Domestic waterfront licence

If you want to have facilities such as jetties, berthing areas, boat ramps, slipways and pontoons on foreshore Crown land adjoining your property, you will need a domestic waterfront licence.

The department issues these licences to individuals for the use of submerged and tidal Crown land where there is direct access to Crown land. We  use appropriate licensing to manage built structures on our waterways. This ensures that waterways are not overcrowded, and facilities are balanced with the public’s right to foreshore access.

When your responsibilities begin

The domestic waterfront licence agreement starts from the transfer date on title – typically the settlement or acquisition date. It is granted to the registered owners of the adjoining property where structures are below the mean high-water mark. The licence agreement outlines the responsibility of the licence holder over the life cycle of the structure, from initial granting of licence, ownership, care and maintenance, rent and payments, indemnity and insurance, through to the removal of a structure.

Processing time for applications

The domestic waterfront tenures program receives high volumes of applications. Processing times can be lengthy, depending on the complexity of the application. You can continue to use your waterfront facilities while we assess your application. As the licence starting date is the transfer date shown on title, you may incur back-dated rent while your application is being processed.

Once you sign and return your licence, the minister’s delegate executes the licence and gives you a copy for your records, along with an invoice for any fees due. If you have difficulty paying your rent by the due date, please contact the department to discuss financial hardship concessions.


Our domestic waterfront licence holders brochure, purchasing a waterfront property fact sheet, domestic waterfront guidelines, rent fact sheet and standard terms and conditions give more information.

For information on sublicensing , read the sublicensing frequently asked questions, template sublicensing terms and conditions and the deed poll template.

Compliance and enforcement

The department has an active and risk-based compliance and enforcement regime to help protect Crown land against illegal activity that threatens environmental values or the enjoyment of Crown land users. Find more information about development and use of Crown foreshores and waterways including  guidelines, fact sheets and FAQs.

Application forms