AB 1221 Effective Date

As a reminder, when is the course certification required for servers?

The law goes into effect on July 1, 2022.

ABC as a Training Provider

So since ABC is offering a similar RBS Training Course, why do you need Training Providers?

ABC will not be offering an RBS training course, as we will be acting as the accreditation agency. Our LEAD program is being modified into a training program that will be specific to off-sale licensees.

Additional Fees

Is there any fee related with the servers reporting data to ABC?

No, there are no additional fees associated with when a training provider reports that a server has completed their training course. Upon registration, a server will pay $3.00 for their first three attempts to pass the certification exam.

Alternative Ways to Pay

How will County funded programs be able to pay ABC if credit cards are not available?

We are looking into alternative payment methods for these situations. However, at this time, we can only take payment via our pay portal, which requires a credit card with the Mastercard or Visa logo.

Certification Processes

Who will deliver the certificates to the learners? Will that be delivered by ABC or us?

ABC will be issuing the server their unique certification number once they have successfully passed the alcohol server certification exam. The server will be able to view this status upon login. The training provider is issuing the certificate of completion for training.

Clarification on Training Provider Requirements

Did I see that RBS trainers cannot be involved in creating the RBS course for their particular organization?

No, the exclusion is for anyone involved in creating our alcohol server certification exam or if the training provider company was acting as an accreditation agency.

Copy of the PowerPoint to be made Available

Will this deck be available after the call?

Yes, to obtain a copy of the PowerPoint used during the Zoom meeting, please email rbstp@abc.ca.gov.

Course Requirements

Does the course require restrictions that prevent the user from moving forward without completing each task within the course?

The course may not be a “click-through,” meaning that a server must be actively engaged in the training course. It is up to the training provider to determine how the server will navigate their training course.

For eFiles, will that be for supplementary info only, or the course itself will need to be uploaded? What if the program file needs an LMS to operate?

The course in its entirety will need to be uploaded into the application. The program file types are outlined in the Training Provider Instructions that will be provided to you.

What info will need to be obtained?

Please see section 168 of our regulations for what information is required for an RBS course.

I noted during the review of the application that you requested a cost associated with the course; do you have a recommended pricing structure?

We are not regulating the cost of the course.

Must the curriculum be completely done before we apply as an online trainer?


What course documentation needs to be included in the application if the training is online?

Please refer to section 168 of our regulations for what is required for submission of the Training Provider Application. Any and all materials intended for use in, during, or after the course will need to be submitted for review and approval.

Can we customize the content of the mandatory topics and subtopics for a specific industry (winery specifics, brewery specific, restaurant specific, etc...) as long as we include all the material?

Yes, so as long as all of the required curriculum elements are included in the course.

Course Types

Are all platforms approved for delivering training, i.e., a phone app versus web site…and if so, is it a separate fee for the same course on a different platform or delivery system?

We differentiate courses as online or in-person and by language. Training on a mobile phone app would qualify as an online course.

Currently Approved Programs

Are there currently any approved applications, or will all approved providers be publicly released at the same time?

Currently, no one is approved as a Department authorized training provider under AB 1221. There will be a group release for the first wave of training providers approved just prior to the Server release. The rest will be granted approval as their applications are approved.


Are you providing a curriculum?

No, we are providing the curriculum outline and the items required to be taught, but the training providers will be creating their own programs based on our requirements.

Where can we get the curriculum?

The curriculum requirements are listed in sections 162-166, and our available regulations on our website.

Discount for Nonprofits

Is there a discount for nonprofits?



Will we get a copy of the exam?

No. The exam is proprietary to ABC. However, the exam was designed using the required curriculum and does not include any information outside of the curriculum standards as provided in the regulations.

How quickly will students have access to the exam upon completion of the training? Is there a maximum timeframe that a training provider has to confirm a server has completed training?

Access to the exam is immediate once the training provider has confirmed that the server has completed their training course in the RBS portal.

How much does it cost to take the exam? How much will it cost for the server/manager to take the exam?

The cost of the exam is $3.00; it is included as part of the alcohol server’s registration into the RBS portal. The server has three attempts to pass the exam before retaking the training and paying $3.00 for the exam.

Does the state directly collect the $3 fee from the student when they register?


How will you (or should we?) guarantee the identity of the course taker is the one who takes the exam? Is it possible to sit for the exam without taking a course?

The server cannot take the certification exam without completing training from an authorized training provider. The training provider is only granting servers who have completed their training course access to the exam. In order to give the server access to the exam, the server will need to be registered in the RBS Portal before taking training.

Fingerprinting Process

Will fingerprinting happen through CA ABC and the portal? Or will the outside vendor be used?

LiveScan and/or fingerprint cards will be sent to their intended users after the training provider has submitted their application.

Do we have to come to California to get fingerprints for the state level?

Fingerprinting can be done outside of California, similar to the fingerprinting process for ABC Licensees.

Do the business owners and their employees need to be fingerprinted or just the business owner?

Section 168.2 outlines who qualifies as needing to be fingerprinted for your business entity. The training provider must provide a valid fingerprint record of each owner and officer of the applicant to the Department.

How long do we have to get the fingerprint?

The fingerprinting process will be initiated once your application is assigned to an analyst for review. Your analyst will send you the appropriate fingerprinting information based on your residency.

Can we go ahead and get the fingerprint sheets so we can have that done?

No. The fingerprinting process will be initiated once your application is submitted and appropriate fingerprint fees have been paid.  Your assigned analyst will send you the appropriate fingerprinting information based on your residency.

Government Entities as a Training Provider

Can a County government entity be a training provider?

Yes. We have created a Government entity application for those who qualify as a government entity and are applying to be a training provider.

If a Server Fails the Exam

What if the student fails the exam? Will the trainer be notified so they can reset course?

The server will have three attempts to pass the exam.  If the server fails the exam three times, they will be locked out of the exam. The server will need to retake the training and repay $3.00 for the exam.

Licensee as a Training Provider

As a business, can we register our employees for the exam once we've completed their classroom training?

If you are an ABC licensee who is also acting as an authorized training provider, then yes, you may confirm that your servers have completed training. Servers will need to register themselves in the RBS Portal before taking the training.

Are all owners of an LLC required to take the course, or just the manager?

All owners of an LLC will need to be fingerprinted if they are also applying to be an authorized training provider. If that company is also an ABC licensee, then any member who makes decisions or policies around alcohol service would need to be trained and certified in RBS (see definition of a manager of alcohol server).

Maximum Number of Training Provider Applicants

How many providers are you looking for?

There is no limit to the number of approved Department authorized RBS training providers. 

Online Program

Can the training course be 100% online with no in-person/virtual instruction?

Yes, as long as it meets the course requirements outlined in section 161 of the regulations.

Previous RBS Certification

What about those who have already received a permit?

Anyone who has previously been trained in RBS will need to take training from a Department authorized training provider and pass the alcohol server certification exam.

Program Length Requirements

Is there the option to offer the program in English only? Or are English and Spanish required at a minimum?

Yes, you may offer your training course in any language you desire.

Is there a time requirement for the course?


Is there a timeline to complete the course once started, i.e., 30 days?

No, we are not regulating the length of time it takes to complete a training course. That would be up to the training provider on how they wish to conduct their business.

Should the course be timed? Does the course have to be completed within a certain time?

We are not regulating the length of time that a program lasts.  Based on the required course content, we estimate an average course to be between 3-4 hours, but each training provider will determine their program’s actual course length.

Program Types

If you offer a course in Spanish and English, is that two programs?


Does live in-person and live virtual Zoom count as two courses?

It depends on how it is done.

Is this a one-time application fee of $1000?

The $1000 fee is for the initial application program fee. Each training program requires its own $1000 application fee. Please refer to section 168.3 for training provider fees.


Where do we find the regulations?

The regulations are available on our website.

Requirements for Confirming a Server has Completed Training

Who is responsible for creating the initial Server account with RBS?

The server is responsible for creating an account in the RBS portal. One may not be created for them by another person or training provider. The $3 fee is part of the server registration process. The server should create an account with ABC prior to taking training.

How do we submit information to ABC on the servers who have passed training?

Per Section 168.3(d) of the regulations, the training provider has 24 hours to update the RBS portal after a server has completed their training course. We are working on developing an electronic means to have training providers be able to do mass confirmations or confirmation through API. For now, the data entry is a manual process to be completed by the training provider or their designee.

Will you provide the link to sync the exam immediately to you once they complete the online course?

That functionality is still in development, so it will be a manual process in which the training provider will be the one to enter who has completed their training course to grant the server access to the exam.

Should there be any link that redirects the servers to take the ABC Final Exam after he/she successfully completed the training? Or do we just report the student completion and student need to go to the ABC website by themselves to take the final exam to get their license?

That functionality is still in development, so it will be a manual process in which the training provider will be the one to enter who has completed their training course to grant the server access to the exam. Once the training provider has confirmed training in the RBS Portal, the server will receive notification from the RBS Portal that they may now take their certification exam.

Once they complete the course, we provide them a link to the exam?

Upon the server’s completion of your training course, you will need to instruct them to go back to the RBS Portal in order to take their certification exam. Once the training provider has confirmed training, the server will receive notification from the RBS Portal that they may now take their certification exam.

Please confirm that training providers have to manually enter completion data into a site until an API is set up?

The API’s for online providers will not be established at the time of the server release. We certainly understand the desire for this functionality, and we have placed a high priority on it. We are working with the development vendor to complete it as soon as possible.

What identifying information will the provider need to get from the student to submit their grades to the ABC?

At a minimum, the training provider will need to capture the server’s name, email, and Server Identification Number as issued by ABC. The Server Identification Number is provided to the server when they register with ABC in the RBS portal.

What if they register more than 24 hours after the completion of the course?

Then the Training Provider cannot grant access to the exam until the server has registered. If for some reason, the training provider cannot confirm a server has completed training within the 24-hour period, then the training provider will need to email RBSTP to notify the RBSTP Manager of the circumstances surrounding the reason for the delay of granting exam access. Training Providers should be encouraging their students to have registered in the RBS portal before signing up for training. The encouragement can be as simple as requiring their server identification number as part of the course registration process.  

Server Register for Training

Does the student (server) has to first register on abc.gov, and then they use the number issued to the server by ABC to register on training providers system (for online)?


Server/Training Go Live

Will we be notified in advance or on the day the application system becomes live?

Once we have a scheduled release date for server access, we will post that information on the RBS webpage as well as send out notifications through our email subscription service. 


For alcohol server registration assistance or general assistance with RBS contact:

Online Services
Phone: (916) 318-6435
Email: onlineservices@abc.ca.gov

Translation Services
Email: eeo@abc.ca.gov

For training provider assistance or questions about RBS requirements contact:

3927 Lennane Drive, Suite 100
Sacramento, CA 95834
Email: rbstp@abc.ca.gov