Lawyers, Legal Liabilities, And Liquor Licenses

Posted on: 15 March 2018

Opening a bar or a restaurant that serves liquor is not quite as easy as it sounds. There are dozens of situations that would either prevent you from getting a liquor license or stall you in getting one. Meanwhile, your bar or your restaurant suffers and loses money because you cannot serve alcoholic beverages. What most first-time establishment owners do not realize is that they can get a lawyer's help with most of these issues. Here are some of those situations and why you would need a lawyer's help for these cases. 

Your Spouse Has a Record

Serving jail time for just about anything is a red flag to the local licensing commission. Your record could be clean as a whistle, but if your spouse is going to serve liquor in your business and has a checkered past, you could be denied the license you desperately seek. A lawyer can help by arguing that your spouse will never go anywhere near the liquor or the bar with the exception of imbibing the beverages. There are ways to assure that, and your lawyer knows what they are.

Appealing Your Denial

If you have already received a denial letter for your liquor license application, you can appeal. The city council to which you applied for your license is not required to give a reason why you were denied, which may also be something your lawyer can uncover in the appeal process. If the reason is something reasonable that is easily remedied, you can comply with some changes. Then your lawyer can show evidence of these changes while reapplying for your license.

You Want to Serve Alcohol All Night Long and All Day Too

There are bars and restaurants that are able to serve alcoholic drinks 24/7. Most cities and states forbid this allowance. However, there are some that do allow it, such as Las Vegas, Nevada. It requires a very special type of liquor license, one which may be difficult to acquire unless you and all of your employees are squeaky clean, legally speaking. Since you do not have access to any closed court records, but the city does, you could be denied based on information one of your employees is not supplying to you. 

Only those who have access, like your lawyer, can uncover the details. Then you have to decide how to handle the situation. Apply for a liquor license that only allows you to serve for limited hours, or release the employee whose adolescent record is impacting your ability to get the 24/7 license you want for your restaurant/bar.

Click here to read more about how a lawyer could help you obtain a liquor license for your restaurant.