According to the Florida Law, if you plan to sell liquor in the state, you may need to obtain one of the limited number liquor licenses available in your county depending on the type of license you need. While there are an unlimited number of licenses available to sell beer or wine, if you want to sell or serve hard liquor, you’ll need to obtain one of the limited number of liquor licenses. However, there are also certain exceptions. For example, if you own a restaurant and want a liquor license, you may be able to obtain a special SRX license. This special restaurant alcoholic beverages license allows you to serve liquor, but only if your business derives 51% of its revenue from food and non-alcoholic beverages. Before you apply for a liquor license in Fort Lauderdale, or South Florida, it is important to understand what kind of license you should seek. A liquor license lawyer in Fort Lauderdale, Florida can review your business plans, goals, and revenue sources to help you understand which liquor license is best for you. Choosing the wrong license can be unnecessarily costly and leave you with a license that does not allow you to operate as you intend. Our liquor license attorneys at Eskander Loshak LLP can help you navigate the process in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Types of Liquor Licenses in Florida
If you are planning to sell alcoholic beverages, there are four main licensing options in Florida. (While there are in actuality dozens of specific types of licenses, for the purpose of clarity, we’ll stick to the four big catch-all types here) Each license meets a specific business need, so it is important to have a clear business plan in place before you apply for a liquor license. A liquor license lawyer in Fort Lauderdale, Florida like Eskander Loshak LLP can help you navigate the complexities of the licensing process. What are some of the types of liquor licenses available?
- Package sales—consumption off premises only. This liquor license allows you to sell beer or wine in closed containers for consumption off site. There are different types of licenses within this category depending on what kinds of liquor you plan to sell and depending on whether your business is being run in a dry county. There are no quotas for this kind of liquor license in Florida. Each license also comes with limits on how much you can gross in sales under each license.
- Consumption on premises. This liquor license allows vendors to sell either beer or wine on premises for consumption on the property. There are no quotas for this license, but there are limits on how much alcohol a business can sell and the types of alcohol that can be sold under each license type.
- SRX restaurant licenses. If your restaurant makes more than 51% in revenue from food or non-alcoholic beverages, you may be able to obtain a special SRX license. This license allows you to sell liquor, as well as beer and wine, but you must meet the revenue restrictions in order to qualify.
- Quota licenses. Quota licenses allow vendors to sell liquor for consumption on premises. For every increase in population by 7,500, a new quota liquor license is created. Vendors who wish to obtain this license can register for a drawing to win the new license, or vendors can buy a liquor license up for sale.
There are many different types of applications for liquor licenses available in Florida, but choosing the wrong one for your business can have serious financial and legal ramifications. If you have questions about which liquor license you should pursue, consider reaching out to Eskander Loshak LLP. A liquor license lawyer in Fort Lauderdale, Florida can help you navigate the legal concerns that arise when pursuing a liquor license.
Buying or Selling a Liquor License?
If you determine that you will need a quota license, you’ll either need to register for a drawing for new licenses when they become available or consider buying a liquor license for sale. Quota licenses can be more expensive than other types of licensing because of their restricted and limited numbers, and because holders of liquor licenses must pass drug abuse training and education courses, which can also be costly to attend. The price of a liquor license on the market can vary depending on where you live, as well as supply and demand, but when it comes time to finalize a sale, it is important to have a liquor license lawyer on your side who can facilitate the transaction, handle all paperwork, and help you understand your obligations and legal rights. The benefits of a restricted liquor license is that it isn’t affiliated with any one business. You can open one bar, close the bar, and relocate, and still use the same liquor license. The other license types are associated with the specific business location for which you have obtained the license.
However, you may not necessarily need a restricted quota liquor license if you plan to open a restaurant or if you only want to sell wine or beer at your bar. This is where having a liquor license lawyer on your side can help. Eskander Loshak LLP are liquor license attorneys in Fort Lauderdale, Florida who can help you navigate the complexities required before you can open your bar, restaurant, or night club.