Having a liquor license can help a restaurant with relatively thin margins make a profit. Be able to offer beer, wine and mixed drinks to patrons along with their meal can incentivize people to stay longer and consume more. Staff members can also expect bigger tips when customers spend more and order multiple rounds of drinks.
Once you have invested the time and money necessary to secure a liquor license, your business needs to retain that license. Carefully training all of your workers about liquor law and alcohol serving rules in Colorado is an important responsibility, as failing to do so might mean that your employees could put your license at risk.
When do businesses lose their liquor licenses?
There are many violations of state alcohol law that could cost your business its liquor license. For example, if one of your servers or bartenders decides to serve drinks to their friends or siblings who are not yet 21, that underage service might endanger your business.
However, not all the violations are that obvious and egregious. The steps a server takes to get a good tip could also put your liquor license at risk. Your business cannot serve alcohol to someone already visibly impaired. Unfortunately, cutting someone off often provokes an unhappy response.
A server knows they will likely lose their tip or at least see it shrink significantly if they have to decline someone’s drink order. That financial pressure might make your staff feel like serving someone a final drink despite their openly-inebriated appearance isn’t a big deal. Training your staff to handle this process delicately and about the risks of over-serving can help you avoid compliance issues.
How compliance-focused is your current training process?
One of the best ways to protect your business is to routinely review its alcohol and training practices to make sure they are in line with state law. Going over your training documentation and employment contracts to make sure there is adequate focus on alcohol compliance and safety could help your company avoid an expensive issue in the future.
For those who have lost their liquor license or hope to reinstate it, new training practices and legal action may help set them up for success.