This guide was made to educate the residents and visitors of Vermont. It covers the opioid crisis, which Vermont has handled very well. We will also cover Alcohol and Marijuana laws. We explain ways that we can help you overcome addiction, find resources in your own community, and how to identify if a loved one is abusing drugs or alcohol. Everything in this guide is entirely about Vermont, including Vermont government resources and Vermont based non-profit organizations. We hope to educate you about addiction and how to get help. If you are in immediate crisis, please call our toll-free 24 hours crisis line found at the top of the page.
To purchase or consume alcohol in Vermont you must be 21 years of age. To serve alcohol in a restaurant you may be 18. To work in a liquor store with closed-containers only you may be 16 years of age.
Where can you buy alcohol in Vermont?
The state contracts with private retailers to sell alcohol rather than operating state stores. Beer and lower alcohol wine are typically available in convenience and grocery stores. While retail stores can sell alcohol from 6 a.m. to midnight, bars and restaurants may serve from 8 a.m. to 2 a.m.
Open Container Laws
It is illegal in Vermont to have an open container of alcohol in the main cabin of a car, regardless of whether the driver or passengers are intoxicated. However, it is legal to transport open containers of alcohol in the trunk of a car.
It is legal to ferment or brew your own alcoholic beverages and there is no license or tax required. For households with 2 or more adults the limit is 200 gallons of alcoholic beverage. For households with 1 adult it is 100 gallons.
For more information on Vermont alcohol laws visit: http://liquorcontrol.vermont.gov/laws/laws
In Vermont the the legal limit is 0.08% BAC. When you apply for a driver’s license in Vermont, you sign an “implied consent law,” which means that if you are asked by law enforcement officer to submit to a blood or breath alcohol analysis you must comply. If you refuse an alcohol or drug screening, you will lose your license for 1 year.
Vermont does not have enhanced DUI laws like many states. If your BAC is above .08%, you will receive a standard DUI charge.
1st offense results in a 90-day license suspension with possible fines and court costs
2nd offense results in an 18-month license suspension with possible fines and court costs
3rd offense can result in permanent revocation of your driver’s license and possible court-ordered addiction treatment programs. Vermont does not support ignition-interlock devices like some states.
Currently, Marijuana laws are fairly lax in Vermont. Possession under 1 oz is a civil violation ($200 ticket). Second offense is $300, and the the third offense is $500. Over 1 oz is a misdemeanor and could result in jail time and hefty fines. Over 2 ounces is a felony and could result in 3 years imprisonment and a $10,000 fine. This is all likely to change though.
In January 2018, the Vermont House of Representatives passed a bill to legalize marijuana. The bill is expected to pass in the Senate and Gov. Phil Scott has promised to sign the bill into law. Vermont would become the 9th state to end marijuana prohibition.