Non-Retail Licensing FAQ

Do I have to be licensed with Washington State to produce alcohol?
Yes.

How long will it take to process my liquor license application?
It typically takes 60-90 days for an in-state license, and 30-45 days for an out-of-state license.

Do I still have to submit Certificate of Label Approvals (COLA) to WSLCB?
Yes, however you will no longer get a product approval code, and package sizes will no longer be approved. Alcohol and keg products that do not require federal approval are approved to ship immediately. Once you have submitted the COLA to the WSLCB, you can sell the product in Washington. Visit the Beer and Wine Label Tracking Login Page for more information.

Who needs an Agent’s License?

  • Sole proprietors
    • The sole proprietor does not need an agent's license
    • Any employee of a sole proprietor who calls, visits or emails retailers needs an agent's license
    • Any employee of a sole proprietor who calls or emails their appointed distributor does not need an agent's license
       
  • Partnerships, LLCs, corporations, and their employees
    • Licensees and their employees who call, email, take orders, pour or visit businesses with a liquor license need an agent's license
       
  • Out-of-state Certificate of Approval holders
    • If the out-of-state COA has an endorsement to ship directly to retailers and calls or emails retailers, they need an agent's license (unless they are a sole proprietor
       
  • Wine Shipper to Consumer
    • The Wine Shipper to Consumer does not need an agent's license
       
  • Application for agent's license

How do I appoint a distributor to distribute my product?
Your appointment letter must be on the supplier’s letterhead and must contain the supplier’s license number. Also, please provide the distributor’s license number and street address. Washington does not appoint by brand or territory (except Auth Rep COA US Wine and Auth Rep COA US Beer - please contact Non-retail staff for more information), therefore multiple distributors can be appointed.

Send your appointment letter to the WSLCB:

Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board
Licensing and Regulation - MIW
P.O. Box 43098
Olympia, WA 98504-3098

How many tasting rooms can a winery have?
A winery can have one tasting room on the premises of their winery and four off-site tasting rooms (no production allowed).

Do I need a federal permit to make beer and/or wine?
For home use, no federal permit is required to make beer and wine. If the product you produce will be sold, then you need a federal permit. Visit the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, U.S. Department of the Treasury, at www.ttb.gov for more information.

Can a winery pour wine off their winery premises?
Yes, but only at the following:

  • A winery’s additional locations
  • Special-occasion licensed events
  • Beer/wine specialty shops
  • Private clubs
  • On premises restaurants that can serve wine

Can I have a restaurant license if I have a winery?
Yes. Recent law changes allow a separate retail location. Also, manufacturers can now participate in the retail tier under a different entity.

How do I apply for an Out-of-State Certificate of Approval (COA) or Authorized Representatives License?
For your Business License Application, you will need to enter the following information:

  • Under “Purpose of Application,” mark “other” and fill in the license type you will be applying for (i.e., license types are: Auth Rep COA - Foreign Wine, Auth Rep COA - Foreign Beer, Auth Rep COA - US Wine, Auth Rep COA - US Beer, Wine Out-of-State Certificate of Approval or Beer Out-of-State Certificate of Approval)
  • In Section 2 write your license type again on one of the blank lines
  • In the fee column, enter $200
  • Finish the application (most parts will not apply because you are out of state. In the business location address, enter your winery address)
  • You will also need to submit the required documents
  • Place all material together and mail your documents to the address on the upper left-hand corner of the Business License Application. Applications typically take from 30 to 45 days to process

How do I apply for a Wine Shipper to Consumer Permit?
For your Business License Application, you will need to enter the following information:

  • Under “Purpose of Application,” mark the “other” box and write in “Wine Shipper to Consumer Permit”
  • In Section 2, write your license type again on one of the blank lines
  • Tab over to the fee column and enter $100
  • Finish the application (most parts will not apply because you are out-of-state. In the business location address, you will enter your winery address)
  • You will also need to submit the required documents
  • Place all material together and mail the application, fees and additional documents to the address listed on the upper left-hand corner of the Business License Application. Applications typically take from 30 to 45 days to process
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