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Effective date: 31 August 2010Last amended: 12 July 2018Next review: July 2020
This policy is designed to provide information in regard to the subject matter covered, and with the understanding that the Director of Liquor Licensing is not passing legal opinion or interpretation or other professional advice. The information is provided on the understanding that all persons undertake responsibility for assessing the relevance and accuracy of its contents.
For the purposes of the Liquor Control Act 1988 (“the Act”) a juvenile is a person under the age of 18 years. This document provides guidance on the legislative provisions regarding the situations where it is acceptable for a juvenile to be present on licensed premises (for reasons other than approved work experience/training).
Part 4, Division 9 of the Act describes the situations in which juveniles can be present on licensed premises. Despite the above, the Act prohibits the sale or supply of liquor to a juvenile, for consumption either on or off licensed premises.
Juveniles are permitted to be on licensed premises when accompanied by, and under the supervision of a responsible adult. A person is considered to be a ”responsible adult‟ for the purposes of the Act, if that person is in ”loco parentis‟ (meaning in place of parent) of the juvenile. A legal guardian, parent, step-parent or any other person who has control of and responsibility for a juvenile could be considered a responsible adult (although the decision to allow entry is entirely at the discretion of the licensee).
Section 120 and 121(5) also prescribe situations where juveniles may be permitted on licensed premises without supervision. These situations are as follows:
The Act permits an unaccompanied juvenile to be present on a club licensed premises, provided that the presence of an unaccompanied juvenile:
A juvenile is permitted on licensed premises if s/he is a family member of:
A juvenile is permitted on a premises to which a restaurant licence applies, or a part of any premises set apart primarily for the supply of meals (being a place where the sale of liquor is only ancillary to a meal supplied there) for the purposes of obtaining a meal.
A juvenile is permitted on premises to which a special facility licence applies which authorises the sale of liquor to passengers of private or public transport or persons accompanying or awaiting travelers.
The Director may approve unaccompanied juveniles being present on licensed premises. An application under this section must be accompanied by a submission detailing why unaccompanied juveniles should be permitted on the licensed premises (i.e. entertainment is provided in a cinema or theatre that might attract juveniles) and what strategies will be implemented to ensure liquor is not sold to, or consumed by, a juvenile. Approvals under this section may be subject to such conditions as the Director thinks appropriate.
A juvenile is permitted on a licensed premises for the purposes of carrying on a lawful business, even if that place has for the time being been declared to be out of bounds to juveniles. For example, an apprentice plumber under the age of 18 would be permitted to undertake plumbing work at a nightclub, even if the licensee has declared the nightclub out of bounds for juveniles.
The Act does not prohibit a juvenile from being on a licensed premises if the juvenile is there solely for the purposes of passing to or from some part of the premises (where liquor is not sold or supplied or the juvenile is not prohibited from being present). This only applies if there is no other convenient means of passage.
The Act permits an unaccompanied juvenile to be on licensed premises where the juvenile is engaged in an approved training course (see the policy titled Juveniles – Working / Training on Licensed Premises for further information).
Juveniles are permitted to be unaccompanied on a part of the premises where entertainment is provided solely for juveniles, with the approval of the Director under section 126A of the Act. Further information on juvenile functions can be found at page 3 of this policy.
Apart from where section 120 or 121(5) applies, where a juvenile is not accompanied and supervised by a responsible adult, the juvenile is not permitted to enter or remain on licensed premises.
A licensee, with the approval of the Director may post a notice (in the form approved by the Director) at each entrance to the out of bounds area, to declare the whole or part of the licensed premises to be out of bounds to juveniles at all or specified times.
These provisions do not limit any other right for a licensee to refuse a person entry to the premises or to remove a person from the premises. That is, the licensee has discretion to refuse entry to a juvenile.
Section 126A of the Act provides that a licensee may apply to the Director for approval of the provision of entertainment solely for juveniles on all or part of the licensed premises.
Under-age concerts and juvenile functions have been successfully held on licensed premises in the past and the continuation of such events is generally considered to be in the public interest.
Therefore, the Director will continue to give consideration to applications for approval of juvenile functions on licensed premises, provided the functions conducted are consistent with the provisions of section 126B of the Act. That is
In considering applications for approval of a juvenile function, the Director will have regard to the reputation, management practices and history of the licensed premises at which the function is to occur.
These functions should be aimed at only catering for juveniles between the ages of 13 and 17 years of age. Persons aged younger than 13 should be discouraged from attending while persons aged 18 years and above may only attend as a responsible adult for the sole purpose of supervision.
In addition to the above, due to an increase in anti-social behaviour occurring in the vicinity of the central Perth CBD, including Northbridge, the Director of Liquor Licensing has determined that it is not in the public interest to approve functions in licensed premises that attract juveniles to those areas.
In accordance with section 126A, applications for juvenile functions must be lodged on the approved form and accompanied by the prescribed application fee, with the Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries and in accordance with the following:
Application kits can be obtained from the department’s website or by contacting the department on +61 8 6551 4888.
Please note: licensees should not advertise or promote the function in any way until such time that the application has been approved.
Section 126B(3) provides that the Director may grant approval for a juvenile function subject to such terms and conditions as the Director thinks fit. Therefore, juvenile functions are generally subject to conditions including, but not limited to, the following standard conditions:
Licensees should note that under section 126B, the Director is empowered to withdraw the approval if the Director is no longer satisfied the function is appropriate or in the public interest.
There are some instances where juveniles can be present on licensed premises, for reasons other than work/training. Apart from these instances, juveniles must be accompanied by a responsible adult at all times that they are on a licensed premises. A juvenile is not permitted on licensed premises if the licensee has received approval to declare an area as out of bounds to juveniles.
The Act also prohibits the sale or supply of liquor to a juvenile under any circumstance.
Do not submit enquiries with this form.