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TTB Issues Final Rule for Small Brewers and Reduces Regulatory Burdens

On September 30, 2014, TTB issued a final rule in the Federal Register for small brewers (defined infra), reducing regulatory burdens. The final rule is entitled “Small Brewers Bond Reduction and Requirement to File Tax Returns, Remit Tax Payments and Submit Reports Quarterly” and goes into effect on January 1, 2015. This rule finalizes an important and significant change, drastically reducing burdens for smaller brewers by adopting a flat $1,000 penal sum for the brewer’s bond for small brewers (TTB defines small brewers, in the context of this rule, to be those brewers with excise tax liability is reasonably expected to be not more than $50,000 in a given calendar year and who were liable for not more than $50,000 in such taxes during the preceding calendar year).

In addition, the final rule adopted a proposal outlined in Notice No. 131, Small Brewers Bond Reduction. The proposal and now final rule requires small brewers (as defined supra) to file Federal excise tax returns, pay tax, and submit reports of operations on a quarterly basis. Such amendments are expected to reduce regulatory burdens on small brewers, reduce their administrative costs, and create administrative efficiencies for TTB. Effectively, the final rule reduces the number of excise tax returns filed yearly from twenty-five to four.

In the last few weeks, we’ve seen some other regulatory reductions on TTB’s end. For example, in Industry Circular Number 2014-02, TTB amended its Allowable Revisions To Approved Labels, noting several important additions to the list of allowable revisions. For more information, see TTB Expands List of Allowable Revisions to Approved Labels for Alcohol Beverages.

For more information on wine or alcohol law, licensing, or TTB matters, please contact Lindsey Zahn.

DISCLAIMER: This blog post is for general information purposes only, is not intended to constitute legal advice, and no attorney-client relationship results. Please consult your own attorney for legal advice.

Lindsey A. Zahn


Lindsey is the founder and author of On Reserve: A Wine Law Blog. She is an alcohol beverage and food attorney and is admitted to the New York State Bar.

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