Manufacturing, distributing, and selling alcoholic beverage products are regulated by both federal and state laws and regulations. In Florida, state laws and regulations are enforced by the Florida Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco (ABT), a division of the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulations.
The ABT has the legal authority to discipline business and organizations that are issued alcoholic beverage licenses, permits and brand registrations. Discipline may take the forming of warnings, corrective action, civil penalties, license suspensions and revocations, reimbursement of costs, and forfeiture of money and property.
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Penalty Guidelines under Florida Administrative Code 61A-2.022
In 1994, the ABT issued penalty guidelines concerning single and repeated violations of the Florida Beverage Law. While these penalty guidelines have not been updated to reflect all changes to the law since 1994, it is a helpful guide to the ABT’s disciplinary actions.
The penalty guidelines are contained in Florida Administrative Code 61A-2.022, which includes general application rules followed by an itemized table. Key among the general application rules are:
- Guideline penalties are based upon a single violation which (a) the licensee committed or knew about; or (b) a pattern of at least three violations on different dates within a 12-week period by employees, independent contractors, agents, or patrons on the licensed premises or in the scope of employment in which the licensee did not participate; or (c) violations which were occurring in an open an notorious manner on the licensed premises.
- Penalties for repetitive unlawful conduct will be based on the same violations occurring within 36 months of the date of the first administrative proceeding note.
- Requests for lower penalties than the guidelines provide must be approved by the ABT director and must include a written statement of mitigation in addition to a statement of correction and prevention plan.
Searchable Penalties Guidelines Table
Official notice of Rule 61A-2.022 is available for download as a Word document on the Florida Department of State website. However, the document does not include a searchable version of the penalties guidelines table. The following table is a searchable reproduction of the table embedded in the official rule.
Florida Beverage Law Penalty Guidelines from Florida Administrative Code 61A-2.022
|wdt_ID||STATUTE||VIOLATION||FIRST OCCURRENCE||SECOND OCCURRENCE||THIRD OCCURRENCE||FOURTH OCCURRENCE|
|STATUTE||VIOLATION||FIRST OCCURRENCE||SECOND OCCURRENCE||THIRD OCCURRENCE||FOURTH OCCURRENCE|
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