Laws, Regulations & Annotations


Business Taxes Law Guide – Revision 2021

Alcoholic Beverage Tax Law


Article 2. Presumptions and Exemptions

Section 32211

32211. Presumption of sale. It shall be presumed that all distilled spirits acquired by any taxpayer have been sold in this State by him unless one of the following is proved to the satisfaction of the board, in reports on forms prescribed by the board:

(a) That the distilled spirits are still in the possession of the licensee.

(b) That the distilled spirits have been sold or delivered to another licensed distilled spirits manufacturer, rectifier, importer, or wholesaler.

(c) That the distilled spirits have been exported without this State or sold for export by the licensee making the report and actually exported from this State within 90 days from the date of the sale.

(d) That prior to the termination of possession the distilled spirits have been lost through unintentional destruction.

(e) That prior to the termination of possession there has been an unaccounted for loss, but the unaccounted for loss shall not exceed a tolerance to be fixed by the board.

(f) That the distilled spirits are otherwise exempt from taxation under this part.

Presumptions favor distilled spirits deficiency assessments.—The burden of proving that distilled spirits were sold in nontaxable transactions is on the taxpayer and disposals of distilled spirits unaccounted for are subject to the excise tax. Rathjen Bros., Inc. v. Collins, (1942) 50 Cal.App.2d 774; Sauers Wholesale Co. v. Collins, (1942) 50 Cal.App.2d 786; Tonkin Distributing Co., Inc. v. Collins, 50 Cal.App.2d 790. Where the State Board of Equalization determines a deficiency in accordance with the procedure set forth in the statute by ascertaining and working from opening and closing inventories for a taxable period, the resulting figure is presumed under the statute to represent the amount of taxable sales. Should a taxpayer seek to recover deficiency taxes paid under protest he has the burden of proving that the figure thus arrived at is not correct. Rathjen Bros., Inc. v. Collins, (1942) 50 Cal.App.2d 765.

Rule-making power of board.—The State Board of Equalization is given power in the general enabling provision of Section 24.25 of the Alcoholic Beverage Control Act (predecessor to Section 32212 of this code) to prescribe the manner in which the taxpayer must furnish proof in rebuttal of the presumption provided in Section 24.2 of the act (predecessor to this section) and this power is not limited by Section 24.2, but is in addition to it. As part of such manner of proof the board can prescribe the time at which data on which the taxpayer relies must be furnished to it. American Distilling Co. v. Johnson, (1955) 132 Cal.App.2d 73.