To learn the insurance policy that you need, see:

Public liability insurance

You need public liability insurance for registration in any of the following building practitioner categories and classes:

  • Builder – Demolisher (Low Rise Buildings, Medium Rise Buildings and Unlimited classes)
  • Erector or Supervisor (Temporary Structures)

Public liability insurance covers the building practitioner against legal liability resulting from any claim made during the period of insurance.

To learn the insurance policy that you need, see:

When do I need to provide proof of my insurance? 

Before the BPB can grant your application for registration as a building practitioner, you must provide proof that you are covered by the required insurance, or are eligible to purchase the required insurance (for domestic builders only).

If you cannot provide the proof on time, you will need to explain why in writing, by letter or email. We may allow more time for you to provide the proof if you can demonstrate that you have taken steps to obtain the insurance.

If we do not receive the proof on time, we may recommend to the BPB that it refuse your application for registration.

To minimise the delay in the finalisation of your application, we recommend that you get in touch with an insurer at an early stage to learn about the process for applying for insurance.