What is the 2021 ABC Reform Act?
To streamline the number and type of licenses administered by the Authority and to craft a less complicated licensing structure for our licensees, the Virginia General Assembly approved a new licensing and fee structure for ABC. On January 1, 2022, ABC licenses will be consolidated from 152 existing alcohol licenses down to 71, in a set of 12 categories. This change will reduce complexity and duplicative processes for businesses that manufacture, sell and/or serve alcohol.
These changes in ABC’s license and fee structure are incorporated in ABC’s new “VAL” system.
What is the VAL system?
VAL stands for - Virginia ABC Licensing. It is a state-of-the-art, on-line licensing system that will replace ABC’s paper application process. VAL consist of two modules. A “back-office” which allows ABC employee to complete their licensing functions using advanced technology. VAL also has a public facing portal. This portal is a web-based software application available to ABC customers 24-hours a day. This license portal will be accessed through the ABC website (www.abc.virginia.gov) and will allow our customers to conduct their ABC business whenever it is convenient for them.
What transactions can I process in VAL?
Virginia ABC customers seeking to obtain any type of event license can utilize VAL.
- Banquet Mixed Beverage Special Event
- Banquet Special Event
- Manufacturer Event
- Mixed Beverage Club Event
- Mixed Beverage Special Event
Additionally, Virginia ABC is onboarding licensees in a phased approach by renewal date. You will receive by mail a separate letter with VAL login instructions and your unique PIN (personal identification number) and Record Number. Follow the instructions in the letter to create an account and synchronize your licenses to your newly created account. Once this is complete, you are ready to start transacting on the site which includes:
- License transactions – Application, renewal, modification, surrenders, etc.
- Financial transactions – All payment of fees and fines
- Training records –Officially record training such as RSVP and MART
- Printing license certificates and other documentation
- Adding delegates
Will my historical information be available in VAL?
Yes, the PIN letters you receive from ABC will consist of two parts. The first will give instructions on how to create your account in ABC and then how to link that account to VAL. The second part of the letter will have two columns of numbers. One column will be your “PIN Number” and the corresponding second column will be your “Record Number.” The number of information “rows” will depend on the number of separate records that relate to your business entity. You will be instructed how to navigate in the VAL system to the “Matching Records” screen and how to input your PIN and Record numbers. Once complete, you can check to see that all your records have related to your new account. There is a “how to” video available that demonstrates this process. Watch video here.
What is a record number?
When you transact using the VAL System, a record number is created for each transaction. Each application, license, amendment, renewal, business, and individual will have a separate record number.
Can I organize my records into categories?
Yes, the VAL System has a collections function. You simply select the records that you want to organize and create the category for them. Your collections of records will be displayed in your dashboard.
What forms of payment are accepted?
Customers can use credit cards and debit cards. There are no transaction fees. At this time customer cannot use ACH, E-Checks from their checking accounts or money orders. If you prefer to pay by check or money order, you can do so by mail.
Is my license number changing in VAL?
If you have an active license with Virginia ABC, you will retain that license number. If you have a pending application, a new license number will be created at the time your license is issued.
Can I pay for more than one transaction at a time?
Yes, you can select the items you want to pay from your list of records and add them to the cart. After you pay for them, you will have the ability to view or print your receipt for each of the transactions.
Will I be charged a transaction fee for paying online?
No, Virginia ABC will not assess a transaction fee.
Can I view all my delegated records in one account?
Yes, if you will be acting as a delegate, you will need to set up an account in VAL first. The licensee can then use that account to delegate records and tasks to you. To learn more, watch this training video on assigning a delegate.
How do I pay my renewals online?
Sixty (60) days before your license expires you will receive an email notification. A new row will also appear on your “My Records Page.” That “row” will be your renewal record and have a “Pay Fees due renewal” button in the left column. Simply click that button and you will be directed to the “check out and pay” page where you will enter your credit card information. The entire renewal process will take less than 3 minutes.
How do I change or update information related to my license?
On your “My Record Page” you can see your license record. In the left column you will see a button called “amendment.” All changes that you need to make will be capture using the amendment function. Follow the prompt to submit your added information. The amendment function eliminates the need to call or visit a Virginia ABC office.
Will the way I receive renewal bills and licenses change after I onboard to VAL?
When you sign-up to transact with Virginia ABC electronically using “VAL”, you will automatically be opted into electronic notifications for all licensing transactions. We will send you important correspondence about your applications and licenses only via the email on file with your VAL account.
By signing up you are agreeing to keep us up to date with your current email address.
Who do I contact for a technical or process question?
ABC has created a Product Support Team (PST) to assist customers with any issues they may encounter with the new VAL system. Contact this group at (804) 213-4513 or by email at ABC-PST@VirginiaABC.com. This group will try to answer your question. If they cannot resolve the issue, they will create a “service ticket” and forward it to trained personnel with procedural or technical expertise. Those individuals will be responsible for getting back with you to resolve any issues you have.
What web browsers are supported in VAL?
For the optimal experience when using the VAL system, we recommend Google Chrome or Microsoft Edge. Currently the VAL system is not compatible with Safari or mobile devices.
Will there be training opportunities?
ABC has created video and instructional tutorials to support your use of VAL. These trainings are available on the Virginia ABC website at https://www.abc.virginia.gov/licenses/val/training.
What if I don’t have internet access?
In the rare case where a licensee (or potential licensee) does not have access to the internet, a waiver can be granted, and an additional service charge will be added to all paper transactions. Currently, using the VAL system is not mandatory. The paper application process will still be available.
Please contact your ABC agent first. If they cannot answer your question immediately, they will get you the answer.