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Permits and Contests

Which contests require a permit?

An individual must not hold a combat sport contest unless the person is the holder of a permit to promote the contest. Severe penalties apply to any person who conducts a combat sport contest without a valid permit.

All contests which meet the following definition require a permit.

The Combat Sports Act 2013 defines a combat sport contest as a contest, display or exhibition of combat sport:

  • to which the public are admitted on payment of a fee, or
  • arranged or held on a for profit basis, or
  • that is held on premises licensed under the Liquor Act 2007 or the Casino Control Act 1992, or
  • where at least one of the combatants is competing for a monetary prize or other valuable reward, or
  • that is prescribed by the regulations for the purposes of this definition,

but does not include a contest, display or exhibition excluded from this definition by the regulations.

Download checklist to assist promoters determine if a proposed activity meets the definitions of the Combat Sports Act 2013 and if a permit is required. This checklist is a guide only and Promoters should seek independent legal advice on this matter.

What type of permit do you need?

There are three types of permit issued for combat sport contests in NSW:

  • Professional Permit
  • Amateur Permit
  • Pro/Am Permit.

A permit may be issued for a single combat sport contest, or two or more combat sport contests, if the contests are held on the one occasion and at the same venue.

Professional permits are required:

  • where at least one of the combatants is competing for a monetary prize or other valuable reward, or
  • where at least one of the combatants is registered, or has been previously registered, in a registration class applicable to professional combat sport contests for the style of combat sport concerned, or
  • where at least one of the combatants has previously been a combatant in a professional combat sport contest for the style of combat sport concerned.

Amateur permits are required for all combat sport contests other than a professional combat sport contest.

Pro/Am permits are required for combat sport contests where a mixture of both amateur and professional contests will be conducted on the one occasion and at the same venue.

View the role of promoters factsheet.

Applying for a permit (timeline of requirements)

Not later than 28 days prior to the contest a registered Promoter must lodge their application for a permit with the Combat Sports Authority.

The application must be completed by the Promoter using the approved form. 

The type of information that must be provided at the time of the initial application is as follows:

  • the name of the promoter
  • the venue of the contest
  • the audience capacity of the venue (number of tickets to be sold)
  • the date of the contest
  • the time of the contest
  • the disciplines (sport) to be contested
  • the type of permit (amateur, professional or pro-am)
  • a valid certificate of currency for Public Liability Insurance (PLI).
  • the Approved Amateur Body (in the case of amateur permits or pro-am permits).
  • Notification of NSW Police.

Not later than 21 days prior to the contest the applicant must make payment of the application fee for the contest.

Not later than 5 days prior to the contest – the promoter must provide:

  • the finalised fight card for the contests showing the combatants, round times, discipline to be contested etc.
  • details of the Match-Maker
  • details of the Doctor.

Permit application fees

Contest type Professional contest Application fee

Up to 500 tickets to be sold


501 - 2,000 tickets to be sold


2,001+ tickets to be sold


Amateur 201+ tickets to be sold $400
51 - 200 tickets to be sold $250
Less than 50 tickets to be sold $100

Approvals required before a permit is issued

For all permits – NSW Police Force must approve the issuance of a permit for any combat sport contest.

Additional approval required for Amateur or Pro/Am permits – the Approved Amateur Body is required to approve the contest before a permit may be issued.