Referring to Use of AVPA Members in Licensing Conditions/Policies

Responsible Authorities under the Licensing Act may wish to include a recommendation or add a condition that holders of premises licences who make online sales and deliveries of age-restricted goods should undertake online age verification using a supplier which is a member of the

Age Verification Providers Association.

WHY AGE VERIFICATION?

“The Home Office advises that anyone selling alcohol online or by phone should already be taking all reasonable steps to verify age at the point of sale in order to avoid committing an offence of selling alcohol to a child.  PAS 1296 is a good point of reference for these steps.”

Home Office, May 2020

Setting the global standard for rigorous online age verification

AVPA Members sign up to a Code of Conduct which addresses key requirements trading standards officers would wish to see from suppliers of online age verification services:

– Fairness and Transparency

– Use of appropriate verification methods

– Security and Privacy

– Accuracy

– Independence

The key element of this is that our Members  “comply with applicable published international or local age verification standards where these have been endorsed by the AVPA e.g. PAS 1296:2018 for the UK.”

PAS 1296 is a BSI standard already recommended by the Home Office and recognised in Assured Advice provided by Trading Standards to online and offline suppliers of age restricted products.

 

Trading Standards Authorities issuing assured advice for age restricted products are increasingly referring to PAS 1296 as their preferred approach, such as the assured advice issued to the Association of Convenience Stores – https://www.acs.org.uk/advice/age-restrictions.

 

An example from a recently updated Statement of Licensing Policy (Lambeth)

DELIVERY SERVICES
Since the last Statement of Licensing Policy there have been an increasing number of applications for licences relating to delivery services. These tend to fall into three groups:

Premium specialist product mail order-type services;
Food delivery services (both meal and grocery) that include alcohol delivery but are
primarily food lead; and
Convenience-type alcohol delivery services that are targeted at convenience for those
drinking at home.

Although these types of services are not provided for in the Licensing Act 2003 in any way differently from other licensed premises they do provide their own unique circumstances that need to be addressed. In particular the Authority has concerns with the potential for the following:

  • Age verification at both purchase point and delivery point;
  • The safety of delivery drivers at point of delivery;
  • Safety of the premises from which orders are taken and sent out for delivery; and
  • Possible public nuisance caused by delivery drivers collecting deliveries from the
    licensed premises.

The Authority is likely to place the following conditions on to a premises license for delivery
services where it is appropriate and relevant to the individual license application:

  • A standard age verification check shall be undertaken on entering the website.
  • A signature at the point of delivery must be obtained from a person above the age of 18
    with appropriate age verification identification. No delivery shall be left without a
    signature.
  • Alcohol shall only be delivered to a residential or business address and may not be
    delivered to a public place.
  • Every third-party courier delivery box shall be labelled with the words “Age Restricted
    Product”.
  • Any delivery driver or third-party courier will be required to have appropriate age
    verification training, and in particular they will be required to have undergone training in
    refusal of supply where age verification is not provided, or the recipient is clearly
    intoxicated.
  • A refusals log will be maintained for deliveries and available for inspection on request.
  • Appropriate security will be in place at the premises as agreed with Police.
  • Measures for minimising noise and disturbance caused by the dispatch of deliveries to be
    identified in the operating schedule.
  • Website and all promotional material should be designed and set out in a way which is
    consistent with the responsible retail of alcohol.
  • The Authority would expect operators to have systems in place to ensure alcohol is not
    delivered to problematic house parties or to people who appear drunk and, in such
    instances, alcohol should be refused, and that refusal recorded.

Lambeth Council Statement of Licensing Policy 2019

CONTACT

Licensing Officer enquiries: avpa@avpassociation.com 07811 409769