An industry body and TV Licensing are warning businesses about the legal issues of having a TV in the workplace.
With more than 250 takeaway food shops in West Sussex, those showing live TV without a licence could be fined up to £1,000.
Whether it’s for people queueing for a kebab or buying some fish and chips, many takeaway owners now offer customers entertainment via hanging or wall-mounted TVs. Some show music channels to pass the time, others prefer sport or light entertainment shows.
Any business that shows television programmes as they’re being broadcast on TV, or live on an online TV service, whether for customers’ use or in staff areas, must be covered by a valid TV Licence.
Those without a valid licence run the risk of being taken to court and fined up to £1,000 per offence, plus costs.
Andrew Crook, treasurer for the National Federation of Fish Friers, said: “In order to create the best experience for customers, more and more takeaways are showing live TV, whether music channels or sport for example.
“We regularly remind owners that if anyone watches live TV in the workplace, whether at the front of the shop or back, they need to have a TV Licence.”
Ben Craig, TV Licensing representative for London and the South East, said: “With many takeaways mounting small TV screens, it’s really important that owners take into consideration that, if not correctly licensed, they could face a fine.
“TV Licence costs £145.50 and can be bought in minutes online at www.tvlicensing.co.uk/businessinfo”
To help businesses and staff understand the legal implications of watching programmes live at work, TV Licensing has a downloadable TV in the Workplace guide. The guide allows managers to work out whether the business is covered by a TV Licence and whether staff and customers are allowed to watch TV in the workplace. It can be downloaded at: http://bit.ly/198Xk6a
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