Underage Drinking

Minimum Ages for Off-Premises Sellers

Laws that specify a minimum age for employees who sell alcoholic beverages in off-premises establishments.

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Jurisdiction Policies as of Minimum Age To Sell Manager or
Must Be
Beer Wine Spirits
Alabama (3252)

A minor employee of an off-premises retail licensee may handle, transport or sell beer or table wine, provided there is an adult employee in attendance at all times.

1/1/20200021Yes2 Citations
Alaska (3273)
1/1/2020212121 1 Citations
Arizona (3254)

Prior to August 9, 2017, off-sale retailers could employ persons who were at least 16 years of age to check out, if supervised by a person on the premises who was at least 19 years of age, package or carry merchandise, including spirituous liquor, in unbroken packages, for the convenience of the customer of the employer, if the employer sold primarily merchandise other than spirituous liquor. As of August 9, 2017, the age of the supervising person need only be 18 years of age.

1/1/2020161616Yes1 Citations
Arkansas (3253)
1/1/2020181821 1 Citations
California (3255)
1/1/2020000Yes1 Citations
Colorado (4103)
1/1/2020181818 7 Citations
Connecticut (3257)

Although any person 15 years of age or older may be employed by a grocery store beer permitee, as of June 2, 2016, an employee 18 years of age or over must approve all beer sales.

1/1/2020151818Yes2 Citations
Delaware (3259)
1/1/2020212121 1 Citations
District of Columbia (3258)
1/1/2020181818 1 Citations
Florida (3260)
1/1/20200018 2 Citations
Georgia (3261)
1/1/2020000 1 Citations
Hawaii (3262)

Liquor can be sold by persons 18 to 20 years of age only in licensed establishments where selling or serving the intoxicating liquor is part of the minor's employment, and where there is proper supervision of these minor employees to ensure that the minors shall not consume the intoxicating liquor.

1/1/2020181818Yes1 Citations
Idaho (3265)
1/1/2020191919 3 Citations
Illinois (3266)
1/1/2020181818 3 Citations
Indiana (3267)
1/1/2020191919Yes4 Citations
Iowa (3264)
1/1/2020161618 1 Citations
Kansas (5119)
1/1/2020182121 4 Citations
Kentucky (3269)

Although 20 years of age is the minimum age requirement to sell alcoholic beverages at both off-sale and on-sale establishments, 18-year-olds may stock, arrange displays, accept payment for, and sack malt beverages by the package, under the supervision of a person 20 years of age or older.

1/1/2020182020Yes1 Citations
Louisiana (3270)
1/1/2020000Yes3 Citations
Maine (3222)
1/1/2020171717Yes3 Citations
Maryland (3272)

Maryland statutes allow for exceptions by specific localities within Maryland that may have more or less restrictive laws on the age to sell or serve alcoholic beverages. Such "local options" are not addressed by APIS.

1/1/2020181821 3 Citations
Massachusetts (3271)
1/1/2020181818 1 Citations
Michigan (3223)
1/1/2020181818 1 Citations
Minnesota (3224)

In Minnesota, the minimum permitted age to sell 3.2 percent malt liquors for off-premises consumption is not specified.

1/1/2020181818 3 Citations
Mississippi (3226)
1/1/2020212121 2 Citations
Missouri (3225)
1/1/2020181818Yes1 Citations
Montana (3227)
1/1/2020181818 1 Citations
Nebraska (3230)

Employees between 16 and 19 years of age may complete a transaction for the sale of beer, wine, or spirits, if they do not handle or serve it.

1/1/2020161616 2 Citations
Nevada (3234)
1/1/2020161616Yes2 Citations
New Hampshire (3231)

To act as a cashier in a selling capacity, a minor is required to be at least 16 years of age, providing a person at least 18 years of age is in attendance and is designated in charge of the employees and business.

1/1/2020161616Yes1 Citations
New Jersey (3232)
1/1/2020181818 1 Citations
New Mexico (3233)
1/1/2020212121 2 Citations
New York (3235)
1/1/20200018Yes1 Citations
North Carolina (3228)
1/1/20200018 4 Citations
North Dakota (3229)
1/1/2020212121 1 Citations
Ohio (3236)
1/1/2020181818 1 Citations
Oklahoma (4142)
1/1/2020181821 3 Citations
Oregon (3238)
1/1/2020181818 1 Citations
Pennsylvania (3239)

In Pennsylvania, a minor who is 17 years of age who is a high school graduate or who is declared to have attained his or her academic potential by the chief administrator of his or her school district is deemed to be a minor of 18 years of age for purposes of the laws relating to the employment of minors by retail licensees.

1/1/2020181818 3 Citations
Rhode Island (3240)
1/1/2020181818 1 Citations
South Carolina (3241)

Although no minimum age is specified to sell beer and wine at off-sale establishments licened to sell beer and wine, an employee of a retail liquor establishment must be at least 21 years of age.

1/1/20200021 3 Citations
South Dakota (4125)

Between July 1, 2010 and June 30, 2018, any off-sale licensee may permit persons 18 years old or older to sell alcoholic beverages if less than 50 percent of its gross business transacted is from alcoholic beverage sales. Beginning on July 1, 2018, any off-sale licensee may permit persons 18 years old or older to sell alcoholic beverages if less than 50 percent of its gross business transacted is from alcoholic beverage sales or the licensee or an employee that is at least 21 years of age is on the premises when the alcoholic beverage is sold. 

1/1/2020181818 5 Citations
Tennessee (3243)
1/1/2020181818 1 Citations
Texas (3244)
1/1/2020161621 5 Citations
Utah (3245)

Although employees must be at least 21 years of age to sell "liquor" at off-sale establishments in Utah, persons between 16 and 21 years of age may sell "beer", defined as containing not more than 5% ABV or 4% ABW (prior to November 1, 2019 not more than 4% ABV or 3.2% ABW) on the premises of a beer retailer for off- premise consumption if under the supervision of a person 21 years of age or older who is on the premises.

1/1/2020212121 5 Citations
Vermont (3247)

Vermont statutes and regulations are silent regarding the minimum age of seller for distilled spirits sold for off-premises consumption, which occur only in state-controlled outlets. Vermont's Liquor Control Board establishes minimum age of seller in its outlets as a matter of internal board policy.

1/1/202016160 3 Citations
Virginia (3246)
1/1/2020000 3 Citations
Washington (3248)

There must be at least two adults twenty-one years of age or older on duty supervising the sale of spirits at the licensed premises. Wash. Rev. Code § 66.44.340

1/1/2020181818Yes2 Citations
West Virginia (3249)
1/1/2020181818 5 Citations
Wisconsin (3251)

No person, including a member of the licensee's or permittee's immediate family, other than the licensee, permittee or agent may serve fermented malt or alcohol beverages in any place operated under a Class "A," "Class A," Class "B," "Class B," or "Class C" license or permit unless he or she has an operator's license or is at least 18 years of age and is under the immediate supervision of the licensee, permittee, agent or a person holding an operator's license, who is on the premises at the time of the service. Thus, if an 18-year-old held an operator's license he or she would not require immediate supervision by a manager or supervisor.

1/1/2020181818 8 Citations
Wyoming (3250)
1/1/2020212121 1 Citations
United States (3263)

Please see the Federal Law page for this policy topic, on the About This Policy tab.