How to Get an ABC Card in Tennessee

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Alcohol and the serving of alcoholic beverages are regulated in the state of Tennessee by the Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission. The commission regulates and enforces all issues pertaining to liquor by the drink in the state. Each state in the U.S. has specific rules and regulations regarding alcohol and licensing. While some states allow the sale of wine in grocery stores, others do not. The values and attitudes of the individuals in different parts of the country are reflected in the each states' dealings with this issue.


The state of Tennessee requires that all individuals employed in establishments that serve alcoholic beverages by the drink be licensed. The licensing involves a process that ensures that individuals come away with a knowledge base that includes alcohol awareness, and proper intervention and techniques for prevention of intoxication. It also includes training in requiring proper proof of age of patrons seeking to buy alcohol.

Things You'll Need

  • Notarized application for Alcoholic Beverage Commission permit
  • Read the Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission requirements to make sure you are eligible to apply for the permit. There is a list of Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission requirements in the Warnings section of this article.

  • Check for any new requirements at the Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission website. The link is located in the Resources section of this article.

  • Register for the required five-hour training class. There are many places to complete the required class. See Resources for links to programs and sites.

  • Attend the training class. The fee for the class is $65 as of June 8, 2010, according to the Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission, and the cost for the permit is $20.

  • Take your notarized application to the Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission with the permit fee of $20. This is done once the class is completed and the exam is passed. The license is permanent and has a duration of five years. Local Alcoholic Beverage Commission offices are as follows:

    Nashville

    226 Capitol Blvd, Suite 300

    615-741-1602

    Knoxville

    4420 Whittle Springs

    865-594-6342

    Memphis

    170 North Main, 11th Floor

    901-543-7284

    Chattanooga

    540 McCallie Ave, Suite 341

    423-634-6434

Tips & Warnings

  • The Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission requires you to be at least 18 years of age to apply. Other requirements are: You must not have been convicted of a felony within the previous four years; you must not have been convicted of a misdemeanor or felony relating to the sale of alcoholic beverages or beer within the previous eight years; you must not have been convicted of a crime involving a Schedule 1 or 2 controlled substance, any sex-related crimes or embezzlement within the previous eight years; you must not have had ownership or interest in the previous eight years in an establishment that has had its license revoked; and you must not have had a Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission permit revoked within the previous five years.

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