Lawsuit Ruling Could Change Oklahoma Liquor Laws Again

Monday, August 12th 2019, 8:34 am
By: Tess Maune

A ruling is expected on Monday in a major lawsuit that could change Oklahoma's liquor laws, again.

Since Oklahomans passed sweeping changes to the state's alcohol laws back in 2016 the industry has been in a nearly-constant state of flux.

The lawsuit is over a new state law which requires the top 25 alcohol brands to be sold in any liquor store that wants to sell them instead of allowing local distributors to pick and choose where to sell which brands.

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The law was an attempt to correct some of the fallout changes made 3 years ago, which forced many small liquor stores to close because they were unable to sell the most popular brands.            

That new law is being opposed by some high-profile alcohol groups including the American Distilled Spirits Association, the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States, the Wine and Spirits Wholesalers of America, and the State Chamber of Oklahoma which called the law unconstitutional.

The state maintains it promotes competition. Earlier this year the State Supreme Court refused to hear the case which was widely seen as a win for small businesses.

The District Court's decision should be announced sometime Monday morning but the clock is ticking as the law is set to go into effect on August 29th.