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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:


  • For a prize pool or prize value of greater than $10,000 a permit is needed
  • In N.S.W or nationally*
  • Allow approximately 5 working days for permit application processing for ‘barrel draw’ promotions (factor 14 - 21 working days for instant win promotions)

*N.S.W lottery regulation takes the national prize pool into consideration, rather than what is allotted to N.S.W only


  • For a state specific or national promotion where the prize pool or prize value to be potentially won by ACT entrants is greater than $3,000
  • Allow approximately 5 -7 working days for application processing


  • For a barrel draw prize pool or prize value of greater than $5,000
  • Considers S.A prize / prize pool only
  • Instant win promotions under $5,000 require a permit e.g scratch & win or spin & win
  • Allow approximately 14 working days for application processing.
  • A S.A government express service for 7 working day processing is available at a premium


  • If a promo is running solely in N.T and the prize pool exceeds $5,000
  • At a national level there’s no requirement to obtain a permit when another state has issued a permit
  • Allow approximately 7 -10 working days for application processing

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.

Prize Draw Scrutiny

An independent prize draw scrutineer is required by the South Australian government to oversee a draw when the value of prizes drawn is valued at over $30,000. 

Electronic Prize Draws

Where winners of a competition are determined by an electronic prize draw, promoters may need to have the drawing system approved in South Australia. 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 Terms and Conditions, Permit Numbers and a reference to where the full Terms and Conditions can be found. Online Promotions must have a digital link to a full set of approved Terms and Conditions, displaying permit numbers.

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).

Please note: The structure of a promotion cannot be changed once a promotion has commenced. The Terms and Conditions of entry must be 'set in stone'. For example, a promotion can’t be extended or the prize pool cannot be adjusted.  

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
  • 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. And, due to state government specific policies and regulations, SAM cannot assist Promoters that plan to offer Bitcoin and other Cryptocurrencies as prizes.

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:

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