Disorderly Conduct

A licensee shall not permit disorderly conduct to take place on a licensed premises.  Disorderly conduct means unreasonable behaviour by a person on licensed premises which having regard to the circumstances is likely to cause injury, fear or distress to any person on the premises.

It includes but is not limited to violent, threatening, abusive, quarrelsome or insulting behaviour, conduct causing damage to property, offences regarding firearms and other offensive weapons, breach of duty in respect of fire safety of persons, conduct likely to constitute a risk to health, safety and welfare of a person.

A person who engages in disorderly conduct shall leave the licensed premises on being requested to do so by the licensee or member from Garda Siochana shall not re-enter the bar within 24 hours.

A person who contravenes the provision is guilty of an offence commits and an offence subject to a €300 fine and €500  for second and subsequent offences.  A member of an Garda Siochana may arrest without warrant, a person committing an offence or whom he has reasonable cause to suspect of so doing.

It is not unlawful for a licensee to refuse admission to a licensed premises or persons convicted under the section where having regard to the obligation of the licensee under the act, admission could reasonably be regarded as involving a substantial risk that a person would engage in disorderly conduct.

Closure Order

There is provision for a temporary closure order for breach of the above conditions.  The same provisions as apply as those mentioned above.

Licence holders convicted of the principal offences shall be subject to a closure order.  This is 2 to 7 days for the first offence and 7 to 30 days for the second offence.  The above procedures regarding closing order in the case of under-aged thinking are broadly applicable.

There is provision for closure of licensed or catering premises whether or not licensed by order of the District Court where there has been disorder in the management of the  premises or in its vicinity or involving persons who are on the premises or noise emanating from the premises or from the vicinity and caused by persons who are on the premises who have been so loud continuously or repeatedly or of such duration or pitch or at such times to give reasonable cause for annoyance to persons in the vicinity where such disorder or noise is likely to recur.

An application for a closing order may be made by the Gardai  having served certain notices as to their  opinion and requesting desistence within a period of seven days. The closure order may order the closure of catering premises at specified times or days for a period up to 7 days and up to 30 days for a subsequent offence.

The court shall have regard to all the circumstances of the case and may order the licensee to comply with specified requirements including installation of closed-circuit TV. The closure order may apply to the whole or a part of premises.

A notice must be affixed by the licensee to the exterior of the premises. Breach of the various  obligations are an offence.

Breach of the closure order is subject on summary conviction to a fine up to €3000 and imprisonment or imprisonment up to 6 months or both. It is an offence to be on catering premises without reasonable excuse where there is a closure order in force.

Exclusion Orders

The District Court may on conviction of persons for certain public order offences prohibit those person from being entering or being in the vicinity of specified catering premises. A catering premises in this context means a licensed premises a food premises, licensed dance hall, licensed gaming and lotteries premises or a  registered club.Such exclusion orders may be for periods of up to 12 months.

It may be postponed until after a person has served a sentence of imprisonment. Breach of the order without reasonable excuse is an offence subject on summary conviction to a fine up to €650 or two months imprisonment.

Exclusion orders may be made in respect of convictions for

  • drunkenness in a public place to the extent to give rise to a reasonable apprehension that the person may endanger himself
  • offensive  conduct between 12 midnight and 7 AM or at any other time if requested to do this by a member of an Garda Siochana to desist; in this context offensive conduct means any unreasonable behaviour having regard to all the circumstances which is likely to cause serious offence or serious annoyance to any person who might reasonably be expected to be aware of such behaviour.

Person so convicted are subject on summary conviction to a class D  fine.


Legislation makes it an offence knowingly to permit premises to be that the habitual resort of reputed prostitutes whether or not their objective is prostitution. If they remain longer than reasonably necessary for the purpose of obtaining reasonable refreshment, an offence is committed. This is subject on conviction to a class D fine.

It is not offence subject to immediate forfeiture of the of the licence on conviction, to allow a premises to be used as a brothel..

It is an offence for a person occupying a licensed premises or place of public entertainment knowingly to harbour or lodge theiives or reputed thieves, or to allow them to assemble or to deposit goods having reasonable cause to believe them to be stolen. The licence may be forfeited on first conviction at the discretion of the court. It must be forfeited on a second conviction and the licensee is to be disqualified from holding such a licence for two years.

Public Order Offences

The public order legislation is subject to provisions for fixed charge/on the spot fines for contravention. A fixed charge penalty notice may be served on a person where a member of an Garda Siochana has reasonable grounds for believing he is committing has committed the above drunk and disorderly type offences.

A member of an Garda Siochana may request a person’s name and address. If he or she is not satisfied as to their identity he may require the person to accompanying him to the Garda Station.  Failure to comply is a offence.

A member of the Garda Siochana who has reasonable cause to believe that a person has committed these offences may arrest that person without a warrant. The court on conviction of a person for the above public order disorderly/drug offences may make an exclusion order.

It is an offence to distribute or display any writing or visible representation which is abusive, insulting obscene or threatening with intent or being reckless as causing a breach of the peace. Breach is an offence subject on summary conviction to a €1000 fine and or three months in prison.

Garda Powers

Breach of most of the key public order offences permit a member of an Garda Siochana to arrest a person without warrant who is committing such offence. Generally an exclusion order may be made by the District Court on conviction. A restriction of movement order may also be applied.

In the case of many of the offences, a member of an Garda Siochana may direct the person to desist from committing the offence and leave the vicinity in a peaceable and orderly manner. Failure to comply with the direction is an offence subject on summary conviction to a fine up to €1000 and or six months imprisonment.

Where a member of an Garda Siochana has reasonable grounds to believe that a person is in possession of a bottle or container with the intoxicating liquor containing intoxicating liquor in a public place giving rise to a reasonable apprehension for the safety of persons or property or the maintenance of peace or gives rise to reasonable apprehension that he is likely to cause annoyance or nuisance to another or interfere with that person’s peaceful possession or enjoyment of property, then certain powers arise.

The member may seek an explanation of the relevant matters. He may request the person to give him the bottle or container advising the person that failure to do so is an offence. If he fails to do so the container may be season detained without warrant.

The person may be directed to desist from acting in the manner concerned. The may be directed to leave the place in a peaceable and orderly manner. Breach is an offence. There are powers of arrest where a person does not give satisfactory evidence of their identity. It is an offence without lawful authority or reasonable excuse to fail to comply with a direction so made. The member of an Garda Siochana may dispose of the bottle or container as they believe of appropriate and keep a record thereof.

Members an Garda Siochana may enter places other than a private dwelling house without a warrant where they have reasonable grounds for believing such offences have been committed. Persons may be subject exclusion order on conviction.


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