Client service charter | ACMA

Client service charter

This service charter sets out:

  • how the ACMA seeks to serve you
  • what you can expect when you deal with us
  • how you can help us serve you better.

It explains how we respond to your requests—for example, when applying for licences or enquiring about processes for making complaints about broadcasting content. 

If your concern is outside the scope of our responsibilities and we can identify the appropriate organisation, we will refer you to that organization.

You can download the charter (Word 364 kb | PDF 338 kb), or read on for the full charter.

More information

About the ACMA

The Australian Communications and Media Authority (the ACMA) is Australia’s communications and media regulator.

We aim to make media and communications work in Australia’s public interest.

We seek to deliver a communications and media environment that balances the needs of the industry and the Australian community through information, advice, and where necessary, through regulation. In discharging our various roles and functions, as a light-touch evidence-informed regulator, we always look to communicate and facilitate, but, where circumstances require, we will regulate.

Our key responsibilities

We are responsible for the regulation of broadcasting, radiocommunications, telecommunications and online industries. We work with industry and government, locally and internationally, so that Australians can enjoy the best and most innovative media and communications services in a fair, responsible, safe and productive way. Our key responsibilities include:

  • regulating telecommunications, broadcasting, online industries and datacasting services
  • managing access to radiofrequency spectrum bands through the establishment of spectrum planning frameworks, radiocommunications licence arrangements, and resolving competing demands for that spectrum through price-based allocation methods
  • planning the availability of segments of radiofrequency spectrum bands used by broadcasting services, and managing access to that spectrum through broadcasting licence arrangements
  • regulating compliance with the relevant legislation, licence conditions, codes of practice, standards, service guarantees and other safeguards
  • where necessary, exercising powers to create legislative and other instruments, often in the form of standards or service provider rules
  • facilitating the provision of community information to promote informed decisions about communications products and services
  • reporting on matters relating to the communications industry, including its performance representing Australia’s communications interests internationally
  • advising the government on specific matters from time to time.

magnifying glass graphic pngFor more information, you can download a copy of the ACMA’s corporate plan or annual report.

What you can expect from us

All ACMA staff must comply with the Australian Public Service (APS) values and code of conduct. The APS values and code of conduct include requirements for ACMA staff to act impartially, behave with integrity and honesty, and act with due care and diligence in the course of their employment.

Our staff also comply with the organisation’s core values of being informed, active, agile, innovative and influential. Our values guide the way we work, the way we make decisions and how we interact with each other and the wider community.

We take the commitments made in this service charter seriously and, whether you interact with us as a citizen, customer, client or stakeholder, we will:

  • treat you with respect and courtesy
  • provide you with prompt, professional and quality service at all times
  • consult widely when developing and reviewing policy and regulation, make informed decisions, and advise you of our decisions in a timely manner
  • be openly accountable for our actions, and monitor and improve our performance in the services we provide you.

A dedicated Customer Service Centre

We provide you with a single point of contact for enquiries—our Customer Service Centre. The centre can be contacted by phone, email or web-form; please see Contacts at the end of this charter. Our Customer Service Centre staff aim to respond promptly and fully to your enquiries and, where appropriate, refer you to other service delivery arrangements (for example, those associated with the Do Not Call Register or with administering telecommunications numbering). The centre makes it easier for you to access our services and helps us ensure that our customer service delivery is professional, consistent and of a high quality.

Information collection and use

If you give us information, we will collect, store and use that information in accordance with the law. We will respect your rights to privacy and confidentiality.

magnifying glass graphic pngYou have the right to request access under the Freedom of Information Act to information we hold, including any information we hold about you.

Responding to your requests

The matters for which the ACMA has responsibility vary in complexity and can have particular statutory deadlines—information about target time frames for our key activities is outlined later in this charter. We will take all reasonable steps to ensure your matter is resolved within these time frames. However, if this is not possible, we will:

  • provide an interim response to inform you of our progress
  • review the progress of your matter and prioritise its resolution, depending upon the nature and complexity of the matter.

Your right to a fair and impartial decision

In some circumstances, you also have the right to:

  • request the reasons for our decisions
  • seek a review of our decisions
  • ask for access to documents about the decision under the Freedom of Information Act 1982.

You can complain to the Commonwealth Ombudsman if you are not satisfied with the way we conducted ourselves when we made or reviewed a decision.

For information on appeal rights regarding ACMA decisions, please refer to the ACMA website or request information from the staff member you have been dealing with.

Our approach to consultation

In developing and reviewing policy and regulation, we will, as early as practicable, consult widely with interested parties. When undertaking this consultation, we will:

  • provide information about our public consultation processes and practical guidance on how to make a submission
  • allow reasonable time frames to enable you to make a submission—consultations are generally open for four to six weeks
  • provide information about the policy or regulatory change and prepare a regulation impact statement if there is a significant direct/indirect effect on business
  • acknowledge receipt of your submission
  • respond to your submission online, by email or phone as appropriate. 

magnifying glass graphic pngYou have the right to have your views considered. 

What we ask of you

Before phoning or emailing us, please check whether the information you need is on our website.

When lodging a form, application or complaint with us, please include accurate and complete information, so we can effectively and efficiently respond to your request. 

When paying annual licence fees, we suggest you take advantage of the ACMA’s credit card online payments via ANZ eGate® at or use electronic funds transfer (EFT) or BPay.

magnifying glass graphic pngWe ask that you treat our staff with courtesy and respect.

How we are accountable

The ACMA is held accountable through the courts, tribunals, Parliament and the Commonwealth Ombudsman for our actions in relation to the laws we administer and enforce.

We report our performance on the ACMA website and in our annual report, which includes various key performance targets.

If you are not happy with the ACMA’s service, please contact our Customer Service Centre so we can better understand and address your concerns. We also welcome your feedback on the effectiveness of our charter and performance.

magnifying glass graphic pngWe will keep reviewing our service standards and this charter.

How to contact us

Please see Contacts at the end of this charter.

Response time frames

As Australia’s communications and media regulator, the ACMA has a broad remit and a diverse range of responsibilities.  The table below sets our target (or statutory) response time frames for those of our major activities with a public-facing focus. We aim to undertake these activities as quickly as possible within these time frames noting that if the matter is particularly complex it may take longer. If the service you seek is not listed below, contact our Customer Service Centre by emailing or calling 1300 850 115, or search our website.

Activity Action Target time frame

General enquiries to the Customer Service Centre


1 business day

Submissions to a consultation process

Acknowledge receipt

5 business days

Broadcasting complaints

Acknowledge receipt

2 business days

Finalise investigations

3 months (from commencement of the investigation)

SPAM, telemarketing and fax marketing complaints

Acknowledge receipt

Immediate (auto-reply)


15 business days

Radiocommunications interference complaints

Acknowledge receipt

3 business days

Finalise investigations

2 months

Apparatus licence applications


10 business days

Activity Action Statutory time frame

Numbering applications


10 business days

Carrier licence applications


20 business days

Submarine cable permit applications


25 business days (if relating to a protection zone)


60 business days (if not)

Captioning exemption orders


90 calendar days.

Assessing program classifications (C&P programs)


60 calendar days.


Customer Service Centre

Available to answer your enquiries between 9 am and 5 pm AEST each working day. 

Telephone: 1300 850 115


ACMA offices


Level 5 The Bay Centre, 65 Pirrama Road, Pyrmont NSW 2009
PO Box Q500, Queen Victoria Building NSW 1230
Tel: 02 9334 7700
Fax 02 9334 7799
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Red Building, Benjamin Offices, Chan Street, Belconnen ACT 2617
PO Box 78, Belconnen ACT 2616
Tel: 02 6219 5555
Fax: 02 6219 5353
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Level 32 Melbourne Central Tower, 360 Elizabeth Street, Melbourne Vic. 3000
PO Box 13112 Law Courts, Melbourne Vic 8010
Tel: 03 9963 6800
Fax: 03 9963 6899
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ACMA website

The ACMA website is a great place to start for general (and specific) information. Information is grouped into three zones: industryacma, citizenacma and theacma.

Enter the most appropriate zone and use the top drop-down menus to find what you need. Or use the website’s search function.

Website faults, comments or suggestions

If you want to send us general comments and suggestions about our website and online services, or report a fault or broken link, use the website feedback form or email


Under the Disability Discrimination Act 1992, Commonwealth departments and agencies must ensure that people with disabilities can access online information and services.

The ACMA website has been designed to meet the Government Online Standards, including those that prescribe access for people with disabilities. The design draws on the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) and incorporates all relevant WCAG A and AA requirements.

The ACMA aims to make information on its website accessible to all users. If you’re having trouble accessing information on the website, please call us on 1300 850 115 or email us at We will endeavour to respond immediately (preferably by phone if a number is provided) and we will arrange to get the information to you in another form.

ReadSpeaker is a text-to-speech service that provides a simple ‘click and listen’ operation for users of the ACMA website. It is especially helpful for people with learning difficulties related to language, visual impairments, those who have trouble reading text online or who cannot read. Users from English second language (ESL) or culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) communities will also find it a useful tool.

Teletypewriter service (TTY)

National Relay Service for people that are deaf or have a hearing- or speech-impairment:

TTY/Voice calls: 133 677

Translating and interpreting service

For information in another language, call 131 450 from anywhere in Australia for the cost of a local call. The Translating and Interpreting Service can call the ACMA on your behalf.


Use the following links:





Telemarketing and fax marketing


  • Interference to radiocommunications operated under an apparatus licence 

Equipment labelling


Last updated: 17 December 2012