Common Questions About RBS Training, Answered

Responsible Beverage Service (RBS) training is designed to give alcohol handlers and servers the understanding needed to effectively obtain RBS Certification. Through RBS training, establishments will be able to sensibly distribute alcoholic beverages and limit underage consumption, therefore reducing alcohol-related harm in local neighborhoods.

As of July 1st, 2022, this training will become mandatory under Assembly Bill 1221 for all establishments in the state of California that participate in the sale and service of alcoholic beverages. This mandate, the Responsible Beverage Service Training Act, is enforced by the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC).

For effective training, you will need to engage in an RBS training program from an accredited RBS training provider. But how should you choose your training program, and where should you start? To help you choose your program, these are some answers to common questions about RBS training providers:

What is an RBS training provider?

An RBS training provider is anyone who can train alcohol servers to become RBS certified. Be sure to choose an approved RBS training provider registered with the ABC so that you can have peace of mind knowing that you are getting the right depth of information.

To become an accredited RBS training provider with the ABC in the state of California, a provider must submit an application through the RBS Portal online.

If any seller of alcohol is required to have their servers RBS certified, does that establishment have to become an RBS training provider?

The short answer is no. Establishments will only be required to ensure their servers are trained by the July 1 deadline. However, establishments will have 60 days after that deadline to make certain the above standard is met.

Establishments are not expected to provide the training themselves, and rather will be able to receive training from a government accredited RBS training provider.

Will establishments (bars, restaurants, sellers of alcoholic beverages) pay for the training for their servers?

There are certain California laws that demand employees pay for costs correlated with training that is required to maintain employment. However, it is suggested that employees and their employers consult with labor attorneys that focus on the Federal Fair Labor Standards Act which can extend protections to employees.

Why are RBS training providers essential?

RBS training providers are the first avenue towards a wholly educated alcohol service industry. As alcohol servers, handlers, and managers across California learn the best practices for appropriately distributing alcoholic beverages, establishments will be better equipped to deal with problems of over-consumption.

As the mandate aims to reduce rates of excessive alcohol consumption across the state, approved RBS training providers will help to perpetuate the safe service of alcohol in local communities.

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