The Illinois Direct-to-Consumer Permit applications are now available on the Wine Institute and Illinois Liquor Control Commission’s websites. Beginning June 1, 2008 wineries will be required to have an “Out-of-State Winery Shipper’s License,” file reports, obtain a bond and pay sales and excise tax in order to ship wine to consumers in Illinois. Wineries with a valid Shipper’s License issued by the Illinois Liquor Control Commission will be permitted to ship up to 12 cases a year to a consumer who is 21 years of age or older, an increase over the 2 case annual limit in the reciprocity law being replaced.
The application process separates wineries into 3 classes based on the total of gallons manufactured annually. The license for each class varies. Class 1 wineries have a $150 license fee and produce less than 250,000 gallons annually. Class 2 consists of wineries producing more than 250,000 gallons but less than 500,000 gallons annually. The license fee for Class 2 is $500.00. Class 3 wineries have a $1000.00 license fee and manufacture 500,000 gallons or more annually. A copy of the applicant’s state manufacturer’s liquor license (Class 02 Winegrower’s license in CA) and copies of all federal label approvals must be submitted with the license application. Brands not already registered with the Commission must be registered prior to, or simultaneously with, the direct shipper application filing. Class 1 wineries may apply for self-distribution privileges by completing the “Self-Distribution Exemption” form. Class 2 and 3 wineries are not eligible to self-distribute in Illinois.
Once the Illinois Winery Shipper’s License is issued, the Illinois Department of Revenue will mail the permit holder the Liquor Direct Shipper Wine Return Tax form. Excise taxes must be paid monthly and there is a $1000.00 bond requirement. The permit holder has the option to pay excise taxes electronically or by mail. Permit holders are responsible for paying sales tax. The Department of Revenue has not published instructions for sales tax registration at this time. As soon as the information becomes available it will be posted on the Wine Institute website. Should you have any questions please contact the Wine Institute State Relations Department at 415-356-7530.
Annie Bones | State Relations | Wine Institute