Insurance for loss of licence
In order to sell alcohol, premises need to have an appropriate alcohol license. As a legitimate business you may do your utmost to ensure that you operate within the licensing laws.
Over the years, licensing laws have become more detailed and more complex in order to keep up with the changes in society and its drinking habits.
These days, in order to sell alcohol, premises need to have an appropriate alcohol license. There are two main varieties - an 'on-license' which is required where alcohol is going to be consumed on the premises and an 'off-license' where alcohol can be bought but only consumed off the premises. Many on-licensed premises are also allowed to make off-license sales.
License to sell
Applying for a license is quite an involved process. In England and Wales, the Licensing Act 2003 (which came into force in November 2005) introduced a unified system covering a range of 'regulated activities', which primarily included the retail sale of alcohol. Under the new rules, all premises where regulated activities are carried out must be authorised by a 'premises license'. Where alcohol is sold the premises must have a designated premises supervisor, who himself must hold a personal license.
Rules as to when establishments can open, for how long, and under what criteria are contained in the conditions on each premises license, which are granted by the local/district council or local licensing authority, which is generally a magistrate. Anyone applying for a license has to demonstrate a suitable knowledge of licensing law.
Needless to say, if you are a shop, pub or restaurant that is selling alcohol then you are going to require a license to do so. And it also goes without saying that if you were running your business and, for some reason, you lost your license through no fault of your own, your business could suffer. Indeed, it could threaten your business with closure.
Don't lose your livelihood
A license can be revoked or not renewed for a number of reasons, but the main causes are often issues surrounding crime and disorder, public nuisance, public safety and sale of alcohol to minors. As a legitimate business you may do your utmost to ensure that you operate within the licensing laws, but you may still find yourself on the wrong side of the law and lose your license. Thankfully, it is possible to take out a business insurance policy to cover yourself against such a loss.
A number of Direct Line for Business policies cover loss of licence as an optional extension - namely our Shop Insurance, licensed trade insurance and B&B / Guest House Insurance policies. In the event of loss of licence, under qualifying circumstances, you will be covered for any reduction in gross income and reduction in the value of your business or premises owing to the loss of license. Other costs and expenses, such as accountants or administrators can also be covered.
A loss of license, albeit a relatively rare occurrence, could be a catastrophic incident. Having insurance from Direct Line for Business can give you peace of mind.