Secure a valid liquor license to avoid expensive fines

By Sky Accountants

Sky Accountants Victoria would like to remind new premises owners to secure a valid liquor license, as failure to do so may prove to be a very costly lesson. The Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation (VCGLR) prosecuted a venue for selling liquor without a valid license after its inspectors visited the premises last year. It is a breach of the Liquor Control Reform Act also known as LCR Act 1998.  

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Maddhus Pty Ltd failed to apply for a new license or transfer the liquor license from the previous owners and was found to be operating without a liquor license. The court handed down a significant conviction and a $4,000 fine. The operators were also ordered to pay the costs of the prosecution. 

Non-compliance of operators is a behavior that is clearly a breach of the laws related to the supply and sale of liquor. The court’s penalty only shows the seriousness of the offense. The VCGLR is serious about proactive licensing, compliance and education to make sure participants are aware of the legal requirements to operate. 

Operators can check the VCGLR website which has a wealth of information for anyone who is unsure of their responsibilities. Those in the hospitality industry are encouraged to check the website regularly for updates and contact the VCGLR or attend liquor forums held across Victoria. VCGLR inspectors will be doing rounds in the summer to continue monitoring compliance, including in the regional areas of Victoria. 

Contact Sky Accountants Victoria for more information. The Liquor Control Reform Act 1998 (LCR Act) regulates the supply and consumption in Victoria with the aim of minimising harm and risks associated with the misuse or abuse of alcohol. The Act penalises failure to comply with license conditions such as unlicensed selling of liquor, supplying liquor to intoxicated persons and underage drinking. 

There have been recent changes to the LCR Act which mean several changes for liquor licensees as well. The new restrictions include automatic removal of demerit points on the transfer of license or BYO permit; when the transfer of an existing license or BYO permit takes effect; and evidence of planning permission. 

Further changes include minors not being permitted to consume liquor on licensed premises under any circumstances, static alcohol advertising, taking away unconsumed liquor from restaurant and café licensed premises, RSA register, beer and wine producer’s license, just a few to mention. Owners of premises should educate themselves of these changes to avoid possible penalties. For more information, click here  

To know more about the LCR Act and changes for liquor licensees, click here and speak to Sky Accountants Victoria who specialise in the hospitality industry. Seeking professional advice could prove to be an important and helpful decision. We are big believers in the use of professional tools to manage your business. The right tools can streamline your processes so that the business is best placed to trade profitably. 

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