Liquor and Gaming Solutions

There are 7 categories of liquor licences in NSW, however a liquor licence can be tailored to meet an operator’s individual needs.  Experience shows engaging an adviser who has a detailed understanding and knowledge of the inner workings of the Liquor Act is a distinct advantage to applicants as the process is completed more quickly and less expensively, compared with someone who does not have the equivalent experience or expert knowledge. Our team of professionals are highly trained, motivated and approachable and can provide comprehensive cost effective solutions to meet your needs.  The team at BSV can assist you with:-

Community Impact Statements

A Community Impact Statement (CIS) is required to be lodged with the NSW Independent Liquor & Gaming Authority (the Authority) in many liquor applications.  A CIS assists the Authority determine the likely impact of, or gauge the level of community support for, an application.

Restaurant, Entertainment Venues and Caterers

An on-premises licence enables liquor to be sold with or ancillary to another product or service that is sold, supplied or provided to people on the premises. An on-premises licence can be used for a variety of purposes including accommodation, vessel trading, catering services (both on and off site) or as a public entertainment venue (such as those premises previously known as nightclub licences).   It can also be tailored to suit a multi-purpose business and it is even possible for liquor to be served to patrons without a meal in a restaurant (which requires the approval of a primary service authorisation). The primary purpose of an on-premises licence cannot be the sale or supply of alcohol, whether or not a primary service authorisation is held. Where a primary service authorisation is held, the product or service that is usually provided to customers on those premises must still be available. Expand/Read more

Club Operators

The most appropriate liquor license for a registered club selling liquor to members and guests is a Club Licence. Expand/Read more

Hotel or Bar Operators

Where it is proposed to sell liquor in a hotel, bar or tavern atmosphere the most appropriate liquor license is a hotel licence or a general bar hotel licence. A general bar licence is a limited type of hotel licence suited to venues that wish to operate a bar but do not want to operate gaming machines or offer takeaway liquor sales.  A general bar licence will permit a venue to operate dining facilities, accommodation and public entertainment. Expand/Read more

Gaming and a Local Impact Assessment

The Local Impact Assessment (LIA) process is designed to assess the impact of introducing additional gaming machines into a local government area (LGA).   The gaming machine threshold (GMT) is the number of gaming machines that are lawfully permitted in a hotel or club (i.e. gaming machine entitlements (GMEs) and/or poker machine permits (PMPs) in the case of a hotel).  For each gaming machine operated in a NSW club or hotel, that venue must have a GME or PMP (in the case of a hotel).  A hotel’s GMT cannot exceed 30. Expand/Read more

Small Bar Operators

A small bar licence allows liquor to be sold in a bar that is restricted to a maximum of 100 patrons. Minors are not permitted in a small bar during authorised liquor trading hours.  A community impact statement is not required where development consent from the local council is required and notice of a development application is provided to the local police and the Director General, NSW trade & Investment within two working days.

Bottleshop Operators

Where it is proposed to sell take away liquor through either a bottleshop or through a home delivery, mail order or the internet, the most appropriate liquor license is a packaged liquor licence. A packaged liquor licence permits the sale or supply of packaged liquor to the public for consumption off the licensed premises.   Tastings are permitted to be conducted on the licensed premises with or without charge. Expand/Read more

NCAT Reviews

If an applicant before the NSW Independent Liquor & Gaming Authority (the Authority) is dissatisfied with the outcome of their application before the Authority, then in some circumstances the applicant can appeal that decision to the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NCAT).

The NCAT appeal must be made within 28 days of the notice of the decision of the Authority being published on the website of the Department of Industry.

The nature of the NCAT hearing is ‘de novo’ meaning the NCAT Member will consider all evidence before it afresh, at the date of the decision. Importantly, there is no bearing on either party to prove the prior decision of the Authority was correct or incorrect.

Rather, it is the NCAT Member’s job to decide the outcome, on the balance of probabilities, in exercising the decision-making power of the original decision maker.

Furthermore, there is no presumption nor any additional weight which will be given to the original decision of the Authority, meaning the NCAT hearing is determined and finalised based on the evidence before it and only this evidence. A hearing of this nature can work either in favour or against a party, depending on the circumstances and nature of the hearing.

Back Schwartz Vaughan Lawyers are at the forefront of liquor licensing law in NSW and have the qualifications and reputation in advising on and acting in NCAT appeals.

Complaint, Noise and Disciplinary Matters

We provide specialist legal advice and assistance in relation to complaint, noise and disciplinary matters. Our firm has acted for many licensees in the past in response to Applications by the Police, Director of Liquor and Gaming or the Authority to impose conditions upon a liquor licence. In those actions we have successfully negotiated a satisfactory end to the matters for our clients.

Producer/Wholesale Operators

Producer/wholesaler licences apply to wine producers, brewers, distillers, and wholesalers. The liquor license allows wholesalers to sell to other liquor licensees. For wine producers, the liquor license also allows tastings (with a charge if desired), cellar door sales, direct sales to the public at wine shows and farmers’ (producer) markets, and the operation of multiple premises in an area.  Consumption on the premises as part of a restaurant, motel, vineyard event etc is permitted where a drink on-premises authorisation has been approved. For small scale regional brewers and distillers, the licence also allows tastings and retail sales in bottles at the licensed premises.

Limited Licence Operators

A limited licence allows the sale of liquor for consumption on designated licensed premises at a function or multiple functions. Limited liquor licenses allow liquor sales for consumption on the licensed premises at a function or multiple functions, a special event and a trade fair. Limited liquor licenses apply to sporting clubs that are non-profit organisation and community organisations, such as Councils or public authorities. In the case of trade fairs (such as wine or food shows), a limited licence can also allow take-away sales.

Advice to others in the legal industry

In addition to providing advice to clients, we often provide specialist advice to legal practitioners on a variety of liquor licensing, CIS and gaming issues. Due to our reputation of providing liquor licence and gaming solutions in a timely and cost effective manner, other legal firms and practitioners who do not specialise in such matters regularly seek our advice. Let us help your practice avoid undue delay, expense and frustration and obtain the best possible outcome for your client.

Due Diligence

We also provide specialist advice to legal practitioners, financiers, developers and others regarding the acquisition of licensed premises, liquor licenses and gaming entitlements. Such issues are often overlooked when purchasing these types of assets however it is probably the most critical. If proper checks and searches are not carried out operational issues may arise which can lead to disappointment, frustration and loss of earnings such as, for example when a dispute arises over the ownership of gaming devices. Without proper due diligence checks and searches you cannot be guaranteed you are receiving value for money or purchasing the relevant authorisations to satisfy your business activities.

Sale, Purchase Or Lease Of Licensed Premises

The sale, purchase or lease of any licensed premises raises a number of issues which must be carefully considered in the transaction so as to protect your interests and investment. Expand/Read more