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.
The premises licence holder or club premises certificate holder must ensure that an age verification policy applies to the premises in relation to the sale or supply of alcohol. This must as a minimum require individuals who appear to the responsible person to be under the age of 18 years of age to produce on request, before being served alcohol, identification bearing their photograph, date of birth, and a holographic mark.
Mandatory Condition 5
(1) The premises licence holder or club premises certificate holder must ensure that an age verification policy is adopted in respect of the premises in relation to the sale or supply of alcohol.
(2) The designated premises supervisor in relation to the premises licence must ensure that the supply of alcohol at the premises is carried on in accordance with the age verification policy.
(3) 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 either (a) a holographic mark, or (b) an ultraviolet feature.
Guidance relating to this condition
The premises licence holder or club premises certificate holder must ensure that staff (in particular, staff who are involved in the supply of alcohol) are made aware of the existence and content of the age verification policy which applies by the premises.
The designated premises supervisor (where there is one) must ensure that the supply of alcohol at the premises is carried on in accordance with the age verification policy. This means that the DPS has personal responsibility for ensuring that staff are not only aware of, but are also applying, the age verification policy.
It is acceptable, and indeed encouraged, for premises to have an age verification policy which requires individuals who appear to the responsible person to be under an age greater than 18 to produce such identification on request. For example, if premises have a policy that requires any individual that appears to be under the age of 21 to produce identification that meets the criteria listed above.
Licence holders should consider carefully what steps they are required to take to comply with the age verification requirements under the 2003 Act in relation to sales of alcohol made remotely. These include sales made online, by telephone and mail order sales, and alcohol delivery services. Each of these sales must comply with the requirements of the 2003 Act.
The mandatory condition requires that age verification takes place before a person is served alcohol. Where alcohol is sold remotely (for example, online) or through a telephone transaction, the sale is made at this point but the alcohol is not actually served until it is delivered to the customer. Age verification measures (for example, online age verification) should be used to ensure that alcohol is not sold to any person under the age of 18. However, licence holders should also consider carefully what steps are appropriate to ensure that age verification takes place before the alcohol is served (i.e. physically delivered) to the customer to be satisfied that the customer is aged 18 or over. It is, therefore, the responsibility of the person serving or delivering the alcohol to ensure that age verification has taken place and that photo ID has been checked if the person appears to be less than 18 years of age.
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 supermarket.
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.
Download a minimum standard Age Verification Policy (pdf 17KB).
For more information contact Licensing Unit by telephone: 01634 306 000 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Write to: Licensing Unit, Medway Council, Gun Wharf, Dock Road, Chatham, Kent ME4 4TR