In Western Australia you need to be 16 or older to get a tattoo or be branded.
If you are between the ages of 16 and 18, you’ll need your parent’s permission in writing to get a tattoo or be branded. The note must explain the type of tattoo or brand you want to get and where it’s going to be on your body. It’s against the law for someone to tattoo or brand you without your parent’s written permission if you are under 18.
You can get your ears pierced without your parent’s permission after you turn 16. If you’re under 18 and want to get any other piercing that is not in a private place (eg. your genitals or nipples), you’ll need your parent’s permission in writing. Your parent’s note must explain where the piercing will be.
If you want to get a piercing on your genitals or nipples, you have to wait until you’re 18. You can’t get this done even with your parent’s permission when you are under 18.
Even if you do get permission from a parent, some tattooists and body piercers will not give you a tattoo or a piercing if you’re under 18, and others may ask you to show proof of your age, or even sign a statutory declaration (a legal document) outlining your age, and that you understand the risks involved in the procedure. As a result, it is a good idea to call the tattoo / piercing parlour you are thinking of going to and asking them what their policy is on giving tattoos or piercings to someone your age who has a parent’s consent.
Your school or workplace may have specific rules or policies about tattoos, piercings and body marks, so it’s a good idea to check these first. You must follow these rules as long as they are not unreasonable or discriminatory.
If a tattoo, piercing or body modification is part of your cultural background, for example your race, descent or ethnic heritage, then it may be unlawful discrimination for a school or workplace to ban you from having it. If you would like more information on this, check out our page on discrimination, or contact us here.
If you have any questions about getting a tattoo, piercing or other body modification, please contact us here.
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