How to Get a Safety Certificate in Queensland

NOTE: Be aware that owners of vehicles that are subject to the compulsory defective Takata airbag recall may be required to provide proof that the defective airbags have been replaced by an authorised vehicle dealer before a roadworthy inspection can be performed.

Queensland changed the term “roadworthy certificate” to “safety certificate” in 1999, so from a regulatory perspective, the term “safety certificate” carries the same meaning that the term “roadworthy certificate” did before 1999. Essentially, a safety inspection in Queensland involves checking a vehicle to verify that it conforms to the minimum legally mandated safety standards that apply in the state.

It should be noted though that the law regarding safety certificates is strictly enforced in Queensland, so let us look at a few things you should keep in mind in some detail, starting with-

When is a safety certificate required?

  • If the vehicle is brand new and has not been registered before
  • If the vehicle had not been registered for three months or longer
  • If the vehicle had been registered in a state or territory other than Queensland
  • If a previously unregistered vehicle is re-registered
  • If you are advertising a vehicle for sale. Note though, that although sellers are no longer required to obtain and display a current and valid safety certificate in the vehicle as of 1 September 2021, sellers are still required to obtain a safety certificate before actually selling the vehicle to persons other than to a dealer

What types of vehicles need safety certificates?

Unless a vehicle is legally exempted from the requirement to have a safety certificate as a part of the vehicle registration process in the state, the requirement applies to-

  • all light vehicles
  • all motorcycles
  • all trailers and caravans with an aggregate trailer mass (ATM) of between 751kg and 4 500kg
  • all other vehicles with a GVM (Gross Vehicle Mass) of less than 4 500kg
  • all vehicles that use LPG (Liquefied Petroleum Gas) as fuel, but note that such vehicles also require a Gas Certificate issued by a licenced gas fitter/installer

How long are safety certificates valid in Queensland?

In some cases, it is possible to sell a vehicle legally without a valid and current safety certificate. Some examples include the following-

  • If a vehicle is sold to, or between licenced vehicle dealers
  • If a vehicle is being sold for parts, provided that the vehicle is de-registered before it is sold

In some cases, it is also possible to transfer a vehicle legally without a valid and current safety certificate. Some examples could include one or more of the following-

  • If the seller resides in a legally exempted remote area
  • If the vehicle transfer results from an inheritance from a deceased estate
  • If the transfer occurs between spouses, including transfers resulting from divorces or separations between spouses or partners in other registered relationships, but only until such time when the divorce or separation is finalized or concluded

Note that other exemptions may apply. For more information, contact theQueensland Department of Transport and Main Roads.

How much does a safety certificate cost in Queensland?

As of 1 July 2022, the costs of safety certificates in the state are as follows-

  • $89.85 for vehicles with a GVM of up to 4 500kg
  • $45.00 fortrailers over 750kg and up to 4 500kg ATM
  • $57.75 for motorcycles

Who can issue safety certificates in Queensland?

Only Approved Inspection Stations can issue safety certificates in the state. Such stations can include some service stations, garages, or car repair workshops that have been approved by the Department of Transport and Main Roads.More information about Approved Inspection Stations is available here.

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