Historic Changes to Tennessee’s Alcoholic Beverage Law

The Tennessee General Assembly has passed historic changes to Tennessee’s alcoholic beverage law.  The main headline of the bill is that liquor stores and grocery stores will now be allowed to sell alcoholic beverages and wine on Sunday.  Liquor stores will be able to begin to open on Sunday as soon as the bill is
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Sixth Circuit Strikes Down Residency Requirement

On February 21, 2018, the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit issued an opinion affirming the judgement of the United States District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee that the durational residency requirements found in Tenn. Code Ann. §57-3-204(b)(2)(A), (3)(A)-(B) and (3)(D) are in violation of the Commerce Clause.  This is
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Tying Up Loose Ends

GSRM Attorneys Dan Haskell and Matt Scanlan have filed a bill on behalf of the Tennessee Hospitality and Tourism Association that should clarify several recurring issues for liquor-by-the-drink licensees.  Senate Bill 1820/House Bill 1976 will permit licensees to do the following: Designate any contiguous area owned or controlled by the licensee as part of the
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TABC Moves to Online System for License Application and Renewal

The TABC will launch its new online system for license application and renewal on January 22, 2018.  The system is a product of many years of work for the TABC.  Beginning on January 22, users will be able to preview the site, create accounts, and can begin entering information and documents into their accounts. For
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Rule Changes for LBD and Retail Package Stores

On September 22, 2017, the Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission voted to pass recently promulgated rules and amend some rules that have been in place for a number of years.  The majority of the rules pertain to manufacturers; however, there are a few that pertain to liquor-by-the-drink establishments and retail package stores. Below are some highlights
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A Guide to Serving Donated Product and Private Events

Restaurateurs and hoteliers are often asked to serve product that has been donated by wholesalers or retailers at events on their premises. For many years this has been a problem for premises with an on-premises consumption license as they were only allowed to serve products owned by the licensee. During the 2017 session of the
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Easier for Restaurants to Make Infusions

Whether it was house made sangria or cucumber flavored vodka, prior to 2015 restaurants and hotels made their own alcoholic beverage products for many years. The industry term for these products is infusions. In 2013 the Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission took a keener interest in the practice of creating infusions and sought to prohibit the
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Metro Nashville Beer Board Prorated Privilege Tax Rates

The Metro Nashville Beer Board has adopted prorated privilege tax rates. Before this change it was difficult for those getting a new beer permit to know how much of the $100 annual privilege tax they would owe. The amount was prorated daily, and for many years the agency accepted only the exact cash amount or
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Legislative Summary 2017

Although the legislative session of 2017 did not bring any of the high profile changes to the alcoholic beverage code that we have seen in recent years, there were still several important pieces of legislation that passed this session. Below is a summary of all of the bills affecting the alcoholic beverage industry which passed
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Nashville Restaurants Seek Expanded Hours for Alcohol Sales

A bill to allow alcohol sales to begin earlier in the day is currently being considered by the Tennessee General Assembly. The bill (HB1289/SB705) will effect two locations in Nashville: the newly opened Diner in downtown Nashville and the Scoreboard Bar & Grill near Opryland. It permits these two restaurants to be open at 4:00
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Ownership Changes May Get Easier

At the February meeting of the Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission (TABC), Staff requested that the Commission consider granting the staff the authority to approve ownership changes that occur within a licensee. There would still be a $300 application fee for the change and the staff would still have to approve it, but trying to make
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