Permit applicant - review of a decision

As a permit applicant you can apply to VCAT to review a decision by a responsible authority – usually a council:

  • to refuse to grant a permit under section 77, Planning and Environment Act 1987
  • to impose conditions on a permit that are unacceptable to you under section 80, Planning and Environment Act 1987.

You can also apply to VCAT for a decision on your permit application if the responsible authority fails to decide your application within the prescribed time. Make these applications under section 79, Planning and Environment Act 1987.

VicSmart is a streamlined assessment process for straightforward planning permit applications. The permit applicant is eligible to apply to VCAT for the review of a decision of the responsible authority in the same way as any other planning permit application is eligible for review. VicSmart application has its own application form.

Joint applications

The Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 1998 allows two or more persons entitled to make an application to VCAT to make a joint application. The guidelines for making joint applications explain what is involved in a joint application and also identify circumstances where the Principal Registrar is likely to determine that a joint application should be treated as if it were a number of separate applications.

Time limits

Time limits apply for this type of application. You must apply to VCAT within:

  • 60 days of notice of decision to refuse a permit or
  • 60 days of the permit or notice of decision to grant a permit when the proposed conditions are unacceptable.

You can apply if the responsible authority does not decide your application within the prescribed time once the time has elapsed. However, the prescribed 60-day time limit is not continuous, the time clock is paused at various stages during the permit application process. Use our elapsed time calculator to confirm that 60 days has elapsed before you apply.

You can apply to VCAT for more time to lodge an application, by submitting the application for an extension of time form. Read more about time limits.

Extension of time to apply

Under section 126 of the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 1998, VCAT can extend the time to apply. We can extend the time by which you must make an application to VCAT – if it is reasonable to do so and if extending time would not cause any prejudice or detriment to a party or potential party that cannot be remedied by an appropriate order for costs or damages.

Complete and submit the Application for an extension of time form to apply for more time to lodge an application.

Do I need a lawyer or professional representative?

You may have a legal or other professional representation to appear at VCAT (such as a lawyer, town planner, relative, or some other person). In Planning and Environment cases you do not need to have VCAT's permission to be represented.

Find legal services that may be able to assist you.

Need help with your application?

We can explain the application process and what the form is asking you for. Contact us to get support.

We cannot 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 are unsure about your options or need advice about your claim.

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.

Legislation that applies to this type of case