Keystone Law licensing solicitor Andrew Wong and barrister Marcus Lavell represented clients in the UK’s first remote licensing hearing, held by Wandsworth Council, and have also now appeared in the first remote licensing hearing before Westminster Council, the country’s largest licencing authority.

The licensing hearings, which took place on 19 March and 23 April 2020 respectively, were the first to be held “virtually” after all courts, regulators and local authorities temporarily put hearings on hold due to the coronavirus restrictions, with a risk of months of delay and uncertainty.

After working closely with Wandsworth Council and Westminster Council, Andrew and Marcus advised clients as to this new process, which is likely to become the norm while the UK remains on lockdown and adhering to social distancing measures.

Marcus Lavell said: “In these difficult times, the leisure and hospitality industry has seen business suffer an unprecedented cessation of trade. As a result, many operators are struggling to survive. Being able to advise clients and progress their applications through the remote hearing facility means that they can put measures in place to hit the ground running when the lockdown restrictions are lifted.”

Keystone’s full-service Licensing team has years of experience in dealing with both simple and complex requirements. Working closely with colleagues in other areas of law, such as property, planning, regulatory law and contracts, the team can provide the right advice to ensure that there is no delay in obtaining the correct licences and permissions.