Alcohol Licensing

If you want to sell alcohol to other businesses for re-sale, you will need to be registered under HMRC's Alcohol Wholesaler Registration Scheme (AWRS).

  • Thinking of applying for AWRS registration? You should put sufficient business planning in place for HMRC to be able to test that you meet Fit and Proper criteria before you apply. We can help.
  • Following an AWRS application the HMRC will visit your premises - often giving only a few days' notice. It is essential that your prepare for this inspection well in advance.
Assistance - from £298

What is the AWRS?

The Alcohol Wholesaler Registration Scheme (AWRS) was introduced by HMRC 1 April 2017 to reduce Excise Duty fraud. You’ll need to register if you sell alcohol:

  • from a UK premises;
  • released for consumption by the public; or
  • to other businesses for re-sale.

If you buy alcohol to sell from a UK wholesaler, you’ll need to check that they are AWRS registered. Failure to register, or to check your suppliers, can be a civil and/or criminal offence.

Beer Barrels

Application Procedure

  • If you intend to start wholesaling alcohol you must apply for approval at least 45 days before you intend to trade. You must wait until you get approval from HMRC before you start trading.

Applications are made on-line via the Government website. After you have applied, HMRC will request various documents and will inspect your premises to confirm that you and your business meet Fit and Proper criteria. You may only get a few days' notice. It is hence essential to prepare the required documents in advance of making your application. Pro-Leagle have a proven track-record of helping customers prepare effectively for applications for AWRS approval.

Information that may be required:

Government Login Details

Your Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR) and your HMRC services username and password.

Company Details

Your VAT number and company registration number (if you have one).

The addresses of any additional trading premises.

Management Details

UK residents - names and National Insurance numbers of all business directors, company secretaries or partners.

Non-UK residents - the names and passport numbers of all business directors, company secretaries or partners

Business Details

Names, addresses and VAT registration numbers of up to 5 of your largest alcohol suppliers, by volume (if you have suppliers)

General information about how you operate.

AWRS Registration Inspection

Company Information

You may need to supply your:

  • HMRC approvals
  • Business plan
  • Details of any third party storage and what you keep there.
  • Latest company accounts
  • Company bank statements
  • Lists of suppliers and customers

Compliance Information

Details of the records you keep in line with:

Pro-Leagle AWRS Consultation

Is your UK company intending to produce/import your own alcohol?

Are your UK company directors resident in other countries?

Is your non-UK company looking to sell alcohol in the UK?

Have you had past issues with HMRC (e.g., late filings, fines)?

  • We can advise you on the issues involved with non-standard AWRS applications.
  • We will provide you with a list of initial questions, and discuss issues raised during a 30 min telephone consultation.

Initial AWRS Consultation: £150.

Pro-Leagle AWRS Assistance

  • We will assist with your initial application to HMRC.
  • We will advise you on issues that may arise from the HMRC "Fit and Proper" criteria tests.
  • We will help you assemble the required documentation for your HMRC inspection visit.
  • We will review your current compliance procedures and advise you on any beneficial changes.
  • Fixed fee service: starting from £298 depending on the nature of your business and your current level of preparation.

Pro-Leagle assisted our company in applying for an AWRS licence. The service was exemplary and we couldn’t have asked for more in terms of legal expertise, professionalism and speed of responses. I would highly recommend Pro-Leagle to anyone.

Colm Phelan, Finance Director, Hemingways Marketing Services Ltd.