3PS Quota Liquor Licenses in Pinellas County Florida

Acquiring a liquor license in the state of Florida can be tricky. Dozens of licenses exist, occupying their own classes applicable to every circumstance you can imagine. Yet, determining which license you need is the easiest part. The purchase cost, annual fees, and availability vary depending on the county in which your business resides.

So, while acquiring a 3PS quota liquor license in Pinellas County Florida follows statewide licensing regulations, some particular are unique to the county. Before delving into just how they differ, it is crucial that you confirm that the 3PS license is the correct choice for you.

What is a 3PS Quota Liquor License?

The name “3PS” communicates the key characteristics of this license. The 3 denotes that the sale of all three categories of alcoholic beverage is authorized by this one license, while the “PS” limits this to “packaged sales” only. A 3PS license allows the packaged sale of beer, wine, and liquor. You can’t use this license to sell open containers of alcohol, nor does it allow alcohol to be consumed on the premises.

The “quota” in the name is the class designation. Quota class licenses are limited in number, based on the population of a given county. For instance, the 3PS licenses have a quota of 1 for every 7500 citizens. If the number of licenses meets that quota, no new ones can be issued. Because of this, the likelihood of acquiring a 3PS license from the state is low.

How Do You Get a 3PS Quota Liquor License in Pinellas County Florida?

Even though the chances of success are low, applying directly to the state is still a possible way to obtain your license. Failing that, quota licenses are also available to buy directly from current license holders.

Applying to the State

The application process to receive a license from the state is standardized, and involves filling out a form which can be found at the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation’s online licensing portal. When applying in Pinellas County, the licensing fee will be set at the highest amount, due to the county population exceeding 100,000 citizens. This means you will need to pay $1365 annually.

Other application requirements, such as fingerprinting, submission of any criminal record, business license, and Employer Identification Number, are required anywhere in the state. Along with those, you’ll need the following permits:

  • Alcohol Tax Permit
  • Building permit
  • Health permit
  • Sales Tax Permit
  • Signage permit
  • Zoning permit

It is also possible to obtain a license through the state via lottery. When the quota in a county is full, you can apply to be entered into a lottery for the next available license.

Buying Directly From a License Holder

Not everyone who gets a liquor license intends to use it themselves. Sometimes, people acquire them through the state in order to sell them on the private market. Just as often, businesses close down and, to avoid paying annual fees for a license they are no longer using, resort to that same market.

Because of the limited supply and high demand, the prices for these licenses are often in the six figure range. Pinellas County is no exception to this rule. A 2018 article in the Tampa Bay Times reported a license in the county priced at $280,000 dollars, and this is still the norm today. Luckily, financing is available for these transactions, and several liquor license brokers are available in the Pinellas County area to handle the particulars for you.



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