Wine & Alcohol

News & Analysis as of

Budget 2017

The 2017 Budget was presented by Minister Pravin Gordhan before Parliament on 22 February 2017. The 2017 tax proposals are projected to raise ZAR28 billion, and increase the tax burden from 26% of GDP in 2016/17 to 26.7%...more

Passing “Brunch Bills” to Repeal Blue Laws

A trend sweeping the nation, and perhaps, North Carolina? By statute, North Carolina allows on-premises alcohol sales statewide from 7:00 a.m. to 2:00 a.m. every day, except Sundays, when alcohol service cannot begin...more

The Uncertain Legal Future of Wine Direct Shipping by the Retail Tier

The Supreme Court of the United States’ 2005 decision in Granholm v. Heald, which required states allowing their own wineries to direct-ship to consumers to also grant such privileges to out-of-state wineries, marked the...more

Food for Thought: A Review of 2016 Litigation

Food for Thought is a review of significant court decisions affecting the food, beverage, dietary supplements and personal care products industry. Although many cases in this edition focus on class certification, others...more

TTB Licenses and Regulations: How a Craft Brewery Lawyer Can Help

Craft brewers applying for a permit/license or other approval from the U.S. Treasury Department’s Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (“TTB”) can minimize delays, complication and confusion by working closely with a...more

Saving Lawyers 1 Less Drink at a Time - The Not-So-Obvious Link Between Alcohol and Anxiety

Approximately 20 percent of the general population experiences an anxiety disorder at least once in their lifetime. Law students and lawyers, however, report to struggle with anxiety at twice that rate. “The official number...more

The TTB Proposes New Definition of Hard Cider

On January 23, 2017 the Alcohol & Tobacco Tax & Trade Bureau (TTB) published a Temporary Rule and a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) related to the new definition of hard cider. Congressional action required a new...more

Plain Packaging and Warning Labels—While the WTO is Examining the Legality of Packaging and Labeling Requirements that Prohibit...

There have been several pieces of research recently calling for the use of plain packaging and graphic health warnings, similar to those used on tobacco products, on soft drinks and alcoholic beverages as a means of...more

How Wine Sellers Risk Licenses by Using Third-Party Providers

The innovative marketing and brand experiences offered by the online technology of third party providers (TPPs) can be an effective way for wineries and wine retailers to connect their product with their customers, expand...more

Illinois Appellate Court Limits Warrantless Searches of Liquor Licensees

The Illinois Appellate Court has found unconstitutional a provision of the Illinois Liquor Control Act (Liquor Act) that authorizes unlimited inspection of liquor retailers' premises by local officials. The court ruled that...more

Making United States Consumer Safer For Tequila?

The United States Patent and Trademark Office, Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (the “Board”) recently dismissed Luxco, Inc.’s (“Luxco”) opposition to registration of the mark TEQUILA (in standard character format) by an...more

The Christmas party, and the fallout that followed

Many will recall the vicarious liability case heard earlier in 2016, involving a petrol station attendant (Mohamud v. WM Morrison Supermarkets plc. [2016] UKSC 11) where it was found on appeal that there was a sufficiently...more

TTB Releases 2017 Semi-Monthly & Quarterly Excise Tax Return Due Dates

The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) has released its 2017 due dates for semi-monthly and quarterly excise tax returns. Be sure to file on time. The failure to file on time can result in a penalty of 5% of the...more

BoozeLaw: Automated Service of Beer and Wine Available to Michigan Licensees

Fifty years in the future, historians will likely consider this decade (incidentally, there should be a more a creative moniker for this period than the "20-10s" or "10s") as the advent of true automation. Following...more

Eighth Circuit Hints at Unconstitutionality of Missouri Restrictions on Alcohol Advertising

Last week, the US Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit weighed in on the legality of restrictions on alcohol advertising under the First Amendment, issuing an opinion in Missouri Broadcasters Association v. Lacy that could...more

Pa.L.C.B. Opinion Allows Brewery Storage Locations to Sell Wine and Spirits and More

With the passage of Act 166 of 2016, which went into effect Tuesday, and Act 39 of 2016, G license holders may now sell beer and cider produced by other Pennsylvania breweries, wine produced by Pennsylvania limited wineries,...more

TTB Publishes a Federal Register Notice Adjusting the Civil Monetary Penalty under ABLA

On January 10, 2017, TTB published a Federal Register notice adjusting the civil monetary penalty imposed for violations of the Alcohol Beverage Labeling Act of 1988 (the ABLA). The ABLA requires the labels of alcohol...more

Making Tequila and Pisco Shots Safe From Confusion

The United States Patent and Trademark Office, Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (the “Board”) cancelled the registration for the mark PORTÓN last week, finding it to be confusingly similar to the senior mark PATRÓN. Patrón...more

Boozelaw: TTB Adopts Changes Designed to Benefit Startup Brewers, Winemakers and Distillers

For certain brewers, wine makers and distillers, the gift-giving season did not necessarily end in December. The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) recently announced it has adopted changes that may impact the tax...more

TTB Modified Tax Filing Timeframe for Some Taxpayers

On January 4, 2017 TTB published in the Federal Register a temporary rule, T.D. TTB–146, modifying the tax filing timeframe for taxpayers who fall below a certain monetary threshold and removing the bond requirements for...more

DC Council Passes Amendments to Alcohol Beverage Code

In early December 2016, the Council of the District of Columbia (the Council) unanimously passed the Omnibus Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Amendment Act of 2016 (the Act). The Act amends a number of provisions of DC’s alcohol...more

TTB Changes Under the Fall Edition of the Unified Agenda

On December 23rd, 2016 the federal government published its Fall edition of the “Unified Agenda” – a bi-annual compilation of all ongoing federal rulemaking projects. Attached is a copy of the TTB detail from this latest...more

TTB Publishes Final Rule to Streamline Importation and Exportation Procedures

On December 22, 2016, TTB published a Final Rule implementing the streamlined importation and exportation procedures established by the International Trade Data System (ITDS). See 91 Fed. Reg. 94186 (Dec. 22, 1016). ITDS is...more

December 31st TTB and U.S. Customs Filing and Recordkeeping Changes

Effective December 31, 2016, all imports of distilled spirits, wine, beer, and malt beverages, tobacco products, processed tobacco, and cigarette papers and tubes, must be filed through U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s...more

Texas Court of Appeals Hands Down Instructive Administrative Law Opinion

A recent Texas Court of Appeals decision, EATX Coffee, LLC v. Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission, provides an important reminder of how principles of administrative law may check the current trend towards “regulation by...more

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