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Automatic Mutual Recognition of Occupational Licensing

On 1 July 2021, Australian, state and territory governments introduced a scheme for automatic mutual recognition of occupational registrations (AMR) to streamline long-standing mutual recognition agreements.

AMR means that licensed Victorian workers who hold an occupational licence will be able to work in another state or territory without applying for a new registration or licence.

This scheme, set out in the Mutual Recognition Act 1992 of the Commonwealth (MRA), will be implemented and administered by state and territory governments.

AMR scheme benefits

AMR will help economic recovery from the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and improve Australia’s economic productivity. By removing additional fees and paperwork, AMR will make it easier and less expensive for businesses, trades people and other registered professionals to operate in multiple states and territories.

The scheme will make it easier for workers with an occupational licence to move around the country to take up a new job or take advantage of business opportunities. Employers will benefit where they rely on interstate workforces due to lower costs and reduced administration burden.

Commencement of the new AMR scheme

AMR commenced in Victoria, NSW, the ACT and NT on 1 July 2021. Other states have committed to entering the scheme soon after. Workers and businesses should check whether a state they wish to work in has entered AMR through the Commonwealth Government’s website: Improving occupational mobility.

Occupations covered by the AMR scheme

The AMR scheme applies to occupational registrations covered by existing mutual recognition arrangements within Australia under the MRA. This covers the licensing, approval, administration, certification, or any other form of authorisation, a person is legally required to hold before they can carry on an occupation.

Not all Victorian licensing schemes have commenced AMR and non-Victorian workers who want to undertake these activities in Victoria must do so under pre-existing mutual recognition arrangements.

Victoria has decided to delay the following occupations from the start of AMR:

  • Teaching
  • Building practitioners
  • Architects
  • Plumbing work
  • Labour hire
  • Firearms and weapons
  • Private security
  • Real estate agents, including agent representatives
  • Sex workers including brothel managers
  • Professional engineers
  • Environmental auditors
  • Land surveyors
  • Marine pilots
  • Horse, harness and greyhound racing.

This means that if you work in these occupations, you cannot work in these professions in Victoria under AMR.

Other states participating in AMR have also delayed occupations. Victorian workers should first check that their occupation is included in AMR in the state they may wish to work in.

There are also some things that can affect a non-Victorian’s right to work under AMR in Victoria. Non-Victorians may need to notify the relevant Victorian regulator before commencing work in Victoria. You can find out more about what you must check before you commence working in Victoria under AMR through the following links.

Victorian workers wishing to work interstate should also check that their licensed occupation is an AMR-recognised activity in the state or territory they wish to work in.

Further information

More information on the AMR scheme can be found on the Commonwealth Government website Improving occupational mobility.

Reviewed 02/09/2021
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