(1) The department shall grant nonuse status to a licensee who:
(a) is issued a license without an approved premises as provided in 16-4-417, MCA; or
(b) is not operating a going establishment if the licensee submits a written verification documenting to the department's satisfaction how the nonuse is beyond the licensee's control and the request is received prior to exceeding 90 days of not operating a going establishment.
(2) Acceptable reasons for not operating a going establishment may include but are not limited to:
(a) the death of the licensee or the licensee's family member;
(b) a natural disaster;
(c) a department approved alteration is underway or is pending department approval; or
(d) the licensee lost possessory interest in the premises.
(3) The approved nonuse period shall not exceed one year.
(4) Prior to expiration of the approved nonuse period, the licensee shall resume operations and notify the department that operations have resumed.
(5) If a licensee fails to timely resume operations or provide the required notification, the department shall lapse the license pursuant to 16-3-310, MCA, and ARM 42.13.108.
(6) A licensee cannot resume operations of a license at premises where the licensee:
(a) was granted nonuse status for the license; and
(b) operated another license at the premises while the previous license was on nonuse status.
(7) The department shall deny a request for nonuse status if the licensee has been granted nonuse status for the license within the previous six months, unless the request is based upon reasons other than voluntary closure due to adverse economic conditions or a proposed sale of a license.
(8) A licensee may not purchase, sell, or otherwise provide alcoholic beverages while on nonuse status. This includes catering events and operating through a concession agreement.