Published: 03 July 2014
Q: I allowed a potential purchaser of my premises to use and trade a shop area as an off-licence. Unfortunately, our negotiations broke down but he will not leave my premises! I am now going through expensive litigation to remove him. I withdrew my consent for him to trade under my Premises Licence, and removed him as the Designated Premises Supervisor but he has submitted a new application for a Premises Licence on my building. The Council has accepted this application as valid! This cannot be correct?
A: Unfortunately, there is no requirement under the Licensing Act 2003 for the Council to establish who is the legal owner of a premises before they accept an application as being valid. The individual is only required to satisfy the Licensing Authority that he proposes to carry on a business which involves the use of the premises for licensable activities. Clearly he can do this. Your only real option in light of this ‘hostile’ application, is to make a representation based on the licensing objectives which, in essence, could identify the applicant as being wholly unreliable in light of the current legal proceedings, and that he has no ability to control what occurs on the premises because he has no proprietary interest in the property.
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