Untangling the complex world of wine direct shipping and compliance
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Just Peachy: More Wineries Could Be Eligible for Direct Shipping

March 10th, 2008
By Sarah Fine - ShipCompliant Research Team

A bill is being considered in Georgia that could potentially open up the state to all wineries for direct shipping. The permit system that is in place right now works pretty well for eligible wineries, but the major issue is that some funky language makes it so that wineries cannot ship offsite orders to Georgia residents if the winery is represented by a distributor in Georgia.

3-6-31.(c)(4)No holder of a special order shipping license shall accept any order for any wine that is otherwise registered and designated pursuant to this title or from a person who is licensed under this title;

That little paragraph causes big problems for many wineries. House Bill 1061 would eliminate the distributor restriction, and would introduce a few more minor changes:

  • a winery would no longer have to pay a bond, designate sales territories, or name a wholesaler in each territory (a conflicting law);
  • brands must still be registered;
  • the person placing the order must state affirmatively that he or she is of age before the order can be processed;
  • of-age individuals are limited to 12 cases of wine from each licensee per year (up from 5 cases per household); and
  • it is explicitly stated that wineries may not ship to licensed premises,that sales and excise taxes must be paid and that a shipper must be a winery.

House Bill 1061
has already been approved by the house and was read and referred to a committee on February 28th by the Senate. All in all it’s not a bad bill: More wineries can ship to Georgia, the law makes more sense, and Georgia gets more money.

7 Responses to “Just Peachy: More Wineries Could Be Eligible for Direct Shipping”

  1. Anne says:

    Is it currently legal to ship to licensed premises in Georgia? For instance, if I have a distributor in GA can I shop to a retail outlet in GA that would like a wine not currently represented by the distributor?

  2. [...] the fiasco up in Maryland, it is great to see that the folks down in Georgia are getting it right.  Granted, Georgia already has a decent direct shipping law on the books.  But apparently their [...]

  3. Erwin Dink says:

    Ann, I’m not a legal expert (not even a legal amateur) but as someone who has been trying to get wine shipped to Georgia for many years I believe the answer to your question is no. The wholesale distributor business in Georgia is somewhat akin to an organized crime syndicate.

  4. [...] we mentioned in a previous post, House Bill 1061 had passed in the House and has since passed in the Senate. It made its way onto [...]

  5. [...] we mentioned in a previous post, House Bill 1061 had passed in the House and has since passed in the Senate. It made its way onto [...]

  6. Russell Bell says:

    House Bill 1061 was signed by Governor Perdue (Act Number 526) It will become effective July 1, 2008.

  7. See details about Georgia HB 1061 here. Suppliers in any state, starting July 1, 2008 may ship wine (with restrictions) into Georgia, whether or not they have a distributor. Sales and Excise taxes must be paid. Unfortunately, nothing was changed concerning retail to consumer shipments; retailers still cant ship wine to Georgia consumers.

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