Applicable for Existing Student/Customers Only
Alcohol Awareness Training Program Requirements

New York Alcohol Awareness Training Program

Approved by the New York State Liquor Authority (DABC)


In order to provide an enjoyable experience for customers while keeping everyone safe, it's important for servers and bartenders to be highly-trained to identify potential hazards at their business. Drinking and driving, underage drinking, over-intoxication, and outward violence can all be threats to not only other customers, but to the servers and other employees as well. To counter these dangers, the state of New York has devised a training program that will equip employees with the necessary skills to be able to serve safely and responsibly every time they're on the job.

The New York State Liquor Authority (Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control) has created the Alcohol Training Awareness Program (ATAP) for all licensed establishments. This means that upon hire, a business may have each employee complete a state-certified education course that will instruct in all New York alcohol regulations, along with proper serving methods and essential skills to keep everyone safe during alcohol service.

The state of New York's training program helps licensed establishments comply with all Alcohol Beverage Control laws in the state, and also safeguards the business from any liability in the event of a dangerous situation or broken law.

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What is the Training Program?

There are 2 different courses available for New York employees:

  • The On-Premises Course trains and certifies staff that will be selling and serving on the actual grounds of their establishment. This includes restaurants, bars, concert venues, and other such businesses.
  • The Off-Premises Course is for staff that will be selling alcohol to be consumed off the grounds of the business, such as liquor stores, grocery stores, and some festivals or fairs.

There is a huge emphasis on stopping underage drinking and the sale of alcohol to minors, which is why much of the ATAP focuses on how to spot underage patrons and fake IDs, along with methods to properly check IDs. Employees will also cover New York liquor and alcohol laws and regulations, intervention techniques, how to identify intoxication and safely refuse service, and other skills required for any seller/server job.

State Requirements to Serve

In order to be able to sell or serve alcohol in the state of New York, you'll need to meet the following requirements:

  • You must be at least 18 years old to serve or pour alcohol, or sell packaged liquor
  • Barbacks or bussers must be at least 16 years old and must be supervised by an adult 21 or older
  • You may not serve to anyone under the age of 21 years
  • Only parents may serve to their children aged 18 to 20 years
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How Does Training Help?

New York has a "dram shop law" which states that the server will be held liable for serving either underage or visibly intoxicated customers. However, when a business requires its employees to complete alcohol awareness training, it shields itself from incurring any fines or facing charges in the event that a server does commit an error.

Apart from protecting the business, though, proper alcohol training protects customers from the dangers of over-consumption, which could easily lead to great physical danger. When servers are able to identify risks and prevent them from ever occurring, they are not only doing their employer a service, but they are ensuring the safety and security of every one of their patrons.