Non-survey vessel permit or exemption

Certain vessels do not have to be surveyed. When this is the case, the owner, master, or operator of the vessel will be given a permit or exemption.

Marine Safety (Certificate of survey) Exemption 2017 exempts certain vessels from the requirement to obtain a certificate of survey, including scheme non-survey (scheme NS) vessels. 

Owners of scheme NS vessels make a declaration that their vessels meet the applicable standards, as opposed to undergoing a survey, on their application for either:

Scheme NS vessels are still domestic commercial vessels even though they do not undergo surveys. Owners and masters of scheme NS vessels are still subject to the general safety duties and the requirement to implement and maintain a safety management system for the vessel and its operations.

All scheme NS vessels are required to have a certificate of operation unless otherwise exempt—see Marine Safety (Certificates of operation) Exemption 2017 for further details.

My Boat is an online application which will help you to understand the requirements of scheme NS and your vessel suitability.

Apply for a scheme NS permit

Complete an application for approval of a non-survey vessel (scheme NS) form 579.

Applications and payments must be made to your local marine safety agency.    

Vessels not required to apply for scheme NS

The following types of vessels do not need to apply for scheme NS:

  • existing vessels for which, on 30 June 2013, a survey certificate was not required mentioned in Division 5 (see above)
  • human powered vessels, including dragon boats
  • sailing vessels that are less than 7.5 metres long, that do not have an auxiliary engine, or if it does have an auxiliary engine—the engine has less than or equal to 3.5 kilowatts propulsion power
  • personal watercraft.
Last updated: 6 February 2018
Last reviewed: 6 February 2018