Victorian Legislation on IVF

The Assisted Reproductive Treatment (ART) Act 2008 came into effect on 1st January 2010. The main purpose of the ART Act is to regulate the use of assisted reproductive treatment procedures and to provide for the keeping of the Central Register and the Voluntary Register by the Register of Births, Deaths and Marriages.

Written consent

The ART Act requires Melbourne IVF to obtain written consent from both the patient undergoing treatment and their partner.  A partner is defined by the Act as the person's spouse or a person who lives with the first person as a couple in a genuine domestic basis, irrespective of gender.  This consent can be withdrawn by either party at any time by advising Melbourne IVF in writing. Please speak to our staff if you have any questions about you or your partner providing this consent.  

It is important that Melbourne IVF is notified of any changes to your circumstances, including:

  • change of contact details;
  • relationship breakdown or divorce;
  • in the event of the death of either party; or
  • in the event that you wish to withdraw consent.

Our staff will explain the regulations and guide you through the process, depending on your individual circumstances.

Checks required

The Victorian legislation requires that all patients using ART (assisted reproduction techniques, that is intra-uterine insemination and IVF, undertake a Victorian Criminal (Police) Record Check and Child Protection Order (CPO) Check, prior to commencing treatment.

The guiding principle behind this legislation is ensuring the welfare and interests of persons born as a result of treatment procedures. Melbourne IVF does not support the requirements of this legislation for a criminal records check and CPO check, but respects the will of Parliament and complies with all legislative requirements.

For some patients an Australian Federal Police Check may be required.  Please refer to the International Patients section below.

Victorian Government announced its intention to remove mandatory police and child protection orders for people undergoing assisted reproductive treatments (ART), under new reforms introduced to Parliament on 19th February 2020. Once the Government legislation is ratified formerly, Melbourne IVF will immediately change process, as we understand the immediate positive impact this will have on all patients.

Submitting your checks on time

In order to help patients commence treatment without delay, all patients will be required to submit their original Victorian Criminal (Police) Record Check to Melbourne IVF at least 48 hours prior to attending their new patient counselling appointment, or for existing patients without the checks, prior to the commencement of a new treatment cycle. Patients who live interstate will also be required to complete the Victorian Criminal (Police) Record Check process. For overseas patients, please refer to the ‘International Patients’ information below.

All patients are required to submit their Child Protection Order Check to Melbourne IVF as soon as possible as they must be reviewed by DHS prior to counselling appointment. This also applies to existing patients without the checks, prior to the commencement of a new treatment cycle. A Working with Children Check is not permissible. If you need assistance completing your forms, please contact our Patient Service Administrators on 03 9473 4444.

Applying for the required checks

Criminal (Police) Record Check

Following is the process to complete the Child Protection Order Check. Please note there is no fee associated with this check.  

  1. Download the ‘Child Protection Order Form’ below and follow instructions to complete the form online.
  2. Please ensure you include all names on your application including your middle name, any former names (i.e. maiden name) and any other names known by (i.e. Bob). If you do not have an alternative name, other or previous name/s (including maiden name) please mark “No” under that section on the first page. Unfortunately if you omit any of your current or former names we will be unable to accept your Child Protection Order Check and you will be required to re-complete your application.
  3. Once the form is completed in full, save the form with your name as the document title (e.g. Mary Smith.pdf) 
  4. Confirm the saved Child Protection Order Check application form/s are legible then return forms via email to

If you do not have the facilities to apply via email, you may mail all documents to Melbourne IVF, Suite 10, 320 Victoria Pde East Melbourne VIC 3002.  If you have any questions, please call the Patient Service Administrators on (03) 9473 4444.

Please note, the Child Protection Order Check Form/s are required to be emailed or mailed. Failure to do so may result in a delay in the application process and commencing treatment. 

For further information on this form, please refer to the Fact Sheet for Applicants below.

Melbourne IVF will forward your Request for Child Protection Order Check application forms to the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). Once processed, the DHHS will send the Child Protection Order Check statement directly to Melbourne IVF and this will then be returned to you.

Parents transferring from another clinic

Patients who are transferring to Melbourne IVF from another IVF clinic are required to submit their original Victorian Criminal (Police) Record Check to Melbourne IVF. You will need to reapply for the Child Protection Order Check through Melbourne IVF, as this is a legislative requirement.

International patients

Overseas patients are also required to comply with the ART Act 2008. Please contact the Patient Services Administrators on +61 3 9473 4444 to discuss your specific requirements.

Express your concern

At Melbourne IVF, we continue to express to the Victorian government our opposition to the ART legislation Criminal (Police) Record Check and Child Protection Order Check requirements. We also encourage patients and their families to contact their local member for parliament to express their concerns and personal experiences. You may also consider contacting ACCESS, the national infertility network that campaigns for the rights of patients undergoing treatment in Victoria.

Applying for the Check’s Required

If you have concerns about information on your Criminal (Police) Record Check or Child Protection Order Check, and you want to discuss how this may affect your ability to begin ART treatment, please contact our Counsellor Manager, Amy Stevens, on 03 9473 4444. To understand the application process of these checks you can download our Process for CR and CPOC document below.

If you have any other questions about the ART legislation, or need assistance applying for the required checks, please contact the Patient Services Administrators on 03 9473 4444.

Related links

If you want to read a copy of the legislation, you can download it from the Victorian Government website at ART Act 2008.

If you are considering applying for exemption, you will need to apply to the Patient Review Panel established under the ART Act 2008.

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