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Liquor License Revocation

New York liquor licenses can be revoked, suspended, canceled, or license holders may be forced to pay civil penalties for cause. New York courts have construed “for cause” to mean many things. Causes sufficient to bring about the revocation of liquor licenses include but are not limited to: acts disturbing the neighbors, constant noise, general disorder, negative effects on the neighborhood’s safety, selling illegal alcoholic drinks, fabricating or selling a liquor license. Liquor license holders are placed on notice of each of the causes of potential suspension, revocation, or cancellation by the State Liquor Authority when they receive their licenses. It is not a defense to an action to revoke one’s liquor license that the State Liquor Authority made a mistake and forgot to send papers listing the offenses that can trigger revocation. License holders are responsible for the conduct that occurs in their establishments and should conduct their businesses accordingly.

If your liquor license is in danger of being revoked, call the detail-oriented and aggressive New York Alcohol and Beverage Control Law attorneys at Tilem & Associates for a free consultation.

Breaking the Alcohol and Beverage Control Law a single time is enough justification to allow revocation or cancellation of a business’s liquor license. Courts have held that a single night of public indecency or a single fight were each enough to justify the removal of a business’s liquor license. On the other hand, some single incidents are not enough to justify revoking a liquor license. Acts that did not warrant revocation included single acts that violated the employer’s policy by employees and sole instances of disorder.

Fraud or misrepresentation in connection with applications or hearings for a liquor license may justify revocation, cancellation, or suspension of the liquor license. Examples of such false statements include: False statements that people with ownership stakes in the business were not arrested or convicted of felonies, that a business complies with statutory regulations, and that a person employ to run the business. Even if they are corrected later, false statements may be used to justify the suspension, revocation, or cancellation of a liquor license. It is therefore advisable that restaurant and bar owners retain one of the New York Alcohol and Beverage Control Law lawyers at Tilem & Associate help prepare their license applications.

Being convicted of a felony is grounds for losing one’s liquor license. The jurisdiction prosecuting the felony may be the federal government, New York State, or another state. Additionally, if the holder of a liquor license is convicted of a misdemeanor in another state, and that conviction is for a crime equivalent to a felony in New York, that may still constitute grounds for the revocation of a liquor license. Convictions that have formed the basis for revoking liquor licenses include dealing drugs, tax evasion, and grand larceny.

People who are licensed to sell alcohol have a duty to prevent their premises from becoming disorderly. The legal meaning of disorderly under the Alcohol Beverage Control Law is any conduct that becomes a nuisance, violates public morals, or violates public order. When a license holder knows or should have known with some reasonable diligence that disorderly acts are occurring on his premises, there are sufficient grounds to revoke the owner’s liquor license. It is a defense to accusations of disorder that the license holder, even after reasonable diligent investigation, could not uncover any improper acts. Where incidents do not involve management and are isolated, it is unlikely that a revocation will result.

If action is being taken against you by the State Liquor Authority and you are concerned you will lose your liquor license, call the aggressive and knowledgeable New York Alcohol and Beverage Control Law lawyers at Tilem & Associates for a free consultation.

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