Do I Need Approvals, Licences or Permits?

Starting or expanding a business in the City of Cockburn can involve various approvals, permits, and licences. These essential steps foster responsible business practices, safeguarding you, your staff, your customers, and the community, as well as preserving the environment.

Note: Don't be alarmed. The approvals, permits, and licences you may need are dependent on your type of business and location. This page highlights the different requirements to be aware of, but we are here to help you navigate this process. 

Why approvals and permits are needed

Obtaining the necessary approvals, licences and permits isn't just a legal requirement; it's a protective measure for everyone involved. By complying with these regulations, you're protecting your business, your staff, ensuring the safety and well-being of yourself, your employees, your customers, and the community, and preserving the environment.

Types of business approvals, licences and permits

Managed by the City of Cockburn

The City of Cockburn regulates the following:

Planning approval
Often referred to as Development Approval, Planning Approval is needed to ensure that new construction projects or business ventures comply with local zoning laws, environmental regulations, and urban planning guidelines. It helps maintain orderly development and prevents inappropriate land use, protecting the community's interests and ensuring sustainable growth.
Health licences
Health licences are essential for businesses dealing with food, hairdressing, or skin penetration to safeguard public health and safety. These licences ensure that the businesses adhere to hygiene standards, proper handling of food, and safe practices in personal care services, minimising the risk of disease transmission and contamination.
Building permits
Building permits are necessary to ensure that construction projects, structural changes, or additions meet safety codes and regulations. These permits play a vital role in preventing substandard construction, protecting occupants, and mitigating potential hazards, enhancing the overall safety and quality of buildings in the community.

Other permits managed by the City include Occupancy Permit, Liquor License, Trading Permit, Noise Permit, and Signage Licence.

Managed by State and/or Commonwealth Government

For licences managed by State and Commonwealth governments, please refer to:

Specific guidance by business type

The City has been working on creating dedicated pages by business type, with more to come in the near future. These resources are designed to provide targeted assistance to help you navigate the unique requirements of your business. Find out about Home-Based Business Approvals.

Please continue to check back as we expand this section to include more business types, and don't hesitate to contact us if you need further assistance.

Start your journey with us

The process of obtaining approvals, licences and permits can be complex. That's why it's crucial to contact the City first. We're here to guide you, provide insights, and ensure you follow the right path for your specific business needs. Our pre-lodgement meetings are a good starting place to discuss any questions you may have about the permits and licences you need. They are free and no appointment is needed.

Reach out to the Business Engagement Officer at 08 9411 3444 or email [email protected].

Related Pages



City of Cockburn
Whadjuk Boodja
9 Coleville Crescent,
Spearwood 6163

PO Box 1215, Bibra Lake DC,
Western Australia, 6965

Office opening hours:
8.30am to 4.30pm
Monday to Friday (excluding public holidays)

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Cockburn Nyungar moort Beeliar boodja-k kaadadjiny. Koora, yeyi, benang baalap nidja boodja-k kaaradjiny.
Ngalak kaadatj dayin boodja, kep wer malayin. Ngalak kaadatj koora koora wer yeyi ngalang birdiya.

City of Cockburn acknowledges the Nyungar people of Beeliar boodja. Long ago, now and in the future they care for Country.
We acknowledge a continuing connection to land, waters and culture and pay our respects to the Elders, past and present.