Licensing

​Process for gaining a current, identified Australian occupational licence

Australia has strict safety standards and licensing requirements for licensed occupations. The following information outlines the process for obtaining a current, identified Australian occupational licence in Australia following a skills assessment through a TRA-approved registered training organisation (RTO).

Step 1: Offshore Technical Skills Record (OTSR)

Applicants who complete a skills assessment through a TRA-approved RTO for one of the following licensed occupations will be issued an OTSR:

  • Airconditioning and Refrigeration Mechanic 

  • Electrician (General) 

  • Electrician (Special Class) 

  • Plumber (General) 

The OTSR documents an applicant’s technical skills by recording the technical competencies the applicant has successfully demonstrated against the relevant Australian vocational education and training (VET) qualification. The OTSR holder must still undertake Australian context gap training and a period of supervised employment in the specific trade to be awarded the Australian VET qualification for that occupation.

Step 2: Provisional Licence

Overseas trained tradespeople who hold an OTSR are eligible to apply for a provisional licence. A provisional licence allows the holder to perform work in the licensed occupation under supervision while completing the Australian context gap training. A provisional licence can be obtained on application from Australian state and territory licensing regulators, subject to applicants meeting other non-skill requirements.

Contact details for licensing authorities are available on the Licence Recognition website.

Airconditioning and Refrigeration Mechanics

A restricted electrical licence may be required depending on the licensing arrangements in the particular state or territory. Please contact the relevant licensing authority.

The Commonwealth refrigerant handling licence is an additional licensing requirement across Australia for the refrigeration and airconditioning occupations.

Information on the Commonwealth refrigerant licences is available on the Australian Refrigeration Council website.

Electrician (General) and Electrician (Special Class) 

TRA is now providing detailed information for electrical licensing and Australian context gap training in all states and territories. To find out more please click here.

Plumber (General)

TRA is now providing detailed information for plumbing licensing and Australian context gap training in all states and territories. To find out more, please click here.

Step 3: Australian Context Gap Training

While working under supervision, OTSR holders must also undertake formal training to obtain the Australian-specific knowledge related to their occupation. The process for this context gap training differs between electrical, airconditioning and refrigeration and plumbing occupations.

Airconditioning and Refrigeration Mechanic 

For information on the RTOs who can deliver Australian context gap training for the occupations of Airconditioning and Refrigeration Mechanic please contact TRA at 457SkillsAssessment@education.gov.au.

Electrician (General) and Electrician (Special Class)

Information on the minimum Australian context gap training in each Australian state or territory for the occupation Electrician (General) Electrician (Special Class) can be found here.

Plumber (General)

Information on the minimum Australian context gap training in each Australian state or territory for the occupation Plumber (General) can be found here.

Step 4: Obtain Australian VET Qualification

Airconditioning and Refrigeration Mechanic

On successful completion of both the Australian context gap training and a period of supervised employment (up to 12 months), the OTSR holder can apply for the relevant Australian VET qualification from the TRA-approved RTO that issued the OTSR or the RTO that delivered the Australian context gap training.

The Australian VET Qualification can then be used to apply for a current, identified Australian occupational licence with the relevant state or territory licensing authority, provided any other requirements of the licensing authority have been met.

Electrician (General) and Electrician (Special Class)

Information for the occupations Electrician (General) and Electrician (Special Class) can be found here.

Plumber (General)

Information for the occupation Plumber (General) can be found here.

Step 5: Apply for a current, identified Australian occupational licence

Generally the Certificate III Australian VET qualification is a requisite for a full tradesperson’s licence, which may have a slightly different name and different conditions depending on the state or territory you wish to work in.

Please note that a tradesperson’s licence does not automatically allow the holder to become a contractor. Contractor’s licences generally require further training and additional experience. Individuals should confirm these requirements, and the conditions of the various licence categories with the licensing authority in the relevant state or territory.

Share this Page