Legal - Police & Fire Department Permitting
This section is only intended to be a guideline. We have no complete format that covers all the laws. Contact Los Angeles Police Department, Los Angeles Fire Department, and other City of Los Angeles agencies mentioned. To allow time for due diligence and proper permitting ALL events must be booked 30 days in advance. Absolutely no exceptions will be made if your event needs additional permitting that we do not hold. Original copies of this permitting must be presented to our management NO LATER than 48 hours before your event or it will be cancelled.
What We Have -
- Certificate of Occupancy for Privately Funded Community Center
- Occupancy rating for 400 people
- Entertainment and Show Permit from City of Los Angeles
- No Alcohol can be served to the public without an additional permit
The permits we have allow for live and DJ Music without dancing and all sorts of gatherings from art shows to lectures, as well as all sorts of performances and classes.
Setting up the chairs or stage or large pieces of art reduces floor space and therefore reduces the legal occupancy rating.
What You May Need In Addition To The Above -
- Alcoholic Beverage Consumption - If you want to serve or sell alcoholic beverages - you need to obtain permits. There is NO "loophole" for a donation bar. Even serving FREE alcoholic beverages has limitations.
There are different ways a user may want to serve alcohol. Sell it, host bar, no host bar, etc.
Public events will need permitting in order to serve alcohol approved by LAPD Vice and ABC. Private closed events do not. There are various ways to obtain permits for retail sales. There are catering businesses that can obtain a permit for you sometimes. A satellite permit can be obtained through a bar/restaurant with a liquor license. There are ways to permit yourself with a non-profit sponsor. Also, alcoholic beverage sponsors can occaisionally join in on an event. Contact LAPD Vice 323-846-6559 to discuss the specifics of your event.
- Collecting money - YOU HAVE TWO OPTIONS: 1) Business License. 2) Charitable Services Information Card.
We love fundraisers. The City of Los Angeles does too, as long as they are legitimate and properly permitted. A charitable organization information card allows you to legally accept donations. Select the Non-Profit 501C of your choice and contact LAPD 213-996-1260 to obtain your Information Card.
If you don't have an organization we may be able to connect you with one. Here are two suggested organizations:
• Lines Of Latitude Contact Tylene DeVine: 323.394.6678, email@example.com. This non profit helps financially disadvantaged teens travel the world.
• The Veterans Project, a nonprofit group managed by Social and Environmental Entrepreneurs, helps military veterans adjust to civilian life when they come home. Contact Jeff Norman: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Dances - Need a "Dance Hall" Permit. We do not have one. No dancing to music is legal without one for public events. There are NO all ages Temporary Dance Hall Permits. You can obtain either an 18 and under or 18 and over Dance Hall Permit. Private Events are exempt. Nonprofits get a significant discount. Contact LAPD Vice 323-846-6559.
- Special Use - One example would be a sit down dinner. That falls under "Banquet Hall". You can license our space for one night as a banquet hall with permits from LAPD Vice and LAFD.
If you feel your event may fall outside the categories listed don't risk having it shut down! Call LAPD Vice 323-846-6559 and LAFD Louis Origel 213-978-3646.
If we suspect your event may be a "Special Event" we will refer you to these agencies before considering awarding you with a date for your specific use.
- Private Events - A private event is where no outside public is granted admittance and where you would not need permits especially the ABC license. You will need to have the names of the persons attending along with the names of their invited guests beforehand. Persons not named on the list shall not be granted access to the event. If any persons not on the list are granted access it is then deemed a public event and the necessary permits are required. Here is the relevant section of code:
Section 23399.1 Business and professions Code. No license or permit shall be required for the serving and otherwise disposing of alcoholic beverages where all of the following conditions prevail:
• That there is no sale of an alcoholic beverage.
• That the premises are not open to the general public during the time alcoholic beverages are served, consumed or otherwise disposed of.
• That the premises are not maintained for the purpose of keeping, serving, consuming, or otherwise disposing of alcoholic beverages (see Section 25604 B&P Bottle Clubs). Provided, however, that nothing in this section shall be construed to permit any person to violate any provision of the Alcoholic Beverage Control Act.
NOTE: The purchase of drink tickets, admittance tickets, mandatory donations and or tips entitling a person to an alcoholic drink constitutes a sale, and a license is required.
LAPD may have undercover Officers attempt to gain entry into your event and check to see that your event is following the legal definition of a "Private Party". Also most importantly they will check that there is absolutely no sale of alcoholic beverages. If there is any permit violation they will likely arrest you for the violation.