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Will you lose your liquor license for selling to a minor?

| Jun 9, 2021 | Administrative Law |

In Kentucky, as with the rest of the United States, people need to be 21-years-old or older to buy alcohol. Businesses that have a liquor license must not sell to those who are underage.

Interestingly, the law in Kentucky only focuses on age, not proof of that age. It stipulates that you can’t sell to someone who is under 21 years of age but does not force people to prove their age by showing an ID. 

That said, if you’re a business owner, you could lose your liquor license for selling to a minor or anyone who is under the legal age — even if they’re an adult. This is why many businesses put ID check policies in place themselves, telling employees that they need to card those who are buying. 

Why is this policy helpful?

This policy is helpful because there are not many defenses if you — or an employee — sell alcohol to a minor. 

One defense that does exist, though, is if that person has a fake ID and lies about their age. If you sell to them, you can still show that you did all you could to determine that they were old enough. This can help to preserve your right to a liquor license if a mistake is made. 

If you make that same mistake without carding the buyer, however, the fault falls back on you because you sold to someone illegally. 

Working to keep your liquor license

If you’re facing issues like this, you know how valuable your liquor license is to your future. Make sure you know what steps you can take to work to keep it intact. Protecting your legal interests is not something you should try to handle on your own when you’re in a position where you need to defend your liquor permit.