(a) Any person desiring a license under this article shall file a written application for a license with the commissioner and in the application shall state under oath:
(1) The name of the applicant, including his or her trade name if any, his or her residence address and the length of his or her residence;
(2) The address of the place of business for which the license is desired, or other description that definitely locates it; and that the place of business conforms to all health and fire laws and regulations applicable thereto;
(3) The name of the owner of the premises upon which the business is to be conducted and, if the owner is not the applicant, that the applicant is the bona fide lessee of the business;
(4) If the application is for a retailer’s license, that the applicant is the proprietor or owner of a bona fide grocery store, private wine bed and breakfast, private wine restaurant, private wine spa, or wine specialty shop;
(5) That the applicant intends to carry on the business authorized by the license for himself or herself or under his or her immediate supervision or direction;
(6) That the applicant is a citizen of the United States;
(7) That the applicant shall include a manager on the applicant’s license application, or a licensee’s renewal application, and further that the manager shall meet all other requirements of an applicant for licensure set forth in this section, including, but not limited to, United States citizenship or naturalization, passing a background investigation, being at least 21 years of age, being a suitable person, being of good morals and character, and other requirements, all as set forth in the code and the legislative rules, in order for the manager to be able to meet and conduct any regulatory matters, including, but not limited to: Licensure or enforcement matters related to the applicant or licensee all in the interest of protecting public health and safety and being a suitable applicant or licensee. In order to maintain active licensure, any change by a licensee in any manager listed on an application must be made immediately to the commissioner, in order to verify that the new manager meets licensure requirements;
(8) That the applicant is not less than 21 years of age;
(9) That the applicant has not been convicted of a felony or other crime involving moral turpitude within the three years next preceding the filing of the application; and that he or she has not, within the two years next preceding the filing of the application, been convicted of violating the liquor laws of any state or of the United States;
(10) That the applicant has not during the five years next preceding the date of said application had any license revoked under this chapter or under the liquor laws of any other state;
(11) If the applicant is a firm, association, partnership, limited partnership, limited liability company, or corporation, the application shall state the matters required in subdivisions (6), (8), (9), and (10) of this subsection, with respect to each of the members and the manager thereof, and each of said members and the manager must meet all the requirements in said subdivisions;
(12) If the applicant is a corporation, organized or authorized to do business in this state, the application shall state the matters required in subdivisions (6), (8), (9), and (10) of this subsection, with respect to the manager and each of the officers and directors thereof, and any stockholder owning 20 percent or more of the stock of the corporation and any other persons who conduct and manage the licensed premises for the corporation. Each of said individuals must meet all the requirements provided in those subdivisions except that the requirements as to citizenship may not apply to the officers, directors, and stockholders of a corporation applying for a retailer’s license; and
(13) If the applicant is a trust or has a trust as an owner, the trustees or other persons in active control of the activities of the trust relating to the license shall provide a certification of trust as described in §44D-10-1013 of this code. This certification of trust shall include the excerpts described in §44D-10-1013(e) of this code and shall further state, under oath, the names, addresses, Social Security numbers, and birth dates of the beneficiaries of the trust and certify that the trustee and beneficiaries are 21 years of age or older. If a beneficiary is not 21 years of age, the certification of trust must state that the beneficiary’s interest in the trust is represented by a trustee, parent, or legal guardian who is 21 years of age and who will direct all actions on behalf of the beneficiary related to the trust with respect to the distributor until the beneficiary is 21 years of age. Any beneficiary who is not 21 years of age or older shall have his or her trustee, parent, or legal guardian include in the certification of trust and state under oath his or her name, address, Social Security number, and birth date.
(14) Any other information that the commissioner may reasonably require of the applicant, or licensee, or the applicant or licensee’s manager.
The foregoing statements required in an application are mandatory prerequisites for the issuance of a license.
The application must be verified by the owner, manager, or in the case of a firm, partnership, limited partnership, limited liability company, association, or trust, the members, officers, trustees, or other persons in active control of the activities of the limited liability company, association, or trust relating to the license. The application of a corporation applying for a retailer’s license need be verified only by its president or vice president.
(b) In the case of an applicant that is a trust or has a trust as an owner, a distributor license may be issued only upon submission by the trustees or other persons in active control of the activities of the trust relating to the distributor license of a true and correct copy of the written trust instrument to the commissioner for his or her review. Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, the copy of the written trust instrument submitted to the commissioner pursuant to this section is confidential and is not a public record and is not available for release pursuant to the West Virginia Freedom of Information Act codified in §29B-1-1 et seq. of this code.