Apply for a credit licence

From 1 January 2011, if you want to engage in credit activities you must be:

  • a credit licence holder, or

  • otherwise permitted to engage in credit activities (e.g. an authorised representative of either of the above).

Strict penalties may apply to persons who unlawfully engage in credit activities.

Can I engage in credit activities before I'm granted a licence?

If you are setting up a new consumer credit business, you must not engage in credit activities until you have been granted a credit licence, or you are otherwise permitted to engage in credit activities (e.g. authorised as a credit representative).

Contact ASIC online or phone 1300 300 630 to discuss your options.

Find out what to do if you're a lender with carried over instruments

Step 1: Work out whether your business involves 'credit activities'

Read Regulatory Guide 203 Do I need a credit licence? (RG 203). This guide will help you decide whether you need to get a credit licence.

Step 2: Familiarise yourself with the licensing process

Read: RG 204 Applying for and varying a credit licence (RG 204). This guide outlines the process of applying for and varying your licence.

Frequently asked questions about getting an Australian credit licence.

Step 3: Get your supporting documents together, you have to attach them to your application

The criminal history check and bankruptcy check must not be more than 12 months old.

Your application will be rejected if you don't attach these supporting documents. See RG 204 for details.

Step 4: Get information about your responsible managers

You must include their qualifications and relevant work experience on the application.

Step 5: Think about who you will be authorising as credit representatives

You must tell us about any person authorised to engage in specified credit activities on your behalf

Step 6: Make sure your external dispute resolution (EDR) scheme membership is current

When you apply for your licence, you must be a member of either:

  • Financial Ombudsman Service (www.fos.org.au or phone 1300 56 55 62), or
  • Credit Ombudsman Service Ltd (www.cosl.com.au or phone (02) 9273 8455).

Step 7: Make sure the details we already have about you are up-to-date

Check our registers (e.g company, Australian financial services licence, credit registration)

Step 8: Work out the licence fee you will have to pay

Here is how to calculate your fee.

Step 9: Understand your professional indemnity insurance obligations

Before ASIC grants your licence, you must demonstrate that you have adequate professional indemnity insurance in place.

ASIC guidance on professional indemnity insurance

We will ask you to complete this questionnaire about your professional indemnity insurance, and to provide us with a certificate of currency.

Tip – if you are unsure about how to complete this questionnaire, we suggest that you consult your insurance broker.

Step 10: Understand your other obligations as a licensee

ASIC guidance is available.

Are you ready? You must be able to declare that all of the information in your application is complete and accurate.

Ready to apply?

Lodging online for credit

Please ensure that the online application and declarations are submitted by:

  • for a natural person applicant, the person applying for the licence
  • for a corporate applicant, a director of the corporation applying for the licence, or
  • an authorised agent of the applicant.

What happens next?

When we receive your application an ASIC staff member will contact you.

To ensure that we can contact you efficiently, please provide the direct telephone number of the contact person for the licence application.

The assessment of your application will include:

  • your ability to comply with the general conduct obligations under the National Credit Act, which aim to ensure that you operate your credit business properly, and
  • being a fit and proper person to engage in credit activities. The fit and proper person assessment is made for:
    • natural person applicants,
    • directors, company secretaries and senior managers of corporations, who will perform duties in relation to the credit activities to be authorised by the credit licence
    • responsible managers.

We aim to decide whether to grant a credit licence within 28 days. Applications beyond the 28-day target are generally complex ones, requiring, for example, additional policy work or legal review.

Signing documents

Some documents that you must provide require a signature. These are to be signed by:

  • for a natural person applicant, the person applying for the licence
  • for a corporate applicant, a director of the corporation applying for the licence, or
  • an authorised agent of the applicant.

Search our registers

Use our online services

Find a form

Last updated: 16/10/2014 11:28