2019 marks a milestone year for the licensed trade. It is 10 years since the 2005 Act came into effect which also means that it is time for the first batch of personal licences to be renewed.
But there is a problem. The legislation is unclear on many points relating to the renewal process. The trade desperately needs guidance which has been scarcely available from Holyrood and the information which has been released is misleading and inconsistent. Just this week a document circulated by the Government which was meant to clarify the qualification required for a personal licence renewal contradicted earlier communications and only served to confuse operators more.
The message may have been unclear up until now but what is certain is that if your personal licence states that it was issued on 1 September 2009 or that it expires on 31 August 2019 you need to take action now. The following applies:
Simultaneous to this process the following also applies:
The best and safest approach is to combine these two processes. Think of it as a BOGOF deal which is actually permitted. This will work as follows:
It is also important to remember that although the bulk of renewals relate to personal licences expiring on 31 August 2019 there will be personal licences which expire shortly after this which can’t be overlooked. Always count back 3 months from expiry for your deadline. Licensing Boards are already warning that they will be under immense pressure with limited resources during this time so send all documentation by recorded delivery or keep your receipt safe. One way or another make sure you’ve evidence that the Board has the application. If a licence isn’t renewed by the expiry date it immediately lapses.
Read our practical guide on how to renew your personal licence. The key advice is don’t wait. Act now to ensure your business doesn’t face yet more challenges next year which can, in this case, be avoided by taking a few simple steps. To find out more, please contact our Licensing team on 0141 221 1919 or fill in our online form.