Ban on personal license application is revoked


9th September 2015

The Air Weapons and Licensing (Scotland) Act 2015 now includes a welcome reprieve for personal license holders who missed the refresher training deadline.

It seems like there’s no end to the well documented challenges for operators in the license trade in recent years. However, the consequence of missing the refresher training requirement for personal licence holders (PLHs) has the potential to devastate a business like no other.  Missing either the training or the notification deadline results in mandatory revocation of your license but the sting in the tail was that once the PLH had their Personal Licence revoked they could not reapply for five years!

There were 1,000s of PLHs who had their Licences revoked and faced five years of uncertainty after the deadline of 31 August 2014.

This led to an outcry, and credit to the Government they took action and acknowledged that the five year ban was disproportionate for what is, in essence, an administrative oversight. Now special provisions in the Air Weapons and Licensing Act 2015 have been fast-tracked to address the matter.

The 2015 Act has now removed the five year ban on applying for a new Personal Licence. Therefore, individuals who had their Personal Licence revoked (for failing to refresh - note the five year ban still applies to other revocations such as on conduct grounds) can now reapply.

We recommend that any PLH in this situation sit a full and up-to-date, accredited, personal licence course – this is necessary due to changes in the syllabus in recent years.

However, with this good news comes a warning for others – PLHs are still having their licences revoked for failing to get to grips with the refresher training requirement.  Please note that the need to complete refresher training is a rolling requirement for all PLHs.

Refresher training must be undertaken within five years of the grant of the Licence and importantly, evidence (the certificate) of the training must be provided to the relevant licensing board within five years and three months of the date of grant. Training must be done by an approved provider, similar to the original personal licence course.

Notwithstanding the removal of the five year ban, if the PLH is the Designated Premises Manager and the licence is revoked, this could have a knock on effect on the premises licence and the business could be forced to stop selling alcohol for a period of time.

Niall Hassard, Associate in Lindsays Licensing team

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