What is the Personal Licence ?
The PLH Licence, Personal Licence, allows you to authorise the sale of alcohol at licensed premises. It is commonly referred to as Personal Licence and is issued by the local council. There is no expiration date for the Licence. The Personal Licence is typically for those who work in the hospitality industry like bar staff and event managers. The Personal Licence ensures holders have the necessary skills and qualifications to operate legally, whilst also maintaining a safe environment for their customers, employees and coworkers.
Do I need an Personal Licence?
As per the 2003 Licensing Act, it is a legal requirement for premises that serve alcohol, also known as licensed premises, to have a named Personal Licence holder.
Selling alcohol without an PLH Licence can result in a fine of up to £20,000 and a 6 months prison sentence.
If you are based in Scotland you will need to apply for a Scottish Certificate for Personal Licence Holder (SCPLH).
To be eligible for an Personal Licence, you must be 18 years of age, have the right to work in the UK and have passed the APLH Course. You also must not have forfeited a Personal Licence in the previous 5 years or have been convicted of any relevant offences.
How to apply for a Personal Licence
Here are the steps for getting your PLH Licence:
Pass the APLH Course
The APLH Course takes 1 day and is assessed by a multiple choice exam. You will receive a certificate for the following qualification: Level 2 Award for Personal Licence Holders. Keep it safe as you will need to submit this as part of your application.
Visit your local council's website
To start the application form, visit your local council's website and refer to the licence section. This should be the council where you live, not work.
You will need a recent Disclosure and Barring Service check as part of your application. It costs £25 for a basic check. For further information, click here
You require 2 countersigned passport photographs for your APLH application. This means that the photos must be signed on the rear by: 'someone of good standing in the community', who is also a UK resident with a British Passport. It cannot be signed by someone that is related to you.
Finalise your application
For your Personal Licence Application, you will need the following:
Original qualification certificate (Level 2 Award for Personal Licence Holders)
Recent DBS check
2 countersigned photographs
Pay £37 fee
Disclosure of convictions form (if applicable)
Submit application by post
Find your local council's postal address online and send your application by post. The council should get back to you within a month with their decision.
Receive your licence in the post
You are finally licensed! Your Personal Licence is valid indefinitely.
The Personal Licence (or APLH) Training Course
To apply for your Personal Licence, you will need the Level 2 Award for Personal Licence Holders qualification. You can obtain this by completing the APLH Training Course, which takes 1 day. Some of the units include:
- Unauthorised licensable activities
- Police powers and rights of entry
- Legal and social responsibilities of the personal licence holder
- Illegal drugs, the effects of alcohol and disorderly conduct
The APLH Training Course is assessed by a multiple choice exam which contains 40 multiple-choice questions. When you pass, you will you will receive a certificate. Keep this safe, as it is part of your application.
Cost of the Personal Licence
Your Personal Licence Application costs £37, which is payable to your local council. You may also incur extra costs (around £25) when obtaining your basic DBS Check. Your Personal Licence does not have an expiry date.