As a business owner, it is your responsibility to be aware of and understand all the regulations that apply to your business activities.
The Australian Business Licence and Information Service (ABLIS) is a searchable online tool that helps you find these and the government controls your business needs to comply with. For ACT businesses, ABLIS contains information about all the licences – sometimes referred to as permits or approvals – and codes of practice that you need to operate your business.
ABLIS saves you time by providing a single website to gather all the compliance information you need. ABLIS results include information summaries, links to forms and contact information for the relevant agency if you need more information.
While ABLIS is designed with starting a business in mind, established businesses can also use ABLIS, for example to check their compliance responsibilities, or to check for new requirements when you are growing or adding a new business activity.
The first step is found on the home page – you will need to enter a business type and a location to get started.
The business type matches to the ANZSIC classification system , so if you’re not getting matches you can check what terms ANZSIC uses to describe your business. If you still don’t get a business type match or a list of business types to select from, try entering commas between each word or you can contact us for help.
The location field lets you search by State or Territory, or use a suburb or postcode. The more specific you are with location, the more tailored your search results can be. For ACT based businesses where there are no local government councils, this isn’t as important. If you are planning a base in NSW there may be local council requirements that apply to your business: to get the right council, you will need to use a more precise location.
Next, ABLIS will take you through a series of questions and answers. Once you’ve completed the questions and answers, ABLIS will generate a list of results containing regulation information that matches your business activity, location and the information you provided through the questions and answers.
If you are based in the ACT, all of the results that ABLIS provides are legal requirements. But there are some important differences between Licences and Codes of Practice. To find out more about the differences, visit our ABLIS page.
If you need help with understanding the regulations, your ABLIS results include contact details so that you can contact the relevant area of government.
If you’re based in the ACT, you can also contact Canberra BusinessPoint, the ACT Government’s business mentoring and advisory service. They can offer support and tailored advice in the establishment, operation and development of your business. You can contact them on 1300 648 641 or visit www.canberrabusinesspoint.com.au for more information.
If you have found any regulations that affect or impede your ability to do business in the ACT, you can report it using Fix my Red Tape – an online feedback tool designed for you to provide feedback or suggested reforms. You can also ask questions and lodge complaints through this form.