Arizona Liquor License

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This article is a resource, which describes on both a high and detailed level the process of licensure in Arizona, as well as the rules and regulations stated by the code of Arizona that governs the sale of Alcohol in the state. The following page will help you to learn the steps to obtaining a license as well as the answers to common questions licensees may have.

Liquor licenses in Arizona are required for any individual selling, manufacturing, or otherwise dealing in liquor and can be acquired through two different approaches. The individual may either buy the license directly from the Arizona Alcohol and Beverage Control (ABC) or from an individual already in possession of a license. In nearly all cases, licenses for either on-sale or off-sale will need to be purchased on the open market, unless your establishment fulfills the requirements set forth by the state to be considered a restaurant. This is the case because of the quota system in place in Arizona that limits the number of licenses based on the population of an area.

Regardless of how you obtain your license, however, Arizona mandates that applicants either are resident of the state or use a liquor license agent or broker to facilitate the process between the applicant and the Department of Liquor Licenses and Control (DLLC). After the initial filing has been submitted, applicants should be prepared for a lengthy and comprehensive approval process that can last from 65 to 105 days.

 

FAQ

 

What are the types of Arizona liquor licenses?

  • Series 6 – Bar – This license allows owners to sell beer, wine and spirits (like tequila, rum, vodka and gin) to their customers for consumption on premises without any requirement to serve food. The license also allows for the sale of beer and wine in a package and for delivery of beer and wine.
  • Series 7 – Beer and Wine Bar – This license allows owners to sell beer and wine to their customers for consumption on premises without any requirement to serve food. The license also allows for the sale of beer and wine in a package and for delivery of beer and wine.
  • Series 9 – Liquor Store – The series 9 license allows licensees to sell beer, wine and spirits (like tequila, rum, vodka and gin) to their customers for consumption away from the premise. This license is used for supermarkets, corner stores and liquor stores. Owners of this license are allowed
  • Series 10 – Beer and Wine Convenience Store – The series 10 license allows licensees to sell beer and wine to their customers for consumption away from the premise. This license is used for supermarkets, corner stores.
  • Series 12 – Restaurant – This license allows for the sale of beer, wine and spirits in a location that sells at least 40% food. A restaurant licensee will be audited regularly to ensure they are meeting the restaurant standards and if they do not pass the audit their license will be revoked.

What are the steps to get an Arizona liquor license?

  1. Determine if you need to purchase your license or it you can get one directly from the State.
  2. If the license needs to be purchased, you will draft an agreement and get it signed by both the buyer and the seller of the license. Additional documentation will likely be required to convey the ownership of the license.
  3. Fill out the application for the liquor license to the Department of Liquor License Control (DLLC).
  4. Submit your application.
  5. Receive your notice of deficiency, which will alert you to submit an additionally required documentation.
  6. Complete the Department of Liquor License Control (DLLC) investigation.
  7. Receive a liquor license in the mail from the Department of Liquor License Control (DLLC).

How much do Arizona liquor licenses cost?

The cost of an Arizona liquor license is determined by two things; the type and the county. Most liquor licenses cost between $8,000.00 and $300,000.00. With series 7 beer and wine bar licenses in Pima County being among the least expensive and series 9 liquor store licenses in Maricopa County being among the most expensive.

Who do I contact about getting a liquor license?

If you are in need of a liquor license in Arizona, whether one you need to purchase or one you can get directly from the State, we are hear to help you. LiquorLicense.com is the most effective way to buy or sell your liquor license in the nation. We set the industry standard for professionalism and customer service.

Our central office acts as an umbrella, which houses all of our services and allows us to streamline your brokerage, processing, consulting, escrow, and marketing needs in a timely and cost-conscious manner. We are the only company to offer a complete package to our clients, and with 30 years’ experience we are the preferred partner for corporate and restaurant clients, large and small alike.

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If your business wishes to serve or sell beer, wine, or alcohol, it is imperative that you obtain a liquor license. Failure to comply with your city, county, or state’s laws and regulations can result in thousands of dollars in fines, loss of your business license, and even being shut down indefinitely. LiquorLicense.com clients benefit from extensive jurisdictional neighborhood research providing them expert guidance throughout the entire liquor license process.

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LiquorLicense.com – your one stop resource for all alcohol and restaurant licensing needs.

 

Serving Hours

When may Liquor Be Served?

Can I serve alcohol on Election Day?

May a restaurant licensee decide when to stop serving food and continue serving liquor?

 

Liquor and Age

What is the minimum age for serving/selling alcohol?

Can I allow kids / underage minors in my bar?

 

Qualifications and Licensing

How long is the application process?

How far must I be from a Church or School?

If I have been arrested can I get a Liquor License?

How Many Citations before revocation?

Is it mandatory that licensees and their employees attend an alcohol management/liquor law program?

 

Operations

Do I have to buy alcohol from a wholesaler?

May liquor be removed from an on-sale establishment by a customer?

 

Licensing

I have an area that is not connected to my bar/restaurant that I would like to serve alcohol in, can I?

What pre-requisites are required to apply for a license?

What are the criteria for Restaurant Licenses?

What are the licensing time frames to expect?

What are the responsibilities or my restaurant / hotel?

How do I need to display my License?

How do I prevent people with firearms from entering my premise?

What criteria are used to determine whether to grant a license to a certain location?

 

Serving Hours

When may Liquor Be Served?

6:00AM to 2:00AM. No alcoholic drinks may be consumed between 2:30am and 6:00am regardless of when they were purchased

Can I serve alcohol on Election Day?

Yes, for the same hours as a normal day.

May a restaurant licensee decide when to stop serving food and continue serving liquor?

Kitchens must remain open until 10:00pm

 

Liquor and Age

What is the minimum age for serving/selling alcohol?

19 for an on-sale and off-sale that serves primarily alcohol. 16 for an off-sale that primarily serves items other than alcohol.

Can I allow kids / underage minors in my bar?

Yes, so long as the minor is accompanied with a legal guardian or parent

 

Qualifications and Licensing

How long is the application process?

65-105 Days

How far must I be from a Church or School?

Minimum of 300 Feet

If I have been arrested can I get a Liquor License?

It depends. If you have been convicted of a felony, or a crime that would be a felony in Arizona, in the last five years you cannot get a license.

How Many Citations before revocation?

In the worst of cases, only one citation is required.

Is it mandatory that licensees and their employees attend an alcohol management/liquor law program?

No, but it is mandatory that any new managers or people responsible on a day to day basis attend a basic management training course after submitting an original application.

 

Operations

Do I have to buy alcohol from a wholesaler?

Yes.

May liquor be removed from an on-sale establishment by a customer?

Yes. So long as you have a type 6 or type 7 license. Even unfinished bottles can be taken so long as the corks are flush with the bottle

Can I offer coupons for drinks?

If you are an off-sale retailer then yes. If you are an on-sale retailer then no.

 

Licensing

I have an area that is not connected to my bar/restaurant that I would like to serve alcohol in, can I?

To get approval for the area, the board must ensure: the best interest of the community is served by adding the additional area, the non-contiguous area will be a permanent part of the licensed premise, the division between the areas is not more than 30 feet, the area in question is enclosed but a permanent fence at least 3 feet tall, the building complies with the building and safety codes, and the licensee has demonstrated control of alcohol between the areas.

What pre-requisites are required to apply for a license?

  1. You must be a citizen or legal resident and a bona fide resident of Arizona
  2. If you are a partnership both partners must meet criteria #1
  3. Corporations must be qualified to do business in Arizona and must hold the license through an agent who is an individual who substantiates the requirements in #1
  4. Limited partnerships must have a general, not limited, partner who meets criteria #1
  5. Out of state entities must hold licenses through agents who meet the standard prescribed by the Board.
  6. Regardless of which situation you are in above, you must provide documentation that shows you are, or have an agent, that is a US citizen and a bona fide resident of Arizona.

What are the criteria for Restaurant Licenses?

Restaurants must have at least 40% of gross sales coming from food (to go food is included in the number so long as take out does not represent more than 15% of food sales). Moreover, licensees must ensure that the primary object of customers is to eat. Finally the ABC has the opportunity to review the following criteria to ensure the establishment is a restaurant:

  1. The number of cooks and wait staff
  2. The restaurant Equipment
  3. The menu
  4. Dinner and small-ware
  5. The number of seats that are barstools
  6. The marketing and promotional materials of the business
  7. If the proposed business has a jukebox, live entertainment or dancefloor
  8. If the proposed business has bar games and equipment

What are the licensing time frames to expect?

In order for licenses to be reviewed, they are required to be administratively complete. Note, however, if your application is not complete, you will lose your place in line and have to complete an entirely new application and a new non-refundable application fee. After the application is complete to the standard required by the state the administrative review takes 75 days and the substantive review that’s approximately 30 days. Special event licenses are reviewed for 30 days. If additional information is need for the substantive review, the timeline for completion will be extended depending on the how much and what type of information is needed.

What are the responsibilities or my restaurant / hotel?

  1. A hotel or restaurant must continue to serve food until at least 10:00pm or it no longer fulfills the requirements of a restaurant and must be licensed as a bar unless the restaurant or hotel ceases the sale of alcohol.
  2. If the restaurant or hotel’s kitchen closes at 10:00pm the establishment may continue to sell alcohol until 2:00am
  3. If the restaurant or hotel meets the standard of such an establishment the business must submit records that enable the ABC to determine gross revenue from food if there is an audit. As part of this the business must have vendor invoices, inventory records, financial statements, general ledgers, daily sales reports, bank deposit slips, tax returns, and payroll records.
  4. If you are a multiple licensee you must have separate records for separately licensed premises.

How do I need to display my License?

Retailers must display their license in a place that is readily available to the ABC, a peace officer or a wholesaler.

How do I prevent people with firearms from entering my premise/ other warnings?

At least one warning sign regarding the dangers of alcohol during pregnancy must be displayed in the establishment. If you are interested in prohibiting the possession of firearms in your establishment, you must post a notice which states that you are not an establishment that allows people with concealed weapons.

What criteria are used to determine whether to grant a license to a certain location?

  1. Petitions and testimonies of individuals who are either in favor or against the license. The individuals must reside within one mile of the premise to submit a petition or testimony.
  2. The number of license within 1 mile of the proposed premise
  3. Evidence that all necessary permits and licenses have been obtained by the establishment
  4. The commercial and residential population of the area and the premises likelihood for change key statistics.
  5. Residential and commercial population density around the area.
  6. Evidence concerning the nature of the proposed business, it’s market and its customers.
  7. Effect on vehicular traffic within one mile of the premises
  8. Compatibility of the proposed business with existing businesses in the area.
  9. Effect of licensing the property on the neighborhood and the existing businesses in the neighborhood
  10. History for the past five years of liquor violations and reported criminal activity around the proposed premises.
  11. Hours of operations
  12. Proximity of the proposed premises to licensed childcare facilities.

 

 

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