Swimming Pools and Spas

Overview

New swimming pool and spa registration and inspection requirements

On 1 December 2019, new laws came into effect in Victoria to improve swimming pool and spa safety.

Owners are now required to register their pool and spa with their local Council and have their safety barrier inspected once every four years. 

This applies to all pools and spas capable of containing water deeper than 300mm (30cm).

 

What do I have to do?

As a pool or spa owner you need to complete the following:
  • Register your pool with Council by the due date
  • Organise an inspection of your pool barrier by a registered swimming pool inspector
  • Rectify any issues identified by your pool inspection
  • Submit a safety barrier certificate of compliance to your council by the due date 

 

Registering your pool or spa

To register, download the Swimming Pool and Spa Registration form(PDF, 1MB) and save it to your device before completing the details. The form asks for a volume and folio number, but you don't need to put these details down if you don't have them.

Then either

  • print the completed form and take it to the Customer Service Centre where you can pay the fee of $79.08, or
  • return the completed form by email to council@benalla.vic.gov.au and make a credit card payment over the phone by calling 5760 2600.

Once you've registered, we will send you a letter confirming the next steps for you to lodge the required safety barrier certificate of compliance, or find more information below..

For further information visitwww.vba.vic.gov.au/consumers/swimming-pools

  

Registration due dates - Permanent pool or spa

Relevant date                                                

Final date for lodging application for registration

Construction of pool or spa was completed before 1 November 2020

The later of:

- 30 days after the date of issue of the occupancy
  permit or certificate of final inspection, or

- 1 November 2020

Construction of pool or spa commenced before 1 November 2020 but completed after 1 November 2020

30 days after the date of issue of the occupancy permit or certificate of final inspection

You are required to lodge the certificate of barrier compliance at the same time as your registration application.

Construction of pool or spa commenced and completed after 1 November 2020.

This means that the building permit for the pool or spa was issued:

- on or after 1 November 2020, or

- before 1 November 2020, but construction of pool or spa did not commence until after this date

30 days after you receive the occupancy permit or certificate of final inspection

You must lodge the certificate of barrier compliance at the same time as your registration application.

 

Registration due dates - Relocatable pool or spa

Relevant date                                                

Final date for lodging application for registration

If the relocatable pool or spa was erected before 1 November 2020 for at least three consecutive days and remains erected on 1 November 2020

By 4 November 2020

Erected on or after 1 November 2020 for three consecutive days

On the fourth day after the pool is erected

 

Safety barrier compliance certificate

Owners are also required to have their safety barriers inspected and to lodge a certificate of barrier compliance with their council. If a safety barrier is not compliant, it is the owner’s responsibility to make the barrier compliant.

The new laws apply to swimming pools and spas that are capable of holding more than 300 mm (30 cm) of water. This includes permanent pools, above ground pools, indoor pools, hot tubs, bathing or wading pools and some relocatable pools.

Relocatable pools that do not consist of multiple components and do not require any assembly are not subject to the barrier requirements. An example of such a product is a small inflatable pool that requires no assembly other than inflation.   

The date your swimming pool or spa was constructed will determine which Australian Standard your swimming pool barrier must comply with. This information is included on your swimming pool or spa registration certificate. 

Safety barrier inspections

An inspection and certification of your pool or spa barrier can only be done by a registered building inspector or surveyor in the appropriate category.

You can search for a registered building practitioner authorised to carry out inspections and certification using the Find a practitioner tool. Make sure you select the appropriate class of registration (type of work) and choose a natural person. 

The fee you pay for the inspection to be carried out may not include the lodgement fee of $20.74. We recommend that you speak with your inspector/surveyor and clarify if they will lodge the certificate on your behalf.  (It is the owner's responsibility to lodge the certificate with Council, there is no statutory requirement for the building inspector/surveyor to lodge a compliant certificate with Council.)

Benalla Rural City Council is also providing a safety barrier inspection service. You can book your compliance inspection by email building.admin@benalla.vic.gov.au or phone 5760 2600. A fee will be charged for this service.

To avoid paying for multiple inspections, we recommend you conduct a maintenance and safety barrier check before booking you inspection. Pool barrier check lists can be downloaded from the Victorian Building Authority website vba.vic.gov.au/consumers/swimming-pools/pool-safety-barriers 

Compliance certificate due dates

The date you swimming pool or spa was constructed will determine when your compliance certificate is due. 

Pool/spa construction date      Compliance certificate must be lodged by  

On or before 30 June 1994

1 June 2022

1 July 1994 to 30 April 2010  

 1 June 2023 

1 May 2010 to 31 October 2020  

 1 June 2024 

On or after 1 November 2020

within 30 days of issue of 
final inspection certificate* 

 *must be lodged together with application for registration.

Your next certificate of compliance is due four years after registration. We will advise you of the exact date when we issue your current certificate. 

 

Fees

Inspection fees vary, depending on the practitioner. Benalla Rural City Council's inspection fee is $259 (2021-22 financial year).

Owners of pools or spas with barriers that require multiple inspections before being certified as compliant will likely face higher costs than those whose barrier is certified as compliant after the first inspection.

There are two statutory fees for the lodgement of compliance certificates:

 

Penalties

Failure to register your swimming pool or spa and lodge a compliance certificate with Council will result in a fine and Council may commence legal prosecution in the Magistrates court. 

  • Failure to lodge certificate of barrier compliance by date specified - $1,817.40
  • Failure to lodge certificate of barrier non-compliance by date specified - $1,817.40
  • Failure to comply with barrier improvement notice by date specified - $1,817.40