Despite its prevalence, liquor has been a subject of great debate within the realm of law. Like many laws, those pertaining to liquor can be quite complex and vary in each state. Here is what Floridians need to know regarding the production of liquor and other distilled alcoholic beverages.
Is It Legal to Make My Own Liquor in Florida?
The short answer? No. In the state of Florida, it is not legal to produce distilled beverages within the home, even for personal consumption, unless the individual has the proper license. Vodka, gin, rum, whiskey and tequila are among those classified as “distilled beverages.” In fact, it is illegal to possess any equipment used to distill alcoholic beverages without the proper license, even if the owner has no intention of using it.
What Are the Penalties for Illegal Liquor Production in Florida?
Getting caught with the unlawful possession of distilling equipment is classified as a third degree felony in the state of Florida and is punishable with up to five years in prison, five years of probation, and/or a fine of up to $5,000. Possession of unlicensed liquor (or other unlicensed alcohol) in the amount of under one gallon is classified as a second degree misdemeanor and is punishable with up to 60 days in jail, 6 months of probation, and/or a $500 fine; possession in excess of one gallon is classified as a third degree felony and is punishable with up to five years in prison, five years of probation, and/or a fine of up to $5,000.
Are There Exceptions?
Recent legislation in Florida enables one to legally possess distilling equipment for personal consumption by obtaining a “Craft Distillery License” through the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulations. One can obtain the license by submitting an application and paying a licensing fee of approximately $4,000.
Call Laporte, Mulligan & Werner-Watkins P.A. for Legal Representation
Florida state laws regarding the production of liquor for personal consumption are complex and failure to interpret them correctly can result in severe consequences. Laporte, Mulligan & Werner-Watkins P.A. has the team you need in order to successfully navigate through Florida state statutes. Contact us today.