In Michigan, there aren’t any state regulations in place that require servers or bartenders to be licensed.
With that being said, the state does require certain licensees (business owners) to have supervisory personnel on each shift and during all hours in which alcoholic liquor is served who have successfully completed a server-training program.
Therefore, it is quite common for restaurants and bars in Michigan to require all of their employees to receive a bartending license regardless of state or city laws.
This post was updated on September 5, 2023.
Approved Michigan Server Training Programs
The Michigan Liquor Control Commission (MLCC) has approved a selection of training programs to teach and certify bartenders. You can find the entire list here.
Our suggestion: Take the course provided by ServingAlcohol. Click here for a special discount price.
Please note, that many of the providers also offer training in others states, so you must be sure to complete the program that covers Michigan requirements.
Can Michigan Server Training Be Waived?
Yes. It is worth noting that although the Michigan Liquor Control Commission (MLCC) states that licensing is required, they do have certain situations where they will waive the requirements.
The licensing can be waived if the commission believes that a licensee has shown responsible experience or training as shown through either:
- an acceptable level of responsible operation either as a licensee during the preceding 3 years
- or as a manager with substantial experience in serving alcoholic liquor
In order to find out if your licensing can be waived you will need to contact the MLCC. At the end of the day though, it is our recommendation to just go through the quick and easy licensing process regardless.
Minimum Age To Serve Alcoholic Beverages In Michigan:
Other Requirements That May Be Helpful:
- Driver’s License
- Good Communication Skills
- Be able to stand long periods of time
- Knowledge of basic drink recipes
For more information, please contact your local City Clerk’s office.