What kind of license do I need to sell alcoholic beverages?
If you wish to sell beer or wine, you can purchase a consumption-on-premise license or a package license. There are no restrictions on the number of licenses issued to sell beer and wine. If you wish to sell liquor, a quota license must be obtained. These are limited in number throughout the state, based on county population. There are also various special licenses that are allowed to sell liquor, such as restaurants, but specific requirements must be met for those licenses. To view the various types of alcoholic beverage and tobacco licenses available and applicable fees, you may visit: http://www.myfloridalicense.com/dbpr/abt/rules_statutes/license_types.pdf and http://www.myfloridalicense.com/dbpr/abt/documents/fee_chart.pdf
I own a restaurant, and wish to sale alcoholic beverages; what kind of license do I need?
A special (SRX) restaurant alcoholic beverage license can be obtained (if certain requirements are met) at any time, and is an exception to the quota license restrictions to number of licenses per county. The SRX license allows you to sell beer, wine, and liquor for consumption-on-premises, in connection with a restaurant. However, a restaurant must derive 51% of their revenue from food 2 and non-alcoholic beverages to qualify for this special license, along with other requirements. If this percentage cannot be met and maintained, the restaurant would not qualify for the special license and would then be required to obtain a regular (quota) license to sell liquor. [Reference: F.S. 561.20 ]
How much does an alcoholic beverage license cost?
The annual license fee for an alcoholic beverage retail license ranges between $28 and $1,820, depending on the type of beverages you wish to sell, and the county in which your business will be located. To view the various types of alcoholic beverage and tobacco licenses available and applicable fees, you may visit: http://www.myfloridalicense.com/dbpr/abt/rules_statutes/license_types.pdf and http://www.myfloridalicense.com/dbpr/abt/documents/fee_chart.pdf
How can I obtain a license to sell alcoholic beverages?
There are several methods to obtain a license to sell alcoholic beverages. Each method includes the completion of a license application form, which may be obtained from the Division. Application forms, and additional information on completing an application form, may be requested from any ABT licensing office or online.
What is a quota license?
For every increase in the population of a county by 7500 residents, a new quota license is created. In order to obtain a quota (liquor) license, you must either buy an existing license, or enter the quota drawing to win the right to apply for a quota license. The winner may then apply for the issuance of the new license. For more information on “quota” licenses, F.S. 561.19 and 561.20 describe the requirements and conditions of this type of license. To retrieve an application for the quota drawing, access the site here.
How much does a quota license cost?
In addition to the annual license fee, there is a one-time (Hughes Act) fee of $10,750. This fee is used for alcohol and drug abuse education, treatment, and prevention programs. [Reference: F.S. 561.19]. In addition to the license 4 transfer fee (not to exceed $5000) [Reference: F.S. 561.32(3)(a)], when purchasing an existing license from a current owner, the price can vary. The State does not set the price for quota licenses sold on the open market; the price is usually dictated by supply and demand
What is the Hughes Act fee?
The Hughes Act refers to a fee of $10,750, which is collected from each entity that is issued a new quota liquor license. This fee is imposed on an initial issuance of a license only, and is in addition to the annual license fee. The revenues from this fee are used for alcohol and drug abuse education, treatment, and prevention programs. [Reference: F.S. 561.19]
How long does it take to obtain an alcoholic beverage license?
Processing time for a license can vary depending upon the complexity of the type of license being purchased. Filing a complete and accurate application can decrease the processing time. The Division is required to process a completed application within 90 days of receipt and acceptance. [Reference: F.S. 120.60]
I would like to apply for a license to sell alcoholic beverages. Is there any way that I can start serving alcoholic beverages immediately?
Upon delivery of a completed application which does not on its face disclose any reason for denial, the applicant may purchase a temporary license at a cost of 5 $100 or 1/4 the annual license fee, whichever is greater, for new and increase in series applications. The temporary fee for transfer applications is $100. [Reference: F.S. 561.181]. Once the temporary license is issued, the licensee may begin sales of alcoholic beverages immediately.
Where do I go to apply for a license?
There are several ways to file an application to obtain an alcoholic beverage or tobacco license. The application may be mailed to the local Division office, hand delivered to the local Division office, sent by regular or overnight mail to the Central licensing office, or by making an appointment with our licensing personnel. A list of District office locations and phone numbers may be found on Contact AB&T page.
Can a beverage license be transferred from county to county?
A license to sell beer and wine can be transferred from county to county. A change of location fee is applicable. A license to sell liquor cannot be transferred out of the county in which it was initially issued, due to the limitation of the number of licenses for each county. [Reference F.S. 561.20(1) and 561.33]
I belong to a non-profit civic organization. As part of a fund-raiser, can we sell alcoholic beverages?
Yes, non-profit civic organizations, charitable organizations, municipalities, and counties can obtain a temporary permit for the sale of beer, wine, and liquor for consumption on premises only, and for a period not to exceed 3 days per event. With the exception of small areas within specific counties which are allowed to have an additional number of permits per calendar year, each non-profit organization may obtain up to 12 such permits per calendar year. [Reference F.S. 561.422] Areas of exception can be verified by going to the division’s web page and reviewing the One, Two, Three Day Permit (ODP) Special Acts.
Have the requirements for a restaurant license in Winter Park, Florida changed?
Yes, the chapters of law pertaining to exemptions for special licenses in the City of Winter Park, Orange County, were repealed during the 2015 legislative session. The issuance of special alcoholic beverage licenses for restaurants, hotels, motels, and motor courts in Winter Park are now subject to General Law.
I am interested in placing a vendor's license in a railroad transit station. Can I do this and what is the license fee?
The 2016 Legislature has created a special license category that allows vendors in a railroad transit station to keep for sale and to sell beer, wine, and liquor upon the payment of an annual license tax of $2,500. The vendor license may not be transferred to locations 7 beyond the railroad transit station. The alcoholic beverages sold are for consumption on the licensed premises, and may be consumed in all areas within the railroad transit station. [Reference: F.S. 561.01(22) and 565.02(2)]
Can schools sell alcoholic beverages with their culinary arts programs?
The 2016 Legislature has created a special license category for culinary education programs that allows the sale and consumption of beer, wine, and liquor on the licensed premises of the culinary education program. The culinary education program must be provided by a specific state university, college institution, or career center as a public food service establishment which offers, prepares, serves, or sells food to the general public, and which is inspected by a state agency for compliance with sanitation standards. If the culinary education program provides catering services, this special license allows the sale and consumption of alcoholic beverages on the premises of a catered event at which the licensee is also providing prepared food. The license fee for the special culinary education program license is $1,820 annually. The license does not permit sales of alcoholic beverages by the package for off-premises consumption. [Reference: F.S. 561.20]
I have applied for an alcoholic beverage license but I do not have a location to open for business yet. Can I put the license on hold until I get the building completed?
The Florida Statutes require a quota alcoholic beverage liquor license issued after September 30, 1988, to be open for business to the public for sales of authorized alcoholic beverages during regular and reasonable business hours for at least 8 hours a day for a period of 210 days or more during any 12-month period. This period begins 6 months after 8 the acquisition of the license by the licensee. The division will grant a one-time waiver or extension of the requirements for a period up to 12 months. The division may also grant a waiver or extension of the requirements for a period up to 12 months if the licensed premises has been physically damaged to an extent that active operation is impracticable, if construction or remodeling is underway to relocate the license to another location, or if the licensed premises has been prohibited from making sales as a result of an court order or action of a governmental entity. [Reference: F.S. 561.29]
What taxes are charged by the state on alcoholic beverages and cigarettes?
Excise taxes are charged at the wholesale level for any alcoholic beverage, cigarette, or tobacco products to be sold to retailers in Florida. Current alcohol and tobacco excise tax rates may be found on the Statues and Rules page.
What are the state reporting requirements for alcoholic beverages and tobacco?
Specific monthly reports must be filed by alcoholic beverage Manufacturers, Wholesaler/Distributors, Importers, Exporters, Common Carriers, and Passenger Carriers, and cigarette and tobacco Manufacturers, Wholesaler/Distributors, Exporters, and Distributing Agents by the 10th of the month following the activity being reported. [Reference: F.S. 561.08, 561.49, 561.50, 561.55, 562.20, 210.04(9), 210.09, 210.55]
Is the alcoholic beverage surcharge going to be abolished?
On June 9, 2006, Governor Bush signed House Bill 7105 into law. This legislation is charged with the repeal of the alcoholic beverage surcharge imposed by Section 561.501, Florida Statutes. The actual repeal of the alcoholic beverage surcharge is a two-step process. The bill deletes the submission and reporting of surcharge on alcoholic beverages sold for 10 consumption on premises as of July 1, 2007. Licensed consumption-onpremises alcoholic beverage vendors are required to continue to pay the surcharge through June 2007, and submit the report, which is due by July 15, 2007. It then allows one year from that date for the Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco to complete the collections of the surcharge. The complete repeal of Section 561.501, Florida Statutes, will be effective July 1, 2008.
I didn't have any purchases/sales last month. Do I still have to file a report?
Yes, you must continue to file excise tax reports even when you have no activity, for as long as you have an active license.
What is the minimum age requirement for serving alcoholic beverages?
Although it is unlawful for any person under the age of 21 years to have in her or his possession alcoholic beverages, this does not preclude the employment of any person 18 years of age or older in the sale, preparation, or service of alcoholic beverages in any establishment licensed by the Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco or the Division of Hotels and Restaurants. Generally, it is unlawful for any vendor licensed under the Beverage Law to employ any person who is under 18 years of age. However, there are certain exemptions that may be found in F.S. 562.13.
Does the state regulate the hours of operation for an establishment that serves alcoholic beverages?
The operating hours are regulated by the county or municipality in which the business is located. However, in the absence of county or municipal ordinances, no alcoholic beverages may be sold, consumed, served, or permitted to be served or consumed in any place holding a license with the division between the hours of midnight and 7 a.m. of the following day. [Reference: F.S. 562.14]
I'm going out-of-business and I need to know what to do with my left over alcoholic beverages?
Section 61A-1.0108, Florida Administrative Code, allows retailers to make a request for return of product to the distributor within 10 days after delivery of the product. Exceptions to the 10-day period include the termination of business. Exceptions to the 10-day rule require the distributor to maintain documentation which details the request, the date, the licensed vendor, business name and address, the vendor’s license number and the product returned. The distributor must make the records available to the division upon request.
I'm in the military and want to bring the wine I purchased for my personal consumption to my new residence in Florida. What do I do?
Individuals may bring alcoholic beverages into the State of Florida in quantities less than or equal to one gallon, without being subject to state excise taxes. A ny active member of any branch of the United States Armed Forces, who legally purchases alcoholic beverages in a foreign country, may import those beverages, tax free, into the State of Florida. This alcoholic beverage inventory may exceed one gallon, but must be for personal consumption only. If a nonmilitary individual brings in quantities of alcoholic beverages that exceed one gallon, the individual must apply for a permit from the Division of Alcoholic 13 Beverages and Tobacco to import the product and pay Florida excise taxes. This application form may be found on the Internet at: http://www.myfloridalicense.com/dbpr/abt/forms/auditing/pdfs/4000a-035.pdf [Reference F.S. 561.11, 562.07, 562.15, 562.16, 562.18] This form must be completed and delivered to the appropriate district office along with the applicable taxes (indicated on the form) prior to importing the beverages into Florida. Upon approval of an application, and payment of the excise taxes, a copy of the application will be forwarded to the applicant as proof of claim to clear Customs. Consumers must pick up these beverages from Customs and transport personally. Also, when entering through Customs, Federal excise taxes must be paid on all beverages imported into the state.
What is the difference between a CDA (Cigarette Distributing Agent) permit, and a CWD (Cigarette Wholesale Distributor) permit?
A Cigarette Distributing Agent (CDA), as defined in F.S. 210.01, is an entity located in this state who acts as an agent for another entity outside or inside the state by receiving cigarettes in interstate or intrastate commerce, storing the cigarettes, and then delivering the cigarettes to wholesale dealers and other distributing agents inside or outside this state. A CDA acts as the middleman between the manufacturer and wholesaler, delivering unstamped cigarettes for the manufacturer to the wholesaler. The CDA does not hold ownership of the cigarettes in inventory. A Cigarette Wholesale Distributor (CWD), as defined in F.S. 210.01, is any person who sells cigarettes to retail 14 dealers or other persons for purposes of resale only, or any person who operates more than one cigarette vending machine located in more than one place of business. A CWD then purchases the cigarettes from the manufacturer through the CDA and holds ownership of the cigarettes. The CWD, however, cannot transport unstamped cigarettes but must place a cigarette tax indicia (stamp) on each package of unstamped cigarettes prior to selling the cigarettes at the wholesale level.
What are gray market cigarettes?
Gray market cigarettes refer to diverted tobacco product not meant for consumption in the United States. This can be in either of two categories:
- Labeled for export – manufactured domestically for export and marked “U.S. Tax Exempt,” “For Sale Outside the U.S.,” etc.
- Foreign Source – manufactured outside the U.S. for sale abroad and may bear a variety of marks or legends that distinguish it from product made for the U.S. domestic market. [Reference: F.S. 210.185, 501.204, Title 15, Chapter 36, U.S.C. 1332, 1333, 1335a]
May I buy alcohol and tobacco from a retailer, and offer them for sale at my retail establishment?
No. Vendor-to-vendor purchases or sales of alcoholic beverages or cigarettes are not allowed. Alcoholic beverages must be purchased from a licensed 15 wholesale distributor. Cigarettes may be purchased for retail purposes only from a person holding a wholesale dealer permit. The invoice must show the place of business for which the purchase is made and the product cannot be transferred to any other place of business for the purpose of resale. [Reference: F.S. 561.14(3) and F.S. 210.15]
How do I obtain information about alcoholic beverage and tobacco licensees?
A data file containing information on businesses or individuals holding an alcoholic beverage or tobacco license may be found on the Public Records page. You may also contact any of our Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco offices if you need information on a specific license. A list of offices can be found on our Contact page.
What are the penalties for violations of alcoholic beverage and tobacco laws and rules?
There are various penalties, depending on the violation and number of violations. Penalty guidelines are defined by Florida Administrative Code 61A- 2.022.
How much revenue is collected from licensees?
The Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco collects approximately $1.9 billion dollars annually in alcoholic beverage and tobacco license fees and taxes.
Does a Florida tobacco permit allow for the sale of cigarettes via the Internet?
Yes. The applicable statutory language requires a tobacco dealer to secure a permit and post it in a conspicuous place. [Reference: F.S. 569.003] To comply with the latter provision, an entity should post a copy of its tobacco license, or its tobacco license number, on its web site. All other regulations pertaining to sales at a Florida location also apply to internet sales.
Does the sale of cigarettes from a private residence constitute a taxable transaction?
Yes. Florida imposes an excise tax on the sale, receipt, purchase, possession, consumption, handling, distribution, and use of cigarettes in the state. [Reference: F.S. 210.02(1)] All cigarettes are presumed taxable unless the person in possession establishes the contrary. [Reference: F.S. 210.02(4)] Florida Statutes and the Florida Administrative Code provide certain exceptions to the taxation of the sale and receipt of cigarettes. [Reference F.S. 210.04(4), F.A.C. 61A-10.005] However, no explicit exception has been made for transactions initiated from private residences. Any sales activity to the ultimate consumer must be done by a retail tobacco permit holder only
What are the requirements of shipping cigarettes via interstate/intrastate commerce?
Any person who advertises, offers, sells, or transfers cigarettes-for profit, into interstate commerce-must comply with the Federal Jenkins Act. [Reference: Title 15 U.S.C. Sec. 376] According to the Jenkins Act, persons who advertise or ship cigarettes into interstate commerce must file a statement with the appropriate tobacco tax administrator (e.g. Florida Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco) stating both the name of the business and its trade. In addition, these registered entities must remit, to each state, a detailed report stating whom the cigarettes were sold to, the brand name, and the quantity sold. The State of Florida, Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco, may prosecute all violations of the Jenkins Act. Failure to comply with the Jenkins Act carries a maximum fine of $1000 or imprisonment up to six months. [Reference: Title 15 U.S.C. Sec. 377] Furthermore, all relevant Florida statutory provisions must be complied with for any cigarette shipments into intrastate commerce. In order to do so, an entity must hold a valid Florida retail tobacco permit, and ensure a Florida tax stamp is affixed to each package of cigarettes it disposes of in this state. [Reference: F.S. 210.06(1)] Failure to do so can subject an entity to the applicable penalties. [Reference: F.S. 210.18]
What type of action can be brought against an entity that fails to comply with the applicable laws regarding shipping cigarettes via interstate commerce?
Failure to report the advertisement or shipment of cigarettes into the State of Florida to the Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco constitutes a direct violation of the Jenkins Act. According to 210.18(1), any person who sells, or offers to sell, unstamped cigarettes in Florida-or who attempts to evade the Florida tobacco tax-is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree for the first occurrence, and a third degree felony for the second occurrence. Furthermore, any person who brings cigarettes into Florida without the applicable tax applied is personally liable for the amount of the tax imposed on such cigarettes. The Division may collect the tax either by filing suit, or by restitution, if the taxpayer is found guilty of importing untaxed cigarettes into the State [Reference: F.S. 210.18(4)]
As an alcoholic beverage distributor, how do the Tied House Evil laws apply to me?
Florida Statute 561.42 provides certain limitations and prohibitions related to the manufacture, distribution, and retail sales of alcoholic beverages. Among other provisions, the statute provides for the following:
- Prohibits, with certain exceptions, gifts, loans of money or property, or rebates between manufacturers or distributors and vendors;
- Limits the extension of credit and provides consequences for nonpayment of sales by a vendor;
- Provides certain restrictions related to manufacturers or distributors giving, lending, renting, selling, or otherwise furnishing advertising materials to a vendor;
- Prohibits distributors of beer from furnishing coupons redeemable by vendors to consumers; and
- Prohibits certain sampling activities
Refer to the web links at www.leg.state.fl.us to view the laws and at https://www.flrules.org/ to view the rules in its entirety. Further questions regarding F.S. 561.42 should be referred to the Office of the General Counsel, Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco at 850.488.0062.
The following is provided to answer some common questions regarding the 2015 legislation pertaining to growlers and craft distilleries. While due care has been exercised to assure the accuracy of this information, the actual statute and administrative rules supersede this information. Growlers :
What kind of license do I need to sell alcoholic beverages?
A growler is an individual container that holds 32, 64, or 128 ounces of malt beverage and is filled at the point of sale. A growler must include an imprint or label that provides information specifying the name of the manufacturer, the brand, and the anticipated percentage of alcohol by volume of the malt beverage. The container must have an unbroken seal or be incapable of being immediately consumed. A licensee authorized to fill or refill growlers may not use growlers for the purposes of distribution or sale outside of the licensed manufacturing premises or licensed vendor premises.
Can I be fined, or my license be revoked for selling Growlers without the proper license?
The Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco may impose a first-degree misdemeanor for sales of the specified container types without the authorized license. Additionally, the division may suspend or revoke a license and impose a fine up to $250 for failure of a licensee to label or seal the specified container types in accordance with the requirements set forth in Florida Statutes 563.06.
What is a craft distillery?
A licensed distillery that produces 75,000 or fewer gallons per calendar year of distilled spirits on its premises and has notified the division in writing of its decision to qualify as a craft distillery.
What types of liquor products do craft distilleries make?
Craft distilleries are permitted to manufacture branded products. Branded products are defined as any distilled spirits product manufactured onsite that requires a federal certificate and label approval by the Federal Alcohol Administration Act or federal regulations.
How many bottles of craft distilleries’ branded product may I buy at a time?
A consumer may purchase, during face to face transactions and within a calendar year, no more than:
- Option 1: Two individual containers of each branded product.
- Option 2: Three individual containers of a single branded product and up to one individual container of a second branded product
- Option 3: Four individual containers of a single branded product
Applicants can use any Livescan vendor that has been approved by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement to submit their fingerprints to the department. Please ensure that the Originating Agency Identification (ORI) number is provided to the vendor when you submit your fingerprints. If you do not provide an ORI number or if you provide an incorrect ORI number to the vendor, the Department of Business and Professional Regulation will not receive your fingerprint results. The applicant is fully responsible for selecting the vendor and ensuring submission of the prints to the department.
When should I submit my fingerprints if I am applying for a license?
We suggest that you submit your fingerprints using a Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) approved Livescan Device Vendor at least 5 days prior to submitting your application for licensure. This will allow sufficient time for FDLE to process your fingerprints and submit the results to the Department. If your fingerprint results are not received by the Department at the time your application is being processed, your application will be deemed incomplete.
How do I find a Livescan vendor in order to submit my fingerprints to the department?
The Department of Business and Professional Regulation accepts electronic fingerprinting service offered by Livescan device vendors that are approved by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and listed at their site. You can view the vendor options and contact information at Livescan Device Vendors List.
What information must I provide to the Livescan vendor I choose?
If you are an applicant seeking a license for any profession regulated by the Department of Business and Professional Regulation, which requires a criminal background search as a condition of licensure, you must provide accurate demographic information at the time your fingerprints are taken. Please make sure that you clearly identify the profession for which you are seeking to be licensed or select “Temporary License for Military Spouse” and submit your fingerprints payment to the vendor. Any inaccurate information that you provide could cause a delay in processing your request. You must provide the correct ORI number
Where do I get the ORI number to submit to the vendor?
The following professions require submission of electronic fingerprints as a part of the licensure application. The ORI number identifies the correct profession and the agency that is responsible for processing your request. The ORI numbers are indicated next to each profession.
|Real Estate Sales and Brokers||-FL920010Z|
|Real Estate Appraisers||– FL922050Z|
|Community Association Managers||– FL921932Z|
|Talent Agents||– FL921670Z|
|Athlete Agents||– FL922040Z|
|Employee Leasing||– FL921880Z|
|Alcoholic, Beverages and Tobacco||– FL 920150Z|
|Home Inspectors||– FL 924250Z|
|Mold Remediation or Assessment||– FL 924260Z|
|Temporary License for Military Spouse||– FL 924270Z (All Boards)|
|Drugs, Devices & Cosmetics||– FL 924780Z|
|Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes (FCTMH)||– FL921900Z|
|Pari-Mutuel Wagering (PMW)||– FL920630Z|
|Pari-Mutuel Slots (PMW)||– FL923230Z|
FDLE will only retain the criminal results from applicants for a period of six months from the date the fingerprints were rolled. Applicants should submit their applications soon after submitting their fingerprints in order to afford themselves an opportunity to resolve any application deficiencies prior to the expiration of the criminal history results
How does the electronic fingerprinting process actually work?
In the traditional method of fingerprinting, ink is applied to each of your fingers which are then “rolled” across a fingerprint card to obtain your prints. With electronic fingerprinting, there is no ink or card. Your fingerprints are “rolled” across a glass plate and scanned. It is faster and cleaner than the traditional method. Electronic fingerprinting reduces the likelihood of illegible fingerprints and will reduce the overall application processing time.
How long will it take to have my fingerprints scanned?
It should only take approximately 5-10 minutes.
How much does electronic fingerprinting cost?
The total fee charged by each vendor varies. Please contact the vendor to obtain this information. The fingerprint results are usually received by the department two to four days after your fingerprints are scanned. You can view the vendor options and contact information at Livescan Device Vendors List.
What do I need to bring with me to the Florida electronic fingerprinting site?
All applicants will be required to bring two (2) forms of identification to the electronic fingerprinting site on the day of scheduled fingerprinting. One of the two types of identification must bear your picture and signature such as a driver’s license, state identification card or passport. Applicants cannot be permitted to be fingerprinted without proper identification
I submitted my fingerprint through an FDLE approved vendor, but I have now received a deficiency letter regarding my fingerprints? What should I do?
As of the date of the mailing of the deficiency letter, your electronic fingerprinting results have not been transmitted to the Department of Business and Professional Regulation. We will not be able to process your application until we have received this information. You should contact your fingerprint vendor to determine if they have submitted the prints to the FDLE for processing. Vendor contact information can be viewed at Livescan Device Vendors List.
What should I do if I am notified by the Department of Business and Professional Regulation that the Florida Department of Law Enforcement or the Federal Bureau of Investigation determined my electronic fingerprints were illegible?
The electronic fingerprint scanning machines are equipped to determine if your fingerprints scanned successfully; however, if it is determined by the Federal Bureau of Investigation that your prints were not legible, we will send you a notification letter asking you to go back to the same vendor that did your initial prints and schedule a re-roll of your prints. You will be required to bring the notification letter with you as information such as the TCN (Transaction Control Number) and TCR (Transaction Control Reference) must be identified and used at the time of the reroll.
How long are my fingerprints valid for?
DBPR will retain results of the prints for 12 months from the date your digital fingerprints were electronically received by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. FDLE retain the prints for 180 days only. If your prints have expired at the time your application is submitted to the department, you will be required to submit new prints again.
Can I use my recent prints to apply for another professional license?
Per FBI regulation, your prints cannot be shared between professions or with other agencies. You are required to have separate prints for each license you are applying for, using the correct ORI.
What kind of assistance can the DBPR provide if I have problems with a Livescan vendor?
As an applicant, you have the choice to select a vendor approved by the FDLE. Since DBPR does not approve or regulate Livescan vendors, you will be fully responsible for the fingerprint submission and for ensuring that the prints have been timely submitted to the FDLE. The DBPR retrieves the fingerprint results from the Department of Law Enforcement through a secure web site. We suggest that you ask the vendor for a receipt showing payment date and other pertinent information in case you need to go back to them for assistance.
If I am living out of state, how do I submit my fingerprints without having to travel to Florida?
Go to the FDLE Livescan Device Vendors List and choose a Livescan vendor that is certified as “hard card scanning capable”. These vendors have the ability to process fingerprints through additional methods, including the use of hard copy fingerprint cards. If the vendor requests that you provide a fingerprint card, you may call the Department of Business and Professional Regulation at 850.487.1395 to obtain one. When requesting a card, please specify the profession for which you are seeking licensure.
What if I am living out of state and unable to secure my fingerprints through a “hard card scanning” capable vendor?
If you are unable to obtain fingerprinting services through an FDLE approved “hard card scanning capable” vendor, please contact the Department of Business and Professional Regulation by calling 850.487.1395 to request the alternative procedure for fingerprint processing and fingerprint card. Each fingerprint card has a specific ORI code identifying the profession. When requesting a card, please specify the profession for which you are seeking licensure. Once the fingerprint card is received, you may then go to a local law enforcement office in your area to have your fingerprints rolled onto the card. Other information will be completed at the local law enforcement agency. For all programs, the completed card must be mailed to: FLDBPR, Florida Fingerprinting Program, Prints Inc., 119 East Park Avenue, Tallahassee, FL 32301, where the fingerprint card will be scanned. Prior to mailing your fingerprint card, you must complete the steps listed at https://pearson.ibtfingerprint.com/ in order to register and make an advance payment of $50.00 plus Florida Sales Tax. Do not send any money to Prints Inc. Out of State Alcoholic Beverage and Tobacco Applicants only: Your fingerprint card can be obtained from the Department of Business and Professional Regulation by contacting the Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco at 850.488.8284, or one of the division’s district offices. A listing of the district offices can be found here.. Once the fingerprint card is received, you may then go to a local law enforcement officer in your area to have your fingerprints rolled onto the card. Information specific to the Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco will be preprinted on the fingerprint card. Other information will be completed at the local law enforcement agency. The instructions for submitting your fingerprint card are outlined above.
What happens after I get my fingerprints done using a Livescan vendor?
The Livescan vendor will send your scanned fingerprint images to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) using the ORI number you provide to the vendor. The FDLE/FBI will process the fingerprints and provide the results to the Department of Business and Professional Regulation, usually within three to five business days from the scan date. You do not have to do anything with your fingerprint results unless the department contacts you for additional information.
How can I determine the status of my Livescan transaction?
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) has developed a new feature that will allow an individual or organization to perform a search to determine the status of an applicant Livescan transaction. The Civil Workflow Control System (CWCS) serves as the FDLE automated applicant criminal history request system. The status of a CWCS transaction can now be provided from a search within the newly developed “Civil Workflow Control System Transaction Status Search”. The only identifier needed to perform the search is the Transaction Control Number (TCN) which is generated at the time the applicant information and fingerprints are captured. The “Civil Workflow Control System Transaction Status Search” is available to the public at: https://web.fdle.state.fl.us/search/app/tcnlookup
What happens if the fingerprint results indicate that I have a criminal history?
If you have a criminal history, your application will be reviewed by the department to ensure that your criminal history will not statutorily disqualify you from becoming licensed in that particular profession. Depending on the type of criminal offense(s), your application might require board review or require your personal appearance before the board. You will be notified in writing of any required appearance before the board.
Brand Renewal Discrepancy Resolution
If during the renewal process you find discrepancies between your records and the Department’s, please proceed as follows:
- Follow the renewal process for those brands that you desire to renew.
- To resolve the discrepancies, please send an explanation of the discrepancy and applicable supporting documentation to: Department of Business and Professional Regulation 2601 Blair Stone Road Tallahassee FL 32399-1021
Note: the FAQ: “Step-by-Step Online Brand Renewal Process with Screen Shots” includes instructions on how to print a report of your registered brands that are in a current and active status.
The following is provided to answer some common questions regarding the recently enacted amendment to Florida’s enclosed indoor workplace smoking ban. While due care has been exercised to assure the accuracy of this information, the actual statute and administrative rules supersede this information.
What Florida law bans smoking in enclosed indoor workplaces?
The following sections of Florida law as amended by the 2003 Legislature: Chapter 386, Part II, Florida Statutes, “the Florida Clean Indoor Air Act,” Chapter 561, Florida Statutes; and the following sections of Florida Administrative Code as recently adopted: 61AER03-1.
When did the ban on enclosed indoor workplace smoking begin?
July 1, 2003
Where is smoking allowed now that the ban has gone into effect?
The law provides that smoking may be allowed in the following places:
- Private residences not being used commercially for childcare, adult care, or a combination
- Retail tobacco shops
- Hotel guest rooms designated as smoking rooms
- Smoking cessation programs that have been approved by the Florida Department of Health
- Medical or scientific research
- “In-transit” airport smoking lounges under control of U.S. Customs and Border Protection
- Stand-alone bars (see below)
- Outdoor patios (see below)
- Membership association [See s. 386.203(12)(13), Florida Statutes] facilities used
- exclusively for non-commercial activity
When is a membership association exempted from the Florida Clean Indoor Air Act?
An association may be exempt if the facility is owned or leased by and used exclusively for noncommercial activities performed by members and their guests. Any services performed on the premises must be of a noncommercial nature and performed by members only whether compensated or not. The association must also have a current exemption under s. 501(c) (3,4,7,8,10,19) or s. 501 (d) of the Internal Revenue Code.
If a membership association holds a weekly bingo game that is open to the public and sometimes rents the facility for weddings, parties, etc., how does the smoking ban apply?
Smoking may be allowed in membership association facilities used exclusively for guests and members engaged in noncommercial activity.
Is smoking permitted in a convenience store?
No. Smoking is not permitted unless the establishment meets one of the statutory exclusions or exemptions.
When did enforcement begin, and who enforces the smoking ban?
Those in violation of the law after July 1, 2003 are subject to enforcement action, as a result of a complaint, by the Division of Hotels & Restaurants or the Division of Alcoholic Beverages & Tobacco if licensed by the Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR), or the Florida Department of Health if any other indoor workplace.
How are complaints filed?
If the establishment is a Department of Business and Professional Regulation licensee, provide the complaint information to the department:
- On the department’s web site at www.MyFloridaLicense.com
- By contacting the department’s Customer Contact Center at 850.487.1395; or
- By mailing directly to the Department of Business and Professional Regulation, 2601 Blair Stone Road, Tallahassee, FL 32399-1021.
For all other enclosed workplaces call the Florida Department of Health at 1.800.337.3742.
What happens if there is a complaint about smoking in my establishment?
The department will review all complaints regarding violations alleged at a licensed premises. If the complaint is substantiated, the department may take enforcement action including monetary penalties
What are the penalties for violating the ban?
Penalties are established for individuals [See s. 386.208, Florida Statutes], for stand-alone bars [See s. 561.695(8), Florida Statutes] and for establishments that are not stand-alone bars [See 386.207(3), Florida Statutes]. The penalties for establishments which are not stand-alone bars are:
- First Violation: Civil penalty of not less than $250 and not to exceed $750; and
- Subsequent Violations: Civil penalty of not less than $500 and not to exceed $2,000.
The penalties for stand-alone bars are:
- First violation: Warning or a fine of up to $500, or both;
- Second violation: If within 2 years of the first violation, a fine of not less than $500 or more than $2,000;
- Third violation: If within 2 years of the first violation, a suspension of the smoking designation not to exceed 30 days and a fine of not less than $500 or more than $2,000;
- Fourth and subsequent violations: 60-day suspension of smoking designation and a fine of not less than $500 or more than $2,000, or revocation of smoking designation.
What responsibility does the business have?
The proprietor or other person in charge of an enclosed indoor workplace must develop and implement a policy regarding the smoking prohibitions established in law. The policy may include, but is not limited to, procedures to be taken when the proprietor or other person in charge witnesses or is made aware of a violation of the law in the enclosed indoor workplace and must include a policy which prohibits an employee from smoking in the enclosed indoor workplace.
If a customer refuses to stop smoking in an enclosed indoor workplace, what should the owner or operator do?
As with any action that is unlawful, the establishment may seek assistance from local law enforcement.
What is a stand-alone bar?
Florida Statute defines “stand-alone bar” as “any licensed premises devoted during any time of operation predominantly or totally to serving alcoholic beverages, intoxicating beverages, or intoxicating liquors, or any combination thereof, for consumption on the licensed premises; in which the serving of food, if any, is merely incidental to the consumption of any such beverage; and the licensed premises is not located within, and does not share any common entryway or common indoor area with, any other enclosed indoor workplace, including any business for which the sale of food or any other product or service is more than an incidental source of gross revenue. A place of business constitutes a stand-alone bar in which the service of food is merely incidental in accordance with this subsection if the licensed premises derives no more than 10 percent of its gross revenue from the sale of food consumed on the licensed premises.” “Stand-alone bar” is the designation given to those licensed premises that operate a business that meets the definition of a stand-alone bar in s. 386.203(11), Florida Statutes, if the only food provided is limited to “nonperishable snack food items.” “Stand-alone bar with food” is the designation given to those licensed premises that operate a business meeting the definition of a stand-alone bar in s. 386.203(11), Florida Statutes, in which the serving of food is merely incidental and the licensed premises derives no more than 10 percent of its gross revenue from the sale of food consumed on the licensed premises.
How does an establishment become a stand-alone bar?
To qualify, an establishment with an active alcoholic beverage license permitting consumption on the premises must notify the division of its intent to allow smoking and must continue to meet all requirements of a stand-alone bar (see above requirements). (Please note: merely electing to make the stand-alone bar designation does not establish qualification for the exemption.)
- This is done by filing Form DBPR ABT-6039 “Notification of Election to Permit Tobacco Smoking in the Licensed Premises” with the Division of Alcoholic Beverages & Tobacco, 2601 Blair Stone Road, Tallahassee, FL 32399-1021.
Is there a fee to become a stand-alone bar?
There is no fee to add this designation to your alcoholic beverage license.
What types of licenses are not eligible to be designated as a stand-alone bar?
The following licenses are not eligible for a standalone bar designation:
- S – Special Hotel
- SH – Special Hotel in counties with population of 50,000 or less
- SR – Special Restaurant issued on or after January 1, 1958
- SFS – Special Food Service
- SBX – Special Bowling
- SPX – Pleasure, Excursion, Sightseeing, or Charter boats
- SAL – Special Airport
- SCX – Special Civic Center
- SCC – Special County Commission
- X – Airplanes, Buses, and Steamships
- IX – Railroad Cars
- XL – Passenger Waiting Lounge operated by an airline
- PVP – Passenger Vessels engaged in foreign commerce
- 11AL – American Legion Post permitted to sell to general public
- 11C – Social, Tennis, Racquetball, Beach, or Cabana Club
- 11CT – John and Mable Ringling Museum
- 11GC – Golf Club
- 11PA – Symphony, Live Performance Theatre, Performing Arts Center
- 11CE – Licensed vendors exempt from payment of surcharge tax
- 11CS – Special Club license; not transferable, consumption on premise only
- 12RT – Dog or Horse Track or Jai Alai Fronton
- 13CT – Catering
- HBX – Special Horse Breeders
- FEX – Special Public Fairs/Expositions
- 1APS, 2APS, 3PS, 3APS, 3BPS, 3CPS, and 3DPS – Package Stores
Can an establishment make physical changes to qualify as a stand-alone bar?
Before making changes, an operator should first rely on s. 386.203(5) and 386.203(11), Florida Statutes, and should consider consulting an attorney.
Can an establishment that serves food close off one half with a solid wall, making it a bar with a separate outside entrance and no food, permit smoking in that area?
No, before allowing smoking in this situation, the licensee would have to obtain a separate license for those premises
What are the conditions or restrictions for a stand-alone bar to allow smoking?
To allow smoking a stand-alone bar must meet the following conditions:
- No more than 10 percent of the gross revenue of the business may be derived from the retail sale of food consumed on the licensed premises;
- All food must be paid for by a patron at a charge that reasonably approximates the retail value of the food; and
- Any food given away at no charge must be restricted to customary bar snacks only.
- A standalone bar must be totally or predominantly dedicated to the serving of alcoholic beverages for consumption on premises. “Predominantly” means that the revenue from the sale of alcoholic beverages for consumption on premises must exceed all other categories of gross sales listed in Florida Administrative Rule 61A 7.009.
What will happen to a licensee who has not made the election to permit smoking on their licensed premises and is permitting smoking?
If a complaint is received on such an establishment, the licensee can be issued a notice to comply with the requirements of the law. Failure to comply within 30 days will result in the following penalties:
- First Violation: Civil penalty of not less than $250 and not to exceed $750; and
- Subsequent Violations: Civil penalty of not less than $500 and not to exceed $2,000.
May free food, such as a “happy hour buffet” be offered at an establishment with a smoking designation?
A caterer may deliver food to the stand-alone bar; however, only the licensed operator may provide or serve food on the licensed premises.
What are bar snacks?
“Customary bar snack” means popcorn and any ready to eat food item, commercially prepared and packaged off the premises, served without addition or preparation, that is not a potentially hazardous food. The definition of potentially hazardous food, provided in subparagraph 1-201.10(B)(61), Food Code, 1999 Recommendations of the United States Public Health Service/Food and Drug Administration, incorporated herein by reference, shall apply to Chapter 61AER03-1, F.A.C. Customary bar snacks include:
- Pre-packaged or bulk items: chips (potato, plantain, yucca, etc.), pretzels, nuts, crackers, trail mix, party mix, and pork rinds, and the like.
- Pickled items: eggs, pickles, pigs feet and sausages.
The above may be provided without charge, but may also be provided for sale.
What is an outdoor patio?
An outdoor patio is a place NOT predominantly or totally bounded all sides and above by physical barriers regardless of whether such barriers consist of or include, without limitation, uncovered openings, screened or otherwise partially covered openings, or open or closed windows, jalousies, doors or the like. A place is “predominantly” bounded by physical barriers anytime BOTH of the following conditions exist:
- it is more than 50 percent covered from above by a physical barrier that excludes rain, and
- more than 50 percent of the combined surface area of its sides is covered by closed physical barriers. [See s. 386.203(5), Florida Statutes]
If a licensed premises, either a stand-alone bar or a food service establishment, serves food in an outside seating area, is smoking permitted there?
Yes. However, if the area is more than 50 percent covered from above by a physical barrier that excludes rain, and more than 50 percent of the combined surface area of its sides is covered by closed physical barriers, smoking is not permitted in the area.
Can I allow my customers to bring food onto my licensed premises if I have a stand-alone bar with a smoking designation?
No. All food consumed on the licensed premises must be provided by the licensed operator.
Can a licensee with a consumption on premises license close the kitchen at 10:00 p.m. and then permit smoking?
No. There is no hourly designation for smoking. Smoking is allowed in stand-alone bars that meet the requirements of the law as described in question 13.
Is there a requirement for certain signs?
Yes. For stand-alone bars with smoking designation, signs stating that smoking is permitted must be posted in a conspicuous place at each and every entrance to the establishment. It is left to the establishment’s discretion to determine the color and design of the signs to be posted. Additionally, after the licensee notifies the Division of Alcoholic Beverages & Tobacco of the election to operate as a stand-alone bar, the licensee must post a notice of such intention in the same place the operator’s current alcoholic beverage license is posted. The notice shall affirm the operator’s intent to comply with the conditions and qualifications of a stand-alone bar imposed pursuant to Part II of Chapter 386 and the Beverage Law. Enclosed indoor workplaces that had designated smoking areas prior to this legislation must conspicuously post a sign stating that smoking is now prohibited. This requirement applies to restaurants that were previously required to maintain a “no smoking” section. The requirement will expire on July 1, 2005. While smoking is allowed in designated smoking guestrooms at public lodging establishments, no sign requirement is currently in the law. For all other enclosed indoor workplaces, in order to increase public awareness, the proprietor may, at his or her discretion, post “No Smoking” signs.
Can an owner or their employees smoke in the kitchen area or any other area such as a break room?
No smoking is ever permitted in kitchen or food prep areas. Otherwise, unless the business is eligible for and has made the election to be designated as a stand-alone bar that permits smoking, neither the owner nor his employees may smoke in the licensed premises.
Is there a certain distance from a licensed premises that a person must be in order to smoke?
Is there a record-keeping requirement related to the smoking designation?
Stand-alone bars holding an “ss” or “ssf” designation shall maintain records to substantiate reports, affidavits and designation qualifications. Records of all purchases of food, all gross retail sales of alcohol for consumption on the licensed premises, all gross retail sales of alcohol for consumption off the licensed premises, all gross retail sales of food sold for consumption on premises, all gross retail sales of food sold for consumption off the premises, and gross revenue from all other sales shall be separately documented. These records include, but are not limited to: purchase invoices, sales tickets, inventory records, receiving records, cash register journal tapes, on premises food sales records, computer records generated from automatic dispensing devices, and any other record documenting or evidencing sales. Records of all purchases and gross retail sales of food consumed on premises must be separately documented. Department of Revenue Sales Tax Returns are acceptable as a record of total sales revenue. All required records must be maintained on the premises, or a designated place approved in writing by the Division of Alcoholic Beverages & Tobacco for a period of 3 years and provided within 14 days of a request by the division. The required records must be legible, clear, and in the English language.
What is required for stand-alone bars to keep or renew their smoking designation?
To retain its smoking designation, the establishment must continue to meet all stand-alone bar requirements and must file the following with the Division of Alcoholic Beverages & Tobacco: 0
- At the first renewal of the beverage license that occurs at least 12 months after the initial smoking designation, the licensee must file an affidavit verifying that food sales for the preceding 12 months did not exceed 10 percent of the gross revenue of the business.
- For each subsequent year, to continue to qualify as a stand-alone bar, the licensee must provide to the division annually, on or before the licensee’s annual renewal date, an affidavit that certifies that food sales for the preceding 12 months did not exceed 10 percent of the gross revenue of the business.
- The 10 percent food sales requirement is continual, not annual, and audits are based on any consecutive 2-month period.
Failure to file the required documents or reports will result in loss of the smoking designation and smoking will not be allowed on the premises.
Can I be audited if my establishment has a smoking designation?
Yes. The department shall have access and the right to examine all records and source documents used to determine compliance with this rule. Licensees must give the department the means, facilities, and opportunity to verify the accuracy of these records. The 10 percent food sales requirement is continual, not annual, and audits are based on consecutive 2-month periods.
How does an establishment change its stand-alone bar designation?
To change this status, the licensee must simply notify the division of its desire to cancel its designation as a stand-alone bar.
Who do I contact for more information?
For more information regarding enforcement for premises licensed by DBPR please contact: The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation 2601 Blair Stone Road Tallahassee, FL 32399 Phone: 850.487.1395 Email: Call.Center@dbpr.state.fl.us Internet:www.MyFlorida.com/dbpr For more information regarding all other enclosed workplaces or the Florida Clean Indoor Act please call the Florida Department of Health at 1.800.337.3742.
If you filed a zero report
Due to an incomplete data upload some people received the second notice in error. Please give the below information to the division and we will research the particular license and will notify you if we need additional information.
- License Number
- Contact Name
- Phone Number
If you filed and paid with a personal or business check;
If you have more than one license/location and reported then all under one license and paid with one certified check or money order, we still need a surcharge form for each license.
If you filed and paid with a certified check or money order;
Please give the below information to the division and we will research the particular license and will notify you if we need additional information.
- License Number
- Contact Name
- Phone Number
All requests for publications, documents, forms, applications for licenses, permits and other similar certifications can be obtained by contacting the Customer Contact Center.
Thomas R. Philpot, Director
Division of Alcoholic Beverages & Tobacco
2601 Blair Stone Road
Tallahassee, FL 32399-0791