Code of the District of Columbia

§ 25–104. Board authority to grant licenses.

(a) The Board may issue licenses to persons who meet the requirements set forth in this title.

(b) All licenses issued under this title, except for a festival license, temporary license, farmer's market license, or pub crawl license issued under § 25-115, shall be valid for a term of 3 years and may be renewed upon completion of the procedures set forth in this title and payment of the required fees.

(c) A license to sell alcoholic beverages in the District can be granted only by the Board upon completion of the application and review process as contained in this title.

(d) Except as set forth in subchapter II of this chapter, each license or permit shall particularly describe the place where the rights of the license are to be exercised.

(e) The Board, in issuing licenses, may require that certain conditions be met if it determines that the inclusion of the conditions will be in the best interest of the locality, section, or portion of the District where the licensed establishment is to be located. The Board, in setting the conditions, shall state, in writing, the rationale for the determination.

(f) Unincorporated associations, other than limited liability companies, shall not be issued a license other than a festival license or a temporary license.


(Jan. 24, 1934, 48 Stat. 324, ch. 4, §§ 10, 13; Aug. 24, 1935, 49 Stat. 900, ch. 756, § 8; June 29, 1953, 67 Stat. 103, ch. 159, § 404(c); Dec. 8, 1970, 84 Stat. 1394, Pub. L. 91-535, § 5; Oct. 26, 1977, D.C. Law 2-27, § 2, 24 DCR 3720; Mar. 5, 1981, D.C. Law 3-157, § 2(c), 27 DCR 5117; July 26, 1986, D.C. Law 6-130, § 2, 33 DCR 3405; Mar. 7, 1987, D.C. Law 6-217,§ 8, 34 DCR 907; May 24, 1994, D.C. Law 10-122, § 2(d), 41 DCR 1658; May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; Oct. 1, 2002, D.C. Law 14-190, § 1702(b), 49 DCR 6968; Sept. 30, 2004, D.C. Law 15-187, § 101(a), 51 DCR 6525; Mar. 9, 2016, D.C. Law 21-84, § 2(a)(3), 63 DCR 781; Oct. 30, 2018, D.C. Law 22-165, § 2(a)(2), 65 DCR 9366.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 25-104.

1973 Ed., §§ 25-110, 25-114.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 1-523.01, § 1-636.02, and § 10-1102.01a.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 14-190 rewrote subsec. (f) which had read as follows: “(f) Unincorporated associations shall be not be issued a license.

D.C. Law 15-187, in subsec. (b), substituted “a term of 3 years” for “a term of 2 years”.

The 2016 amendment by D.C. Law 21-84 added “a festival license or” in (b) and (f).

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 1702(b) of Fiscal Year 2003 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2002 (D.C. Act 14-453, July 23, 2002, 49 DCR 8026).