Enforcement & Complaints

These topics have been provided to assist customers with Council information.

Note: This advice does not substitute for the full planning controls of North Sydney Council. Site conditions may invalidate any aspect of these controls or this advice.

If you have any specific questions regarding the following, please contact the Planning and Development Advisor:

  1. Phone: 9936 8100

  2. Email: council@northsydney.nsw.gov.au
    *Please include your name and contact telephone number(s) on any email.


Council enforces a minimal tolerance approach to unlawful activities or breaches of the Acts and Regulations for which we are responsible. We take enforcement action to protect the amenity of the area by ensure that all relevant health, safety and environmental matters meet appropriate standards. Council's Compliance and Enforcement Policy (linked below) provides a framework for managing building and environmental compliance.



The regulatory action taken by Council varies according to the circumstances, but may include the service of a Notice and/or Order, or Penalty Infringement Notice, or the instigation of legal action in either the Local Court, or the Land and Environment Court.


Notices and Orders

Council has the power to issue Notices and Orders to have works rectified or addressed. A Notice or Order can be issued concurrently with a penalty infringement notice (fine) or enforcement proceedings. However, we are able to start civil proceedings in the Court, without issuing an Order.

If you fail to comply with Notices and Orders you may be fined or prosecuted. Alternatively, the Council can approach the Court for appropriate Orders. Negligent or wilful non-compliance with an Order is likely to result in prosecution. You have the right to appeal an Order.


Penalty Infringement Notices (fines)

Council may elect to issue a fine for certain offences instead of starting prosecution proceedings in the Local Court or the Land & Environment Court. Fines range from $100 up to $2000. Council Officers will issue a fine if it is considered to be commensurate with the seriousness of the offence.

Paying a fine is not an admission of liability or guilt. When you pay a fine, you cannot be prosecuted for the same offence, however, Council may still seek rectification of unlawful work through the issuance of an Order or Court action.


Lodging a Complaint

If you believe that there has been a breach of building or environmental law, you should lodge a complaint with Council.

  • Write to:
    The General Manager
    PO Box 12

  • email: council@northsydney.nsw.gov.au

  • phone Council Customer Service: 9936 8100.

  • outside Business Hours contact Council Rangers Department: 9936 8100

When you lodge a complaint, please provide the following information:

  • Property address relating to the complaint.

  • DA number (if applicable).

  • Confirmation that approved plans of the DA have been checked (if applicable).

  • Confirmation that the Principal Certifying Authority (PCA) has been contacted in the first instance (if applicable).

  • Confirmation that Schedule 2 - Exempt Development of our LEP 2013 has been checked:

  • Confirmation that Part 2 - Exempt Development Codes of SEPP (Exempt and Complying Development Codes) 2008 has been checked:

  • Specific details of the particular non-compliance/issue.

  • Your contact details. These details will be kept undisclosed by Council Officers during the course of investigation, however, are essential if further clarification of your concerns/issues are required.

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