For bar and restaurant owners who employ minors, it may be crucial to know if workers under 21 can also serve alcohol.
While those under 21 years of age typically can't drink alcohol, in many situations they can legally serve it.
Here's what employers need to know:
Alcohol Serving Determined by State Law
Although some bars and restaurants have taken the unorthodox approach of raising the drinking age for their establishment to 25, almost all private businesses will serve alcohol to those 21 and older. (If you have the proper permits to serve alcohol, that is.)
The drinking age in each state is set by state law, and despite efforts to lower it, it is currently set in stone. However, each state differs when it comes to laws regarding minors serving the sauce. For example:
City/County Specific Requirements
In addition to each state's laws on minors serving alcohol, business owners should be aware of their local jurisdiction's laws on alcohol servers. For example, an employer may be operating in a dry or semi-dry county with more stringent rules than the state regarding alcohol serving age.
This intersection of state and local alcohol laws can be confusing. That's why bar and restaurant owners hoping to hire a minor to serve alcohol may want to contact an attorney familiar with state and local laws first.