Liquor Licence Law

Liquor Licence Lawyers in Perth

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Cullen Macleod’s hospitality and tourism team have been providing advice on all aspects of liquor licensing law and successfully applying for liquor licences for over 40 years.

We can assist you if you are:

  • setting up a new business and need to apply for a new liquor licence;
  • planning on selling or buying a liquor licenced business;
  • want to update or change your current liquor licence; or
  • simply need general information on liquor licensing laws in Perth and Western Australia,


Cullen Macleod’s liquor licensing lawyers can help you with the following:

Liquor Licensing Services

Cullen Macleod’s team of liquor licence lawyers can help:

  • Determining the type of liquor licence most appropriate for your proposed business or event.
  • Making an application for a liquor licence, including applications for:
    • a new liquor licence;
    • an occasional liquor licence;
    • transfer of a liquor licence;
    • variation of a liquor licence;
    • removal of a liquor liquor licence;
    • altering or redefining a liquor licence;
    • an interim authorisation to trade a licence; and
    • a protection order.
  • Preparing Public Interest Submissions for a liquor licence application.
  • Compliance requirements for licencees and approved managers of licenced premises.
  • Objecting to a liquor licence application.
  • Making an application for review of a decision by the liquor licensing authority to the Liquor Commission of WA and Supreme Court of Western Australia.
  • Selling or purchasing a liquor licenced business or premises, including due diligence and contract preparation and negotiation.
  • Responding to disciplinary proceedings, criminal proceedings or notice of infringements under the WA liquor licensing legislation.
  • Making a complaint in relation to a licenced premises.
  • Leasing or selling a licenced premises.
  • Establishing a business vehicle to own or operate a licenced premises.

As we understand everyone’s needs are different we take pride in understanding each client’s individual needs and tailoring a solution specific to those needs.

Our Clients and Experience

Cullen Macleod’s liquor licensing lawyers have assisted a wide range and of variety clients on all aspects of liquor licensing and hospitality matters in Western Australia.

Our clients range from some of Australia’s largest hospitality operators and retailers (such as Woolworths Group Limited and Lion Nathan), to wine makers and small bar operators, to landlords and developers of liquor licenced premises.

Some examples of the liquor licence applications and transactions we have been involved with are:
  • Taverns and Hotels
    • Optus Stadium, Perth
    • Wildhop Brewing Company, Yallingup
    • Oceanic Bar & Grill, Mandurah Ocean Marina
    • Brotxeit German Bier Bar & Restaurant, Perth CBD and Baldivis
    • Brass Monkey, Northbridge
  • Small Bars
    • Brotzeit German Bier Bar and Restaurant, Joondalup
    • Old Faithful Small Bar, Perth CBD
  • Restaurants
    • Bayside Kitchen, Matilda Bay
    • Theo & Co, East Vic Park
    • Solo Pasta, Mt Lawley
  • Nightclubs
    • Hip-E Club, Leederville
    • The Republic Nightclub, Perth CBD
  • Special Facility Licences
    • MV Jabiru (Kununurra Cruises), Kununurra
    • Driftwood Estate, Margaret River
    • Carnegies, Perth CBD
  • Producers and Wholesalers
    • Cullen Wines, Margaret River
    • Howard Park Wines, North Fremantle
    • Lion Nathan
    • Bacardi Australia
  • Liquor Stores
    • BWS – Beer Wine Spirits (various locations)
    • Dan Murphy’s (various locations)
    • De Vine Liquor Store, Noranda
    • Cellarbrations, Harvey
    • Sandringham Cellars, Belmont
  • Occasional and One-off Events
    • Women Lawyers of WA, Fashion Event
    • Fairbridge Music Festival
    • Reverb 2018
  • Other
    • Development of the Myer Forest Chase food and beverage precinct, Perth CBD
    • Development of the Lakelands Tavern, Lakelands
    • Acquisition of WA licenced venues by Dixon Hospitality Limited

Significant Cases, Matters and Outcomes

Cullen Macleod’s liquor licensing lawyers have acted on some of the most significant liquor licensing applications in the state and have also been involved in cases that have had a major impact on liquor licensing laws in Western Australia.

Some examples include:

  • Assisting Woolworths Group Limited secure the liquor approval to open the first Dan Murphy’s liquor store in Western Australia, a liquor store brand that has revolutionized the way packaged liquor is sold throughout Australia. Cullen Macleod also successfully secured most of the Dan Murphy’s liquor store licences in WA.
  • Advising on, and making an application for, the liquor licence for the Optus Stadium – one of the State’s most important infrastructure developments. The licence was successfully secured in time for the Stadium’s first official event in 2018.
  • Advising and acting for Woolworths Group Limited in the Dan Murphy’s Bicton application. This application involved a 6 year battle to secure the licence, culminating in a WA Supreme Court of Appeal decision that set down much needed guidance on the application of the public interest test. Many of our arguments on how the public interest test for liquor licence applications should be interpreted and applied were adopted by the Court of Appeal.

Why use Cullen Macleod's Liquor Licensing Team?

Liquor licensing law in Western Australia is highly regulated and complex. Cullen Macleod’s liquor licence lawyers have significant experience and expertise in the area, and can provide advice and assistance that is pragmatic and tailored to your needs.

Five key reasons why you should use Cullen Macleod to assist you with your liquor licensing matters are:

  • Our success rate for liquor licence applications is over 95%.
  • We take pride in understanding your needs and tailoring a solution specific to those needs, that is realistic, adds value to your business and is cost effective.
  • We are one of the few firms in Western Australia with liquor licensing lawyers that work in the area, and deal with the licensing authority, on a daily basis.
  • As well as having knowledge and expertise in liquor licensing law, our liquor licensing lawyers also have specific industry experience.
  • We will do our best to deliver your desired outcomes in a timeframe that works for you.
Susan Nicholson

Susan Nicholson

Head of Practice – Liquor Licensing 

Susan is one of WA’s leading liquor licensing lawyers, with almost 20 years’ experience in liquor licensing, hospitality and property transactions.

She has advised and acted on many of WA’s leading hospitality venues, and represented her clients in many of the major liquor licensing applications and cases in WA.

She takes pride in providing advice and assistance that delivers solutions and outcomes that are commercial, pragmatic and cost effective.

Need more information?

If you would like any more information on liquor licensing law in WA please contact Susan Nicholson.

Susan’s direct line is 08 9389 3914 and her email address is