7. Appeal to VCAT

VCAT's role

The Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) is a Victorian state government tribunal that deals with different types of disputes, including planning permit application disputes.

When reviewing the decision of a Council to grant a new permit, VCAT’s role is to reconsider the whole application afresh on its merits. The tribunal has all the powers of the decision maker in relation to the matter. The tribunal’s discretion is more limited where it is deciding to amend an existing permit, or an application for review against conditions.

Application for VCAT review

If you have applied for a planning permit or you have made an objection to a planning permit application and you disagree with a Council decision, then you can appeal to VCAT to review the decision.

A planning permit applicant has 60 days from the date of Council’s decision to submit an application for review to VCAT. 

An objector to a planning permit application has 28 days from the date of Council’s Notice of Decision to Grant a Planning Permit to submit an application for review to VCAT.

How to apply to VCAT

Information on how to apply to VCAT for a review of Council’s decision is located in your planning permit, Notice of Decision to Grant a Planning Permit or the Refusal to Grant a Planning Permit. 

There is an application fee for applying to VCAT for a planning permit application decision review. The fee must be submitted with your application.

You can find out more information about how to apply to VCAT and how the review process works from VCAT

VCAT decisions

Once the VCAT hearing is finished, VCAT will consider all of the material on the file and presented at the hearing.

Once a decision is made, a copy of the Tribunal’s order will be sent to all parties by email or mail. This will usually include reasons for the decision.

The Tribunal’s decision is final unless there is an appeal by a party to the Supreme Court on a point of law.

If a planning permit is granted, Council must issue that permit in accordance with VCAT's order. Council is responsible for making sure that the requirements of the permit are met.

VCAT decisions are available from Australasian Legal Information Institute (AustLii).

Related brochures and guidelines