U.S. Supreme Court to Review State Residency Requirements

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The U.S. Supreme Court has granted a petition filed by the Tennessee Wine and Spirits Retailers Association to review conflicting lower court decisions, the most recent of which invalidated Tennessee’s two-year residency requirement for retail license applicants. The resolution of the issue that has split lower courts on the narrow residency matter, whether the non-discrimination principle of the “dormant” Commerce Clause applies not only to producers and products but to state laws regulating the wholesale- and retail-tiers of the industry, could have more far-reaching consequences including as to whether an out-of-state retailer has a right to ship direct to consumers within a state that allows that ability for in-state retailers.

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