For licensees and hospitality operators, the festive period is a celebration of busy trading.

It may be easy to get caught up during this period and forget about the obligations and responsibilities under the liquor licensing legislation.  Licensees should remain diligent and continue to comply with their licence and permit conditions.

We’ve created a list of important things to remember

1. Juveniles

Juveniles are generally not allowed to patronise licensed premises, unless accompanied by a responsible adult or guardian.  (Click here to read more about juveniles on licensed premises.

2. Incidents

Licensees are obliged to keep track of incidents that happen on and in the vicinity of their premises by recording them in the Incident Register.  (Click here to read more on what kinds of incidents should be recorded in the Incident Register)

The Incident Register must be in a format that complies with the licensing authority’s policies.  Click here to download an example from the licensing authority’s website.

Where a crowd controller physically restrains or removes a person, or prevents a person from entering the premises, the following information must be recorded:

  • An explanation outlining the manner in which the person was physically handled and the reasons for physical contact being used
  • The name, address and security licence number in respect of each crowd controller who made physical contact

Crowd controllers must be authorised in writing to remove a person from licensed premises.  Click here to download the licensing authority’s authorisation form.

The maintenance of the Incident Register is a strategy to help licensees with the management of their premises.  It also assists the Police and licensing authority, should there be an investigation into any incident.

3. Noise

Licensees should be mindful of managing noise on and from the premises.  This may involve monitoring music volumes and observing patron behaviour.

Anyone can complain about noise.  It may be a nearby resident or a neighbouring business.  There are a variety of ways for a disgruntled person to make a complaint.

Dealing with noise complaints can potentially be costly, burdensome to the business and involve a lot of time for licensees and staff.  It is certainly preferable to avoid a complaint arising in the first place through awareness and early preventative measures.

All noise complaints need to be properly recorded in the Incident Register.

4. Table service

Restaurant licences only allow for liquor to be served by the licensee or its staff to patrons who are seated at a table or some other fixed structure used as a table.  Patrons should not be allowed to move about the premises with an alcoholic drink in hand.

The requirement for table service might also be endorsed on certain extended trading permits attached to other licence types.  For example, a tavern might have a condition requiring liquor to be served only by staff to patrons who are seated in the alfresco area.

5. Licence and permits to be displayed

Licensees are reminded that they must ensure that a current copy of their liquor licence and any extended trading permits are displayed in a readily legible condition and in a conspicuous position within the licensed premises at all times.

6. Documents to be readily available at the licensed premises

In addition to displaying a copy of the licence and any extended trading permits, licensees must also ensure that up-to-date copies of the approved plans, harm minimisation documents, training register and incident register are readily available on the licensed premises and made available for inspection if requested by an authorised officer.

7. Approved managers

At least one approved manager must be on duty at all times and their name must be displayed in the licensed premises in such a way that it identifies that person as the manager responsible for the licensed premises.  Approved managers must have their current approved manager card on them at all times whilst supervising a venue.

8. Numbers limit/patron capacity

Many licences are now endorsed with a restriction on the maximum number of patrons or people, either for the entire venue or for particular parts of a venue.  During the busy summer trading period, it is all the more important for licensees to ensure that these numbers limitations are strictly adhered to.

9. Free drinking water

Where liquor is sold for consumption on the licensed premises, the licensee must ensure that water suitable for drinking is provided, free of charge, at all times when liquor is sold.

10. Training registers

During this peak season, licensees may employ additional staff.  In doing so licensees  should maintain their  training register with each employee’s training compliances.  Although the training register does not need to have a copy of the training certificates within it, licensees are required to keep a copy of their employee’s training certificates.