How to Get an Ohio Liquor License

by Contributing Writer; Updated September 26, 2017
You must have a license to serve liquor in Ohio.

If you wish to sell alcohol in the state of Ohio in a place where it will be consumed on the premises, such as a bar or club, you must first be issued an Ohio liquor license. Applying for an Ohio liquor license doesn't have to be difficult, especially if you know a bit about the licensing process.

Items you will need

  • Application
  • Application fee
  • Notary
Step 1

Obtain an application by calling the Division of Liquor Control's Licensing Office, visiting the Ohio's Division of Liquor Control website or writing the Licensing Office (see Resources). If you choose to submit your request in writing, include a self-addressed, stamped envelope.

Step 2

Complete the application properly and have it notarized.

Step 3

Send the completed application back to the Division of Liquor Control's Licensing Office along with the application fee.

Step 4

Wait to see if you are eligible to receive a liquor license. Eligibility will depend on the number of licenses already in the area where you are seeking yours. These numbers are determined by the population of each tax district. If there is no opening, you will have to wait until there is one.

Step 5

Expect a background check to be run on your establishment and on yourself. This background check will be conducted by your local police department.

Step 6

Prepare for a visit from the Licensing Office. The officer will inspect the premises, draw a diagram of it and check to see whether any schools, churches, playgrounds, libraries, or parks are within 500 feet of the establishment.

Step 7

Expect to receive your license in 10 to 12 weeks if there are no objections and there is a license vacancy in your area.

Warnings

  • A hearing might be requested by either the legislative body or any public institution to stop the process. If this happens, you will be notified by certified mail and should consider consulting an attorney.

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