Oklahoma state liquor laws have changed in recent years. Liquor laws are published and enforced by the Alcoholic Beverage Laws Enforcement Commission of Oklahoma. While some of the major aspects of the law remain the same there are changes to the laws.
In 2016, State Question 792, a citizen initiative designed to legalize the sale of alcohol in grocery stores and convenience stores, was passed. With the passage of the law, several changes took place beginning Oct. 1, 2018. A larger variety of products, more beverages sold cold, and strong beer options are some of the differences resulting from the passage of State Question 792.
As with all other states, Oklahoma has a minimum alcohol purchase age of 21 years old. In addition, property owners are forbidden from allowing a person under 21 to drink on their property, punishable by a fine and up to 5 years in prison.
It is a misdemeanor for anyone under 21 to pretend he/she is over 21 for the purposes over buying alcohol.
Much of the new law that went into effect in late 2018 pertains to the sale of alcohol. Liquor stores are now allowed to sell refrigerated beer and wine. Liquor stores are permitted to sell beer greater than 8.99 percent alcohol by volume and wine greater than 15 percent.
Grocery stores and gas stations are not allowed to sell liquor. Grocery stores and gas stations are able to sell chilled beer stronger than 3.2 percent alcohol by volume. Beer in grocery stores and convenience stores can be up to 8.99 percent alcohol by volume, and wine can be up to 15 percent. Many 3.2 alcohol products eventually will be restocked with the company's standard strength products as they are sold.
Wine and spirits stores are now able to sell items other than alcohol, as long as those sales don't exceed 20 percent of monthly sales.
Sales Time Restrictions
As of 2007, liquor stores can now be open on election days. The new liquor laws implemented in 2018 allow liquor stores to open as early as 8 a.m. and, if elected by voters of an individual county, to be open on Sunday and determine the operating hours. The state-wide regular hours for sale of alcohol at liquor stores is 8 a.m. to 2 a.m., Monday through Saturday.
Restaurants and Bars:
The rules for restaurants and bars are different than those above in the state of Oklahoma, as the consumption is "on premises." For these establishments, individual counties get to decide whether to allow "by the drink" alcohol purchases, but alcohol can not be sold between 2 a.m. and 7 a.m. There are a decreasing number of "dry counties" in Oklahoma.
In addition, there are specific rules for promotions. Restaurants and bars with a liquor license may offer happy hour specials and can advertise their happy hours on alcoholic beverages during specific days of the week and hours. The happy hour prices must be at least six percent above the cost of making that drink.
The "open container" law in Oklahoma forbids consuming alcohol in public, as well as makes it illegal to be intoxicated in public. If cited, you could face a small fine and possibly between 5 and 30 days of imprisonment. An open container in any location accessible by the driver of a car is also prohibited.
Driving Under the Influence
Driving Under the Influence (DUI) is defined as a blood or breath alcohol content of 0.08 percent or more in the state of Oklahoma. It is punishable by a fine of up $1000 and up to 1 year in prison.
If under the age of 21, a blood or breath alcohol content of anything over 0.00% results in a DUI charge and drivers license revocation.
Fines and punishments increase with each incidence of DUI.