This authorises a transition period when a business is sold to allow the new owner of a licensed premise to trade on an existing licence until they obtain a new licence in their own name.

Apply for Temporary Authority

Download and complete a temporary authority application form [PDF, 892KB](external link) before you apply. 

Please ensure you have read and understood the privacy statement, signed and dated your application.

Selling a business

Existing owners

We encourage you to talk with us early about transition arrangements. For example, annual fees will still be due on the existing licence until a new licence is issued.

New owners

Your temporary authority application should be lodged at least 15 working days before the takeover date. You cannot sell alcohol until the temporary authority has been issued.

Lodge your application as early as possible before the takeover date. If all relevant information is received and the Inspector and Police have no objection, a temporary authority normally can be issued within that 10-day period.

Please read the checklist on the form to make sure you include all the extra documents we need with your application. Incomplete applications will be returned.

For assignment of any existing Council footpath leases for the business included under the existing licence, please contact the Council's property leasing team directly to arrange.

A temporary authority is normally issued for three months. A temporary authority cannot be issued to a club.

Documents required with your application are:

  1. Proof of your tenure/right to occupy, including proof of assignment of any Council leased footpath areas covered under the existing licence.
  2. Proof of ownership of the business. Either: 
    • a sale and purchase agreement for the property, or
    • a signed copy of the lease, or 
    • evidence of the right to occupy, such as a written deed of assignment or letter of intent from the building owner

Payment of fees

View alcohol licensing fees.

The fees for processing your application are non-refundable and must be paid when you apply for your licence. 

For a temporary authority to be issued the existing licence needs to be kept current. Any annual licence fees that are due must be paid for you be able to trade. The licence must not be surrendered by the existing licensee.

Most alcohol licensing fees are set by regulations.  However, any fees set by Council may be subject to annual review and any changes take effect on 1 July each year.

You will need to have an invoice from us before you can make your payment. This will be provided to you when you file your application documents.

Payments can be made by cash, EFTPOS, or credit card at a service desk or by internet banking.  Internet banking payment account and reference details can be found on your invoice. 

We no longer accept payments by cheque.

For internet banking, you will need to provide proof of payment that includes confirmation of the payment details (e.g. a screenshot of the completed transaction).

We can only process your applications once we have both the proof of payment of fees and the required application form and documents.

Management of licensed premises under a temporary authority

When alcohol is available for sale to the public, a manager who holds a current Manager’s Certificate must be on duty at all times.  When operating under your temporary authority you will need to either:

  • hold a General Manager’s Certificate yourself, or
  • employ someone who holds a certificate.

If you are new to the alcohol industry it can take up to six months for you to undergo the required training, and gain enough experience to obtain a General Manager’s Certificate. You should bear this in mind when considering the staffing of your new business. 

A temporary authority cannot be issued if you do not have an experienced duty manager for your premises.

How long does a temporary authority last?

A temporary authority can only be issued for up to three months and during this time you need to obtain your own licence.  You need to apply for your new licence as soon as possible:

  • As soon as you receive your temporary authority you should start gathering the supporting information you need for your licence application. 
  • Start this process as early as possible, and have your application lodged within six weeks of the granting of your temporary authority.  This means the licence(s) can be processed and granted before your temporary authority expires.
  • New licence applications take a minimum of five to six weeks to process.  This is dependent on the quality of the application and reporting timelines, so may take longer. 
  • At the same time you apply for a licence you must also apply for a Certificate of Compliance Alcohol.
  • If there is a good reason that you are unable to lodge a new licence application before your temporary authority expires you need to let us know as soon as possible so we can work with you. Temporary authorities are not renewable so you need to apply for a new one if your current one is due to expire before your new licence has been issued. 
  • Non-working day (processing) period: There are also special rules about accepting and processing applications between 20 December and 15 January and these may impact on how quickly your application can be processed. See the licensing information under Deadlines and Timelines

Further information

These links give more information about responsibilities for operating under the type of licence you will be operating, if granted, your temporary authority under:

Food premises registration

A change in ownership of the business will also mean you need to apply for a new notice of registration for the preparation and sale of food. 

Applications for this registration can be found under Food Licensing.

Questions about your food premises registration application should be emailed directly to the Food Safety Team at or by calling 03 941 8727 and ask for the Food Safety Team.