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Massachusetts House Bill 267 Would Affect Brewer-Distributor Relationships

Posted on | February 20, 2014 by | No Comments

BostonFor craft brewers distributing in Massachusetts, or thinking about it, there’s a bill before the legislature that you’ll want to know about. House Bill 267, if passed, would make it easier for small breweries to change distributors. Right now, Massachusetts law makes it difficult for brewers to make a switch, requiring permission from the Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission that doesn’t always come easily.

Interestingly, the existing law went into effect to protect mom & pop distributors from the whims of the “big guy” beer brands. Now, though, the tide has changed and there are good reasons for revising the law, in favor of letting the contracting parties terminate the agreement when and how their contract specifies. Notably, the bill would also provide an alternative non-contractual route to termination. There’s good reporting on MA H267 from the Boston Globe here, and you can check out the full text of the bill right here.

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Danielle Teagarden
Brewery Attorney at Reiser Legal PLLC
Danielle Teagarden is a Seattle-based brewery lawyer, business attorney, and intellectual property advisor with particular focus on protecting trademark rights and handling trademark disputes. Danielle frequently represents craft breweries, start-ups, and small alcoholic beverage businesses, and she is Author and Editor of the Brewery Law Blog. You may reach her directly at danielle@reiserlegal.com

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