Types of Liquor Licenses in Florida

What types of Florida Liquor Licenses are there?

In order to sell alcoholic beverages in Florida for consumption or by the package, you must first apply for licensure with Florida’s Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco (“DABT”). For most, this is a daunting task—as the regulations and varying license types offered provide a number of hurdles to jump through before the most basic step of choosing a license.

If you are looking to either purchase or sell a 4COP or 3PS Quota Liquor License, The Liquor License Guy is a professional liquor license broker here to ease the difficult process.

Below is a brief description of the license types available in each category and how to best determine their applicability to your business needs:

4COP-SFS(formerly “SRX”) Liquor License – Restaurants

4COP-SFS, meaning Special Food Service, Liquor License is available for those restaurants meeting the criteria (more below) who wish to serve beer, wine and full spirits for consumption on premise only—in conjunction with a bona-fide restaurant. This license is ideal for most Restaurants due to its relatively low annual fee ($1,820), which require that the restaurant:

Consist of 2,500 sq. ft of service area;
Is equipped to serve meals to 150 persons at one time; and
Derives 51 percent of its gross food and beverage revenue from food and nonalcoholic beverages

Other important conditions tied to the issuance of a 4COP-SFS license require that the Restaurant must serve meals during all hours alcoholic beverages are served for consumption, and that there are to be no package sales offered under any circumstance.

4COP Quota Liquor License / 3PS Quota Liquor License– Bars, Nightclubs, Package Stores, Restaurants not compatible with SFS requirements

The 4COP Quota Liquor License or 3PS Quota Liquor License is easily the most highly coveted and valuable Florida Liquor License. This due to its ability to allow a Licensee to sell beer, wine and full spirits for either consumption on premise (4COP) or by package (3PS) without any food sale restrictions. These Quota Liquor Licenses are generally held by bars, nightclubs, package stores or other establishments that wish to serve full alcohol but do not meet the criteria of the 4COP SFS Liquor License.

Unlike the 4COP SFS license, where you may file for and obtain from DABT without any limitation upon the licenses issued, these Quota Liquor Licenses are limited in number and may only be obtained via a private sale in the secondary-market or via an annual issuance by DABT’s lottery system – where a limited number are issued based upon population growth.

2COP Liquor License(Beer/Wine) – Smaller restaurants, Quick Service eateries

2COP Liquor License allows the sale of beer and wine (hence, “2”) for Consumption on Premises. This license is commonly used by restaurants or small, quick service type eateries that do not qualify for the space requirements of an SFS Liquor License but still wish to offer beer and wine. 2COP Licensees are not able to offer full spirits, and would be required to obtain a 4COP Quota Liquor License if they desire to do so and do not meet the SFS criteria.

2COP Licenses also allow the Licensee to offer package sales of beer and wine in sealed containers so long as it is allowed by your municipal ordinances. 2COP Liquor Licenses are not limited in number and require an annual fee between $162.00 – $392.00 depending on the county of issuance.

2APS Liquor License(Beer/Wine) – Convenience Stores, Gas Stations, Supermarkets, Bottle Shops

2APS Liquor License allows for the sale of beer and wine via packaged sales for off-premise consumption. These licenses are typically held by your convenience stores, gas stations, supermarkets and bottle shops. As with the 4COP SFS and 2COP Liquor Licenses, the 2APS Liquor License is not limited in number and may be obtained for an annual fee between $84.00-$196.00 depending on the county of issuance.