Am I eligible for a plumbing licence?

Read this page if you want to know whether you should apply for a plumbing licence in Victoria.

Why must you have a licence to work?

The Building Act 1993 (Vic) regulates plumbing practitioners, plumbing work and plumbing standards. Its objective is to protect the safety and health of people, and the integrity of the water supply. 

To uphold this objective, the VBA licenses plumbers to ensure they carry out plumbing work competently and safely. It decides whether to grant applications for a licence in a class or specialised class of plumbing work. The decision is based on an assessment of the applicant's competencies.

Are you eligible for a licence?

Victoria's Plumbing Regulations 2008 define eight main classes of plumbing work, and six specialised classes.

To be licenced to carry out a class or specialised classes of plumbing work, you must have all of the following:

  • be eligible to be registered in that class of plumbing work
  • for some classes of specialised plumbing work, you must already be registered in certain classes
  • have successfully completed the VBA's licence examination of competencies for that class of plumbing work
  • be covered by the required insurance.

If you are not already registered in the class or specialised class of plumbing work in which you seek to be licensed, the VBA will assess whether you are eligible to be registered in that class. Read the Plumbing registration section to learn whether you would be eligible to be registered.

Do you need just a Private Plumbing Work Licence?

If you are already licensed in a class of plumbing work, but you want to perform plumbing work only in your own home or that of a family member, then the VBA may grant you a Private Plumbing Work Licence. For more information, check out Find answers to common questions.

Do you have insurance?

All licensed plumbing practitioners must hold a minimum level of insurance, protecting both themselves and their consumers. If you are applying for, or renewing, your licence, then you must provide the VBA with a certificate of currency as evidence of your insurance cover.

Ministerial Orders set out the minimum level of cover required. You may choose a higher level of cover, but these are the minimum requirements:

  • For a licence, you must have the insurance prescribed in the Licensed Plumbers General Insurance Order 2002.
  • For a Type B Gasfitting licence, you must have the insurance prescribed in the Licensed Plumbers Insurance Order 2002 – (see page 23–24).
  • For a Private Plumbing Work Licence, you must have the insurance prescribed in the Licenced Plumbers (Private Plumbing Work) Insurance Order 2002 – (see page 13–14).

Licensed Plumbers Insurance Order 2002 (PDF, 175.01 KB)

It is an offence to work as a licensed plumber without insurance cover in the required areas. So, you should learn about your insurance needs and seek independent advice. The VBA does not provide insurance advice.

At a glance

To be licenced to carry out a class of plumbing work, you must:

  • be eligible for registration in that class of plumbing

    And

  • undergo an examination of the competencies required to be licensed in that class. To pass this exam, you may need to undertake training at a registered training organisation.

You also need to ensure you have the required insurance cover.