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Licensing and trade

Assessment timeframes

Find out how long it will take us to process your water licensing or approval application.

Important information

The Licensing and Approvals team are currently experiencing extended delays in the issuing of licences, approvals and enquiry responses.

We apologise for the inconvenience these delays are having on our customers.

We understand that providing greater certainty on assessment timeframes and processes will help our customers to better adjust and plan for these delays. Find more information on adjusted assessment timeframes below.

About assessment timeframes

Find out how long it may take to process your water licence or approval application.

The department is committed to providing excellent service by striving to meet or exceed assessment timeframes, prioritising urgent and overdue matters, and ensuring transparent and up-to-date communication through email or mobile updates.

Processing guidelines

To process your application as quickly as possible, please:

  • use all the available e-Tools before submitting an integrated development or controlled activity approval application
  • review the application forms and guides to ensure that all required information is provided with your application or enquiry
  • ensure that the required document is filled and correctly signed:
  • for companies, it must be two directors or a director and a company secretary
  • Council requires a duly authorised officer, which can be a single signature.

Incomplete applications will not be accepted; they will be returned to you to re-submit.

Timeframe factors

It may take us longer to process your application if:

  • there is a delay in payment of application fees
  • your application is incomplete, or the wrong form was used
  • additional information has been requested by agencies
  • you have revised a proposal or design after lodgement
  • a statutory referral to other agencies is required
  • compulsory advertising and resolution of submissions is needed
  • there are high departmental workloads.
Advice enquiriesReceipt confirmation 24-48hrs
Response 10 working days
or 30 working days (if complex)
Controlled activity application (CAA)80 working days
Integrated development application (IDAS)40 calendar days
Water supply work and use approvals80 working days
Water access licences45 working days
Planning proposals, rezonings, LEP/DCP amendments, REF40 working days

What is the status of my application?

If an existing application has exceeded the proposed timeframes, please use Water Assist or email waterlicensing.servicedesk@dpie.nsw.gov.au to request an update.

Not sure about what you need?

We've developed the Water Assist tool to help you work out who to talk to and what steps to take to get the licences and approvals you need.