Winning a Liquor License in Florida

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In April 10, 2019
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Florida liquor license types

Are you considering the Florida liquor license
lottery for your business or even
to hold a license as an investment?
Get expert consulting from Liquor License Outlet.

In the United States of America, there are a total of seventeen states that place quotas on the number of liquor licenses they issue. Florida is one of the few that distributes the new license via a lottery, and it is a rather discreet, state-run affair. While the rules differ across the board, Florida counties see a new license for every 7,500 new residents. There are several different Florida liquor license types, but quota licenses are some of the most sought after as business owners can use them anywhere as long as they follow zoning regulations. Winning or buying are the only ways to get one.

Learn all there is to know about the Florida liquor license lottery. If you’re a business, Liquor License Outlet can help you get the right paperwork to serve beer, wine, and spirits on-premises.

WHO CAN ENTER THE LOTTERY?

Quite simply, anyone can enter the drawing and get a liquor license, and while your mind might automatically jump to businesses, individuals are also more than welcome to enter the drawing. Here’s the big question: why would an individual enter a drawing for a Florida liquor license if they had no intention or ability to use it? The answer: money.

QUICK CASH IN A FIX

While the regular lottery can win you a lot of money, a liquor license lottery may be able to do much more. These licenses are worth a lot to business owners, and it should be no surprise to you that they want them and are willing to pay for them. Exactly how much are they willing to part with for a license? It all depends on the area, but in a place like Florida, you can bet that large retail companies like Publix will be at your doorstep wanting a piece of the action. In Tampa Bay, liquor licenses go for an average of $100,000, with some going as high as $500,000. It’s a decent amount of money, and it can give anyone the windfall they need if they are lucky enough to win.

WHAT ARE THE ODDS?

Before you go all out in your attempts to get a license here’s a question: what are the odds of winning? Lucky for you, the chances are actually very high because the lottery isn’t well known. This, however, is not for lack of effort. No matter what the odds are, if you win, you need to pay a fee in order to obtain the license. Winners have 45 days to apply, and they must meet the following requirements:

  • Be fingerprinted.
  • Have no felony convictions in the last fifteen years.
  • Pay the license fee.

The annual license fee costs anywhere from $28 to $392 for beer and wine, but liquor licenses are more expensive, ranging from $468 to $1820. The license you get all depends on what it is you want to do or how much money you ultimately want to make.

A HISTORY OF QUOTA LAWS

Florida liquor license

Businesses may find the Liquor License Lottery
to be a slow and uncertain process.
You can license your business with
non-quota options today.

Quota laws are not a new thing in the United States. As a matter of fact, they date all the way back to 1933 following the end of the 24-year experiment known as ‘prohibition.’ Even though prohibition was over, quotas were enacted to tightly control the number of establishments that would be able to serve liquor. While they can be a bit of a constraint to modern businesses, these quota laws can help you if you happen to win the lottery.

Remember: the quota can only increase with the county population so keep an eye on the numbers and watch for the announcements. The next lottery might bring you a ton of money and a new lease on life whether you are saving for retirement, need a new car, want to do some home renovations, or have completely different plans.

WHAT ABOUT BUSINESSES?

If you’re a business owner looking for a license, then the Florida liquor license lottery might not seem like the fairest way to get operational. For restaurants, bars, cafés, clubs, and similar businesses, a liquor license is essential.

If there are no available quota licenses in your county, usually due to slow population growth, you will have to find alternative options. Thankfully, the lottery is only applicable to a specific license type. To keep commerce both fair and ready to grow, Florida counties offer a couple of different options.

If you are in need of a license for a growing business or for one that you plan to open, you can consider the following two Florida liquor license types that are available.

These include:

  • The 4COP-SRX License – This is a license designed for Florida businesses that want to offer beer, wine, and spirits for consumption on their premises. The business needs to be a restaurant or a similar company that derives at least 51% of its revenue from the sale of food and non-alcoholic beverages. To qualify for this type of license, the business must have floor space between 2,500 and 5,000 square feet. It must also provide tables and seating to serve between 150 and 250 customers, depending on the specific county. Any time that liquor is served, the business must offer a full menu service.
  • The 2COP Liquor License – This is a more restricted license that allows for the sale of beer and wine on the premises. Because this license doesn’t cover spirits, it usually won’t suit a bar or full-service restaurant. This is the ideal license for small businesses like cafés and food bars (gourmet burgers, designer sandwiches, etc.). There is no quota system for this type of Florida liquor license, so you won’t need to worry about entering the lottery to get one.

If you are considering either of the above licenses or if you want more information about the Florida lottery and how to enter it, the experts at Liquor License Outlet can help.

With decades of experience in liquor licensing and the hospitality industry, we know exactly what is needed to submit license applications. We also connect license sellers for quota license transactions in the private market.

Whatever your needs are, expert assistance will ensure that you have the right license to grow your business. Contact us today and discuss your options for Florida liquor license applications.

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