Australia: Liquor Accords Under The Amended Liquor Act 1992 (Qld)

As previously reported by Deacons, the Liquor and Other Acts Amendment Act 2008 (Amendment Act) was passed by the Queensland Government last month. The Amendment Act significantly amends the Liquor Act 1992 (Qld) (Liquor Act) with an aim to enhance the role of harm minimisation, increase administrative efficiency, clarify existing provisions and address anomalies.1 Harm minimisation is now the first objective of the Liquor Act.2

A new Section 224 has been inserted to introduce Liquor Accords into the Liquor Act as a voluntary harm minimisation initiative. According to the Explanatory Notes, the intention for the inclusion of Liquor Accords is to clarify the purpose and membership of a Liquor Accord for a locality.

What is a Liquor Accord?

Under section 224 of the Liquor Act, a Liquor Accord is defined as an agreement, memorandum of understanding or other arrangement entered into by interested parties within a local community about liquor related issues.3 A Liquor Accord is created for the purposes of promoting responsible practices in relation to the sale and supply of liquor at licensed premises, minimising harm caused by alcohol abuse and misuse and associated violence and minimising alcohol-related disturbances, or public disorder.4

Members who sign up to a Liquor Accord usually include representatives from licensed premises, businesses, councils, police, government departments and other community organisations.5

Liquor Accords in Queensland

It is not compulsory in Queensland for holders of a liquor licence to be a member of a Liquor Accord.

The new provision in the Liquor Act attempts to achieve the purpose of harm minimisation by providing a definition of Liquor Accords and their function, but does not provide any guidance on powers or obligations.

We assume the Government will soon draft supporting regulations and guidelines to assist in the interpretation of the new provisions of the Liquor Act and also provide some detail on how some of the new harm minimisation initiatives will work. We hope these regulations and guidelines will soon spell out the practical operations of a Liquor Accord and the obligations that Liquor Accord members must observe.

Does the new section 224 go far enough?

While the Liquor Act now "recognises" Liquor Accords, the NSW and Victorian liquor legislation6 spells out the powers and obligations of the Liquor Accords in those states.

A prime example of a power that NSW Liquor Accords members have under the Liquor Act 2007 (NSW) (NSW Act) is the power to ban a repeatedly troublesome patron from all member-licensed venues for certain periods of time.7

Under section 78 of the NSW Act, an application can be made to the NSW Casino, Liquor and Gaming Control Authority (NSW Authority) to issue an order banning a person from entering or remaining on licensed premises. This type of order can be made in circumstances where the person has been repeatedly intoxicated, violent, quarrelsome or disorderly on or in the immediate vicinity of licensed premises. The director, the police or a licensee who is a member of a Liquor Accord can seek this order. Under this section, an order to ban a person from entering or remaining on licensed premises can apply to multiple venues that are members of a Liquor Accord.

The person who is the subject of a banning order application has an opportunity to make a submission to the NSW Authority before any decision is made. The NSW Authority's decision cannot be reviewed simply because a person does not agree with it. The Supreme Court of NSW can consider claims of a denial of natural justice or concerns about due process.

Why join a Liquor Accord?

As of 1 January 2008, annual licence fees will be determined on a risk-based approach. The compliance history of licensed premises will be considered and additional fees charged for those licensed premises with a poor compliance history.

While the Liquor Act is silent on the issue, we assume that the Queensland Government may view voluntary membership of a Liquor Accord favourably when considering the compliance history of a venue in calculating liquor licensing fees for the relevant assessment period, thereby potentially reducing the liquor licensing fees payable by the club because it is itself a member of a compliant Liquor Accord. However, please be aware that the government has not provided any solid assurances of this to date.


In our view, while Liquor Accords are a proactive strategy to minimise harm from the sale and supply of alcohol, Queensland licensees will require comprehensive guidelines to be drafted outlining the powers available under a Liquor Accord and the duties of members of a Liquor Accord. We assume that the liquor regulations (being those made under the newly amended Liquor Act) will include provisions which mirror those in NSW and provide guidance in relation to the establishment and ongoing administration of Liquor Accords. Now would be the best time for interested parties to lobby the Queensland Government for this to be achieved. We believe that the NSW Act provides the best model for Liquor Accords in this regard.

What advantages licensees will obtain from joining a Liquor Accord at this stage is uncertain. However, Liquor Accords are seen by the Office of Liquor, Gaming and Racing as a means of reducing liquor-related harm in the community. Considering harm minimisation is the primary objective of the Liquor Act, licensees who voluntarily join a Liquor Accord will no doubt be seen by the OLGR as taking a positive step to comply with the spirit and purpose of the Liquor Act.


1 Liquor and Other Acts Amendment Bill 2008 – Explanatory Notes

2 Liquor and Other Acts Amendment Bill 2008 – Explanatory Notes

3 Section 224 of the Liquor Act

4 Section 224 of the Liquor Act

5 Queensland Treasury website at

6 Liquor Control Reform Act 1998 (Victoria) (Victorian Act) and Liquor Act 2007 (NSW) (NSW Act)

7 Section 78 of the NSW Act

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Some comments from our readers…
“The articles are extremely timely and highly applicable”
“I often find critical information not available elsewhere”
“As in-house counsel, Mondaq’s service is of great value”

Mondaq Advice Centre (MACs)
Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
Email Address
Company Name
Confirm Password
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Media & IT
 Real Estate
 Wealth Mgt
Asia Pacific
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
United States
Worldwide Updates
Check to state you have read and
agree to our Terms and Conditions

Terms & Conditions and Privacy Statement (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd and as a user you are granted a non-exclusive, revocable license to access the Website under its terms and conditions of use. Your use of the Website constitutes your agreement to the following terms and conditions of use. Mondaq Ltd may terminate your use of the Website if you are in breach of these terms and conditions or if Mondaq Ltd decides to terminate your license of use for whatever reason.

Use of

You may use the Website but are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the content and articles available (the Content). You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these terms & conditions or with the prior written consent of Mondaq Ltd. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information about’s content, users or contributors in order to offer them any services or products which compete directly or indirectly with Mondaq Ltd’s services and products.


Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the documents and related graphics published on this server for any purpose. All such documents and related graphics are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers hereby disclaim all warranties and conditions with regard to this information, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information available from this server.

The documents and related graphics published on this server could include technical inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes are periodically added to the information herein. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers may make improvements and/or changes in the product(s) and/or the program(s) described herein at any time.


Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.

Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.

If you do not want us to provide your name and email address you may opt out by clicking here .

If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of products and services offered by Mondaq by clicking here .

Information Collection and Use

We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

Mondaq News Alerts

In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.


A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

Log Files

We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

Surveys & Contests

From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.


If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.


This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to

Notification of Changes

If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

How to contact Mondaq

You can contact us with comments or queries at

If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.