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Under-18 patrons on licensed premises

The legal drinking age in Victoria is 18 years. It's illegal to supply alcohol to underage people on licensed premises and a minor to be on licensed premises to purchase or consume alcohol.

Anyone under the age of 18 years is considered a minor.

The legal drinking age in Victoria is 18 years. It's illegal for any person to supply alcohol to a minor on licensed premises. It's also illegal for a minor to be on licensed premises to purchase, receive or consume alcohol.

Minors and licensed premises

Minors are not allowed to drink alcohol on licensed premises under any circumstances.

Depending on the situation, a minor may be allowed on licensed premises.

A minor may be on licensed premises if they are in the company of a responsible adult.

responsible adult is defined as a person who is 18 years or older and is:

  • the minor's parent, step-parent, guardian, grandparent, or
  • the minor's spouse who is over the age of 18 years, or
  • a person who is acting in place of a parent and who could reasonably be expected to exercise responsible supervision of the minor – for example, a sporting coach.

An unaccompanied minor cannot be on licensed premises unless:

  • there is a condition allowing them to be on the licence (for example, a junior sports club)
  • they are at a venue with a restaurant and cafe licence (until 11pm) or
  • an on-premises licence with restaurant conditions (until 11pm).

Other circumstances that allow minors on licensed premises are if the minor is:

  • having a meal, or
  • is a resident of the premises if accommodation is supplied, or
  • employed by the licensee but not involved in the supply of alcohol, or
  • completing a Liquor Control Victoria (LCV) approved training program in hospitality.

Refusing service

A licensee must not sell alcohol to a customer if they suspect the customer will give the alcohol to a minor. This is called secondary supply.

Minors checklist

Use this checklist as a training tool and go through it with staff to ensure you are on top of your obligations when it comes to minors.

A minors checklist for managers and staff
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Minors selling and supplying alcohol

Minors cannot be involved in the supply of alcohol, except if they are part of an LCV approved training program. To seek approval to allow a minor to supply alcohol as part of a hospitality training program, email Your email must include details of the training course, including the location you are seeking approval for.

A minor can be employed on licensed premises to undertake duties that are not associated with the supply of liquor. These duties may include:

  • preparing food
  • taking orders for anything other than alcohol (a minor cannot take combined orders of food and alcohol)
  • taking payment for anything other than alcohol
  • clearing vessels (for example glassware, or bottles, cans etc) used for alcohol that are empty. Whether glassware that has been used for alcohol is empty is a matter of common sense. If you are unsure, staff other than minors should perform this duty.

The above list of duties is intended to be instructive only and will not cover all duties that a minor may perform on a licensed premises.

A staff member of a bottle shop who is a minor can carry purchased alcohol to a customers car.

Duties that a minor cannot perform include:

  • selling alcohol through a check-out
  • serving alcohol from a bar or to/at a customer’s table
  • taking orders for alcohol from a bar or at a customer’s table, including when clearing empty drinks from a table
  • clearing drinks that have alcohol in them
  • stocking display fridges or shelves with alcohol.

A minor can perform logistical duties relating to moving sealed alcohol that is not shown to customers. This means they can stock shelves in storage rooms with sealed alcohol. If minors are performing this or similar duties, you should ensure they are appropriately supervised by adult staff.