Liquor Licence Law

Your leading liquor licensing lawyers in Western Australia
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Your leading liquor licensing lawyers in Western Australia

As anyone in the industry knows too well, liquor licensing law in Western Australia is as complex as it is highly regulated. This goes not only for the application process, but also in relation to the ongoing management of licences, including transfer, removal or conversion, licence variations, mitigating licensee risk, and maintaining regulatory compliance.

At Frichot Lawyers, we have helped countless liquor and hospitality industry players to effectively navigate the liquor licensing minefield, successfully securing liquor licences and permits, and taking care of the ongoing legal responsibilities that they bring.

We have assisted businesses both large and small in every corner of the industry, from bottle shops, bars, hotels and taverns, to micro-breweries, wine processing facilities, nightclubs and restaurants. In fact, we are the go-to firm for some of Western Australia’s premier resorts, wineries and hotel chains, including Mandoon Estate, Bunker Bay Quay West Resort, Exmouth Novotel, Margaret River Quest, Smiths Beach Resort and Broome Cable Beach Club.

Need a liquor licence? Call now to arrange an appointment with one of our liquor licensing lawyers

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What sets Frichot Lawyers apart when it comes to resolving your liquor licensing needs?

With decades of hands-on experience and incomparable industry knowledge, no law firm understands better than we do that there is no such thing as a ‘one size fits all’ approach when it comes to liquor licensing.

So, whether you run a wine bar, a resort, or a festival, at Frichot Lawyers we understand your distinctive needs, and will tailor a pragmatic solution that not only meets those needs, but also adds value to your business.

Liquor licence and permit applications

The liquor licence application process can be extremely complex, and in many cases lengthy with unexpected obstacles and difficulties arising along the way. At Frichot Lawyers, we have extensive experience in managing all aspects of the application process, including:

  • Identifying the correct licence for you
  • Addressing the public interest test and submissions
  • Providing advice on, preparing and lodging application forms
  • Demonstrating evidence of consumer demand
  • Satisfying relevant local government approvals
  • Completing probity and police checks
  • Managing objections
  • Dealing with interventions by state or local government departments

So, whether you’re finding it difficult to identify the right licence for your operation, having trouble gathering the information and supporting evidence that you need, or you have been met with objections or interventions, we can help.

Applying for a liquor licence? Call us to arrange an appointment with one of our team today

Transfers and removals

At Frichot, our liquor licensing lawyers are commercial law professionals, making us the go-to law firm not only for liquor licence advice and applications, but also to facilitate the sale, purchase or lease of licensed premises or businesses.

It is important to remember when buying, selling or leasing a licensed premises or business, that there are several approvals and legislative requirements that must be addressed before the transaction can proceed. These include:

  • ensuring a correctly drafted sale contract, agreement or lease
  • completing duty assessment
  • preparing licence transfer applications,
  • correctly valuing both the business and the liquor licence
  • identifying and managing compliance issues
  • understanding and dealing with potential lessor rights to liquor licences

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When it comes to leasing liquor licenced premises, there are also particular considerations that you need to be aware of, including who will “own” the rights to the licence, the tenant’s rights and obligations as licensee during the term of the lease, and the arrangements for the licence at the end of the lease. You will also need to provide for any potential issues that can arise throughout the life of the lease, including licensee bankruptcy or breach of liquor licensing requirements.

With Frichot Lawyers, whether you are buying or selling, or you are a lessor or lessee of a licensed business or premises, we will assist with every aspect of the transaction, from drafting or reviewing contracts and agreements, to providing advice on the process and how to navigate issues along the way, to preparing transfer applications, right through to settlement.

Buying, selling or leasing a licensed premises? Call us today

Objections to a liquor licence application

If you are concerned about an advertised liquor licence application, we can help

Anyone is able to object to a liquor licence application. To do so, you must lodge a formal Notice of Objection with the licensing authority. There are several grounds under which you may object which are defined in the Liquor Control Act 1988. Currently the grounds are:

  • that granting the licence would not be in the public interest,
  • that granting the licence would cause undue harm or ill-health to people, or any group of people due to the use of liquor,
  • that granting the licence would be likely to result in undue offence, annoyance, disturbance or inconvenience to people living or working in the vicinity, or to people in or travelling to or from an existing or proposed place of public worship, hospital or school,
  • that granting the licence would reduce the amenity, quiet or good order of the locality, and
  • that granting the licence would otherwise be contrary to the liquor licensing legislation.

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If you are concerned about an advertised liquor licence application and would like to lodge an objection, it is important to obtain quality legal advice to ensure not only that you raise the correct grounds, but that you establish your claim including the requisite persuasive evidence.

At Frichot Lawyers, we can prepare your Notice of Objection, provide advice on the evidence that you need, and ensure that you obtain all of the materials that you require to substantiate your objection.

Call us today to find out if you can lodge a Notice of Objection

Compliance, offences and legal proceedings

Ideally it is best to make sure that you understand your compliance obligations from the outset, and to establish robust systems to guard against slip-ups that that can jeopardise your licence and your future. At Frichot Lawyers we have demonstrated expertise in liquor licence compliance matters, and provide high quality advice to keep you ahead of your responsibilities.

But what happens if you do run into compliance trouble?

If you have been issued with an infringement notice, or charged with an offence under the Liquor Control Act 1988, it’s very important to seek legal advice as early as possible so that you are in position to take advantage of all legal options available to you.

Our lawyers are experts in all compliance matters, and provide advice and representation to clients in disciplinary proceedings before the Liquor Commission, prosecutions in the Magistrates Court, and in any dealings with the Department of Racing, Gaming and Liquor.

Got compliance issues? Call us today to see what your options are