Fees for apparatus licences
We charge a yearly fee for apparatus licences.
Licence fees include:
- fees for services
- a licence tax.
We adjust our taxes each year for inflation.
Different fees apply to commercial broadcasters.
The August 2023 apparatus licence fee schedule sets out the current fees for apparatus licences.
You should only use the schedule as a guide. You may want to ask an accredited person to help you or get legal advice.
You can also check if you are eligible for a licence fee exemption or concession.
Changes to licence fees
In August 2023, we reduced the annual licence taxes of Television Outside Broadcast Network licences from $415,899 per year to $211,701 per year, as a result of our March consultation.
In June 2023, as part of our proposal to allocate area-wide apparatus licences (AWLs) in the 3.4–4.0 GHz frequency range in remote areas of Australia, we introduced a new AWL tax for the frequency range.
To keep our tax arrangements current we have updated our apparatus licence taxes with new references from the 2016 census to the 2021 census. Transmitter licence tax invoices that fell due on or after 23 November 2022 included these changes.
From 1 October 2022, we updated apparatus licence charges. This resulted from a review of all existing fees for radiocommunications, telecommunications and broadcasting services. You can find more information in the Proposed ACMA fees for service 2022–23 consultation paper.
Apparatus licence fee calculator
Use our apparatus licence fee calculator to estimate the taxes and charges you need to pay. It's quick and easy to use.
Area-wide licence (AWL) calculators
Use our AWL calculators to estimate annual licence taxes.
We’d like to help by giving you the option to pay your renewal fee within 3 months from the expiry of your current licence.
We can also help you by:
- identifying your licence number
- updating your licence details
- printing and sending a copy of your licence to you
If you require help in arranging the payment option, please contact us. If we don’t hear from you before your licence expires, we’ll contact you to check you still need the licence before it’s cancelled.
How we calculate taxes for apparatus licences
Apparatus licences may be for a transmitter or receiver.
We charge a licence tax for all transmitters. We only charge a tax for a receiver if you haven't licensed the transmitter.
The amount we charge depends on if the licence is an:
- assigned licence
- non-assigned licence
- new licence
The amount you need to pay for an assigned licence depends on:
- how many frequencies you need
- the amount of bandwidth
- the frequency
- location of the site
- transmitter power
We base the licence tax on the population density of an area.
Apparatus licence fee density area maps
The boundaries for density areas are available in:
We also use these to determine some taxes:
- the Australian Spectrum Map Grid (ASMG)
- hierarchical cell identification scheme
More information is in the licence fee schedule.
Pay your invoice
You have 45 days to pay your invoice.
If you don’t pay on time, we may refuse your application or renewal. We may also give your frequency to someone else.
You can appeal our decision.
If you give up your licence, we may refund part of your licence fee. We do this automatically.
As stated above, If you’re unable to pay for your licence renewal because you or your business have been impacted by circumstances beyond your control (e.g., natural disaster), you can apply to defer your fee.
Rules for licence fees
This legislation helps us determine how we charge for apparatus licences:
- Radiocommunications Act 1992
- Radiocommunications (Receiver Licence Tax) Act 1983
- Radiocommunications (Receiver Licence Tax) Determination 2015
- Radiocommunications (Transmitter Licence Tax) Act 1983
- Radiocommunications (Transmitter Licence Tax) Determination 2015
- Radiocommunications Licence Conditions (Apparatus Licence) Determination 2015
- Radiocommunications (Specified Radiocommunications Receivers and Types of Transmitter and Receiver Licences) Determination 2014
- Radiocommunications (Interpretation) Determination 2015
- Radiocommunications Taxes Collection Act 1983
- Radiocommunications Taxes Collection Regulations 1985
- Radiocommunications Taxes Collection (Penalties on Unpaid Tax) Determination 2015
- Radiocommunications (Charges) Determination 2022