Adult entertainment permits

You must apply for an adult entertainment permit to conduct sexually explicit entertainment on licensed premises.

As a permit holder, you are responsible for the way the adult entertainment is conducted and can be prosecuted if you breach your permit conditions.

A permit can be issued for a one-off occasion (but no more than 6 occasions in any year) or for up to 3 years. It is not renewable or transferrable.

Definition of 'adult entertainment'

Adult entertainment is defined in the Liquor (Approval of Adult Entertainment Code) Regulation 2002 as entertainment where the anus, vulva, vagina, penis or scrotum of any performer or staff member is visible, either deliberately or by accident.

Depending on the nature of the performance, a permit may still be required, even when performers are wearing some clothing. For example, if clothing is transparent or if the performer wears a g-string that does not hide their genitals, then a permit is needed. If you intend to provide such adult entertainment, we encourage you to seek legal advice.

Applying for an adult entertainment permit

You will need consent from your venue’s local council to apply for a new adult entertainment permit. Note: Evidence of town planning approval for the premises is not considered consent from council.

You will need local council approval for:

  • one-off permits
  • 3-year permits
  • applications for new premises
  • subsequent applications where a permit has not been held at the proposed premises for more than 30 days.

You don’t need local council approval if you already hold a current permit, and are applying for a subsequent permit.

Activities that require an adult entertainment permit

The following sexually explicit activities, according to the Adult Entertainment Code, require your venue to hold an adult entertainment permit:

  • strip teases
  • exotic nude dancing
  • nude wait staffing
  • when the following areas of a performer’s body are visible, either deliberately or by accident:
    • anus
    • vulva
    • vagina
    • penis
    • scrotum.

Activities that do not require an adult entertainment permit

A permit is not generally required for:

  • topless barmaids
  • G-string promotions or ticket sellers (clothing must not be transparent and provide total covering)

Note: Depending on the nature of the performance, a permit may still be required even by performers wearing some clothing. Intending applicants are encouraged to seek their own advice in this regard. Acts of this nature may be deemed to be prostitution or indecent and prosecuted accordingly.

Activities that breach an adult entertainment permit

You can be prosecuted, or have your permit cancelled, if you or your staff carry out the following activities:

  • masturbation
  • oral sex
  • sexual intercourse
  • touching genitalia
  • penetration
  • placing genitalia or anus close to a person's face
  • soliciting for prostitution.

Investigations show a trend of adult entertainers' genitalia touching patrons during 'lap dances'. This is not allowed according to Clause 14 of the Code which prohibits a performer from allowing another person to touch a performer's genitalia or anus.

Read the Liquor (Approval of Adult Entertainment Code) Regulation 2002 for full details of the Adult Entertainment Code.

Penalties for unauthorised adult entertainment

You can be fined up to 200 penalty units, or $26,110, from July 1, for conducting adult entertainment without a permit.

If you breach your permit conditions, or the Liquor Act 1992, your permit may be suspended or cancelled.

Supervision of adult entertainment

Adult entertainment permits require an approved controller to be present wherever and whenever adult entertainment is being performed. This ensures the entertainment is properly supervised and complies with the Code.

If a permit holder or approved controller fails to supervise adult entertainment in accordance with the provisions of the Liquor Act and the conditions of the permit, they breach Section 149B of the Act and can be penalised up to 100 penalty units, or fined $13,055, from 1 July 2018.

For further information on adult entertainment permits, please contact the OLGR on 13 QGOV (13 74 68) or email OLGRlicensing@justice.qld.gov.au.

Trading hours for adult entertainment

Traditionally adult entertainment trading hours been linked directly to the liquor trading hours of the licensee or permit holder. However, since 1 July 2016, the Commissioner for Liquor and Gaming is accepting applications which allow adult entertainment for up to 2 hours after liquor sales finish.

If your adult entertainment permit was issued before 1 July 2016, your existing trading hours are being 'grandfathered' even if those hours of operation exceed 2 hours after the sale of alcohol ceases. This grandfathering provision will be maintained while a permit is held continuously.

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