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30 Second Guide to Australian Permit Requirements for Promotions

30 Second Guide to Australian Permit Requirements for Promotions

If you're planning a national or localised consumer promotion in Australia you may be wondering “Do I need a competition permit in Australia?” This quick guide will help you to understand if you are required to obtain a trade lottery permit for your competition or promotion. 

Trade lottery regulations are specific to each state and the following is a quick guide of your requirements for Australian competition permits.

Understanding Contest Types

There are two types of contests / promotions:

  • Test of Skill - e.g. ‘In 25 words or less tell us why you should Win..’
  • Games of Chance – e.g. Instant Win, Prize Pool Sweepstakes.

Your requirements for ‘Test Of Skill’ promotions

You do not require a competition permit to conduct a test of skill promotion if there is no element of chance involved in winning. However, you must ensure that:

- All entries are judged individually on their merit.

- One winner is chosen at a judge’s decision based on skill or originality. Please note that you cannot run a test of skill promotion where entrants can potentially submit the same answer or result. E.g. Who played the villain in the movie 'Joker'?’

Requirements For Game Of Chance…

Permits for games of chance are not required in Victoria, Tasmania, Queensland or Western Australia.

You may require a permit if the promotion is running in the Australian Capital Territory (A.C.T), South Australia (S.A), New South Wales (N.S.W) or Northern Territory (N.T) subject to state specific regulation. Here’s is an overview of regulations:

N.S.W
A permit is required for a ‘game of chance’ style promotion with a prize pool, or prize value of greater than $10,000 (in N.S.W or nationally). This update as of July 1, 2020 makes if easier for marketers to run promotions. There is no longer a need for a blanket permit or separate applications, to cover promotions with very small prize values.

A.C.T
In A.C.T a promoter must obtain a permit if the total prize pool exceeds $3,000 and there is traditional/print advertising. If the promotion is run solely online, a permit is not required unless a promotional website or web based application is hosted in A.C.T.

S.A
Permits are required in South Australia if the prize pool is over $5,000. ‘Instant Win’ promotions in South Australia have specific conditions too (SAM can elaborate on these as needed). 

N.T 
N.T promoters require permit approval if the promotion is only running in N.T and no other state has issued a permit.  The prize pool must also exceed $5,000.

Permit fees and administration costs are based on the total prize pool and promotional mechanics. 

Prize Draws & Announcing Winners

There are state specific regulations that apply to prize draw conduct. You must also publish the names of competition winners on a website, social media feed or in the relevant local or state based newspaper. Winners of national promotions can be announced in ‘The Australian’ newspaper. 

Prize Draw Scrutiny

An independent prize draw scrutineer is required by the New South Wales government when the value of prizes drawn is over $10,000. South Australian law requires a scrutineer to oversee a draw when the value of prizes drawn is valued at over $20,000. These regulations mean that for a national promotion, a scrutineer is required to oversee prize draws whenever a prize draw has prizes valued at greater than $10,000.

Electric Prize Draws

Where winners of a competition are determined by an electronic prize draw, promoters must have the drawing system approved in South Australia via an official application. New South Wales Lotteries also require promotion permit holders to obtain an Appraisal Report and Draw Procedure Report for electronic prize draw systems.

Displaying Permit Numbers & Terms and Conditions

All printed material used for advertising a promotion must include abbreviated Term and Conditions, Permit Numbers and a reference to where the full Term and Conditions can be found. Online Promotions must have a link to a full set of approved Term and Conditions.

Lead Times

For national promotions, allow at least 14 days from the submission of permit applications to the relevant state authorities to obtain approval and permit numbers. Lead times vary by state (contact us for information on current lead times).

More on information on Australian Competition Permits

Need help with competition permits in Australia?

SAM can help you apply for permits (provided that you have an ABN).

We’ve been helping companies obtain trade promotion permits in Australia since 1981.

SAM have assisted corporations, independents, advertising agencies and specialist marketing firms to apply for competition permits. In cases where a promotion or competition requires permits from state and territory authorities, you can trust SAM to guide you through the process.

SAM can also assist marketers with any, or all of the following:

  • Writing Terms and Conditions of Entry
  • Obtaining permits for competitions and promotions
  • Insured Prize Promotions - insurance for high-value prizes and prize pools.
  • Promotion Creative (SAM has a state of the art graphic design studio)
  • Point of Sale Display development, production & distribution
  • Event permits in Australia
  • Instant Win competitions - for more information, click here
  • Promotion Microsites - for more information, click here
  • On-Pack Promotions
  • Trade Promotion in Australia
  • Competition Websites and SMS lines to collect entry data
  • Database Management (data is assigned to the client at the conclusion of the promotion)
  • Prize Draws & Draw Scrutineering
  • Public Notices

Please feel free to contact SAM for advice or a quotation for permit application management.

Phone: (03) 9 646 5644 or email an enquiry using the form below.

Please note: SAM do not consult on raffles or ‘pay to enter’ style promotions. We assist companies who are conducting Trade promotions.


Trade Promotion Enquiry Form


Thank - you for enquiring about Trade Promotion compliance for your promotion.

So that we can service your enquiry please confirm the following points:

How to Enter - basic summary of proposed entry mechanism(s):

Once we receive your enquiry we’ll respond within 24 hours.
Alternately contact us on (03)9 646 5644


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