Top Five Reasons Why Its Difficult To Get A Liquor Licenses

Here’s the scenario:


You’ve got a new concept for your business. Then you find a space to rent and have you conceptual plans drafted and you’re now ready to go. Congratulations!!!

Oh wait. You need a liquor license to start ordering your alcohol from suppliers. OH WAIT! The liquor license application is being protested. OHHHHH ¬†WAAIIIIITTTTTT!!!! The Conditional Use Permit is being protested. OH THATS IT!!!!! A Variance is now needed because I’m in the wrong zone. I GIVE UP!!!!


That is a possible scenario to an unsuspecting prospective business operator… maybe not to that extent but definitely conceivable. That’s why its good to know what are the possible issues before applying for a liquor license. In a nutshell, that means DO YOUR HOMEWORK.

Here’s the good news. Just like when you were in high school and didn’t really want to read Charles Dickens’ “Great Expectations” ¬†in its entirety, you grabbed the Cliff Notes version to rummage through the key points. Well friends, we’ve got the get-to-the-point version for you.


5. Parking – Welcome to CA. Parking is often determined by the size of the business. Have plenty of them or you’re in a world of hurt (financially and possibly physically).

4. Process & Procedure – You’ve got write out your business plan, menu, justifiable claims to why you should be allowed to sell alcohol/liquor. Then you got to have an Environmental Review, draft plans, write more narratives, speak to a planner, then to an ABC licensing representative and a LOT of phone tag in between.

3. Meetings & Hearings – After you’ve written down almost your entire life story, now you’ve got to present your business to neighborhood council groups, city council members, zoning administrators, planning commissions and everyone in between. Not fun if you’re not fond of public speaking.

2. Protests – Everyone can’t always be pleased so expect protests from residents and neighbors. This can be jarring especially if you’re near the finish line.

1. Patience – You’ve got bills racking up for expenses for the business yet you can’t operate without a liquor license. Plan ahead and accordingly.