Restaurant Licence


Restaurant Licence


A restaurant licence authorises the consumption of liquor and the sale of liquor for consumption on the premises at any time with or ancillary to a genuine meal. Liquor Licensing Act 1997 defines a meal as a genuine meal eaten while seated at a table.

A restaurant licence may also authorise the following:

Supply of liquor without a meal

A condition that allows the sale of liquor for consumption by a patron seated at a table or attending a function where food is provided. This condition allows a person to consume liquor while not consuming a meal. For example, a group of people go into the premises and order a meal, however, two of them do not want to eat, but would like to have a glass of wine.

  • As long as the restaurant licence has a Section 34(1)(c) authorisation then those people can consume liquor as long as they remain seated at a table; or
  • If a group books the premises for a function, for example a cocktail party, then the licensee can serve liquor to people who have been invited to the function provided that the licence has a Section 34(1)(c) authorisation.

BYO with meals

A person may bring liquor onto the licensed premises with the consent of the licensee to consume with or ancillary to a meal provided by the licensee on the licensed premises. The person can then take the unconsumed portion of that liquor from the premises when they leave.

  • However any liquor sold or supplied by the licensee for consumption on the licensed premises must be consumed on the premises and cannot be removed from the premises.
  • Corkage may be charged at a fee determined by the licensee.

Trading hours

A restaurant licence allows the licensee to trade at any time, provided the sale and consumption of liquor occurs with or ancillary to a meal.

However, in some cases trading hours may be restricted by a condition on the licence. Trading hours are usually subject to local council consents so it is advisable to check with your local council.

  • A section 34(1)(c) authorisation only allows trade (without a meal) until midnight Monday to Saturday or between 11 am and 8 pm on a Sunday, unless the licence also has an extended trading authorisation.
  • This authorisation can not operate on Good Friday or Christmas Day.

Other authorisations

An applicant for a restaurant licence or an existing licence holder may apply to Consumer and Business Services for any of the consents listed below:

Extended trading authorisation (ETA)

If a licensee wishes to trade (without a meal) between midnight and 5 am Monday to Saturday, or between 8 am or 11 am or 8 pm and midnight on a Sunday, or between midnight and 2 am on Christmas Day, the licensee may apply for an Extended trading authorisation.

This authorisation cannot operate on Good Friday, the day after Good Friday or the day after Christmas Day.

Entertainment consent

If a licensee intends to provide entertainment on the licensed premises, either prior to 11 am or after Midnight on any day, the licensee must apply for an Entertainment consent.

An Entertainment Consent will only be granted for a restaurant licence provided the licensee can show that entertainment is ancillary to the primary business, being the supply of meals.

Extension of trading area

If a licensee intends to trade in an area adjacent to the licensed premises, then an Application for an extension of trading area is required for example drinking and/or dining on the footpath adjacent to the premises.


It is a condition of a restaurant licence that the primary and predominant activity must be the supply of meals to the public at the premises at all times that the premises are trading.

Consumer and Business Services must be satisfied that the premises are suitable to be licensed. For example, the premises must have sufficient toilet facilities for patrons and comply with other building regulations and planning approvals.

An applicant must satisfy the licensing authority that they are fit and proper persons to hold a licence and will need to complete a Personal Information Declarations (PDF 120KB). Relevant knowledge, skills and experience, the results of a police check and creditworthiness will be taken into consideration.


If an application is made for a restaurant licence where the proposed premises are incomplete the licensing authority may grant a certificate subject to any conditions considered appropriate.

The licensing authority will grant the restaurant licence once the applicant can satisfy the authority that the conditions have been met and the premises have been completed in accordance with the plans lodged.

How to apply

Applicants may wish to contact a solicitor,  relevant industry association or any other person approved by the Commissioner before making an application.

  • When lodging an application all the people involved in the business, for example, all partners must be included on the application.
  • If the business is a company the application should be made in the company name. Where an individual runs the business, the individual is the applicant.

All documentation such as leases and finance agreements must be in the name of the applicant.

All the relevant forms and other documentation will need to be lodged meeting the minimum requirements when making an application.

Lodgement guide – information on making an application for a liquor licence

What to include

An application must include the following:

  1. Restaurant licence online application form
  2. Restaurant licence application 
  3. Additional information Form
  4. application fee – including government gazette fee for advertising
  5. notice of advertisement:  the Form 2 Notice will be sent once the application has been lodged
  6. two plans of the proposed licensed premises
  7. if the applicant is a company – ASIC Search Extract and/or Share Certificates detailing current directors and shareholders of the company
  8. Personal Information Declarations (PID)
    • for responsible persons
    • in the case of a sole-trader or partnership: For the sole applicant or each partner
    • in the case of a body corporate: For each director and shareholder
    • for each director and shareholder of any shareholding company
    • for each beneficiary under a trust (other than a minor)
    • for any person in a position of authority
  9. two passport sized photographs for each person seeking approval.

Police and creditworthiness checks may take up to six weeks to complete. If those requiring approval reside interstate or overseas, this may take longer. It is strongly advised that Personal Information Declarations be lodged as soon as possible.

A hearing date will not be set until all of these documents have been received.

Further requirements

Lodge at least seven days before hearing date

The following documents must be lodged at least seven days before the date of the hearing or your application may be delayed.

  • Proof that the application has been advertised:
    • a copy of the page where the advertisement appears in The Advertiser.
    • a copy of the page where the advertisement appears in the local newspaper (eg Messenger)
    • a copy of the notice that has been given to the local council
    • a copy of the notice that has been given to the occupiers of adjacent premises or land.
  • Evidence of development approval.
  • Any other necessary Council consents.
  • Details of finance:
    • copy of a bank or loan statement (if the applicant has borrowed money to finance the application).
  • Certificate of registration of business name in the name of the applicant
  • Copy of certificate of title.

Other documentation required only if applicable

  • If the applicant does not own the freehold:
    • executed copy of lease agreement or other evidence of tenure or
    • a letter of consent from the landlord.
  • If the applicant is a partnership, and a partnership agreement has been executed:
    • partnership agreement.
  • Front page and Schedule of Beneficiaries relating to any trusts
    • in the case of a unit trust, the number of units held by each unit holder and whether they are held for someone else.
  • Any other relevant approvals, consents or exemptions:
    • For example – Department of Transport, Urban Lands Trust, Marine and Harbours etc.
  • Any agreed conditions by interested parties.