Home Delivery


  1. Home
  2. Education
  3. Legally Speaking
  4. Home Delivery

August 2011

During the 2011 session, the Iowa legislature passed Senate File 240. The legislation clearly defines how and when a licensed retailer can deliver alcoholic beverages to customers. 

Unopened containers of alcohol for personal use may be delivered seven days a week, until 10:00 PM. Both the individual making the delivery and the person receiving the product must be at least 21 years old. Proof of the recipient’s identity and age, as well as their signature, are a condition of delivery. 

Here is a breakdown of what liquor licensees need to know prior, during and after delivering alcoholic beverages to customers:

Prior to Delivery

Businesses wanting to deliver must hold a license that allows the sale of unopened containers of alcohol for off-premises consumption. Licensees may only deliver authorized products. For example, if a store has a beer and wine permit, they may not sell spirits for delivery. 

Alcohol can be delivered to customers’ homes and other designated areas, such as a reception hall. If the place of delivery is a business or public venue, all applicable rules of the location must be followed. For instance, if a park does not allow alcohol consumption, licensees may not deliver to that park. 

All alcoholic beverages delivered must be for personal consumption and cannot be for resale in any way. As such, licensees are not allowed to deliver products to an event with a cash bar. 

When Taking Orders

It is the responsibility of the licensee and its employees to ensure the purchasing customer is of legal drinking age. 

Payment for all alcohol being delivered must be received on the licensed premises at the time of the order. This can be in person or over the phone. Customers cannot pay for products upon delivery. 

Deliveries can be made seven days a week, with a Sunday sales privilege, until 10:00 PM. Deliveries may be made after 6:00 AM on Monday through Saturday and after 8:00 AM on Sunday. 

While orders may be accepted at any time during the legal hours of sale, it is the responsibility of the licensee to ensure all deliveries have been completed by 10:00 PM. 

The employee accepting an alcohol order for delivery must be at least 16 years old. 

During Delivery

Deliveries must be made by an employee of the licensee. No third party deliveries are allowed. Alcohol must be transported in a vehicle owned, leased or under the control of the licensee. Deliveries may not be made in an employee’s personal vehicle.  

The delivery personnel and the recipient of the alcohol must both be at least 21 years old. Upon delivery, the licensee’s employee must obtain proof of identity and age as well as the recipient’s signature. It is illegal to deliver to an intoxicated person or an individual simulating intoxication. 

If a sale is made or delivered to a minor, the employee who accepted the order, the employee who made the delivery, and the license holder could potentially be charged with a sale to minor violation. The licensee is responsible for the actions of all employees.

The law does not restrict licensees from charging a delivery fee or delivery personnel from accepting tips.

After Delivery

Businesses must keep a record of the recipient’s name, signature and address, as well as the alcohol quantity delivered, for a period of three years. Licensees may develop their own record keeping form as long as it contains all required information. 

It is up to individual store policy whether or not to accept returns on delivered unopened products. 


If you have specific questions regarding home delivery of alcohol or other licensing and regulations issues, please contact the Division’s Regulatory Compliance staff at 866.469.2223, option 1.