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Southern Hits Another Roadblock In Missouri, As Appellate Court Denies Appeal

September 26, 2013

Southern Wine & Spirits’ bid to enter Missouri hit a setback yesterday as its appeal against the state’s residency requirement for wholesalers was denied by the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. The 8th Circuit affirmed last year’s ruling by the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri, asserting that under the landmark Granholm v. Heald Supreme Court decision, “States have flexibility to define the requisite degree of ‘in-state’ presence to include the in-state residence of wholesalers’ directors and officers, and a super-majority of their shareholders.”

The court rejected Southern’s arguments that the residency law is an example of economic protectionism and in violation of the Commerce Clause, ruling that the latter’s protections against discrimination against out-of-state producers do not apply to wholesalers.

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