Retail Sales

Beverage Service Training and Related Practices

Laws specifying requirements or incentives for retail alcohol outlets to participate in server training programs (often referred to as Responsible Beverage Service).

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Search policies as of this date:
Jurisdiction Policies as of Law Type Mandatory States
Training Required
Voluntary States
Incentives for Training
Applies To Citations
Licensee Manager Server/
Seller
Liability
Defense
Mitigation
of
Penalties
Discounts Protection
of
License
On or
Off-Premises
Establishments
New or
Existing
Licensees
AL (Alabama)
1/1/2017Voluntary    Yes YesBothBoth9 Citations
AK (Alaska)
1/1/2017MandatoryYesYesYes    BothBoth2 Citations
AZ (Arizona)
1/1/2017Voluntary    Yes  BothUnspecified4 Citations
AR (Arkansas)
1/1/2017Voluntary    Yes  BothBoth6 Citations
CA (California)
1/1/2017Voluntary    Yes  UnspecifiedUnspecified1 Citations
CO (Colorado)
1/1/2017Voluntary    Yes  UnspecifiedUnspecified4 Citations
CO (Colorado)

A liquor-licensed drugstore that sells alcohol beverages must obtain certification as a responsible alcohol beverage vendor. A training program must be attended by the resident on-site owner (if applicable) or manager, and all employees selling alcohol beverages.

1/1/2017MandatoryYesYesYes    Off-PremisesUnspecified4 Citations
CT (Connecticut)
1/1/2017       No Law
DE (Delaware)
1/1/2017MandatoryYesYesYes    BothBoth4 Citations
DC (District of Columbia)
1/1/2017Mandatory Yes     BothBoth3 Citations
FL (Florida)
1/1/2017Voluntary    Yes YesBothBoth4 Citations
GA (Georgia)
1/1/2017       No Law
HI (Hawaii)
1/1/2017       No Law
ID (Idaho)
1/1/2017       No Law
IL (Illinois)
1/1/2017Voluntary       Off-PremisesUnspecified3 Citations
IL (Illinois)

Although the effective date of Illinois’ enacting legislation establishing an on-premises beverage service training program was August 15, 2014 (see 2014 Ill. Laws 98-939, §5, as amended by 2015 Ill. Laws 99-46, §5), on-premises alcohol servers in Cook County are required to complete training in basic responsible alcohol service as outlined in 77 Ill. Adm. Code 3500 by July 1, 2015, or within 120 days after beginning employment, whichever is later. All servers in a county, other than Cook, with a population of 200,000 or more must complete training by the later of July 1, 2016, or within 120 days after employment. All servers in a county with a population of more than 30,000 and less than 200,000 are required to complete training by the later of July 1, 2017, or within 120 days after employment. All alcohol servers in counties with a population of 30,000 or less are required to complete training by the later of July 1, 2018, or within 120 days after employment. From July 1, 2015 through December 31, 2015, enforcement is limited to education and notification of the requirements to encourage compliance.

1/1/2017Mandatory  Yes    On-PremisesUnspecified6 Citations
IN (Indiana)
1/1/2017MandatoryYesYesYes    BothBoth10 Citations
IA (Iowa)

The mitigation of penalties incentive does not apply if a sale is made to a minor under the age of 18.

1/1/2017Voluntary    Yes YesBothUnspecified5 Citations
KS (Kansas)
1/1/2017       No Law
KY (Kentucky)
1/1/2017       No Law
LA (Louisiana)
1/1/2017Mandatory YesYes    BothBoth7 Citations
ME (Maine)
1/1/2017Voluntary   Yes   UnspecifiedUnspecified4 Citations
MD (Maryland)
1/1/2017MandatoryYesYes     BothBoth2 Citations
MA (Massachusetts)
1/1/2017       No Law
MI (Michigan)
1/1/2017Mandatory YesYes    On-PremisesNew1 Citations
MI (Michigan)

Michigan provides for a liability insurance discount as an incentive for retailers to implement beverage service training. See Mich. Comp. Laws § 500.2405.

1/1/2017Voluntary   Yes Yes On-PremisesExisting3 Citations
MN (Minnesota)

Minnesota provides for a reduced license fee as an incentive for retailers to implement beverage service training, among other programs. See Minn. Stat. § 340A.408(3)(c)(1).

1/1/2017Voluntary     Yes 2 Citations
MS (Mississippi)
1/1/2017       No Law
MO (Missouri)
1/1/2017       No Law
MT (Montana)

Although the effective date of Montana's enacting legislation adding a mandatory server training requirement was October 1, 2011 (see 2011 Mont. Laws 412), the mandatory training requirement was not fully implemented and enforceable and did not replace the voluntary server training program until January 13, 2012 (with a 30-day grace period).

1/1/2017Mandatory YesYes    BothBoth6 Citations
NE (Nebraska)
1/1/2017Voluntary       UnspecifiedUnspecified6 Citations
NV (Nevada)

Although the effective date of Nevada's enacting legislation establishing a beverage service training program was June 17, 2005 (see 2005 Nev. Stat. 497), by its terms the program will not be fully implemented and enforceable until July 1, 2007 (with a 30-day grace period). The applicability of Nevada's "alcoholic beverage awareness program" to on-sale retailers is limited to establishments located in a jurisdiction that: (a) is located in a county whose population is 100,000 or more; or (b) is located in a county whose population is less than 100,000, if the governing body of the jurisdiction has, by the affirmative vote of a majority of its members, agreed to be bound by the provisions of section 9 of the act. In addition, prior to July 1, 2011, the applicability to off-sale retailers was limited to establishments in counties whose populations were 400,000 or more. Beginning July 1, 2011 this applicability is limited to off-sale retail establishments in counties whose populations are 700,000 or more.

1/1/2017Mandatory  Yes    BothBoth4 Citations
NH (New Hampshire)
1/1/2017Mandatory Yes     BothNew1 Citations
NH (New Hampshire)
1/1/2017Voluntary   Yes   BothBoth2 Citations
NJ (New Jersey)
1/1/2017MandatoryYesYes     Off-PremisesNew5 Citations
NM (New Mexico)
1/1/2017Mandatory YesYes    BothBoth3 Citations
NY (New York)

In certain proceedings to revoke, cancel or suspend a retail license based on furnishing to a minor, it can be an affirmative defense that at the time of the violation the person who committed the alleged violation held a valid certificate of completion or renewal from an entity authorized to give and administer an alcohol training awareness program, and that the licensee had diligently implemented and complied with all of the provisions of the approved training program. The licensee is required to prove each element of the affirmative defense by a preponderance of the credible evidence. N.Y. Alco. Bev. Cont. Law § 65(6).

1/1/2017Voluntary    Yes  BothUnspecified6 Citations
NC (North Carolina)
1/1/2017Voluntary   Yes   UnspecifiedUnspecified2 Citations
ND (North Dakota)
1/1/2017Voluntary    Yes  UnspecifiedUnspecified2 Citations
OH (Ohio)
1/1/2017Voluntary    Yes  BothUnspecified2 Citations
OK (Oklahoma)
1/1/2017       No Law
OR (Oregon)
1/1/2017MandatoryYesYesYes    BothBoth6 Citations
OR (Oregon)
1/1/2017Voluntary    Yes YesBothBoth4 Citations
PA (Pennsylvania)
1/1/2017Voluntary    Yes  BothBoth3 Citations
PA (Pennsylvania)
1/1/2017Mandatory YesYes    BothBoth3 Citations
RI (Rhode Island)
1/1/2017Voluntary   Yes   UnspecifiedUnspecified5 Citations
RI (Rhode Island)

Although the effective date of Rhode Island's enacting legislation establishing a mandatory beverage service training program was June 25, 2004 (see R.I. Gen. Laws § 3 -7-6.1), due to the subsequent amendments, the program did not become fully implemented and enforceable until April 1, 2006.

Note that prior to June 25, 2004, Rhode Island had only a voluntary beverage service training program.

1/1/2017Mandatory YesYes    On-PremisesExisting7 Citations
SC (South Carolina)
1/1/2017       No Law
SD (South Dakota)
1/1/2017Voluntary    Yes  BothBoth5 Citations
TN (Tennessee)

Although the approval date of Tennessee's enacting legislation establishing a voluntary beverage service training program applicable to off-premises sale of beer was June 5, 2006, the program did not become fully implemented and enforceable until July 1, 2007. Note that prior to June 5, 2006, Tennessee had only a mandatory beverage service training program applicable to on-premises sales of alcoholic beverages.

1/1/2017Voluntary    Yes YesOff-PremisesUnspecified16 Citations
TN (Tennessee)

Although the effective date of Tennessee's enacting legislation establishing a mandatory beverage service training program for: (a) "retail food store wine licensees," and (b) retailers licensed to sell "alcoholic spirituous beverages, including beer and malt beverages, to patrons or customers, in sealed packages only, and not for consumption on the premises except for conducting tastings," was March 20, 2014 (see 2014 Tennessee Laws Pub. Ch. 554), by its terms the program will not be fully implemented and enforceable until July 1, 2016.

1/1/2017Mandatory YesYes    BothBoth10 Citations
TX (Texas)
1/1/2017Voluntary      YesUnspecifiedUnspecified2 Citations
UT (Utah)

In Utah, the Off-Premises Establishments subject to Mandatory training are "off-premise beer retailers." "Off-premise beer retailers" are licensed to sell "beer," which in Utah is any product that contains not more than 3.2 percent alcohol by weight (ABW) and is obtained by fermentation, infusion, or decoction of any malted grain.

1/1/2017Mandatory YesYes    BothBoth8 Citations
VT (Vermont)
1/1/2017MandatoryYesYesYes    BothBoth4 Citations
VA (Virginia)
1/1/2017Voluntary    Yes  UnspecifiedExisting3 Citations
WA (Washington)
1/1/2017Mandatory YesYes    BothBoth7 Citations
WA (Washington)
1/1/2017Voluntary    Yes  Off-PremisesNew2 Citations
WV (West Virginia)
1/1/2017       No Law
WI (Wisconsin)
1/1/2017MandatoryYes Yes    BothNew3 Citations
WY (Wyoming)
1/1/2017Voluntary       BothUnspecified4 Citations
US ( United States)

Please see Federal Law for this policy topic.

1/1/2017       No Law