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Liquor Licensing Act offences

The Liquor Licensing Act 1997 (SA) provides for a number of criminal offences relating to the sale, supply and consumption of liquor.

The Act also enables the Police, Commissioner of Police, and licensees of licensed premises to issue barring orders to patrons, preventing a person from entering or remaining on licensed premises, see Barring Persons from Licensed Premises or Casino.It is an offence to breach a barring order, punishable by a maximum penalty of a fine of up to $5 000 or expiation fee of $315 [see Liquor Licensing Act 1997 (SA) ss 125(2), 125C].

Specific provisions of the Act apply to the consumption, sale, or provision of alcohol to minors or by minors - see Law Handbook chapter Children and Young People - Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drugs.

Additional provisions apply to criminal organisations - see Liquor Licensing Act Offences About Criminal Organisations.

Other common offences under the Liquor Licensing Act 1997 (SA) include:

Consumption or provision of liquor on unlicensed premises

It is an offence to consumer liquor on an unlicensed, regulated premises, such as a restaurant, café, shop, amusement parlour, or arcade [Liquor Licensing Act 1997 (SA) s 129(1)].

Maximum penalty: fine of up to $5 000

Expiation fee: $315

It is also an offence for a person to supply liquor on or in the vicinity of an unlicensed, regulated premises for the purpose of consumption on the premises [s 129(2)].

Maximum penalty: fine of up to $5 000.

Consumption of liquor in public places during specified events

The Minister or a Council can prohibit the consumption or possession of liquor in specific public places for a specific period by publishing a notice in the Government Gazette. This could be implemented, for example, during large public events such as Christmas Pageants, New Years Eve celebrations, or during the period the Lobethal Lights are available for public viewing.

It is an offence to consume or possess alcohol in a public place at a specific time if it is contrary to such a notice published in the Government Gazette [see s 131].

Maximum penalty: fine of up to $1 250

Expiation fee: $160.

Failing to leave a licensed premises on request

It is an offence for a person to fail to leave a licensed premises without reasonable excuse, after being requested to do so by an authorised person [see s 131A].

An authorised person can request a person to leave the premises if:

  • they are under the age of 18 years and are on the premises for the purpose of consuming alcohol; or
  • they are intoxicated; or
  • they have supplied, or are about to supply, alcohol to an intoxicated person; or
  • they are behaving in a disorderly or offensive manner; or
  • they are subject to a barring order.

Maximum penalty: a fine of up to $5 000.

Unauthorised sale or supply of liquor

It is an offence for a licensee to sell liquor in circumstances in which the sale of liquor is not authorised by their licence [see s 46].

Maximum penalty:

For a first offence: a fine of up to $20 000

For a subsequent offence: a fine of up to $40 000.

It is also an offence for liquor to be sold or supplied to an intoxicated person on a licensed premises [see s 108(1), see also the defence in s 108(2)].

Maximum penalty:

For a first offence: a fine of up to $20 000

For a subsequent offence: a fine of up to $40 000.

Liquor Licensing Act offences  :  Last Revised: Fri Sep 21st 2018
The content of the Law Handbook is made available as a public service for information purposes only and should not be relied upon as a substitute for legal advice. See Disclaimer for details. For free and confidential legal advice in South Australia call 1300 366 424.