Principal certifying authority

What is certification?

Most building and subdivision in NSW involves certification, ranging from the assessment of detailed construction plans for a multi-unit residential building, house plans assessed as complying development or inspections undertaken during the construction phase.

Certificates are approvals provided from either a council or an accredited certifier. The certificates confirm that the proposed and completed development complies with relevant planning controls and national building standards.

The group of professionals who deliver this certification are accredited by the Building Professionals Board. It is up to the person who is building or developing to decide whether to use their council or an accredited certifier to issue a certificate.

Please note: any applications for Construction Certificates, Complying Development Certificates, Subdivision Certificates or PCA appointment must be made via the NSW Planning Portal. There are numerous applicant resources to assist you on their site - Portal Applicant Resources - detailing how to lodge via the Portal.

Certificates are issued under the:

Either council or a private accredited certifier can:

  • Issue a complying development certificate.
  • Issue a construction certificate.
  • Issue a compliance certificate.
  • Issue a strata certificate.
  • Inspect building works during construction.
  • Act as a Principal Certifying Authority (PCA), responsible for issuing occupation certificates for building work and subdivision certificates for subdivision work (usually only a council can act as PCA for subdivision work and issue subdivision certificates unless the local planning instrument says otherwise).

Council as principal certifying authority 

Council accredited certifiers:

  • Have a wide range of knowledge and skills in building certification.
  • Hold accreditation from the Building Professionals Board.
  • Can provide you with an efficient and comprehensive service and only deal with applications in Ku-ring gai.
  • Have access to extensive information about properties in Ku-ring-gai.
  • Work closely with a diverse range of staff (planning, landscaping, food health and engineering) if additional professional assistance is needed.

To nominate Council as your PCA, please complete the following form.

PCA Service Agreement form(PDF, 369KB)

To nominate Council as a replacement PCA (ie. change from your existing accredited certifier to a council accredited certifier), please complete the following form and make an application via the NSW Planning Portal.

Notice to Appoint a Replacement PCA form(PDF, 152KB)