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legalgems, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 10049
Experience:  Just Answer consultant at Self employed
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I live in Massachusetts Boston area and I'm planing to make

Customer Question

I live in Massachusetts Boston area and I'm planing to make a huge private house party but I'd like to apply a cover charge. Am I breaking any laws ?
Thank You
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  legalgems replied 11 months ago.

Hello! I will be reviewing your question and posting a response momentarily; if you have any follow up questions please respond here. Thanks!

Expert:  legalgems replied 11 months ago.

It is illegal to sell alcohol without a license, so if the cover charge is for alcohol, then it would be illegal. One could charge an entrance fee, but that may violate local ordinances so those would need to be checked.

If money is being charged, most cities require an alcohol permit- please see:

Here are the rules re: licenses:

I could not find case law for MA on this subject, but the court can look to other states for guidance, and recently (2014) a CA court determined that charging an entrance fee is paramount to charging for alcohol, which would violate the above.

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Information provided is for educational purposes only. Consultation with a personal attorney is always recommended so your particular facts may be considered. Thank you and take care.

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
I will not be selling alcohol in the house it will be free
The cover charge is to get in to the house
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Thank you