Liquor laws enable either on-site or off-site consumption of alcohol. They determine what types of alcohol establishments can legally serve, including beer, wine, and hard liquor. In New York State, licenses that permit off-site consumption of alcohol include L, A/DS, and AX/DX. L licenses are general liquor store licenses that permit the sale of wine and liquor for consumption off premises. A/DS licenses let grocery stores and drug stores sell beer for consumption off premises. AX/DX liquor licenses grant grocery stores and drug stores the right to sell beer and wine coolers for consumption off the store’s premises. Getting a liquor license can be a tedious and complicated process, but we are here to guide you through.
In New York State, grocery stores and drug stores must meet several requirements to maintain an AX/DX liquor license. State requirements for selling alcohol off premises include: alcoholic beverages must be sold only to go, and they cannot be consumed within an establishment. The establishment cannot have open containers on its premises at any time. Grocery stores and drug stores must purchase alcohol only from a licensed wholesale dealer. Alcohol may not be purchased from another retailer. Liquor stores are not allowed to sell beer. Grocery stores cannot sell wine, but they can sell wine coolers, which are mixed with juice and have a lower alcohol content than wine. State law also prohibits resale of alcohol; an AX/DX liquor license only lets consumers sell alcohol for personal consumption. Resale is prohibited. Establishments cannot sell beer and wine coolers on house credit. However, customers can purchase alcohol using credit cards.
State liquor laws also impose time restrictions for when establishments can sell alcohol. In New York State, grocery stores and drug stores cannot sell alcohol on Sundays between the hours of 3a.m. and noon. Counties and towns may set additional time restrictions, so grocery stores and drug stores should check local requirements too. The exception is for liquor stores licensed pursuant to ABCL Section 63 and wine stores licensed pursuant to ABCL Section 79 for off-premise consumption. Stores licensed according to these regulations are granted seven-day licenses, which allow them to sell alcohol to customers all days of the week. However, they are restricted to selling liquor between the hours of 12:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. on Sundays. They are also subject to additional time restrictions imposed by local laws.
In New York State, applicants looking to get a liquor license must meet several conditions. Applicants must be at least 21 years old to apply. They must be a citizen of the United States, a permanent resident alien, or a visa-holder from a country engaged in trade with the United States. Applicants who are convicted felons (convicted in New York State or another state) are not permitted to hold a liquor license. Applicants cannot get a liquor license if they are police officers or have had a license to sell alcoholic beverages revoked in the past two years.
The application process can be quite lengthy, but some entities may be eligible for a temporary liquor permit while waiting for the permanent license application to go through. Temporary permits depend of the establishment’s location, the type of license applied for, and if the applicant is starting a new business or acquiring an existing one.
For liquor license holders in the state, the penalties for violating license conditions can be severe. Possible disciplinary penalties include revocation, cancellation, suspension, civil penalty, bond claim, and summary suspension. Revocation and cancellation terminate the license. If a license is revoked, the applicant must wait two years before it can sell liquor again. Suspension prohibits alcohol sales for a certain time, and civil penalty imposes a monetary fine. A bond claim is a claim made against the license holder’s surety bond. Summary suspension lets a state agency summarily suspend a license if it jeopardizes public health, safety, or welfare.
AX/DX liquor license lawyers can help apply for a liquor license, ensure compliance, or navigate legal issues that arise from a license violation.
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