Person Who is Not a Licensee Sell Liquor or Offer Liquor for Sale
– section 107(1) of the Liquor Control Reform Act 1998
In Victoria any person or organisation that intends to sell liquor must apply for a liquor license. The type of license required will depend on the type of event or business you are running and how you wish to supply the liquor.Liquor that is provided free of charge or with no direct payment will not require a license. A business may be exempt from having a liquor license if alcoholic beverages only account for a small part of the business model for example a hairdresser or bed and breakfast.
As a summary offence, any summons for this charge will primarily be handled by the Magistrates’ Court.
What is the legal definition of Person Who is Not a Licensee Sell Liquor or Offer Liquor for Sale?
- A person who is not a licensee must not sell liquor or offer liquor for sale.
- Subsection (1) does not apply to the sale of liquor, or the offer of liquor for sale, by an employee or agent of a licensee if the sale or offer is in accordance with the licence and this Act.
- If a person is convicted of an offence under this section, the court must also order all liquor which is found in the possession of the person and the vessels containing it to be forfeited.
- For the purposes of this section, proof of consumption or intended consumption of liquor on any premises by a person other than the occupier of the premises is, as against the occupier, evidence that the liquor was sold to the person consuming or intending to consume it.
- The fact of there being on any premises more liquor than is reasonably required for the use of the persons residing on those premises is evidence of the sale of liquor by the occupier.
- Subsections (4) and (5) do not apply to premises if the court is satisfied that the premises are used solely for residential purposes.
Examples of Person Who is Not a Licensee Sell Liquor or Offer Liquor for Sale
- A person who is selling alcoholic beverages from an esky to people in a park on a weekend over the busy summer months.
- A sporting club selling alcohol in their club rooms after a game.
- A sporting club does not sell alcohol but allows people to bring their own without having a BYO permit.
Elements of the offenceTo Prosecution must prove:
- That the accused was selling liquor or offering to sell liquor; and
- The accused did not have a license to sell liquor.
LegislationThe legislation for this offence can be found on section 107(1) of the Liquor Control Reform Act 1998.
Criminal defences that are used in response to this charge include factual dispute, concept of beyond reasonable doubt, impossibility, lack of intent, and possibly honest and reasonable mistake of belief.
Questions in cases like this
- Are you or you business exempt from a liquor license?
- Was there direct payment for the liquor?
- Was it liquor?
This offence carries a fine of 240 penalty units (around $38,685.60 at the time of print) or two years imprisonment as the highest possible sentence.