You must apply in person at any office of the Opal Mining Registrar, either in Andamooka, Coober Pedy or Marla.

The permit is current for one year.

Applicants must be at least 16 years of age and be an Australian resident or hold a current working visa.

Individuals will be required to provide some form of identification for signature (for example a drivers licence or current passport).

Note: Visitors from overseas who wish to apply for a Precious Stones Prospecting Permit must have an unlimited working visa.

The immigration online verification service will be used to confirm the status of all international passports prior to a permit being issued.

You will need to pay a fee for many applications required before you can undertake opal mining, including an application fee for a permit, for identification plates and for registration of claims as well as for renewals.

Complete list of Opal Mining Act Fees (PDF, 143.5 KB)

The first step is to obtain a current precious stones prospecting permit (PSPP).

The guidelines for opal prospecting and mining provide information on how to obtain a PSPP and the requirements to prospect and mine for opal both within and outside a precious stones field:

You can obtain posts from the general stores at Coober Pedy, Andamooka and Mintabie. Posts may also be purchased from the Department for Energy and Mining Regional Office at Coober Pedy, or the District Offices at Andamooka and Marla. The specifications for the posts are as follows:

- The post must have a cross-sectional dimension equal to or exceeding 7 centimetres
- The post must project at least 75 centimetres above the ground
- The post must be devoid of marks or writing that refers to a previous pegging
- If the post is for an opal development lease it must be completely white.

SafeWork SA (Adelaide Office)
Phone: +61 8 8303 0400

Opal Mining Registrar
Coober Pedy Office
Phone: +61 8 8672 5800

To mine at Lambina you must:

  • Hold a current precious stones prospecting permit
  • Be a current member of the South Australian Opal Miners Association Inc (SAOMAI)
  • Serve a notice of entry on the pastoralist
    • The notice of entry must be validated by an authorised officer of the Mining Registrar in Andamooka, Coober Pedy or Marla
    • From the date of serving the notice of entry you must wait at least 21 clear days before you can enter the property to peg your claim
  • Sign a Deed of Consent through SAOMAI and pay an annual fee
    • The Deed of Consent binds the miner to the Lambina Native Title Mining Agreement which has been negotiated between SAOMAI and the traditional owners, the Antakarinja and Yunkunyatjara people
    • If you do not sign a Deed of Consent, any claim you peg at Lambina will not be registered and you will not be allowed to mine
  • Peg your precious stones claim at Lambina, then apply at either the Coober Pedy or Marla office to register the claim

Note: you cannot commence mining operations on the claim until you have received written notification from the Opal Mining Registrar at Coober Pedy.