The Scottish Beer and Pub Association (SBPA) has urged Licensing Boards north of the boarder not to enforce the requirement for the Personal Licence Holder (PLH) to be present at a pub on at all times.
The SPBA has revealed it spent "several thousands of pounds" in obtaining legal opinion from Scottish Senior and Junior Counsel.
In the view of the SBPA solicitors there is no legal requirement under the 2005 Licensing (Scotland) Act to have a PLH at a pub at all times unless the premises trades after 1am.
Chief executive of the SBPA, Patrick Browne, said: "Their opinion is very clear that there is no requirement to have a PLH on a licensed premises at all times. Most boards have already accepted that view, but a handful have taken a different view and have written that into their policy statements, the latest being South Ayrshire.
"This is a critical issue for licensees in that if they had to have a PLH on the premises at all times then they would have had to have trained multiple members of staff at additional unnecessary cost."
South Ayrshire has included a reference in its Licensing Policy Statement, which states: "The Board expects a personal licence holder to be on the premises at all times."
By Christopher Walton