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Frequently Asked Questions About Sales of Alcoholic Beverages

25. How will the 9% tax apply to events such as wine-tasting or wine festivals, where I am charged a fixed admission that allows samples at no extra charge?

This will depend on whether the charge for entry is truly an "admission" charge as opposed to being a charge for the sale of the wine. If you are allowed entry to the venue without payment of any charge, and the only payment collected is from those who participate in the tastings, then the charge will be considered to be a sale of an alcoholic beverage and the 9% sales and use tax will apply. On the other hand, if everyone has to pay the admission in order to gain entry into the venue, regardless of whether they participate in the tastings or not, then the sales and use tax does not apply to the sale of admission tickets. However, depending on the jurisdiction, the gross receipts from the sale of the tickets may be subject to the admissions and amusements tax. In this case, the entities that are providing the wine tastings are considered to be the consumer of the products, and must pay the 9% tax on the cost of the wine.



 
Links for Alcoholic Beverages FAQs
Individual Tax Types
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Frequently Asked Questions
Alcoholic Beverages FAQs
  1 - What is the sales and use tax rate on sales of alcoholic beverages in Maryland?
  2 - What is the effective date for the 9% rate on sales of alcoholic beverages?
  3 - Is the 9% rate calculated in the same way as the 6% sales and use tax on sales of other types of products?
  4 - How do I report the 9% tax on my sales and use tax return?
  5 - I currently file my sales and use tax returns and remit via EFT ACH (Electronic Funds Transfer Automated Clearinghouse). Will I still be able to file and pay my sales and use tax via ACH?
  6 - What products are subject to the 9% tax rate?
  7 - Are there products that contain alcohol that are not subject to the 9% rate?
  8 - What about the sale of mixers, such as grenadine, lime juice, or other flavoring, that are used as a component in an alcoholic cocktail?
  9 - How are sales and/or purchases by a tax exempt organization affected?
  10 - I own a restaurant and have an alcoholic beverage license. How do I charge tax on sales that include both alcoholic beverages and other taxable items?
  11 - If I sell food and beverages to groups of more than 10 persons at my restaurant and I impose a mandatory gratuity charge, how should I charge the tax?
  12 - I heard that Maryland will allow direct shipment of wine from certain vendors beginning July 1, 2011. How will the new 9% tax on the sale of alcoholic beverages apply to this situation?
  13 - The store charges me for the amount that it costs to have the item delivered to the store (inbound freight charge) and includes that amount in the taxable price of the product. Is this correct?
  14 - How will the sales and use tax apply to sales of gift baskets that include alcoholic beverages as well as other items?
  15 - I am a caterer and I provide a detailed listing of all of the items that I use in catering an event for my customer. How do I apply the different tax rates to my operation?
  16 - I am a caterer and I either charge a per-person amount or just issue a lump-sum bill. If I am including alcoholic beverages in my sales, how do I apply the tax?
  17 - I have a signed contract for a catered event that will take place on August 14, 2011. What tax rate applies to the alcoholic beverages that will be sold with this event?
  18 - My annual catering contract begins on January 1, 2011, but specifics are determined on an event-by-event basis and not in the contract. What tax rate will apply to my sales of alcoholic beverages beginning on July 1, 2011?
  19 - When must the caterer report and pay to the Comptroller the tax due on an executed catering contract?
  20 - I offer a Champagne Brunch at my restaurant on weekends. The customers are charged a fixed amount that allows them a buffet-type all-you-can-eat event and one or more alcoholic beverages. How do I apply the tax to this situation?
  21 - I offer a meal with a complimentary alcoholic beverage at my restaurant on Sunday mornings. How do I apply the tax to this situation?
  22 - If I buy a bottle of wine or other alcoholic beverage while visiting another state, will I owe the 9% tax when I bring that bottle into Maryland?
  23 - I rent beer kegs and taps. I charge for the beer in the keg and a deposit. The deposit is usually refunded to the customer, but sometimes I have to retain it. How will the 9% tax on the sale of alcoholic beverages apply to my situation?
  24 - I’ve obtained a license to sell refillable containers (growlers) of draft beer. Are these subject to sales tax? When a customer returns to have a growler refilled, is the growler subject to sales tax again?
  25 - How will the 9% tax apply to events such as wine-tasting or wine festivals, where I am charged a fixed admission that allows samples at no extra charge?
  26 - I operate a night club providing live music and I sell food and beverages with the entertainment. How do I apply the admissions and amusement tax on sales of alcoholic beverages that are subject to the 9% sales and use tax rate?
  27 - I operate a dinner theater where I charge an admission that allows entry to the show along with a meal and two free alcoholic drinks. How do I apply the tax to my business?
 
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