Object to an alcohol licence
Whakahē i te tuku raihana waipiro
When a business applies for an on-licence, off-licence, or club licence, new or renewed, they are required to publicly notify it.
Public notices for alcohol licence applications
You can see public notices for alcohol licence applications at www.alcoholnotices.co.nz.
You can also get email notifications of public notices for alcohol licence applications. Public notices are also posted in local newspapers or the Sunday Star-Times if no local paper is available.
Objection period for alcohol licence applications
Once the public notice has been posted online, there is a 15-working-day period to object to the council.
Any person who has a 'greater interest' than the general public in an application for an alcohol licence, may object to the grant or renewal of that licence.
What is 'greater interest'?
A person with a 'greater interest' may be a resident or business located in the same street as the proposed or existing business applying for an alcohol licence.
On the other hand, someone who is concerned about the effects of alcohol on the community in general, but who lives in a different area, may not meet the criteria for 'greater interest'.
Criteria for objecting to alcohol licence applications
The Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012 (section 105) outlines the only grounds for objecting to the application for a new, or renewed, alcohol licence.
The object of the act is that:
- alcohol sales, supply and consumption should be undertaken safely and responsibly
- harm caused by the excessive or inappropriate consumption of alcohol should be minimised.
What you can object about
For all alcohol licence applications
- Suitability of the applicant.
- Any relevant local alcohol policy.
- Days and hours when alcohol will be sold.
- The design and layout of the premises.
- Other goods and services offered at the premises apart from food and alcohol.
- Whether the applicant has the appropriate systems, staff and training to comply with the law.
For new alcohol licence applications only
- Whether the amenity and good order of the locality would likely be reduced, to more than a minor extent, by the effects of the issue of the licence.
- Whether the amenity and good order of the locality are already so badly affected by existing licences that it is not desirable to issue any further licences.
- Amenity and good order includes consideration of noise, nuisance, vandalism, nearby sensitive sites such as schools, and the density of licensed premises in the area.
For renewal alcohol licence applications only
- Whether the amenity and good order of the locality would likely be increased, by more than a minor extent, by the effects of a refusal to renew the licence. Amenity and good order includes consideration of noise, nuisance, vandalism.
You should know
Trade-related objections from other licensed businesses are not valid grounds for objection under the act.
If you are objecting to a new alcohol licence application for premises that are already licensed, and the new applicant is seeking the same terms and conditions as the existing licence, the only ground you can object under is the suitability of the applicant.
How to make an objection
If you'd like to object to an alcohol licence application, you'll need to:
- notify us in writing that you wish to object and the reasons why (you must refer to the relevant criteria listed above)
- make sure to include your full name, address, email address and contact telephone number.
You need to file your objection with us within 15 working days of the first online public notice announcing an application has been made.
Send your objection to:
Private Bag 92300
Victoria Street West
If we receive a posted objection later than the allowable 15 working-day time frame, we may not be able to consider it.
If you are concerned, contact us to organise a hand-delivery or email your objection.
What happens next
When we receive your objection, we will:
- send you an acknowledgement letter
- send a copy of the objection to the applicant.
- submit your objection to the Auckland District Licensing Committee (DLC) for their consideration.
If the DLC believes the objection meets the criteria for objection, they will schedule a hearing and notify everyone involved.
You don't have to attend the hearing, but if you don't appear to answer questions on your objection, it may hinder the consideration the DLC gives to your objection.
If you need assistance in preparing a written objection, or preparing for a hearing, refer to the Health Promotion Agency's advice.