COVID-19 and your application

The Epidemic Preparedness (COVID-19) Notice 2020 Renewal Notice (No2) 2020 has just been published. This means the Police and Medical Officers of Health now have until 2 March 2021 to report on applications. Now more than ever you need to get your applications in early. If you need some help give us a call on 0800 ALCOHOL.

To allow for government agencies (the Police and Medical Officer of Health are involved in the response to the epidemic) involved in the COVID-19 response more time to report on applications the government has altered some of the alcohol licensing procedures.

The order that has allowed them to do this is The Epidemic Preparedness (Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012—Licence Application Inquiries) Immediate Modification Order 2020. It came into force on the 16 April 2020.

This is a temporary order that will be revoked 30 working days after the Epidemic Preparedness (COVID-19) Notice 2020 expires. This order was most recently renewed on 16 September 2020. The Ministry of Justice administer this order. You can find information about alcohol licensing during this time on their website here. This information covers questions about the changes, and the licence applications that the Order applies to.

To summarise the order makes the following changes:

  1. The starting date for reporting by the Police and Medical Officers of Health has been changed. It is now from the date of receipt of the application to the date the Epidemic Notice ends.

  2. The number of working days for completion of reports has been extended to 30 working days (normally 15).

  3. Police and the Medical Officer of Health are required to make a report on every application. Under normal circumstances they are not required to report unless they have matters in opposition.

This means that applications for alcohol licences will be delayed while the epidemic continues.

Businesses with current alcohol licences can continue to trade if they lodge an application for renewal within 20 working days of the expiry of the licence.

Unfortunately, new businesses applying for licences may have delays gaining a licence having an impact on opening. This means that now, more than ever, you need to get your application in early. We can help you with this. We will also help you make sure your application is as good as it can be.

Call us on 0800 ALCOHOL for a chat.