Private Security Act 2004 (review)
VCAT can review certain decisions made by the Chief Commissioner of Police under the Private Security Act 2004 regarding private security licensing and registration.
This page provides general information and shouldn't be considered as legal advice. Seek legal advice if you're unsure about your legal rights. Be aware that the law can change.
Private Security Act 2004 provides for the licensing and registration of certain participants in the private security industry, and regulates the industry to ensure public safety and peace.
Cases we can hear
You may be able to apply to VCAT for a review if your interests are affected by a decision of the Chief Commissioner of Police. These decisions include:
- refusing to grant a private security licence or private security registration
- imposing conditions on a licence or registration
- refusing to renew a licence or registration
- varying a licence or registration
- refusing to vary a licence or registration
- cancelling a licence under section 47(1A) or (1B) of the Act
- taking action under Section 56 or Section 111 relating to a licence or registration (following an enquiry)
- refusing an application to issue, or imposing a condition on a permit for a non-Victorian applicant
- making a request for information in the course of conducting an investigation or inquiry, which is unreasonable or unrelated to the investigation or inquiry.
Cases we can't help with
We can't review a decision if it's a refusal of the Chief Commissioner to grant an application because:
- you're a prohibited person (or a close associate is)
- the applicant is a body corporate
- the nominated person or an officer of the body corporate is a prohibited person.
We also can’t accept some cases where one party lives in another state or is a Commonwealth government organisation.
Legislation that gives VCAT the power to hear these applications
Section 150 of the Private Security Act 2004
Documents you need to apply
If you have a decision document, use it to help you complete the VCAT application form and attach a copy of the document to your application.
You must apply within 28 days of the later of these events:
- the day the decision was made
- if you requested a statement of reasons under the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act, the day the statement of reasons is given to you or you are informed that a statement of reasons will not be given.
If you apply outside of the time limit, VCAT may extend the time for making an application. You must ask for an extension of time by indicating this on the ‘extension of time’ question of the application form and briefly explaining why your application was late.
VCAT will ask the decision maker if they agree to any extension. If the decision maker doesn't agree, VCAT may hold a preliminary hearing before deciding whether to grant an extension
What can VCAT order?
Unless the relevant Act gives us different powers, VCAT can:
- affirm the original decision, in which case the original decision will stand
- vary the decision
- set aside the decision and substitute our own decision
- set aside the decision and send back the matter for reconsideration by the decision maker giving directions or recommendations
- invite the decision maker to reconsider their decision at any time during the case.
Sections 150A to 150E of the Act set out some special requirements where protected information is involved in the Chief Commissioner’s decision. You should read those sections of the Act in full to understand what they could mean for you.
If VCAT receives an application for review under sections 150(1)(a), (c) or (ea) we must ask the Chief Commissioner whether the grounds for the refusal or cancellation were based on protected information.
If the Chief Commissioner informs VCAT that the decision was based on protected information:
- VCAT will appoint a special counsel to represent the interests of the applicant
- a Presidential Member of VCAT will hear the case
- at the hearing, VCAT will determine whether or not the information is protected information. The hearing may be a closed session with only the Chief Commissioner and the special counsel present
- any order made by VCAT must only state:
- whether the decision of the Chief Commissioner is upheld or overturned
- if the licence is not granted or not reinstated, that the applicant or each relevant person has failed to meet the probity requirements.
We may publish reasons for our decision to the extent that those reasons do not relate to protected information.
We can explain the application process and what the form is asking you for. Contact us to get support.
We can't give you legal advice. This means we cannot tell you what to write in your application or recommend how to get the outcome you want.
Seek legal help if you're unsure about your options or need advice about your claim.
Do I need a lawyer or professional representative?
You don't need to have legal or other professional representation to appear at VCAT. If you want to be represented by a lawyer or a professional advocate, usually you must ask for VCAT's permission.
Be aware that the regulatory body in most cases uses legal representation.
Find legal services that may be able to assist you.
Access and privacy
VCAT hearings and files are usually public.
VCAT has limited authority to restrict who can access cases and files but, in certain circumstances, you can apply for confidentiality.