A visiting tattooist permit allows a person who is not an Australian citizen or permanent Australian resident (includes New Zealand citizens) to perform body art tattooing procedures in NSW for up to three months.

Only two permits may be granted to the same person each calendar year and conditions may be imposed on the permit. Applications must be received by SLED at least 28 days before the proposed start date of the permit.

Who can apply for a visiting tattooist permit?

To apply for a visiting tattooist permit you must:

  • be at least 18 years of age
  • not be an Australian citizen or permanent Australian resident (includes New Zealand citizens)
  • not be a controlled member of a declared organisation under the Crimes (Criminal Organisations Control) Act 2012
  • not be a member of a prescribed criminal organisation (as listed in Schedule 3 of the Tattoo Industry Regulation 2023) or have been a member in the previous 12 months before making the application
  • not have been convicted of a disqualifying offence in the past 10 years.

Your application may also be refused if:

  • it is incomplete
  • not received by SLED at least 28 days before the proposed start date of the permit
  • you have already been granted two visiting tattooist permits in the calendar year
  • you are not a fit and proper person to be granted a permit
  • one of your close associates is not a fit and proper person
  • it would be contrary to the public interest to grant you a permit.

No more than two visiting tattooist permits may be granted to the same person in the same calendar year.

How long is a visiting tattooist permit valid?

A visiting tattooist permit is valid for up to three months. The period granted will be stated in the permit.

How many visiting tattooist permits can be granted?

No more than two visiting tattooist permits may be granted to the same person in the same calendar year.

You must keep your visiting tattooist permit with you at all times while performing body art tattooing procedures and produce it to an authorised officer when requested.

You must also comply with conditions imposed on the permit. Penalties apply for not complying with the permit conditions or other legislation requirements.

How do I apply?

To apply for a permit, complete the P1249 Application for a Visiting Tattooist Permit form (PDF) and include:

  • your full name
  • your date and place of birth
  • your intended residential address while in Australia
  • your intended postal address if it will be different from your intended residential address
  • details of where you intend to perform body art tattooing procedures
  • application fee payment details

Your application must also include a copy of:

  • your passport, and
  • another kind of identification issued by the NSW Government, the Commonwealth Government, another state or territory government, or an overseas government, and
  • your visa to enter Australia. If a copy of a visa issued to you is not included in the application, you must provide with the application evidence that you have applied for a visa to enter Australia.

Note: SLED will not grant a visiting tattooist permit if the performance of a body art tattooing procedure would be in breach of a condition of the visa issued to the applicant to enter Australia.

SLED must receive fully completed application forms, accompanying information, and the application fee at least 28 days before the proposed start date of the permit.

The visiting tattooist show permit fee for the 2023-24 financial year is $258

Application forms and accompanying attachments must be posted to SLED at:

Security Licensing & Enforcement Directorate

Locked Bag 5099

Parramatta NSW 2124