State and Local Alcoholic Beverage Laws

The use of alcoholic beverages by members of the University of Florida Community is subject to the alcoholic beverage laws of the State of Florida and to local ordinances. Below are selected state statutes and city ordinances pertaining to alcoholic beverages with brief summaries.

State Regulation of Sales

Statute 561.422 – Nonprofit civic organizations, temporary permits.
Upon filing of an application with the Division of Alcoholic Beverages & Tobacco and payment of a fee of $25, a permit may be issued authorizing a bona fide nonprofit civic organization to sell alcoholic beverages for consumption on the premises only, for a period not to exceed 3 days subject to any state law or municipal or county ordinances regulating the time for selling such beverages.

Statute 562.12 – Beverages sold with improper license, or without a license or registration, or held with intent to sell prohibited.
Convicted violators of this statute shall be guilty of a misdemeanor of the second degree

State Drinking Age

Statute 562.11 – Selling, giving, or serving alcoholic beverages to persons under age 21; misrepresenting or misstating age or age of another to induce licensee to serve alcoholic beverages to person under 21; penalties.
It is unlawful for any person to sell, give, serve, or permit to be served alcoholic beverages to a person under 21 years of age or to permit a person under 21 years of age to consume said beverages on the licensed premises.

It is unlawful for any person to misrepresent or mistake his or her age or the age of any other person for the purpose of inducing any licensee or his agents or employees to sell, give, serve, or deliver any alcoholic beverage to a person under 21 years of age or for any person under 21 years of age to purchase or attempt to purchase alcoholic beverages.

Anyone convicted of violating either of the above provisions is guilty of a second-degree misdemeanor. If a driver's license or an identification card issued by the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles is used in violation of these provisions, additional penalties may be imposed, including suspension or revocation of the driver's license.

Statute 562.111 – Possession of alcoholic beverages by persons under age 21 prohibited.
It is unlawful for any person under the age of 21 years...to have in his or her possession alcoholic beverages.

Convicted violators of this statute are guilty of a misdemeanor of the second degree. Suspension or revocation of a driver's license may also be imposed.

Statute 768.125  Liability for injury or damage resulting from intoxication.

A person who sells or furnishes alcoholic beverages to a person of lawful drinking age shall not thereby become liable for injury or damage caused by or resulting from the intoxication of such person, except that a person who willfully and unlawfully sells or furnishes alcoholic beverages to a person who is not of lawful drinking age or knowingly serves a person habitually addicted to the use of any or all alcoholic beverages may become liable for injury or damage caused by or resulting from the intoxication of such minor or person.

Other State Laws

Statute 856.011 – Disorderly Intoxication.
No person (defined as any person 21 years of age or older) having control of any residence shall allow an open house party (defined as a social gathering at a residence) if any alcoholic beverage or drug is possessed or consumed at said residence by any minor (person under 21 years of age) where the person knows that an alcoholic beverage or drug is in the possession of or being consumed by a minor at said residence and where the person fails to take reasonable steps to prevent the possession or consumption of the alcoholic beverage or drug.

Statute 856.015 – Open House Parties
No adult [person 21 years-of-age or older] having control of any residence shall allow an open house party (defined as "a social gathering at a residence") if any alcoholic beverage or drug is possessed or consumed at said residence by any minor (person under 21 years of age) where the person knows that an alcoholic beverage or drug is in the possession of or being consumed by a minor at said residence and where the person fails to take reasonable steps to prevent the possession or consumption of the alcoholic beverage or drug.

Convicted violators of this statute are guilty of a second-degree misdemeanor.

Statute 316.193 – Driving Under the Influence.
A person is guilty of the offense of driving under the influence and is subject to punishment as provided in subsection (2) if such person is driving or in actual physical control of a vehicle within this state, and: > top The person is under the influence of alcoholic beverages, any chemical substance set forth in s.877.111, or any substance controlled under Chapter 893, when affected to the extent that his normal faculties are impaired; or

The person has a blood or breath alcohol level of 0.08 or higher.

Convicted violators of this statute are guilty of a second-degree misdemeanor; violation of this statute subjects a person to fines or imprisonment or both as well as restrictions on driving privileges.

Statute 316.1936 – Possession of open containers of alcoholic beverages in vehicles prohibited; penalties.
It is unlawful and punishable as provided in this section for any person to possess an open container of an alcoholic beverage while operating a vehicle in the state or while a passenger in or on a vehicle being operated in the state.

Gainesville City Ordinances

City Ordinance Section 4-4(b) (1)
It shall be unlawful for any person to consume or have in his/her possession any alcoholic beverages in any open container on any public street, thoroughfare, sidewalk . . . or on any public or semi-public parking facility in the city. It shall be unlawful for any person to have in his/her possession any alcoholic beverages in any open container while in or on any motor vehicle on any public or semi-public parking facility in the city.

City Ordinance Section 4-4 (c)
Except the section commonly known as the executive suite boxes, it shall be unlawful for any person to consume or to have in his or her possession any alcoholic beverages within the stands, stadium, or grounds of Florida Field, which is the stadium located on the campus of the University of Florida. This prohibition shall apply at any place within the gates of the stadium whether the same be in the stands, on the grounds, in the aisles or at any other place in said stadium.

Violators of these city ordinances may be subject to fine, imprisonment or both.

Policy Revised May 2003.
See Related Policy 6Cl-2.003 University of Florida; Distribution of Printed Material (pdf)
Code of Ordinances, City of Gainesville