As of October 1, 2007 only wineries producing up to 150,000 gallons annually with an approved S Permit issued by the Ohio Department of Commerce Division of Liquor Control and registered with the Ohio Department of Taxation may ship to Ohio consumers. Wineries producing 150,000 gallons or more annually are prohibited from shipping both on-site and off-site sales to Ohio consumers as of October 1, 2007. The application fee for the S Permit is $25.00 annually.
Wineries shipping to Ohio consumers are required to pay excise and state and county sales tax. Excise tax forms and instructions will automatically be mailed to all S Permit applicants. Direct Shippers must register with the Ohio Department of Taxation, Sales & Use Tax Division. Registering your business by telephone is recommended. Call 1-888-405-4089 and press #1 after the message. There is also the option of registering with the Department of Taxation by submitting Form UT-1000. S Permit holders are required to report annually to the Division of Liquor Control. The annual report must include a copy of each wine shipment invoice and a record of the name, address and quantity of wine purchased by each consumer. An Ohio family household may receive an aggregate total of 24 cases of wine annually.
Wine Institute has received an initial clarification from the Ohio Division of Liquor Control that should allow wineries holding permits to begin shipments to Ohio consumers. In addition to the restriction on the size of wineries (under 150,000 gallons) that can apply for a permit, there had been confusion surrounding the “family household” limit of 24 cases annually from an aggregate of winery sources. According to the advice that was given to our staff by the ODLC any penalty for a violation of the case limit provisions will fall solely to the consumers who order the wine, so long as no individual winery were to ship more than the legal amount to a given address. That being the case, those qualifying wineries that obtain a permit to ship should be able to initiate shipments of up to 24 cases of wine annually to any one Ohio address. It is likely that additional regulations and clarifications will be forthcoming, and we will keep members posted as they do. In the meantime, however, at least some wineries should be able to begin making shipments after receiving their permits.
Permit applications are available at http://www.liquorcontrol.ohio.gov/1614pdf.pdf and a document outlining the program has just been posted at http://www.liquorcontrol.ohio.gov/DirectShipping.htm .
Please contact WI State Relations at (415) 356-7530 if you have further questions.