What is the Responsible Service of Alcohol | RSA Online NSW

Responsible service of alcohol (RSA) – RSA Online NSW – is an important concern in New South Wales. The state has its own rules and regulations on how to serve alcohol. In NSW, the Liquor & Gaming NSW oversees the regulations for liquor activities across the state, including the licensing, serving, and selling of alcohol, as well as the initiatives for the reduction of alcohol-related harmful incidents.

What does this mean in layman’s terms? Let’s tackle what RSA entails for the liquor serving business.

Liquor Licences

In NSW, it is a requirement for any establishment intending to serve alcohol that they must first get a licence to sell and/or serve within the premises of their business or establishment. There are various types of licences available, including limited licences for events and sale packaged liquor. It’s important for the business owner or event coordinator to correctly identify which type of licence is suited for their purposes to avoid any inconveniences in the conduct of their business.

Serving Alcohol Responsibly

Serving alcohol is not as simple as serving or making a drink for a customer. Some regulations stipulate RSA training as a requisite for servers of alcohol in NSW. The RSA Online training course is only valid within the state and is non-transferable to other states. The training covers how to handle patrons, and how to eject patrons, preventing intoxication, standard drink and alcohol guidelines, as well as fee schedules and fines. Hospitality staff working in NSW, especially in Kings Cross and Sydney CBD Entertainment precincts, must carry a valid photo competency card or interim certificate to be able to serve liquor.

Competency Cards

In NSW, it is a requirement for servers to have an RSA/RCG competency card to be able to work within the industry. It is illegal to do the following without a competency card: sell, serve, or supply alcohol; work with gaming machines; and operate an ID scanner. Competency cards have a validity of five years, and can be attained through RSA Online NSW courses.

Underage Drinking

There are significant penalties that are applicable if a business or event supplies alcohol within the New South Wales jurisdiction. There is an on-the-spot penalty notice of $1,100; court-imposed fines of up to $11,000 and/or 12 month’s imprisonment; and the suspension or cancellation of the venue’s liquor licence. It is the responsibility of both the licensed venue owner or manager and the minor’s parents to prevent the consumption of alcohol by a minor.

In the event that alcohol is served to a minor, willfully or accidentally, the on-the-spot penalty of $330 or a court-imposed fine of $3,300 can be applicable. The penalty or fine is applied to the venue licensee if the parent or guardian is absent, or is applied to the parent or guardian if the alcohol is supplied within or without the confines of one’s residence while the parent or guardian is present.

For more details on the legal aspects of serving alcohol to minors, please refer to the Liquor and Gaming NSW official website.

Being mindful of the rules and regulations in liquor service within NSW can not only ensure that any fines and inconveniences are avoided, but that everyone from patrons to business owners have a good time.