Author Topic: Trading is legal?  (Read 1014 times)

Offline Stevie

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Trading is legal?
« on: September 11, 2015, 09:54:25 PM »
Article linked below says its legal to trade homebrew, just not sell it.

http://nyulocal.com/city/2015/09/11/obama-can-make-beer-and-so-can-you-a-homebrew-expert-shows-us-how/

Offline 69franx

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Re: Trading is legal?
« Reply #1 on: September 11, 2015, 10:15:46 PM »
Good to know!
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Offline phunhog

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Re: Trading is legal?
« Reply #2 on: September 12, 2015, 05:16:54 AM »
Probably isn't legal but any reasonable person wouldn't think twice.  A buddy gives me backyard eggs and I fill his growler.  Don't think anyone really cares. Or at least the government doesn't.
Not I am not one for conspiracy theories but....at this years NHC there was a panel on Homebrew Law and Legislation.  The head of the CA brewers guild and someone from the BA were panelists.  One of the topics touched upon was homebrewers trying to sell, barter, trade their beers and all the reasons why it is illegal.  Now I listened to the podcast so maybe something was lost in translation vs. being there.  They mentioned that they are very much "stakeholders" in the commercial brewing industry. Remember the AHA is just a small part of the much larger BA.  And the BA is really nothing more than a industry group for craft commercial beers.  My take on the podcast is when homebrewers trade/barter their beers it potentially hurts their industry and members. It makes sense. If I trade a growler fill for eggs that means that is one less growler fill for a local commercial brewery (potentially).

Offline narvin

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Re: Trading is legal?
« Reply #3 on: September 12, 2015, 05:26:25 AM »
You lost me at "Tinder fling".

Didn't read past the first sentence, but bartering homebrew is not going to be considered legal.  If you're trading for something with another (non-commercial) person, there's no way that's really going to be considered bartering. If you try to pay your bills to Comcast with homebrew, that's not gonna fly.
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Offline reverseapachemaster

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Re: Trading is legal?
« Reply #4 on: September 12, 2015, 06:37:35 AM »
It's definitely not legal under federal law. The Internal Revenue Code considers bartering for goods or services of value to be a taxable source of income. If beer is creating a taxable income then it is unlawful unless the person obtaining the income is properly licensed to manufacture beer for commercial purposes.

The lawyer in me says bartering with homebrew--or any bartering without reporting it as income for tax purposes--is a no-no. The non-lawyer part of me that thinks individuals bartering homemade goods and services for minimal value should not be taxable income would be happy to fill some tax-free growlers to have a neighbor mow the yard.
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Offline ynotbrusum

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Re: Trading is legal?
« Reply #5 on: September 12, 2015, 01:09:49 PM »
Let's keep in mind that trading beers like was done here last spring was undertaken to allow other homebrewers to sample and comment/judge the beers received.  I think that is not bartering and should not be of major concern - it is not a quid pro quo situation, like eggs for beer.  There is a distinction in my mind for value given and received in different goods traded between producers of different products versus evaluating non-commercial, home made products of the same kind that are exchanged merely for evaluation by the other person involved in the trade.
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Offline klickitat jim

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Re: Trading is legal?
« Reply #6 on: September 12, 2015, 01:48:35 PM »
Every winter, without ever being asked, my neighbor plows my road for me. I give him a jug of his favorite whiskey. I guess that could be construed as illegal even though there is no agreement between us to do this. I figure he paid tax when he bought the tractor and fuel and I paid taxes when I bought the R&R, and every year the property taxes. The only thing not getting taxed is our friendship and time.

There are a number of things that are technically against a law or regulation. In my opinion, if they occur on your private property and no one is harmed or complains (meaning that no one knows or care) then... who cares?

Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Trading is legal?
« Reply #7 on: September 12, 2015, 01:59:51 PM »
Every winter, without ever being asked, my neighbor plows my road for me. I give him a jug of his favorite whiskey. I guess that could be construed as illegal even though there is no agreement between us to do this. I figure he paid tax when he bought the tractor and fuel and I paid taxes when I bought the R&R, and every year the property taxes. The only thing not getting taxed is our friendship and time.

There are a number of things that are technically against a law or regulation. In my opinion, if they occur on your private property and no one is harmed or complains (meaning that no one knows or care) then... who cares?

+1.  Hard to go much further without getting all political, but ....yeah.
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Offline narvin

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Re: Trading is legal?
« Reply #8 on: September 12, 2015, 02:20:35 PM »
Every winter, without ever being asked, my neighbor plows my road for me. I give him a jug of his favorite whiskey. I guess that could be construed as illegal even though there is no agreement between us to do this. I figure he paid tax when he bought the tractor and fuel and I paid taxes when I bought the R&R, and every year the property taxes. The only thing not getting taxed is our friendship and time.

There are a number of things that are technically against a law or regulation. In my opinion, if they occur on your private property and no one is harmed or complains (meaning that no one knows or care) then... who cares?

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Offline reverseapachemaster

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Re: Trading is legal?
« Reply #9 on: September 12, 2015, 02:32:57 PM »
Every winter, without ever being asked, my neighbor plows my road for me. I give him a jug of his favorite whiskey. I guess that could be construed as illegal even though there is no agreement between us to do this. I figure he paid tax when he bought the tractor and fuel and I paid taxes when I bought the R&R, and every year the property taxes. The only thing not getting taxed is our friendship and time.

There are a number of things that are technically against a law or regulation. In my opinion, if they occur on your private property and no one is harmed or complains (meaning that no one knows or care) then... who cares?

There is also a significant difference between bartering with an express agreement and two people gratuitously gifting a good or service to each other. Otherwise Christmas would be, well Christmas for the IRS.

While I'm at it, I should clarify my earlier post. People trading homebrew to evaluate each other's beers is probably legal (so long as there are not other legal issues with the transportation or with the beer being consumed outside of the household as some states prohibit.) This is akin to submitting beer for a competition or organized tasting. This is different from trading in the sense discussed in the article in which the homebrewer is obtaining goods in exchange and both sides have given their goods a value in the exchange. The fact that it is an alcoholic beverage in the barter creates its own problem independent of the taxability of the barter transaction.

We know unreported bartering happens all the time. Most of us are just not stupid enough to let our friends openly expose it in publication.

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Offline Wort-H.O.G.

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Re: Trading is legal?
« Reply #10 on: September 12, 2015, 04:16:36 PM »
live free or die!   ;D
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