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Age Verification Policy
This condition is intended to ensure that all licensed premises
operate at a minimum standard of due diligence to ensure they do
not sell alcohol to minors.
Mandatory Condition 5
(1) The premises licence holder or club premises certificate
holder shall ensure that an age verification policy applies to the
premises in relation to the sale or supply of alcohol.
(2) The policy must require individuals who appear to the
responsible person to be under 18 years of age (or such older age
as may be specified in the policy) to produce on request, before
being served alcohol, identification bearing their photograph, date
of birth and a holographic mark.
Guidance relating to this condition
As a minimum, the premises must have a written
policy. Staff and management must be fully aware and have received
training on the contents within the policy. The age
verification policy does not have to be a separate document as long
as it forms part of a staff training manual. A poster is
not an age verification policy.
An age verification policy outlines how staff
will ensure that alcohol is not served to under 18s (or any older
age specified in your own policy). There are huge difficulties in
guessing someone's age correctly. When your livelihood may be
affected guessing isn't an option; you need to be certain. So why
not adopt a Challenge 21 or Challenge 25 policy for your
Within the policy you should refer to the
requirement of identification as proof of age. Recognising and
asking for approved proof of age is the best way of preventing
underage sales because fake ID cards are widely available. Ask
for identification that shows their photograph, date of birth
and a holographic mark such as passport, driving licence,
pass approved id card.
The law does not say in detail what you must or must not do, so
there is flexibility as to how you may achieve the requirements.
For example the policy adopted in an independent convenience store
may be very different to that applied in a nightclub or a major
Our guidance has been developed with local retailers in
mind and suggests what we consider to be best practice. You may
choose to do things differently but you will need to be able to
demonstrate that your policy satisfies the mandatory condition. The
Home Office provides further guidance can be found on its
alcohol licensing conditions page.
Download the Age Verification Policy (pdf
17KB). To use this file you will need Adobe Acrobat Reader. If you
do not have this on your computer, please use our advice page.
Always bear in mind that the ultimate objective of the policy is
to prevent anyone under 18 being illegally supplied with
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