United States Code
USC most recently checked for updates: Aug 11, 2020
There is hereby imposed on all distilled spirits produced in or imported into the United States a tax at the rate of $13.50 on each proof gallon and a proportionate tax at the like rate on all fractional parts of a proof gallon.
All products of distillation, by whatever name known, which contain distilled spirits, on which the tax imposed by law has not been paid, and any alcoholic ingredient added to such products, shall be considered and taxed as distilled spirits.
Wines containing more than 24 percent of alcohol by volume shall be taxed as distilled spirits.
Any person who removes, sells, transports, or uses distilled spirits, withdrawn free of tax under section 5214(a) or section 7510, in violation of laws or regulations now or hereafter in force pertaining thereto, and all such distilled spirits shall be subject to all provisions of law relating to distilled spirits subject to tax, including those requiring payment of the tax thereon; and the person so removing, selling, transporting, or using the distilled spirits shall be required to pay such tax.
Any person who produces, withdraws, sells, transports, or uses denatured distilled spirits or articles in violation of laws or regulations now or hereafter in force pertaining thereto, and all such denatured distilled spirits or articles shall be subject to all provisions of law pertaining to distilled spirits that are not denatured, including those requiring the payment of tax thereon; and the person so producing, withdrawing, selling, transporting, or using the denatured distilled spirits or articles shall be required to pay such tax.
If any volatile fruit-flavor concentrate (or any fruit mash or juice from which such concentrate is produced) containing one-half of 1 percent or more of alcohol by volume, which is manufactured free from tax under section 5511, is sold, transported, or used by any person in violation of the provisions of this chapter or regulations promulgated thereunder, such person and such concentrate, mash, or juice shall be subject to all provisions of this chapter pertaining to distilled spirits and wines, including those requiring the payment of tax thereon; and the person so selling, transporting, or using such concentrate, mash, or juice shall be required to pay such tax.
Imported liqueurs and cordials, or similar compounds, containing distilled spirits, shall be taxed as distilled spirits.
There is hereby imposed on all imported distilled spirits withdrawn from customs custody under section 5232 without payment of the internal revenue tax, and thereafter withdrawn from bonded premises for beverage purposes, an additional tax equal to the duty which would have been paid had such spirits been imported for beverage purposes, less the duty previously paid thereon.
Except as provided in section 5314, upon bay rum, or any article containing distilled spirits, brought from Puerto Rico into the United States for consumption or sale there is hereby imposed a tax on the spirits contained therein at the rate imposed on distilled spirits produced in the United States.
The tax shall attach to distilled spirits as soon as this substance is in existence as such, whether it be subsequently separated as pure or impure spirits, or be immediately, or at any subsequent time, transferred into any other substance, either in the process of original production or by any subsequent process.
In the case of a controlled group, the proof gallon quantities specified under subparagraphs (A) and (B) of paragraph (1) shall be applied to such group and apportioned among the members of such group in such manner as the Secretary or their delegate shall by regulations prescribe.
For purposes of subparagraph (A), the term “controlled group” shall have the meaning given such term by subsection (a) of section 1563, except that “more than 50 percent” shall be substituted for “at least 80 percent” each place it appears in such subsection.
Under regulations prescribed by the Secretary, principles similar to the principles of subparagraphs (A) and (B) shall be applied to a group under common control where one or more of the persons is not a corporation.
Pursuant to rules issued by the Secretary, two or more entities (whether or not under common control) that produce distilled spirits marketed under a similar brand, license, franchise, or other arrangement shall be treated as a single taxpayer for purposes of the application of this subsection.
In the case of any proof gallons of distilled spirits which have been produced outside of the United States and imported into the United States, the rate of tax applicable under paragraph (1) (referred to in this paragraph as the “reduced tax rate”) may be assigned by the distilled spirits operation (provided that such operation makes an election described in subparagraph (B)(ii)) to any electing importer of such proof gallons pursuant to the requirements established by the Secretary under subparagraph (B).
For purposes of this section, any importer making an election described in subparagraph (B)(ii) shall be deemed to be a member of the controlled group of the distilled spirits operation, as described under paragraph (2).
For purposes of this paragraph, in the case of a controlled group, rules similar to section 5051(a)(5)(B) shall apply.
This subsection shall not apply to distilled spirits removed after
For provisions relating to the tax on shipments to the United States of taxable articles from Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, see section 7652.