Licenses are required in a range of circumstances, from running a bar or restaurant to owning a firearm. The process of applying for a license will vary depending on what you are applying for, but you will invariably need to demonstrate your suitability to be a license holder as assessed against a strict set of qualifying criteria.
Once a license has been issued, it is important that you comply with its terms and take immediate action to address any breaches if you want to avoid the risk of your license being revoked.
Failing to obtain a license where required or to comply with all license terms could result in you being prosecuted and sentenced to a period of imprisonment or subjected to a hefty fine.
Our solicitors for licensing can deliver expertise on matters such as:
- Applying for a license
- Variations to an existing license
- Alleged breaches of license terms
- Licensing issues where the police or licensing authority are involved
- License reviews
- Appeals against license revocation
Where you are accused of having failed to obtain a license where required or any other criminal charge arising out of licensing laws, our criminal law team is also on hand to assist.
Advising people and businesses throughout Gravesend, Kent and beyond
We can also offer meetings at your place of business or at home if the need arises, as well as conference calls via Skype for clients who frequently need to travel abroad.
Our licensing expertise
Applying for a license
Some businesses require licenses by law to carry out specific activities. If your business needs a license, it is important that you obtain one to ensure you are not breaking the law. The process of applying for a license can be quite complicated and timely if not done efficiently. To make certain everything is done correctly, and any potential barriers are identified, an experienced solicitor’s assistance is recommended.
Our licensing solicitors can guide you through the process of applying for a license and help you with any related matters that may subsequently arise.
Our licensing solicitors can help you with applying for a license in Maidstone, Gravesend, Tonbridge, Chatham and Tenterden in respect of:
- Gambling establishments
- Entertainment venues
- Organised events
Variations to an existing license
Under section 34 of the Licensing Act 2003, where alterations need to be made to your existing license, an application must be submitted to the local licensing authority.
Our licensing law solicitors in Maidstone, Gravesend, Tonbridge, Chatham and Tenterden can assist with advising you on how to make variations, contacting the relevant parties, along with guiding you to correctly fill in the application form to ensure delays or mistakes are avoided. This includes ensuring an accurate description of the proposed variation and any other required details that relate to your business are included.
Our solicitors can assist with making alterations that include:
- Adding additional regulated entertainment or late-night refreshment activities
- Changes to hours, including regulated entertainment and late-night refreshments
- Changes to hours when members of the public are permitted on the premises
- Removing conditions which are no longer applicable
- Changes to the structure of the premises
Alleged breaches of license terms
If you have been accused of an alleged breach of license terms, this could have a detrimental impact on the future of your license and ultimately could impact the business’s survival. During an alleged breach of the terms of your license, it is essential to receive the guidance of a solicitor who can provide expert advice on your legal options.
Our solicitors can assist with assessing the alleged breach of license terms and creating a robust case proving no breach was made before a review is needed in front of a committee.
Our solicitors can assist with alleged breaches of license terms, including licensing issues where the police or licensing authority are involved.
If your local authority is reviewing your license due to failure to fulfil the licensing objectives, it is crucial that you have efficient aid from a legal professional. During the review, your license will be discussed and reviewed in front of the local licensing committee.
Our licensing solicitors in Maidstone, Gravesend, Tonbridge, Chatham and Tenterden have assisted a wide range of clients from various industries with licensing reviews and have a strong track record for success. Working with us guarantees solicitors that will assess the main issues and create a strong argument with supporting evidence as well as representation at the committee hearing.
Appeals against license revocation
If you receive a result from the licensing committee that you are unhappy with, our licensing law solicitors can assist you in appealing your case to the Magistrates’ Court.
Advising people and businesses throughout Kent and beyond
We can also offer meetings at your place of business if needed or via a Skype conference call if you are out of the country.
Licensing law explained
What is a licensing solicitor?
A licensing solicitor can assist with all aspects of the process of obtaining a license. A solicitor can furthermore help with other licensing matters from making variations to your current license and assisting with allegations of licensing term breaches. They can also help with licensing issues where the police or licensing authority are involved, review of licenses and appeals against committee decisions.
What are the licensing laws in the UK?
There is one licensing law in the UK, and that is governed under the Licensing Act 2003. Within this act, there are four different types of licenses that certain premises are required to hold. These are:
- Personal licenses
- Premises licenses
- Club premises certificates
What does the Licensing Act 2003 do?
The licensing Act 2003 is there to regulate provisions concerning the sale and supply of alcohol, entertainment and late-night refreshment, for example, the rights and responsibilities of those who hold a license. Within the act are four objectives which the holder must follow, which are:
- Prevention of crime and disorder
- Prevention of public nuisance
- Protection of children from harm
- Safety of the public
In addition to the four objectives, there are five mandatory conditions which must be followed. These are:
- Banning irresponsible promotions
- Providing customers with free drinking water
- Following correct age identification processes
- Making certain small measures are available
- Banning alcohol sales below the permitted price
The act additionally sets out licensing offences.
What are licensing offences?
- Unauthorised licensable activities
- Drunkenness and disorderly conduct
- Smuggled goods
- Children and alcohol
- Confiscation of alcohol
- Vehicles and trains
Anyone that breaches the conditions of their license may have their license revoked.
We offer an initial appointment to discuss your requirements from £280 plus VAT. After that, we can arrange flexible payment terms, including monthly billing to help you budget.