Code of the District of Columbia

Chapter 7. Standards of Operation.


Subchapter I. Staff Requirements.

§ 25–701. Board-approved manager required.

(a) A person designated to manage an establishment shall possess a manager’s license.

(a-1)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2) of this subsection, an establishment's owner or Board-approved manager shall be present on the premises at all times during the establishment's hours of sale, service, and consumption of alcoholic beverages.

(2) The presence of an establishment's owner or Board-approved manager shall not be required when:

(A) There are not any alcoholic beverages on the premises;

(B) The establishment is not open to the public;

(C) Alcoholic beverages are secure and not accessible to the public for sale, service, or consumption; or

(D) The license is in safekeeping pursuant to § 25-791.

(b) A licensee shall notify the Board within 7 calendar days of a manager’s conviction for other than a minor traffic violation.

(c) This section shall not apply to the holder of a wholesaler’s license that is not open to the public or to licensees who personally superintend the establishment during licensed hours of sale.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; July 18, 2008, D.C. Law 17-201, § 5(b), 55 DCR 6289; Oct. 30, 2018, D.C. Law 22-165, § 2(f)(2), 65 DCR 9366.)

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 17-201, in subsec. (c), substituted “the holder of a wholesaler’s license that is not open to the public or to licensees” for “licensees”.


§ 25–702. Employees — Notice of employee’s criminal conviction.

A licensee shall immediately notify the Board in writing if the licensee discovers that a employee who sells or serves any alcoholic beverage has, at any time up to 5 years before or during her or his employment, been convicted for other than minor traffic violations.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959.)


§ 25–703. Manager and owner conduct requirement.

The Board-approved manager of an establishment or owner of the establishment who personally superintends the establishment during licensed hours of operation shall not be under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs.


(May 2, 2015, D.C. Law 20-270, § 2(e)(2), 62 DCR 1866; Oct. 30, 2018, D.C. Law 22-165, § 2(f)(3), 65 DCR 9366.)


Subchapter II. Posting of Signs.

§ 25–711. Posting and carrying of licenses.

(a) A person receiving a license to manufacture, sell, or permit the consumption of alcoholic beverages shall frame the license under glass and post it conspicuously in the licensed establishment. If a settlement agreement is a part of the license, the license shall be marked “settlement agreement on file” by the Board, and the licensee shall make a copy of the settlement agreement immediately accessible to any member of the public, official of ABRA, or officer of the Metropolitan Police Department upon request.

(b) The licensee under a retail license or a club license, shall post, in a conspicuous place on the front window or front door of the licensee’s premises, the correct name or names of the licensee or licensees and the class and number of the license in plain and legible lettering not less than one inch nor more than 1.25 inches in height.

(c) A licensee under a temporary license shall have the license available for inspection by any member of the Board, employee of the Board, or member of the Metropolitan Police Department during the event for which the license was issued.

(d) A licensee under a solicitor’s license shall, while soliciting orders, carry the license upon his or her person and shall exhibit the license, upon request, to any member of the Board, employee of the Board, or member of the Metropolitan Police Department.

(e) A licensee under a manager’s license shall, while managing a licensed establishment, carry the license upon his or her person and shall exhibit the license, upon request, to any member of the Board, employee of the Board, or member of the Metropolitan Police Department.

(f) While managing or working at a licensed establishment, the owner or licensed manager of a retailer's, manufacturer's, or wholesaler's license shall carry a valid identification document on his or her person and shall show the identification document, upon request, to an ABRA investigator or a member of the Metropolitan Police Department.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; May 1, 2013, D.C. Law 19-310, § 2(x), 60 DCR 3410; Apr. 7, 2017, D.C. Law 21-260, § 2(f)(1), 64 DCR 2079.)

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-310 substituted “settlement agreement” for “voluntary agreement” throughout (a).

Emergency Legislation

For temporary amendment of (a), see § 2(x) of the Omnibus Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Emergency Amendment Act of 2012 (D.C. Act 19-597, January 14, 2013, 60 DCR 1001).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(x) of the Omnibus Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-52, April 22, 2013, 60 DCR 6372, 20 DCSTAT 1388).


§ 25–712. Warning signs regarding dangers of alcohol consumption during pregnancy required.

(a) A licensees shall post in a conspicuous place, in accordance with regulations, a sign which reads: “Warning: Drinking alcoholic beverages during pregnancy can cause birth defects.”.

(b) If the Board determines that action in addition to that required by subsection (a) of this section is necessary to accomplish the objectives of this title, the Board may require additional warnings.

(c) The Board shall prepare the signs and make them available at no charge to licensees.

(d) Each day of noncompliance shall constitute a separate violation of this section.

(e) A violation of this section shall be punishable as a secondary tier violation.

(f) This section shall not apply to the holder of a wholesaler’s license that is not open to the public.


(Jan. 24, 1934, ch. 4, § 47; as added Nov. 19, 1985, D.C. Law 6-57, § 2, 32 DCR 5722; May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; July 18, 2008, D.C. Law 17-201, § 5(c), 55 DCR 6289; May 2, 2015, D.C. Law 20-270, § 2(e)(3), 62 DCR 1866.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 25-712.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 17-201 added subsec. (f).

The 2015 amendment by D.C. Law 20-270 rewrote (e).


§ 25–713. Retail licensee required to post current legal drinking age and notice of requirement to produce valid identification displaying proof of age.

A retail licensee shall post a notice, maintained in good repair and in a place clearly visible from the point of entry to the establishment, stating:

(1) The minimum age required for the purchases of an alcoholic beverage; and

(2) The obligation of the patron to produce a valid identification document displaying proof of legal drinking age.


(Jan. 24, 1934, 48 Stat. 331, ch. 4, § 20; Aug. 27, 1935, 49 Stat. 901, ch. 756, § 10; June 29, 1953, 67 Stat. 104, ch. 159, § 404(g); Sept. 29, 1982, D.C. Law 4-157, § 12, 29 DCR 3617; Sept. 26, 1984, D.C. Law 5-106, § 2, 31 DCR 3381; Feb. 24, 1987, D.C. Law 6-178, § 2(a), 33 DCR 7654; Mar. 7, 1987, D.C. Law 6-217, § 12, 34 DCR 907; Sept. 11, 1993, D.C. Law 10-12,§ 2(c), 40 DCR 4020; May 24, 1994, D.C. Law 10-122, § 2(i), 41 DCR 1658; May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 25-713.

1973 Ed., § 25-121.


Subchapter III. Hours; Noise Restrictions; Control of Litter.

§ 25–721. Hours of sale and delivery for wholesalers and manufacturers.

(a) A licensee under a wholesaler’s license shall sell and deliver alcoholic beverages only between the hours of 6:00 a.m. and 1:00 a.m., Monday through Saturday; provided, that licensees may also make deliveries between 5:00 a.m. and 6:00 a.m., Monday through Saturday.

(b) In addition to the provisions of subsection (a) of this section, the licensee under a wholesaler’s license, class A or B, may deliver alcoholic beverages to a license under a temporary license, class F or G, license between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. on Sunday.

(c) A manufacturer's license, class A, B, or C, holding an on-site sales and consumption permit may sell and serve alcoholic beverages on any day and time except between the following hours:

(1) 2:00 a.m. and 8:00 a.m., Monday through Friday; and

(2) 3:00 a.m. and 8:00 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

(d) A manufacturer's license, class A, B, or C, may deliver alcoholic beverages manufactured at the licensed premises to wholesalers, retailers, and the homes of District of Columbia residents between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and midnight, 7 days a week.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; Feb. 22, 2014, D.C. Law 20-81, § 2, 61 DCR 173; May 2, 2015, D.C. Law 20-270, § 2(e)(4), 62 DCR 1866; Oct. 30, 2018, D.C. Law 22-165, § 2(f)(4), 65 DCR 9366.)

Effect of Amendments

The 2014 amendment by D.C. Law 20-81 deleted “a manufacturer’s license or” preceding “a wholesaler’s license” in (a); deleted “a manufacturer’s license, class A or B, or” preceding “a wholesaler’s license” in (b); and added (c).

The 2015 amendment by D.C. Law 20-270 substituted “class A, B, or C” I for “class A or B,” in (c).

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 2(a) of Inaugural Celebration Extension of Hours Public Safety Emergency Act of 2008 (D.C. Act 17-616, December 19, 2008, 56 DCR 44).


§ 25–722. Hours of sale and delivery for off-premises retail licensees.

(a) A licensee under an off-premises retailer’s license, class A or B, may sell and deliver alcoholic beverages only between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and midnight, Monday through Saturday, and during those same hours on December 24 and 31 of each year, subject to voluntary agreements [settlement agreements] pursuant to § 25-446.

(b) The Board may also permit a licensee under an off-premises retailer’s license, class A or B, to sell or deliver alcoholic beverages between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and midnight on Sundays, subject to voluntary agreements [settlement agreements] pursuant to § 25-446.

(c) [Repealed].


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; Sept. 30, 2004, D.C. Law 15-187, § 101(z), 51 DCR 6525; Sept. 14, 2011, D.C. Law 19-21, § 8122, 58 DCR 6226; Sept. 20, 2012, D.C. Law 19-168, § 2052, 59 DCR 8025; May 1, 2013, D.C. Law 19-310, § 2(y), 60 DCR 3410; Apr. 7, 2017, D.C. Law 21-260, § 2(f)(2), 64 DCR 2079.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 25-123.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 15-187 rewrote the section.

D.C. Law 19-21, in subsecs. (a) and (b), substituted “midnight” for “10 p.m.”.

The 2012 amendment by D.C. Law 19-168 substituted “7:00 a.m.” for “9:00 a.m.” in (a) and (b); added “subject to voluntary agreements pursuant to § 25-446” in (a); and added “subject to the voluntary agreements pursuant to § 25-446” in (b).

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-310 substituted “class A or B” for “class B” in (b).

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 day) addition of section, see § 2 of Independence Day Class A Retailer Sales Emergency Act of 2010 (D.C. Act 18-451, June 28, 2010, 57 DCR 5667).

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 8012 of Fiscal Year 2012 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2011 (D.C. Act 19-93, June 29, 2011, 58 DCR 5599).

For temporary amendment of (b), see § 2(y) of the Omnibus Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Emergency Amendment Act of 2012 (D.C. Act 19-597, January 14, 2013, 60 DCR 1001).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(y) of the Omnibus Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-52, April 22, 2013, 60 DCR 6372, 20 DCSTAT 1388).

Short Title

Short title: Section 8121 of D.C. Law 19-21 provided that subtitle M of title VIII of the act may be cited as “Off-premise Alcohol Act of 2011”.

Editor's Notes

Section 8124 of D.C. Law 19-21 provided: “Sec. 8124. This subtitle shall apply as of July 1, 2011.”


§ 25–723. Hours of sale and service for on-premises retail licensees and temporary licensees.

(a) The licensee under a hotel license may make available in the room of a registered adult guest, and charge to the registered guest if consumed, miniatures as defined in § 25-101(32A) at all hours on any day of the week.

(b) Except as provided in § 25-724 and subsections (c), (d), and (g) of this section, the licensee under an on-premises retailer's, a manufacturer's license that holds an on-site sales and consumption permit, or a temporary license may sell, serve, or consume alcoholic beverages on any day and at any time except between the following hours:

(1) 2:00 a.m. and 8:00 a.m., Monday through Friday, excluding District and federal holidays; and

(2) 3:00 a.m. and 8:00 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday, excluding District and federal holidays.

(c)(1) Except as provided in § 25-724, the licensee under an on-premises retailer's license, a manufacturer's license that holds an on-site sales and consumption permit, or a temporary license may sell, serve, or consume alcoholic beverages until 4:00 a.m. and operate 24 hours a day during the following times:

(A) On a District or federal holiday;

(B) The Saturday and Sunday preceding Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Birthday, Washington's Birthday, Memorial Day, Labor Day, and Columbus Day, as set forth in § 1-612.02(a);

(C) The Saturday and Sunday adjacent to January 1 (New Year’s Day) and July 4 (Independence Day); except, that if the holiday under this subparagraph occurs on a Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday, this subparagraph shall not apply; and

(D) The Friday, Saturday, and Sunday following Thanksgiving Day, as set forth in § 1-612.02(a)(9).

(2) A licensee operating under an on-premises retailer's license or a manufacturer's license that holds an on-site sales and consumption permit shall not be required to obtain Board approval to sell, serve, or consume alcoholic beverages and operate in accordance with paragraph (1) of this subsection.

(3) This subsection shall not apply during Inaugural Week, as defined in subsection (e) of this section.

(4) No fewer than 30 days before the first holiday on which a licensee seeks to extend its hours of operation pursuant to this subsection, the licensee shall provide written notification and a public safety plan to the Board and the Metropolitan Police Department of its intent to extend its hours of operation.

(d) [Repealed].

(e)(1) Every 4 years, beginning in 2013, the week of January 15 through January 21, shall be designated "Inaugural Week"; except, that in 2017, January 14 through January 22 shall be designated "Inaugural Week." Except as provided in § 25-724, during Inaugural Week, a licensee under an on premises retailer's license, a manufacturer's license, or a temporary license may sell, serve, or consume alcoholic beverages until 4 a.m. and operate 24 hours a day if the licensee:

(A) Provides written notification and a public safety plan, no later than January 7, to the Board and the Metropolitan Police Department of its hours of operation; and

(B) Pays the following fee for each day it will serve alcohol pursuant to this subsection:

(i) $250 for a CN licensee;

(ii) $100 for a CR or CT licensee;

(iii) $100 for manufacturer's licenses, class A, B, or C; and

(iv) $50 for any other licensee.

(2) A licensee operating under an on-premises retailer's license or a manufacturer's license shall not be required to obtain Board approval to sell, serve, or consume alcoholic beverages until 4:00 a.m. and operate 24 hours a day during Inaugural Week.

(f) [Repealed].


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; Mar. 25, 2009, D.C. Law 17-361, § 2(c)(1), 56 DCR 1204; Sept. 14, 2011, D.C. Law 19-21, § 8142, 58 DCR 6226; Dec. 2, 2011, D.C. Law 19-45, § 2, 58 DCR 8937; Sept. 20, 2012, D.C. Law 19-168, § 2042(a), 59 DCR 8025; May 1, 2013, D.C. Law 19-310, § 2(z), 60 DCR 3410; May 2, 2015, D.C. Law 20-270, § 2(e)(5), 62 DCR 1866; Oct. 8, 2016, D.C. Law 21-160, § 2012, 63 DCR 10775; Oct. 30, 2018, D.C. Law 22-165, § 2(f)(5), 65 DCR 9366; Oct. 30, 2018, D.C. Law 22-168, § 2052, 65 DCR 9388.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 25-725 and § 25-827.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 17-361, in subsec. (b), substituted “Friday, excluding District and federal holidays” for “Friday” in par. (1) and substituted “Saturday, excluding District and federal holidays” for “Saturday” in par. (2).

D.C. Law 19-21 rewrote subsec. (b)(3), which formerly read:

“(3) 3:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m. on Sunday.”

D.C. Law 19-45, in subsec. (b), substituted “§ 25-724 and subsections (c) and (d) of this section” for “§ 25-724”; and added subsec. (d).

The 2012 amendment by D.C. Law 19-168 substituted “subsections (c), (d), and (e)” for “subsections (c) and (d)” in the introductory language of (b); substituted “Sunday, excluding” for “on” in (b)(2); deleted former (b)(3), which read: “3:00 a.m. and 8:00 a.m. on Sunday”; rewrote (c) and (d); added (e); and made related changes.

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-310 substituted “miniatures as defined in § 25-101(32A)” for “closed miniature containers of alcoholic beverages” in (a); added (d)(4), which stated “This subsection shall expire on September 30, 2013”; and added (f).

The 2015 amendment by D.C. Law 20-270 deleted “Once each calendar year and” from the beginning of (c)(4).

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2052 of Fiscal Year 2019 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2018 (D.C. Act 22-458, Oct. 3, 2018, 65 DCR 11212).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2052 of Fiscal Year 2019 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2018 (D.C. Act 22-434, July 30, 2018, 65 DCR 8200).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2 of 2018 All-Star Game and World Cup Emergency Amendment Act of 2018 (D.C. Act 22-362, May 21, 2018, 65 DCR 5955).

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 2 of Inaugural Celebration Extension of Hours Emergency Act of 2008 (D.C. Act 17-614, December 19, 2008, 56 DCR 40).

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 2(b) of Inaugural Celebration Extension of Hours Public Safety Emergency Act of 2008 (D.C. Act 17-616, December 19, 2008, 56 DCR 44).

For temporary (90 day) addition, see § 2 of World Cup Extension of Hours Emergency Act of 2010 (D.C. Act 18-433, June 7, 2010, 57 DCR 4958).

For temporary amendment of (a) and (d), and addition of (f), see § 2(z) of the Omnibus Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Emergency Amendment Act of 2012 (D.C. Act 19-597, January 14, 2013, 60 DCR 1001).

For temporary amendment of (e)(1), see § 2 of the Inaugural Hours Emergency Act of 2012 (D.C. Act 19-614, January 14, 2013, 60 DCR 1298).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(z) of the Omnibus Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-52, April 22, 2013, 60 DCR 6372, 20 DCSTAT 1388).

Short Title

Short title: Section 8141 of D.C. Law 19-21 provided that subtitle O of title VIII of the act may be cited as “Opening Hours Act of 2012”.

Editor's Notes

Section 2043 of D.C. Law 19-168 provided: “Reporting Requirement. Within one year of the effective date of this subtitle, the Mayor shall transmit to the Council a report on the extensions of hours of operation for licensees licensed to sell and serve alcoholic beverages set forth in D.C. Official Code § 25-723(c), (d), and (e), and the effect of the extensions on liquor store hours, as set forth in the Off-Premises Alcohol Act of 2012, passed on 2nd reading on June 5, 2012 (Enrolled version of Bill 19-743), which shall include:

“(1) The effect of the extensions on local communities;

“(2) An assessment from the Metropolitan Police Department on the number of reported incidents related to the extensions;

“(3) An estimate from the Office of the Chief Financial Officer on the revenue implications of the extensions.”

Former subsection (d) of this section, concerning sales and service of alcoholic beverages on the second Sunday in March between 3:00 a.m. and 4:00 a.m., provided by its own terms that it would expire September 30, 2013.


§ 25–724. Board authorized to further restrict hours of operation.

At the time of initial application or renewal of any class of license, the Board may further limit the hours of sale and delivery for a particular applicant (1) based on the Board’s findings of fact, conclusions of law, and order following a protest hearing, or (2) under the terms of a settlement agreement.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; May 1, 2013, D.C. Law 19-310, § 2(aa), 60 DCR 3410.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 25-123 and § 25-723.

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-310 substituted “settlement agreement” for “voluntary agreement”.

Emergency Legislation

For temporary amendment of section, see § 2(aa) of the Omnibus Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Emergency Amendment Act of 2012 (D.C. Act 19-597, January 14, 2013, 60 DCR 1001).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(aa) of the Omnibus Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-52, April 22, 2013, 60 DCR 6372, 20 DCSTAT 1388).


§ 25–725. Noise from licensed premises.

(a) The licensee under an on-premises retailer’s license shall not produce any sound, noise, or music of such intensity that it may be heard in any premises other than the licensed establishment by the use of any:

(1) Mechanical device, machine, apparatus, or instrument for amplification of the human voice or any sound or noise;

(2) Bell, horn, gong, whistle, drum, or other noise-making article, instrument, or device; or

(3) Musical instrument.

(b) This section shall not apply to:

(1) Areas in the building which are not part of the licensed establishment;

(2) A building owned by the licensee which abuts the licensed establishment;

(3) Any premises other than the licensed establishment which are located within a C-1, C-2, C-3, C-4, C-M, or M zone, as defined in the zoning regulations for the District;

(4) Sounds, noises, or music occasioned by normal opening of entrance and exit doors for the purpose of ingress and egress; or

(5) Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning devices.

(c) The licensees under this subchapter shall comply with the noise level requirements set forth in Chapter 27 of Title 20 of the District of Columbia Municipal Regulations.

(d)(1) ABRA shall maintain a complaint program to receive noise complaints by phone, email, and fax. The complaint program shall be staffed by an ABRA employee until at least one hour after the end time for the legal sale of alcoholic beverages as set forth in § 25-723.

(2) ABRA shall keep records regarding noise complaints and record the following information at the time the complaint is made:

(A) The time and date of the complaint;

(B) The name and address of the establishment that is the subject of the complaint;

(C) The name and address of the complainant, if available;

(D) The nature of the noise complaint; and

(E) Whether the complaint was substantiated by ABRA.

(3) Upon receipt of a noise complaint, ABRA shall attempt to contact the establishment by phone or in person and inform the ABC manager on-duty that a noise complaint has been received and describe the nature of the complaint.

(4) ABRA shall notify the licensee of the complaint by e-mail, phone, or registered mail within 72 hours of receiving the complaint. ABRA shall notify the licensee of the results of any investigation that may result in a show cause hearing within 90 days as required by § 25-832.

(e) The windows and doors of an establishment from which noise can be heard shall remain open or closed, as they were at the time the complaint was made, in order for an ABRA investigator or Metropolitan Police Department officer to determine whether a violation of subsection (a) of this section exists. The ABRA investigator shall have the authority to direct that windows and doors be closed or opened.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; May 1, 2013, D.C. Law 19-310, § 2(bb), 60 DCR 3410.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 25-123 and § 25-313.

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-310 added (b)(5), (d) and (e); and made related changes.

Emergency Legislation

For temporary amendment of (b), and addition of (d) and (e), see § 2(bb) of the Omnibus Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Emergency Amendment Act of 2012 (D.C. Act 19-597, January 14, 2013, 60 DCR 1001).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(bb) of the Omnibus Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-52, April 22, 2013, 60 DCR 6372, 20 DCSTAT 1388).


§ 25–726. Control of litter.

(a) The licensee under a retailer’s license shall take reasonable measures to ensure that the immediate environs of the establishment, including adjacent alleys, sidewalks, or other public property immediately adjacent to the establishment, or other property used by the licensee to conduct its business, are kept free of litter.

(b) A licensee under a retailer's license shall ensure that all solid waste inside the property and in the outdoor spaces immediately surrounding the property are stored and containerized for collection in a manner that will not provide food, harborage, or breeding places for insects or rodents, or other animals, or create a nuisance or fire hazard.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; Apr. 7, 2017, D.C. Law 21-260, § 2(f)(3), 64 DCR 2079.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 25-313.


Subchapter IV. Sale on Credit, Gifts, and Loans.

§ 25–731. Credit and delinquency.

(a) For the purposes of this section, the term “payment” means the delivery to the manufacturer or wholesaler of cash or a check, draft, or other order for payment; provided, that the check, draft, or other order of payment is drawn only on the bank account of the retailer or manufacturer.

(b) No alcoholic beverage shall be sold by a manufacturer or wholesaler to a retailer or manufacturer, or purchased by a retailer or manufacturer, except on the following terms: (1) full payment in cash on delivery, or (2) full payment in cash before the 16th day of the month following the month of purchase or delivery.

(c) A retailer or manufacturer who fails to make payment in full in accordance with the terms of purchase shall not, during the period of delinquency, make any further purchases except for cash on delivery, and, during the period of delinquency, a manufacturer or wholesaler who has knowledge of such delinquency shall not sell any alcoholic beverages to the retailer or manufacturer except for cash on delivery.

(d) Subsections (b) and (c) of this section shall constitute a reasonable extension of credit and no enlargement or extension of such terms, whether cash or credit, shall be granted by the manufacturer or wholesaler or accepted by the retailer or manufacturer.

(e) Repealed.

(f) Repealed.

(g) Repealed.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; Mar. 25, 2009, D.C. Law 17-361, § 2(c)(2), 56 DCR 1204; May 2, 2015, D.C. Law 20-270, § 2(e)(6), 62 DCR 1866.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 25-733.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 17-361 repealed subsecs. (e), (f), and (g), which had read as follows:

“(e) The failure of a retailer who contracts to purchase an alcoholic beverage for full payment in cash on delivery to make full payment upon delivery shall constitute a violation of this chapter.

“(f) A retailer shall not satisfy the obligation to pay for an alcoholic beverage unless the payment is dated on or before the date payment is due and is, upon presentation, promptly honored by the bank on which it is drawn.

“(g) The failure of a manufacturer or wholesaler to deposit the payment in the manufacturer’s or wholesaler’s bank for credit or collection, or present the payment to the bank on which it is drawn, within 5 days from the receipt of a payment shall constitute a violation of this chapter. Each day that the failure continues shall constitute a separate violation.”

The 2015 amendment by D.C. Law 20-270 substituted “retailer or manufacturer' For “retailer” throughout the section.


§ 25–732. Payment plan for use in extenuating circumstances. [Repealed]

Repealed.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; Mar. 25, 2009, D.C. Law 17-361, § 2(c)(3), 56 DCR 1204.)


§ 25–733. Delivery and payment records and reports.

(a) A delivery of an alcoholic beverage to a licensee shall be accompanied by an invoice of sale or delivery which shall bear the date of delivery of the alcoholic beverages.

(b) Before the 26th day of each month, each manufacturer and wholesaler shall file with each other manufacturer or wholesaler within the District, on a form prescribed by the Board, a statement under penalties of perjury showing the following:

(1) The name, including trade name, and address of each retailer who has been required to make payment in cash for alcoholic beverages under § 25-731(c);

(2) All delinquent accounts; and

(3) All checks, drafts, or other orders for payment received from any retailer, which, since the previous report, were dishonored when presented for payment, when such dishonored checks, drafts, or other orders for payment exceed $15,000.

(c) A manufacturer or wholesaler who, after receiving notification of delinquency by a retailer under § 25-731(c), extends credit to any retailer, shall be deemed to have violated § 25-731(b).

(d) Repealed.

(e) Repealed.

(f) Repealed.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; Mar. 25, 2009, D.C. Law 17-361, § 2(c)(4), 56 DCR 1204.)

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 17-361, in subsec. (b)(3), substituted “presented for payment, when such dishonored checks, drafts, or other orders for payment exceed $15,000” for “presented for payment”; and repealed subsecs. (d), (e), and (f), which had read as follows:

“(d) Before March 2, June 2, September 2, and January 2 of each year, each manufacturer and wholesaler shall submit to the Board, on a form prescribed by the Board, a list of the following:

“(1) All retailers that have been required to make payment in cash for alcoholic beverages under 25-731(c), during the preceding 90 days; and

“(2) All accounts that have been delinquent during the preceding 90 days, including the amount of the delinquency.

“(e) Each manufacturer and wholesaler shall, within 24 hours of receipt from the bank or other depository of notice of dishonor of a check, draft, or other order for payment which the manufacturer or wholesaler received from a retailer, notify in writing the Board of the notice of dishonor.

“(f) Failure to file timely a report required by this section shall constitute a violation of this chapter.”


§ 25–734. Sale by retailer of beverages on credit prohibited.

(a) A licensee under a retailer’s license shall not sell on credit any alcoholic beverages except as provided in this section.

(b) For purposes of this section, the extension of credit by the licensee under an off-premises retailer’s license in connection with the sale of an alcoholic beverage through a document, device, or plan intended or adapted for the purpose of establishing credit, except through the use of a credit card, shall be considered a sale on credit.

(c) This section shall not prohibit a club from extending credit to its members or the guests of members or a hotel from extending credit to its registered guests.

(d) This section shall not prohibit the licensee under an on-premises retailer’s license from accepting payment by credit card for sales of alcoholic beverages to customers.


(Jan. 24, 1934, 48 Stat. 336, ch. 4, § 35; Dec. 8, 1970, 84 Stat. 1394, Pub. L. 91-535, § 6; Sept. 29, 1982, D.C. Law 4-157, § 14, 29 DCR 3617; Mar. 7, 1987, D.C. Law 6-217, § 15, 34 DCR 907; May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 25-734.

1973 Ed., § 25-133.


§ 25–735. Gifts and loans from manufacturer prohibited.

(a) A manufacturer, whether or not licensed under this title, shall not engage in the following transactions with a wholesale or retail licensee:

(1) Loan or give money;

(2) Sell, rent, loan, or give equipment, furniture, fixtures, or property; or

(3) Give or sell a service.

(b) A retail licensee shall not engage in the following transactions with a manufacturer, whether or not licensed under this title:

(1) Receive or accept a loan or gift of money;

(2) Purchase from, rent from, borrow, or receive by gift equipment, furniture, fixtures, or property; or

(3) Accept or receive a service.

(c) Notwithstanding subsections (a) and (b) of this section, with the prior approval of the Board, a manufacturer may sell, give, rent, or loan to a retail licensee any service or article of property costing the manufacturer not more than $500 and a retail licensee may purchase from, rent from, borrow, or receive by gift from a manufacturer any service or article of property costing the manufacturer not more than $500.

(d) Notwithstanding subsections (a), (b), and (c) of this section, with the prior approval of the Board, a manufacturer may sell, give, rent, or loan to a retail licensee computer equipment for the purpose of tracking the sale or delivery of alcoholic beverages.

(e) Notwithstanding subsections (a), (b), and (c) of this section, employees or agents of a manufacturer, whether licensed by this title or not, may work or serve alcoholic beverages at a licensed establishment during an event promoting alcoholic beverages manufactured by the manufacturer without Board approval.

(f) Notwithstanding subsections (a), (b), and (c) of this section, a manufacturer, whether licensed by this title or not, may donate alcoholic beverages to the holder of a temporary license or a festival license or a nonprofit organization that does not hold a retailer’s license without Board approval.


(Jan. 24, 1934, 48 Stat. 330, ch. 4, § 18; Aug. 27, 1935, 49 Stat. 902, ch. 756, § 15; Sept. 29, 1982, D.C. Law 4-157, §§ 10, 15, 29 DCR 3617; Mar. 8, 1984, D.C. Law 5-51, § 2(b)(6), 30 DCR 5927; May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; Sept. 30, 2004, D.C. Law 15-187, § 101(aa), 51 DCR 6525; Mar. 9, 2016, D.C. Law 21-84, § 2(e)(2), 63 DCR 781.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 25-735.

1973 Ed., § 25-119.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 15-187, in subsecs. (b) and (c), deleted “wholesale or” preceding “retail licensee”; and added subsec. (d).

The 2016 amendment by D.C. Law 21-84 added (e) and (f).


§ 25–736. Gifts and loans from wholesaler prohibited.

(a) A licensed wholesaler of alcoholic beverages, whether or not licensed under this title, shall not engage in the following transactions with a retail licensee:

(1) Lend or give any money;

(2) Sell equipment, furniture, fixtures, or property, except merchandise sold at the fair market value ;

(3) Rent, loan, or give any equipment, furniture, fixtures, or property; or

(4) Give or sell any service.

(b) A retail licensee shall not engage in the following transactions with a wholesaler:

(1) Receive or accept any loan or gift of money;

(2) Purchase equipment, furniture, fixtures, or property, except merchandise purchased at the fair market value for resale;

(3) Rent from, borrow, or receive by gift equipment, furniture, fixtures, or property; or

(4) Receive any service.

(c) Notwithstanding subsections (a) and (b) of this section, with the prior approval of the Board, a wholesaler may sell, give, rent, or loan to a retail licensee any service or article of property costing the wholesaler not more than $500 and a retail licensee may purchase from, rent from, borrow, or receive by gift from a wholesaler any service or article of property costing the wholesaler not more than $500.

(d) Notwithstanding subsections (a), (b), and (c) of this section, with the prior approval of the Board, a wholesaler may sell, rent, give, loan to a retail licensee computer equipment for the purpose of tracking the sale or delivery of alcoholic beverages.

(e) Notwithstanding subsections (a), (b), and (c) of this section, employees or agents of a wholesaler, whether licensed by this title or not, may work or serve alcoholic beverages at a licensed establishment during an event promoting alcoholic beverages sold by the wholesaler without Board approval.

(f) Notwithstanding subsections (a), (b), and (c) of this section, a wholesaler, whether licensed by this title or not, may donate alcoholic beverages to the holder of a temporary license or a festival license or a nonprofit organization that does not hold a retailers license without Board approval.


(Jan. 24, 1934, 48 Stat. 331, ch. 4, § 19; Aug. 27, 1935, 49 Stat. 903, ch. 756, § 16; Sept. 29, 1982, D.C. Law 4-157, §§ 11, 15, 29 DCR 3617; Mar. 8, 1984, D.C. Law 5-51, § 2(b)(7), 30 DCR 5927; May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; Sept. 30, 2004, D.C. Law 15-187, § 101(bb), 51 DCR 6525; Mar. 9, 2016, D.C. Law 21-84, § 2(e)(3), 63 DCR 781; Apr. 7, 2017, D.C. Law 21-260, § 2(f)(4), 64 DCR 2079.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 25-736.

1973 Ed., § 25-120.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 15-187 added subsec. (d).

The 2016 amendment by D.C. Law 21-84 added (e) and (f).


§ 25–737. Gift bags and gift wrapping.

Holders of a manufacturer's license or an off-premises license, or licenses holding a brew pub permit, wine pub permit, or a distillery pub permit shall be authorized to sell gift bags, gift boxes, and wrapping for alcoholic beverages, and to wrap the alcoholic beverages at the licensed establishment for off-premises consumption.


(Oct. 30, 2018, D.C. Law 22-165, § 2(f)(6), 65 DCR 9366.)


Subchapter V. Restrictions on Sales, Promotions, and Service.

§ 25–741. Go-cups and back-up drinks prohibited.

(a) The licensee under an off-premises retailer’s license, class A or B, shall not provide go-cups to customers.

(b) The licensee under an on-premises retailer’s license shall not serve back-up drinks to customers.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 25-123.


§ 25–742. Solicitation of drinks prohibited.

The licensee under an on-premises retailer’s license shall not:

(1) Require, permit, suffer, encourage, or induce an entertainer or employee to solicit in the licensed establishment the purchase by a patron of any drink, whether alcoholic or non-alcoholic, or money with which to purchase the drink, for that entertainer or employee, or for any other person other than the patron and guests of the patron; or

(2) Pay to the licensee’s agent or manager, or any other person frequenting the licensed establishment, a commission or any other compensation to solicit for herself, himself, or for others, the purchase by the patron of any drink, whether alcoholic or non-alcoholic.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 25-123.


§ 25–743. Tie-in purchases prohibited.

(a) A manufacturer or wholesaler shall not require, directly or indirectly, a retailer to purchase any type of alcoholic beverage or other commodity in order to purchase any other alcoholic beverage.

(b) A licensee under an off-premises retailer’s license shall not require, directly or indirectly, a consumer to purchase any type of alcoholic beverage or other commodity in order to purchase any other alcoholic beverage.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959.)


Subchapter VI. Limitations on Container Number, Size, Labeling, and Storage.

§ 25–751. Limitations on container size.

(a) The licensee under an off-premises retailer’s license, class A, may sell and deliver no fewer than 6 miniatures of spirits or wine per purchase.

(b) The licensee under a manufacturer’s license, wholesaler’s license, or an off-premises retailer’s license shall not sell an alcoholic beverage in any container which does not comply with the standards of fill set forth in the most recent regulations issued under the Federal Alcohol Administration Act, approved August 29, 1935 (49 Stat. 977; 27 U.S.C. § 201 et seq.).

(c) No person shall sell or deliver in the District alcoholic beverages in containers of a capacity of 1/10 gallon, except the following:

(1) Scotch whiskey, Irish whiskey, brandy, and rum;

(2) Cordials and liqueurs, cocktails, highballs, gin fizzes, bitters, and similar specialties; or

(3) Domestic and imported still wines and sparking wines.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959.)


§ 25–752. Containers to be labeled.

No rectified or blended spirits shall be sold unless the container in which it is sold shall bear a legible label, firmly affixed, stating the nature and percentage of each ingredient (except water), the age of the ingredient, and the alcoholic content by volume.


(Jan. 24, 1934, 48 Stat. 336, ch. 4, § 36; May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 25-752.

1973 Ed., § 25-134.


§ 25–753. Keg registration required; procedures specified.

(a) A licensee under an off-premises retailer’s or wholesaler’s license shall not sell any alcoholic beverage in a keg to a consumer without having affixed a registration seal on the keg at the time of sale.

(b) A keg registration seal is a seal, decal, sticker, or other device approved by the Board which is designed to be affixed to kegs and which displays a registration number, name of the licensee offering the keg for sale to the consumer, and any other information required by the Board.

(c) At the point of sale of an alcoholic beverage in a keg, the licensee shall complete a keg declaration of receipt on a form provided by the Board receipt, which receipt shall contain the following information:

(1) Keg registration seal number;

(2) The name and address of the purchaser verified by a valid identification document;

(3) The type and registration number of the identification presented by the purchaser;

(4) A statement signed by the purchaser stating that:

(A) The purchaser is 21 years of age or older;

(B) The purchaser does not intend to allow persons under 21 years of age to consume any of the alcoholic beverage purchased; and

(C) The purchaser will not remove or obliterate the keg registration seal affixed to the keg or allow its removal or obliteration; and

(5) The specific address or location where the alcoholic beverage in the keg will be consumed and the date or dates on which it will be consumed.

(d) Upon return of a registered keg from a consumer, the licensee shall remove or obliterate the keg registration seal and note the removal or obliteration on the keg declaration of receipt form to be retained by the licensee at the licensed establishment. If a keg is made of disposable packaging that does not have to be returned by the consumer to the licensee, the licensee shall indicate on the keg declaration of receipt form that the keg is disposable.

(e) A licensee shall maintain the keg declaration of receipt form on the licensed establishment for 2 years following the date of purchase. These records shall be open at all reasonable times for inspection by the Board, or its authorized representatives, and other law enforcement officers.

(f) This section shall not apply to the wholesale sale of any keg between a wholesaler and a retailer or to the import of any keg by a retailer under this title or regulations promulgated hereunder.


(Jan. 24, 1934, ch. 4, § 48; as added Sept. 11, 1993, D.C. Law 10-12, § 2(e), 40 DCR 4020; May 24, 1994, D.C. Law 10-122, § 2(l), 41 DCR 1658; May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 25-753.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 25-123.

Emergency Legislation

For temporary addition of section, see § 2(e) of the Underage Drinking Emergency Amendment Act of 1993 (D.C. Act 10-24, May 19, 1993, 40 DCR 3405), § 2(e) of the Underage Drinking Congressional Recess Emergency Amendment Act of 1993 (D.C. Act 10-72, July 29, 1993, 40 DCR 5820) and § 2(e) of the Underage Drinking Emergency Amendment Act of 1994 (D.C. Act 10-236, April 28, 1994, 41 DCR 2601).


§ 25–754. Restrictions on storage of beverages.

(a) Alcoholic beverages shall not be manufactured, kept for sale, or sold by any licensee other than at the licensed establishment; provided, that the Board may permit the storing of beverages upon premises other than the licensed establishment under the following classes of licenses:

(1) Manufacturer’s license;

(2) Wholesaler’s license;

(3) Off-premises retailer’s license, class A;

(4) Common carrier license, class C or D; and

(5) Caterer’s license.

(b) A licensee may not store alcoholic beverages upon premises outside the District.


(Jan. 24, 1934, 48 Stat. 327, ch. 4, § 13; Aug. 24, 1935, 49 Stat. 900, ch. 756, § 8; Dec. 8, 1970, 84 Stat. 1394, Pub. L. 91-535, § 5; Oct. 26, 1977, D.C. Law 2-27, § 2, 24 DCR 3720; Mar. 5, 1981, D.C. Law 3-157, § 2(c), 27 DCR 5117; July 26, 1986, D.C. Law 6-130, § 2, 33 DCR 3405; Mar. 7, 1987, D.C. Law 6-217, § 8, 34 DCR 907; May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298,§ 101, 48 DCR 2959.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 25-754.

1973 Ed., § 25-114.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 25-402.


Subchapter VII. Physical Space and Advertising.

§ 25–761. Structural requirements.

No license shall be issued for the sale or consumption of beverages in any building, a part of which is used as a dwelling or lodging house, unless the applicant files an affidavit stating to the satisfaction of the Board that access from the portion of the building used as a dwelling or lodging house to the portion where the applicant desires to sell alcoholic beverages is effectively closed; provided, that the provisions of this section shall not apply to a hotel or a club licensed under this title. The Board, by regulation, may provide for waiver of the provisions of this section upon application of a licensee.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959.)


§ 25–762. Substantial changes in operation must be approved.

(a) Before a licensee may make a change in the interior or exterior, or a change in format, of any licensed establishment, which would substantially change the nature of the operation of the licensed establishment as set forth in the initial application for the license, the licensee shall obtain the approval of the Board in accordance with § 25-404.

(b) In determining whether the proposed changes are substantial, the Board shall consider whether they are potentially of concern to the residents of the area surrounding the establishment, including changes which would:

(1) Increase the occupancy of the licensed establishment or the use of interior space not previously used;

(2) Expand the operation of the licensed establishment to allow for permanent use of exterior public or private space or summer gardens;

(3) Expand the operation of the licensed establishment to another floor, roof, or deck;

(4) Provide for, or expand, an area in which live entertainment would be performed by employees of the establishment, patrons, contract employees, or self-employed individuals, such as dancers or disc jockeys;

(5) Diminish, or expand, the space used by the establishment for service of meals, dining areas, or food preparation areas;

(6) Provide permanent space for dancing by patrons if none existed previously;

(7) Change the exterior design, architecture, or construction of the building in such a way as to convey to the public notice of the fact that alcoholic beverages are to be, or are sold, dispensed, stored, or distributed in or from the building;

(8) Provide music or entertainment if none was provided previously;

(9) Change from recorded to live music or entertainment or the kind of music or entertainment provided;

(10) Change the entertainment to include nude performances;

(11) Change from full-menu offerings to offering snack food;

(12) Change from on-premises consumption of food to carry-out sales or offering carry-out sales if none existed previously;

(13) Extend the hours of operation;

(14) Provide mechanical or electronic entertainment devices if these did not exist previously or provide for the installation of additional devices;

(15) Change the trade name or corporate name, coupled with a change in ownership of the establishment;

(16) Change the booth sizes;

(17) Reduce the number of toilet facilities; or

(18) Increase the number of vessels under the on-premises common carrier license class.

(c) A temporary or permanent reduction in the hours of operation of a licensed establishment shall not constitute a substantial change.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 25-351 and § 25-361.


§ 25–763. Restrictions on use of signs.

(a) Exterior signs advertising alcoholic beverages, which signs have a total cumulative area in the aggregate in excess of 10 square feet, shall be prohibited.

(b) No sign advertising alcoholic beverages on the exterior of, or visible from the exterior of, any licensed establishment or elsewhere in the District shall be illuminated at any time when the sale of alcoholic beverages at the licensed premises is prohibited.

(c) A sign advertising alcoholic beverages on the exterior of, or visible from the exterior of, any licensed establishment, which is illuminated with intermittent flashes of light shall be prohibited.

(d) A retail licensee shall not erect or maintain at the licensed establishment, except to the extent required by federal law, a sign or lettering using the words “Wholesale,” “Wholesaler,” “Wholesale department,” or any other word or words designed or intended to mislead or deceive the general public into believing that the licensee is licensed to sell alcoholic beverages as a wholesaler.

(e) A sign which does not conform to this section shall be removed.

(f) In addition to the provisions of this section, signage shall be subject to § 1-303.21 and any rules issued pursuant to that section.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; Apr. 27, 2013, D.C. Law 19-289, § 6, 60 DCR 2328.)

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-289 rewrote (f).

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 6 of the Sign Regulation Emergency Amendment Act of 2012 (D.C. Act 19-387, July 11, 2012, 59 DCR 8491).

For temporary amendment of (f), see § 6 of the Sign Regulation Congressional Review Emergency Amendment Act of 2012 (D.C. Act 19-499, October 26, 2012, 59 DCR 12749), applicable after the Mayor’s issuance of a comprehensive final rulemaking governing signs on public space and private property, and with the condition that any order, rule, or regulation in effect under a law replaced by this act shall remain in effect until repealed, amended, or superseded.

Temporary Legislation

Section 6 of D.C. Law 19-181 amended (f) to read as follows:

“(f) In addition to the provisions of this section, signage shall be subject to section 1 of An Act To regulate the erection, hanging, placing, painting, display, and maintenance of outdoor signs and other forms of exterior advertising within the District of Columbia, approved March 3, 1931 (46 Stat. 1486; D.C. Official Code § 1-303.21), and any rules issued pursuant to that section.”

Section 8 of D.C. Law 19-181 provided that any order, rule, or regulation in effect under a law replaced by this act shall remain in effect until repealed, amended, or superseded.

Section 9 of D.C. Law 19-181 provided that sections 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7 of the act shall apply upon the Mayor’s issuance of a comprehensive final rulemaking governing signs on public space and private property pursuant to section 2 of the act.

Section 11(b) of D.C. Law 19-181 provided that the act shall expire after 225 days of its having taken effect.

Editor's Notes

Section 6 of D.C. Law 19-289 would have rewritten (f) to read as follows: "In addition to the provisions of this section, signage shall be subject to § 1-303.21, and any rules issued pursuant to that section.

Section 9 of D.C. Law 19-289 provided that any order, rule, or regulation in effect under a law replaced by this act shall remain in effect until repealed, amended, or superseded.

Applicability of D.C. Law 19-289, § 6: Section 10 of D.C. Law 19-289 provided that sections 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8 of the act shall not apply until the Mayor’s issuance of a comprehensive final rulemaking governing signs on public space and private property pursuant to section 2 of the act. Section 2 of D.C. Law 19-289 rewrote §§ 1-303.21 and 1-303.23, and repealed § 1-303.22.


§ 25–764. Advertisements related to alcoholic beverages in general.

No person shall publish or disseminate, or cause to be published or disseminated, directly or indirectly, through any radio or television broadcast, in any newspaper, magazine, periodical, or other publication, or by any sign, placard, or any printed matter, an advertisement of alcoholic beverages which is not in conformity with this title.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959.)


§ 25–765. Advertisement on windows and doors of licensed establishment.

(a) Advertisements relating to alcoholic beverages shall only be displayed in the window of a licensed establishment if the total area covered by the advertisements does not exceed 25% of the window space.

(b) Advertisements relating to alcoholic beverages shall not be displayed on the exterior of any window or on the exterior or interior of any door.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; May 2, 2015, D.C. Law 20-270, § 2(e)(7), 62 DCR 1866.)

Effect of Amendments

The 2015 amendment by D.C. Law 20-270 substituted “to alcoholic beverages” for “to the prices of alcoholic beverages” in (a).


§ 25–766. Prohibited statements.

A statement that is false or misleading with respect to any material fact shall be prohibited.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959.)


Subchapter VIII. Reporting; Importation.

§ 25–771. Reporting. [Repealed]

[Repealed].


(Jan. 24, 1934, 48 Stat. 332, ch. 4, § 22; Apr. 30, 1934, 48 Stat. 654, ch. 181, § 2; Sept. 29, 1982, D.C. Law 4-157, § 15, 29 DCR 3617; Mar. 8, 1984, D.C. Law 5-51, § 2(b)(8), 30 DCR 5927; May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298,§ 101, 48 DCR 2959; Oct. 26, 2001, D.C. Law 14-42, § 6(e), 48 DCR 7612; Mar. 13, 2004, D.C. Law 15-105, § 26(b)(2), 51 DCR 881; Apr. 7, 2017, D.C. Law 21-260, § 2(f)(5), 64 DCR 2079.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 25-771.

1973 Ed., § 25-123.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 14-42, in subsec. (a), substituted “calendar month” for “month”.

D.C. Law 15-105, in subsec. (a), validated a previously made technical correction.

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 6(e) of Technical Amendments Emergency Act of 2001 (D.C. Act 14-108, August 3, 2001, 48 DCR 7622).


§ 25–772. Unlawful importation of beverages.

(a) Only a licensee under a manufacturer’s, wholesaler’s, or common carrier’s license, or retailer’s license under a validly issued import permit shall transport, import, bring, or ship or cause to be transported, imported, brought, or shipped into the District from outside the District any wines, spirits, or beer in a quantity in excess of one case at any one time.

(b) No public or common carrier shall transport or bring into the District wine, spirits, or beer in a quantity in excess of one case per location in any one calendar month for delivery to any one person in the District other than the licensee under a manufacturer’s, wholesaler’s, or retailer’s license.

(c) This section shall not apply to persons possessing old stocks who are moving into the District, to embassies or diplomatic representatives of foreign countries, to wines imported for religious or sacramental purposes, to wine, spirits, and beer to be delivered to the licensee under a manufacturer’s, wholesaler’s, or retailer’s license, or to any persons wishing to have liquor chocolates delivered to their residence. The term “liquor chocolates” may include other types of candies that have small amounts of liquor contained in the candy.

(d) The penalty for violation of this section shall consist of (1) the forfeiture of the beverages transported, imported, brought, or shipped, or caused to be transported, imported, brought, or shipped in violation of this section, and (2) a fine of not more than the amount set forth in [§ 22-3571.01] or imprisonment for not more than 6 months.

(e) In addition to other penalties provided in this section, any person who violates the provisions of this section shall be liable for any tax, penalties, and interest provided for in this title.


(Jan. 24, 1934, ch. 4, § 39; Aug. 25, 1937, 50 Stat. 803, ch. 766, § 4; Dec. 26, 1967, 81 Stat. 728, Pub. L. 90-223, § 1; July 24, 1982, D.C. Law 4-131, § 302, 29 DCR 2418; May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; Sept. 30, 2004, D.C. Law 15-187, § 101(cc), 51 DCR 6525; July 18, 2008, D.C. Law 17-201, § 5(d), 55 DCR 6289; June 11, 2013, D.C. Law 19-317, § 284(b), 60 DCR 2064.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 25-772.

1973 Ed., § 25-137.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 15-187 rewrote subsec. (c) which had read as follows: “(c) The provisions of this section shall not apply to persons possessing old stocks who are moving into the District, to embassies or diplomatic representatives of foreign countries, nor to wines imported for religious or sacramental purposes, or to wine, spirits, and beer to be delivered to the licensee under a manufacturer’s, wholesaler’s, or retailer’s license.”

D.C. Law 17-201, in subsec. (a), substituted “case” for “gallon”; and, in subsec. (b), substituted “case per location” for “quart”.

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-317 substituted “of not more than the amount set forth in [§ 22-3571.01]” for “of not more than $500” in (d).

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 284(b) of the Criminal Fine Proportionality Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-45, April 1, 2013, 60 DCR 5400, 20 DCSTAT 1300).

Editor's Notes

Applicability of D.C. Law 19-317: Section 401 of D.C. Law 19-317 provided that the act shall apply only to offenses committed on or after June 11, 2013.


§ 25–773. Recordkeeping.

(a) As required by subsection (b) of this section, each holder of a retailer’s license shall maintain upon the licensed premises, either physically or electronically, records of canceled importation permits and of invoices and delivery slips that, as determined by ABRA, fully show the purchases made by and deliveries made to the licensee of all alcoholic beverages except beer, including:

(1) The quantity, in gallons, of each kind of alcoholic beverage in each purchase;

(2) The date of each purchase;

(3) The name and business address of the person from whom the alcoholic beverage was purchased, including the license number of the vendor, if licensed under this title;

(4) The price of each kind of alcoholic beverage purchased and the total price for the quantity purchased; and

(5) The character, brand, and quantity, in gallons, of all alcoholic beverages acquired other than by purchase.

(b) All invoices and delivery slips required to be maintained by this section and importation permits after cancellation, as required by § 25-119, shall be systematically filed and maintained for 3 years from the date of receipt and shall show a true, accurate, and complete statement of terms and conditions on which each purchase was made.


(Mar. 9, 2016, D.C. Law 21-84, § 2(e)(4), 63 DCR 781.)


Subchapter IX. Minors and Intoxicated Persons.

§ 25–781. Sale to minors or intoxicated persons prohibited.

(a) The sale or delivery of alcoholic beverages to the following persons is prohibited:

(1) A person under 21 years of age, either for the person’s own use or for the use of any other person, except as provided in § 25-784(b);

(2) An intoxicated person, or any person who appears to be intoxicated; or

(3) A person of notoriously intemperate habits.

(b) A retail licensee shall not permit at the licensed establishment the consumption of an alcoholic beverage by any of the following persons:

(1) A person under 21 years of age;

(2) An intoxicated person, or any person who appears to be intoxicated; or

(3) A person of notoriously intemperate habits.

(c) A licensee or other person shall not, at a licensed establishment, give, serve, deliver, or in any manner dispense an alcoholic beverage to a person under 21 years of age, except as provided in § 25-784(b).

(d) A licensee shall not be liable to any person for damages claimed to arise from refusal to sell an alcoholic beverage or refusal to permit the consumption of an alcoholic beverage in its establishment under the authority of this section.

(e) A person alleged to have violated this section may be issued a citation under § 23-1110(b)(1). The person shall not be eligible to forfeit collateral.

(f) For violations of subsection (a), (b), or (c) of this section , the penalties shall be the following:

(1) Upon the 1st violation, the Board shall fine the licensee not less than $2,000, and not more than $3,000, and suspend the licensee for 5 consecutive days; provided, that the 5-day suspension may be stayed by the Board for one year if all employees who serve alcoholic beverages in the licensed establishment complete an alcohol training program within 3 months;

(2) Upon the 2nd violation in 2 years, the Board shall fine the licensee not less than $3,000, and not more than $5,000, and suspend the licensee for 10 consecutive days; provided, that the Board may stay up to 6 days of the 10-day suspension for one year if all employees who serve alcoholic beverages in the licensed establishment complete an alcohol training program within 3 months;

(3) Upon the 3rd violation in 3 years, the Board shall fine the licensee not less than $5,000, and not more than $10,000, and suspend the licensee for 15 consecutive days, or revoke the license; provided, that the Board may stay up to 5 days of the 15-day suspension for one year if all employees who serve alcoholic beverages in the licensed establishment complete an alcohol training program within 3 months;

(4) Upon the 4th violation in 4 years, the Board may revoke the license or impose a fine of no less than $30,000; and

(5) Upon the 5th or subsequent violation in 4 years, the Board shall revoke the license.

(g)(1) In determining whether a licensee has a prior violation for the purposes of subsection (f) of this section, the 4-year period is the 4 years immediately preceding the date of the incident or conduct in the case pending before the Board for which the licensee has been found liable of violating subsection (a), (b), or (c) of this section, either by an order of the Board, the Board's acceptance of an offer-in-compromise, or the licensee's payment of a fine.

(2) A prior violation falls within the 4-year period if the date that the licensee was found liable of violating subsection (a), (b), or (c) of this section, either by an order of the Board, the Board's acceptance of an offer-in-compromise, or the licensee's payment of a fine, falls within the 4-year period.

(3) For the purposes of this subsection, the term "offer-in-compromise" means a negotiation between the government and the respondent to settle the charges brought by the government for those violations committed by the respondent.


(Jan. 24, 1934, 48 Stat. 331, ch. 4, § 20; Aug. 27, 1935, 49 Stat. 901, ch. 756, § 10; June 29, 1953, 67 Stat. 104, ch. 159, § 404(g); Sept. 29, 1982, D.C. Law 4-157, § 12, 29 DCR 3617; Sept. 26, 1984, D.C. Law 5-106, § 2, 31 DCR 3381; Feb. 24, 1987, D.C. Law 6-178, § 2(a), 33 DCR 7654; Mar. 7, 1987, D.C. Law 6-217, § 12, 34 DCR 907; Sept. 11, 1993, D.C. Law 10-12,§ 2(c), 40 DCR 4020; May 24, 1994, D.C. Law 10-122, § 2(i), 41 DCR 1658; May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; Oct. 1, 2002, D.C. Law 14-190, § 1702(k), 49 DCR 6968; Mar. 25, 2009, D.C. Law 17-361, § 2(c)(5), 56 DCR 1204; May 2, 2015, D.C. Law 20-270, § 2(e)(8), 62 DCR 1866; Mar. 9, 2016, D.C. Law 21-84, § 2(e)(5), 63 DCR 781; Apr. 7, 2017, D.C. Law 21-260, § 2(f)(6), 64 DCR 2079; Oct. 30, 2018, D.C. Law 22-165, § 2(f)(7), 65 DCR 9366.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 25-781.

1973 Ed., § 25-121.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 7-403 and § 25-830.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 14-190 added subsec. (e).

D.C. Law 17-361 added subsec. (f).

The 2015 amendment by D.C. Law 20-270 rewrote (f).

The 2016 amendment by D.C. Law 21-84 added “the penalties shall be the following” in the introductory language of (f); and substituted “4th or subsequent violation” for “4th violation” in (f)(4).

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(a) of Sale to Minors Penalty Clarification Congressional Review Emergency Amendment Act of 2016 (D.C. Act 21-472, July 21, 2016, 63 DCR 10170).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(a) of Sale to Minors Penalty Clarification Emergency Amendment Act of 2016 (D.C. Act 21-398, May 19, 2016, 63 DCR 7912).

For temporary amendment of section, see § 2(c) of the Underage Drinking Emergency Amendment Act of 1994 (D.C. Act 10-236, April 28, 1994, 41 DCR 2601).

Temporary Legislation

For temporary (225 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(a) of Sale to Minors Penalty Clarification Temporary Amendment Act of 2016 (D.C. Law 21-147, Aug. 19, 2016, 63 DCR 9284).


§ 25–782. Restrictions on minor’s entrance into licensed premises.

(a)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2) of this subsection, the licensee under an off-premises retailer’s license, class A, shall not permit a person under 18 years of age to enter the licensed establishment between the hours of 8 a.m. and 3 p.m. on any day in which the public schools of the District are in session during the regular school year.

(2) A licensee under an off-premises retailer's license, class A, may allow a person under 18 years of age who is accompanied by a parent or guardian to enter the licensed establishment between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. on any day in which the public schools of the District are in session during the regular school year.

(b) It shall be an affirmative defense to a charge of violating subsection (a) of this section that the licensee or a licensee’s employee was shown a valid identification document indicating that the minor was 18 years of age or older, which document the licensee or the licensee’s employee reasonably believed to be valid, and that the licensee or the licensee’s employee reasonably believed that the person was 18 years of age or older or was not truant or unlawfully absent from school.

(c) Subsection (a) of this section shall not apply to a licensee under a retailer’s license, class A, for a supermarket if its primary business and purpose is the sale of a full range of fresh, canned, and frozen food items, and if the sale of alcoholic beverages is incidental to the primary purpose and constitutes no more than 25% of total volume of gross receipts on an annual basis.

(d) Except as otherwise permitted, a licensee shall not deny admittance to a person displaying a valid identification document displaying proof of legal drinking age.

(e) The provisions of this section notwithstanding, a licensee not shall discriminate on any basis prohibited by Unit A of Chapter 14 of Title 2.


(Jan. 24, 1934, 48 Stat. 331, ch. 4, § 20; Aug. 27, 1935, 49 Stat. 901, ch. 756, § 10; June 29, 1953, 67 Stat. 104, ch. 159, § 404(g); Sept. 29, 1982, D.C. Law 4-157, § 12, 29 DCR 3617; Sept. 26, 1984, D.C. Law 5-106, § 2, 31 DCR 3381; Feb. 24, 1987, D.C. Law 6-178, § 2(a), 33 DCR 7654; Mar. 7, 1987, D.C. Law 6-217, § 12, 34 DCR 907; Sept. 11, 1993, D.C. Law 10-12,§ 2(c), 40 DCR 4020; May 24, 1994, D.C. Law 10-122, § 2(i), 41 DCR 1658; May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; Oct. 30, 2018, D.C. Law 22-165, § 2(f)(8), 65 DCR 9366.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 25-782.

1973 Ed., § 25-121.


§ 25–783. Production of valid identification document required; penalty.

(a) A licensee shall refuse to sell, serve, or deliver an alcoholic beverage to any person who, upon request of the licensee, fails to produce a valid identification document.

(b) A licensee or his agent or employee shall take steps reasonably necessary to ascertain whether any person to whom the licensee sells, delivers, or serves an alcoholic beverage is of legal drinking age. Any person who supplies a valid identification document showing his or her age to be the legal drinking age shall be deemed to be of legal drinking age.

(c) A violation of subsection (a) or (b) of this section shall be punishable as a primary tier violation.

(c-1)(1) In determining whether a licensee has prior violations for the purposes of subsection (c) of this section, the 4-year period is the 4 years immediately preceding the date of the incident or conduct in the case pending before the Board for which the licensee has been found liable of violating subsection (a) or (b) of this section, either by an order of the Board, the Board's acceptance of an offer-in-compromise, of the licensee's payment of a fine.

(2) A prior violation falls within the 4-year period if the date that the licensee was found liable of violating subsection (a) or (b) of this section, either by an order of the Board, the Board's acceptance of an offer-in-compromise, or the licensee's payment of a fine, falls within the 4-year period.

(3) For the purposes of this subsection, the term "offer-in-compromise" means a negotiation between the government and the respondent to settle the charges brought by the government for those violations committed by the respondent.

(d) The provisions of this section notwithstanding, no licensee shall discriminate on any basis prohibited by Unit A of Chapter 14 of Title 2.

(e) An affirmative defense to a violation of subsection (a) of this section shall be that the person was at the time of the violation 21 years of age or older.


(Jan. 24, 1934, 48 Stat. 331, ch. 4, § 20; Aug. 27, 1935, 49 Stat. 901, ch. 756, § 10; June 29, 1953, 67 Stat. 104, ch. 159, § 404(g); Sept. 29, 1982, D.C. Law 4-157, § 12, 29 DCR 3617; Sept. 26, 1984, D.C. Law 5-106, § 2, 31 DCR 3381; Feb. 24, 1987, D.C. Law 6-178, § 2(a), 33 DCR 7654; Mar. 7, 1987, D.C. Law 6-217, § 12, 34 DCR 907; Sept. 11, 1993, D.C. Law 10-12,§ 2(c), 40 DCR 4020; May 24, 1994, D.C. Law 10-122, § 2(i), 41 DCR 1658; May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; May 1, 2013, D.C. Law 19-310, § 2(cc), 60 DCR 3410; May 2, 2015, D.C. Law 20-270, § 2(e)(9), 62 DCR 1866; Mar. 9, 2016, D.C. Law 21-84, § 2(e)(6), 63 DCR 781; Apr. 7, 2017, D.C. Law 21-260, § 2(f)(7), 64 DCR 2079; Oct. 30, 2018, D.C. Law 22-165, § 2(f)(9), 65 DCR 9366.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 25-783.

1973 Ed., § 25-121.

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-310 added (e).

The 2015 amendment by D.C. Law 20-270 substituted “preceding 4 years” for “preceding 2 years” in the introductory language of (c).

The 2016 amendment by D.C. Law 21-84 added “the penalties shall be the following” in the introductory language of (c); substituted “fourth or subsequent violation” for “fourth violation” in (c)(4); and repealed (c)(5).

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(b) of Sale to Minors Penalty Clarification Congressional Review Emergency Amendment Act of 2016 (D.C. Act 21-472, July 21, 2016, 63 DCR 10170).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(b) of Sale to Minors Penalty Clarification Emergency Amendment Act of 2016 (D.C. Act 21-398, May 19, 2016, 63 DCR 7912).

For temporary addition of (e), see § 2(cc) of the Omnibus Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Emergency Amendment Act of 2012 (D.C. Act 19-597, January 14, 2013, 60 DCR 1001).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(cc) of the Omnibus Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-52, April 22, 2013, 60 DCR 6372, 20 DCSTAT 1388).

Temporary Legislation

For temporary (225 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(b) of Sale to Minors Penalty Clarification Temporary Amendment Act of 2016 (D.C. Law 21-147, Aug. 19, 2016, 63 DCR 9284).


§ 25–784. Sale or distribution of beverages by minor prohibited.

(a) Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section, a licensee shall not allow any person under 21 years of age to sell, give, furnish, or distribute an alcoholic beverage.

(b) A licensee may allow an employee who is 18 years of age or older to sell, serve, deliver, or pour an alcoholic beverage on the licensed premises; provided, that no employee under 21 years of age shall serve as a bartender.


(Jan. 24, 1934, 48 Stat. 331, ch. 4, §§ 20, 25; Aug. 27, 1935, 49 Stat. 901, ch. 756, §§ 10, 12; June 29, 1953, 67 Stat. 104, ch. 159, § 404(g); Dec. 8, 1970, 84 Stat. 1393, Pub. L. 91-535, § 3(b); Sept. 29, 1982, D.C. Law 4-157, § 12, 29 DCR 3617; Sept. 26, 1984, D.C. Law 5-106, § 2, 31 DCR 3381; Feb. 24, 1987, D.C. Law 6-178, § 2(a), (b), 33 DCR 7654; Mar. 7, 1987, D.C. Law 6-217, §§ 12, 13, 34 DCR 907; Sept. 11, 1993, D.C. Law 10-12, § 2(c), 40 DCR 4020; May 24, 1994, D.C. Law 10-122, § 2(i), 41 DCR 1658; May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; Oct. 30, 2018, D.C. Law 22-165, § 2(f)(10), 65 DCR 9366.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 25-784.

1973 Ed., § 25-121.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 25-781.


§ 25–785. Delivery, offer, or otherwise making available to persons under 21; penalties.

(a) A person who is not a licensee shall not, within the District, purchase an alcoholic beverage for the purpose of delivering the alcoholic beverage to a person who is under 21 years of age.

(b) A person who is a licensee shall not, within the District, offer, give, provide, or otherwise make available an alcoholic beverage to a person who is under 21 years of age, except if necessary to allow the person to perform lawful employment responsibilities that require the person to have temporary possession of alcoholic beverages.

(c) A person who violates any provision of this section shall:

(1) Upon conviction for the first offense, be fined not more then [than] $1,000, or imprisoned up to 180 days, or both;

(2) Upon conviction for the second offense committed within 2 years from the date of any such previous offense, be fined not more than $2,500, or imprisoned up to 180 days, or both;

(3) Upon conviction for the third or any subsequent offense committed within 2 years from the date of any such previous offense, be fined not more than $5,000, or imprisoned up to one year, or both.

(d) A person alleged to have violated this section may be issued a citation under § 23-1110(b)(1). The person shall not be eligible to forfeit collateral.

(e) The fines set forth in this section shall not be limited by [§ 22-3571.01].


(Jan. 24, 1934, ch. 4, § 30a; as added May 24, 1994, D.C. Law 10-122, § 2(k), 41 DCR 1658; May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; June 11, 2013, D.C. Law 19-317, § 113(c), 60 DCR 2064.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 25-785.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 7-403.

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-317 added (e).

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 113(c) of the Criminal Fine Proportionality Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-45, April 1, 2013, 60 DCR 5400, 20 DCSTAT 1300).

Editor's Notes

Applicability of D.C. Law 19-317: Section 401 of D.C. Law 19-317 provided that the act shall apply only to offenses committed on or after June 11, 2013.


Subchapter X. Temporary Surrender of License — Safekeeping.

§ 25–791. Temporary surrender of license — Safekeeping.

(a) A license which is discontinued for any reason shall be surrendered by the licensee to the Board for safekeeping. The Board shall hold the license until the licensee resumes business at the licensed establishment or the license is transferred to a new owner. If the licensee has not initiated proceedings to resume operations or transfer the license within 60 days after suspension, the Board may deem this license abandoned after giving notice to the licensee. The licensee has 14 days to respond to the Board’s notice to request continued safekeeping.

(b) The Board may extend the period of safekeeping beyond 60 days for reasonable cause, such as fire, flood, other natural disaster; rebuilding or reconstruction; or to complete the sale of the establishment.

(c) Licenses in safekeeping beyond 60 days, as extended by the Board, shall be reviewed by the Board every 6 months to ensure that the licensee is making reasonable progress on returning to operation.

(c-1)(1) Except as proved by paragraph (3) of this subsection, the Board shall assess licenses in safekeeping a fee of 25% of the annual license fee for every 6 months that the license remains in safekeeping. The initial 6-month fee shall be paid by the licensee at the time the license is placed in safekeeping. Each additional 6-month safekeeping fee shall be paid in advance by the licensee.

(2) After 4 consecutive 6-month periods of safekeeping, the safekeeping fee shall be 50% of the annual license fee for every 6 months that the license remains in safekeeping.

(3) The safekeeping fee required by this subsection shall not apply to a licensee serving a suspension.

(d) This section shall not relieve a licensee from the responsibility for renewing the license upon its expiration.

(e) If a licensee notifies the Board that the licensee has ceased to do business under the license or if the Board cancels the license under this section, the license shall be marked as “canceled.”

(f) Licenses which are restored after being held in safekeeping for longer than 2 years shall be subject to the license renewal process set forth in Chapter 4.

(g) A license suspended by the Board under this title shall be stored at the Board.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; Mar. 13, 2004, D.C. Law 15-105, § 104(a), 51 DCR 881; May 1, 2013, D.C. Law 19-310, § 2(dd), 60 DCR 3410.)

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 15-105 validated a previously made technical correction.

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-310 added (c-1).

Emergency Legislation

For temporary addition of (c-1), see § 2(dd) of the Omnibus Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Emergency Amendment Act of 2012 (D.C. Act 19-597, January 14, 2013, 60 DCR 1001).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(dd) of the Omnibus Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-52, April 22, 2013, 60 DCR 6372, 20 DCSTAT 1388).


Subchapter XI. Valet Parking.

§ 25–796. Valet parking. [Repealed]

Repealed.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; Mar. 13, 2004, D.C. Law 15-105, § 104(b), 51 DCR 881; Mar. 2, 2007, D.C. Law 16-191, § 48(k), 53 DCR 6794; July 18, 2008, D.C. Law 17-201, § 5(e), 55 DCR 6289.)


Subchapter XI-A. Limitation on transfer of responsibility for licensee Security.

§ 25–797. Limitation on transfer of responsibility for licensee security.

(a) The holder of an on-premises retailer's license or a manufacturer's license, class A, B, or C, possessing an on-site sales and consumption permit may rent out or provide the licensed establishment for use by a third party or promoter for a specific event; provided, that the licensee maintains ownership and control of the licensed establishment for the duration of the event, including modes of ingress or egress, and the staff of the establishment, including bar and security staff.

(b) Under no circumstances shall a licensee permit the third party or promoter to be responsible for providing security or maintain control over the establishment’s existing security personnel.

(c) A violation of this section shall constitute a primary tier violation under section 25-830(c)(1).


(July 18, 2008, D.C. Law 17-201, § 5(f), 55 DCR 6289; Oct. 30, 2018, D.C. Law 22-165, § 2(f)(11), 65 DCR 9366.)


Subchapter XII. Reimbursable Details.

§ 25–798. Reimbursable details.

(a) For the purposes of this section, the term:

(1) Agreement means a written contract, including provisions for the staffing requirement of the reimbursable details in accordance with subsection (c) of this section, and compensation of the MPD by the licensee when reimbursable details are requested by the licensee.

(2) MPD means Metropolitan Police Department.

(3) Reimbursable detail means an assignment of MPD officers to patrol the surrounding area of an establishment for the purpose of maintaining public safety, including the remediation of traffic congestion and the safety of public patrons, during their approach and departure from the establishment.

(b) A licensee or licensees, independently or in a group, or a promoter or organizer of a pub crawl event, as defined by rule, may enter into an agreement with the MPD to provide for reimbursable details.

(c) Subject to adequate staffing of the police service areas and an assessment by the MPD of its staffing requirements, the MPD may staff reimbursable details as requested by the licensee, or licensees, or the promoter or organizer of a pub crawl event. The MPD shall only use officers for this purpose who are overtime and would not otherwise be on duty at the time of the reimbursable detail.

(d) The MPD shall establish policies and procedures to implement the provisions of this section.

(e) The Mayor shall, in consultation with licensees, promulgate policies, rules and procedures to identify entertainment areas in the District, and establish security plans thereunder delineating the reimbursable detail deployment needs of those areas.


(Sept. 23, 2005, D.C. Law 16-20, § 2(a), 52 DCR 6575; Oct. 8, 2016, D.C. Law 21-160, § 2022, 63 DCR 10775.)

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 2 of Reimbursable Details Clarification Emergency Amendment Act of 2008 (D.C. Act 17-683, January 12, 2009, 56 DCR 1109).

Temporary Legislation

Sections 2 through 4 of D.C. Law 15-201, as amended by section 2 of D.C. Law 15-314, added provisions to read as follows:

“Sec. 2. Definitions.

“For the purposes of this act, the term:

“(1) ‘Congestion’ means the significant increase in vehicular or foot traffic within the police service area where the venue is operated over a period of time not to exceed 8 hours that is associated with patrons congregating to attend and leave the venue.

“(2) ‘Reimbursable detail’ means an assignment of on-duty officers of the Metropolitan Police Department to patrol the surrounding area of each entrance of a public venue for the purpose of maintaining public safety, including the remediation of traffic congestion and the safety of public patrons, during their approach and departure from the venue.

“(3) ‘Venue’ means a place where the congregation of the public leads to:

“(A) Street closures;

“(B) Traffic congestion; or

“(C) Unusual and significant increases in foot or vehicular traffic within or surrounding the entrance of a commercial building, place of public assembly, establishment required to have a license under D.C. Official Code § 25-102, school, public hall or any establishment or private function, or parking lots regularly used to attend functions at these places.

“(4) ‘Venue operator’ means an individual, corporation or proprietorship with a license to hold an event for-profit at an establishment that leads to congestion surrounding the venue.”

“Sec. 3. Responsibility of venue operators.

“All regular venue operators shall meet with the Metropolitan Police Department (‘MPD’) to develop an agreement with the MPD when holding a function for profit that leads to an unusual and significant increase in foot or vehicular traffic to and from the police service area where the venue is located. This agreement shall:

“(1) Provide procedures for the venue operator to inform the MPD when congestion of city streets within the police service area where the venue is located is expected to occur;

“(2) Provide procedures for establishing reimbursable details at each venue as requested by the venue operator;

“(3) Provide procedures for compensation of the MPD when reimbursable details are requested by the venue operator; and

“(4) Provide the MPD with the obligation to staff reimbursable details as requested by the venue operator.”

“Sec. 4. Responsibility of the Metropolitan Police Department.

“(a) Subject to adequate staffing of the police service areas, the MPD shall staff reimbursable details as requested by venue operators. Where a venue results in unusual and significant increases in vehicular or foot traffic and congestion of city streets, the MPD may establish a detail and charge the venue operator or group of venue operators for the presence of those MPD officers required to maintain the flow of traffic and public safety within the police service area where the venue is located.

“(b) Nothing in this section shall be construed as authorizing the Metropolitan Police Department to charge operators of not-for-profit events for MPD details at a venue or within the police service area where the venue is located.”

Section 6(b) of D.C. Law 15-201 provided that the act shall expire after 225 days of its having taken effect.

Section 4(b) of D.C. Law 15-314 provided that the act shall expire after 225 days of its having taken effect.

Section 2 of D.C. Law 17-380, in subsec. (b), substituted “group, including an association, which includes licensees in its membership, may” for “group, may”.

Section 4(b) of D.C. Law 17-380 provided that the act shall expire after 225 days of its having taken effect.