Is it illegal to serve alcohol to pregnant women? IYCATT (Admin) | June 27, 2013 | Questions | Comments Is it illegal to serve alcohol to pregnant women? If not, can we refuse to? I made four drinks and two shots for a woman who was six or seven months pregnant…that was not fun at all. Ruined my day. ~Maria Tags:alcohol, bartending, customer, illegal, law, pregnant, pregnant customer, pregnant women, serving, serving alcohol, serving alcohol to pregnant women, serving industry Related Posts That’s Not What I Ordered Comments | Jun 5, 2013 Can My Restaurant Do This? Comments | Nov 25, 2014 Can you answer Sheena’s Question? Comments | Feb 6, 2013 How Does Your Restaurant Decide Silverware Rolling Duties? Comments | Oct 14, 2013 Lisa Tobin:June 28, 2013 at 6:59 pmHas it occurred to anyone that possibly the woman and her fetus had medical issues that make her drinking a moot point? There are some medical conditions that cause a woman to have to carry to term (no money for pricey abortion) even though the baby cannot and will not suvive upon delivery (if baby is brain dead, etc.). Or maybe it was already dead and she was the lucky winner of 'waiting for her body to begin labor naturally to expell the deceased baby'....these are all very real situations....most pregnant women are not going to be sitting at a bar pounding drinks, even the alcoholic ones...people care about what other people think...except the ones who have nothing left to lose. Mind your own business, people usually have reasons for the choices they make, even if your mind can't conceive of it. Tracie Kreider:June 28, 2013 at 7:23 pmI agree and I have seen that happen. You cannot judge a book by its cover! Alicia Ann:June 27, 2013 at 9:14 pmNo, it isn't illegal to serve a pregnant woman, and if anyone had tried to deny me my glass of wine, I would have flipped. That being said, it sounds like you overserved her anyway. Who drinks 4 mixed drinks and 2 shot when they are out to eat?? Or was this at a bar?? Either way, you have the right to cut off service to anyone who appears to be intoxicated, regardless of their pregnant status. Ashley Mayo:June 28, 2013 at 2:39 amMom of the year right here people! Your are a moron, if you do not see a problem with this. That being said this is the nicest I can be. Sure a 1/2 a glass of red is fine but a whole glass or more. You do not need to breed! Renee Heitman:June 28, 2013 at 3:49 amThe idiot here is you, Ashley. A half a glass of red is okay but a glass of a white isn't? Are you a buffoon? White is generally less alcoholic, sometimes half the alcohol. Most moscatos are something like 7% or under, where Reds can be up to 14% or so, and even more so with a fortified wine like a Marsala. Besides that, one glass of wine is NOT going to endanger a fetus. What this woman ordered up above, four drinks and two shots, that is irresponsible, but at the same time, this is a FREE country, people can do as they please and it is NOT anyone else's decision to police your life. I get sick of the constant nannying of women and their bodies and the way people think they know better is ridiculous and it is infantilzing. Besides that, we do not know for sure if this woman was really pregnant. She could've looked it, but I know there are some women ( and men for that matter ) who look it and really aren't. Unless a woman is fucking crowning, you do not ask if she's pregnant or not, and you sure as hell don't police her body, even if she is and is a fucking idiot. Her life, her problem. Jamie Yates:June 28, 2013 at 8:06 amShe didn't specify white or red. Where did that come in to play? Perhaps you should read twice before you start calling people names. Jamie McQuinn:June 28, 2013 at 8:35 pmPlenty of buffoonery to go around here. Nanny Angel Waite:June 30, 2013 at 6:15 amRenee Heitman The red is considered better by many doctors because of the other health benefits, not the alcoholic content *smh* Don't even get me started on"what a woman wants to do with her body is her business" because when you're making children there is SOOOOOO much wrong with that statement. Carley Vonderhaar:June 30, 2013 at 2:49 pmYou should read twice since she said a glass of red LeBeau Kpadenou:July 1, 2013 at 4:19 amDoctors often suggest a glass of wine a day to women who are heavy drinkers when they become pregnant, as alcohol withdrawal can lead to miscarriage. Vikki Tikkitavi:July 1, 2013 at 5:26 pmRenee Heitman Exactly. I can count the number of people who actually know what they're talking about in these comments on one hand, so it's probably a bad idea to refuse service to someone based on ZERO knowledge of the issue. Jayson Chen:July 2, 2013 at 5:29 amRenee I think you're whole laissez-faire attitude is a bit ridiculous. I think you have the wrong idea what is meant by a "free country". It was founded on the basis that every person was born with free unalienable rights to do w.e they want but would have to give some of that up to form a society. This prevents me from stealing other peoples things so they don't steal mine. To make the connection, why should a person be able to harm a fetus without consequence( whether a fetus is considered a person is a different debate)? There is a reason why incest is illegal. Laws can change. Right or Wrong doesn't. Christina McInroy:June 28, 2013 at 6:05 amI cannot believe some of these pregnant boozers defending themselves. "Don't tell me how to live MY life" ...? Woman it's not JUST YOUR life anymore!!! Jamie Marie Morton:June 27, 2013 at 9:07 pmIT IS TOTTALLY NOT AGAINST THE LAW TO SERVE A PREGNANT WOMAN, HOWEVER IF YOU ARE LIKE ME I COULDNT DO THAT NO MATTER WHAT. TELL YOUR MANAGER AND THEY WILL FIND SOME ONE ELSE TO SERVE HER Torie Clare Allemann:June 29, 2013 at 11:38 pmYou can get fired for doing that at some places. Denise Marie:June 27, 2013 at 9:16 pmManagement may refuse service to anyone of their choosing. Bartenders may also refuse service. Brian McQuiston:June 28, 2013 at 8:41 amThere's a corollary to the right to refuse service. Yes you *can* refuse service to any *person* you want, just not for any *reason* you want. If your state has anti-pregnancy discrimination laws in their legal code enumerating gender equality statutes, it is every bit as illegal to refuse to serve them as it is to refuse service based on race or gender. Holly Tjaden:June 27, 2013 at 9:15 pmAlso, one drink isn't harmful to the fetus. It's not the policy to be no-alcohol in a lot of other places, but the reason I learned from a doctor is that most doctors don't trust Americans to have self-control. Pregnant women are sometimes ENCOURAGED to have half a glass of red wine a few nights a week. Having 1-2 drinks a week isn't bad for the baby. More than three drinks in a day is what causes the issues with alcohol. Shelby Dyrdahl:October 28, 2013 at 4:12 amYou have no idea what you are talking about! Just saying, maybe you should research what you are telling people before you comment some random crap. It is NOT okay to drink by any means when pregnant and this is because scientifically we are not sure what the official causes of alcohol are to an unborn fetus (in any dose). Personally I think that if you are a mother who would even dare injuring your child by drinking in the nine months you are pregnant you should not be a mother. Being a mother means you're selfless and if you can't hold off on the alcohol for nine months that's pretty sad. Jeremy Mumford:June 28, 2013 at 5:06 amIt's completely illegal in Canada, any establishment that serves a pregnant woman and gets caught loses their liquor license for 30 days, plus a $5000 fine for the server and a $5000 fine to the restaurant. Misty Barfly:June 27, 2013 at 9:08 pmNo, not illegal. They're stupid but it's not on you kiddo Christina Cortez:September 23, 2013 at 9:11 pmIt is illegal to refuse to serve a pregnant woman. No, you can't refuse service to anyone for any reason. There are laws protecting their individual freedoms and rights. Jamie Lynn Rajda:July 1, 2013 at 3:09 pmMaybe she wasn't pregnant.... Tiana M Ervin:June 27, 2013 at 9:36 pmIn some states it is seen as illegal to not serve a woman simply because she is pregnant and can cost you a civil suit and your job. It is seen as going against the rights of the woman, and God forbid if you are mistaken and she really isn't pregnant and is just fat or has a medical condition. Bottom line, it is always best to speak to your manager if you are uncomfortable with it. Ashley Maina-Lowe:June 27, 2013 at 10:53 pmI ordered a glass of wine once and was refused. I lost my mind and asked to speak to a manager who ended up buying me my glass of wine. Its NOT illegal and totally not your place to judge! Your job is to make drinks. IMO Jackie Sellars:June 27, 2013 at 10:57 pmThere is a HUGE difference between A glass of wine and 4 drinks and 2 shots. I would have been pissed if I served this dumbass. Ashley Maina-Lowe:June 27, 2013 at 11:09 pmTrue.. Daniel Wiser:June 27, 2013 at 9:17 pmNot illegal, and depending on the state you live in, if you refuse service the woman has grounds for a discrimination lawsuit. You can't help if some people are incredibly stupid!! Chelsea Cole:June 27, 2013 at 9:15 pmI had to serve a pregnant women once, I made my manager bring her her drinks, I just couldn't do it. Mary Washington:June 27, 2013 at 9:13 pmNo it's not illegal. And if you work at most places no you can not refuse. Xtina Foti:June 27, 2013 at 9:31 pmIt isn't illegal in Minnesota. HOWEVER, in MN, we can deny ANYONE service WITHOUT reason. I have had many a pregnant woman order wine from me & I have asked my manager to carry out the order. I will not, in good conscience, serve a pregnant woman alcohol. Good God.... they'd probably find a way to sue me if something happened to their unborn child. We do have the DRAM SHOP Law, for Pete's Sake. As if people shouldn't be held personally accountable for their own actions while being intoxicated (which is, mind you, self-inflicted). Ah heck! Let's sue the bartender /server who served them last. *sarcasm* Helena Zubkow:June 30, 2013 at 12:43 amShame on anyone who would serve a pregnant woman more than one glass of wine. What is this nonsense that you 'can't' refuse them? I'd rather lose my job than ruin a kid's life. Neelie Sammon Koulouvaris:June 27, 2013 at 10:49 pmI was in that predicament a few times with a regular customer I had. I made my boss serve her,because serving shots of tequila & margaritas to a very pregnant woman made my stomach turn. My boss respected my decision & served the woman herself. If you have ever seen the lifelong,irreversible,very severe damage caused by fetal alcohol syndrome,you would not ever knowingly serve a pregnant woman....and as far as that pregnant woman goes, I can just imagine how awful that kid's life will be. Carolyn Skinner:June 27, 2013 at 11:41 pmMy first question is how did you know the lady was pregnant? I've been a server and had an obviously pregnant woman order a drink. I served it to her and then told my co-workers that I couldn't believe the woman was drinking alcohol only to find out that she wasn't pregnant....she had delivered her baby several months before. In today's world it isn't politically correct to assume someone is pregnant unless they share that info with you. Madelynn Winnefred:June 28, 2013 at 4:37 pmThat was my first thought too! How did the server know for sure the woman was pregnant? That being said, I'm glad I'll never be pregnant because I'm not sure what I'd do if other people didn't want me drinking for three quarters of a year... LoL Julia Rachel Anater:June 27, 2013 at 9:11 pmIn Oregon, refusing to serve a pregnant woman can get you fired and sued. You can ask a manager to serve her, if you simply say you're "not comfortable" serving her, but you cannot discriminate against someone because she is pregnant. It's illegal discrimination. Tara Randol:June 27, 2013 at 9:16 pmIt's not illegal to serve a pregnant woman alcohol, just like it's not illegal for a pregnant woman to drink alcohol. It's really, really stupid, but unfortunately not illegal (to drink while pregnant, I mean). Alicia Ann:June 27, 2013 at 9:24 pmMy doctor told me to avoid all alcohol in the first trimester when the fetus is doing the majority of its developing, but after that, a glass of wine a week is fine. I would be livid had a person denied me my glass of wine with my dinner. That being said, this person appears to have overserved this woman anyway. Lizz Martensen:June 27, 2013 at 9:44 pmThe American Academy of Pediatrics says that no amount of alcohol is safe during pregnancy. Here is their most recent research article: http://aapnews.aappublications.org/content/32/3/26.extract Alicia Ann:June 27, 2013 at 10:54 pmAnd the reason they say that is so women don't justify drinking more often. Either way, it isn't your job to tell me how to live my life. Lizz Martensen:June 28, 2013 at 2:23 amI wasn't saying it was. I was just sharing a journal article on the subject by a reputable group researchers. Renee Heitman:June 28, 2013 at 3:52 amIt's not really stupid, Tara, because we live in a free country where we're supposed to be allowed to make our own fucking decisions ourselves, versus being reduced to incubators. If a woman who is pregnant wants to drink, then I guess she can suffer the consequences, but it's not for the law to decide. Besides that, what do you do when a woman walks into a bar and looks pregnant and isn't? Do you make her take a pregnancy test in the bar's bathroom? This is what the fuck is wrong with this country. Everyone has their noses in everyone else's business. Carley Vonderhaar:June 30, 2013 at 2:52 pmWe just feel bad for the child because 4 mixed drinks and 2 shots obviously shows that this mom doesn't give a fuck about her children Jayson Chen:June 30, 2013 at 5:28 pmRenee I think you're whole laissez-faire attitude is a bit ridiculous. I think you have the wrong idea what is meant by a "free country". It was founded on the basis that every person was born with free unalienable rights to do w.e they want but would have to give some of that up to form a society. This prevents me from stealing other peoples things so they don't steal mine. To make the connection, why should a person be able to harm a fetus without consequence( whether a fetus is considered a person is a different debate)? There is a reason why incest is illegal. Darren Fitzgerald:June 28, 2013 at 1:18 amIt is not illegal to serve a pregnant woman alcohol if she asks for it. Just like selling them cigarettes. People are responsible for their own behavior. I can't believe I said that with a straight face! Diana Rae Klaus:June 27, 2013 at 9:49 pmIt is not illegal in any state. Studies also show that moderate intake is healthy. It lowers blood pressure and relaxes both mother and baby. Your moral standing is in check, however not your choice. Alexandria Phillips:June 27, 2013 at 9:08 pmIt probably varies by state. But i know in Nebraska, it is not illegal, but you do not have to serve them, you can refuse. But the establishment cannot refuse service. You personally just do not have to be a part if it. Tori Rommes:June 28, 2013 at 6:14 amI don't think it is illegal anywhere. I'm curious if she said she was pregnant or just looked pregnant. Some women still look pregnant after birth.