Vaping Laws in Connecticut – Is it Legal to Vape in Connecticut?
Vaping and e-cigarette use has grown exponentially in recent years, including among teens and young adults. As a result, many states have passed laws regulating the sale and use of vaping and e-cigarette products. Connecticut has enacted some measures to limit youth access and deter underage vaping, but where does the Nutmeg State stand on the overall legality of vaping? We break down everything you need to know about Connecticut’s vaping laws.
Federal Law on Vaping
At the federal level, vaping and e-cigarette products fall under the regulation of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) due to their classification as tobacco products. The FDA has banned vape products from being sold to minors under 21, but has otherwise taken a fairly hands-off approach so far regarding vaping regulations for adults. However, the recent outbreak of EVALI lung illnesses linked to vaping has led the federal government to take action to curb youth vaping, including a proposed ban on flavored vape products.
Read more: Vaping Laws in U.S. by state
Connecticut State Law on Vaping
Connecticut does not have a statewide ban on vaping in general for adults over 21. However, the state has passed certain restrictions around when and where people can vape, with additional limits on youth access. Some of the key state laws include:
- Legal age to purchase vape products raised to 21 (from 18) effective October 1, 2019
- Vaping banned in all areas where smoking is prohibited, including workplaces, restaurants, bars, schools, hospitals, public transit, etc.
- Flavored vape product ban for minors under 21, effective October 1, 2019
- Vape shops prohibited from selling products to minors and required to obtain ID for all sales
- Penalties for underage sale or distribution of vape products, including potential license suspension for retailers
Who Can Vape Legally in Connecticut
In Connecticut, the minimum age to purchase and possess vape products is 21. Those under 21 caught vaping can face legal consequences including fines, community service, and potential license suspension. For adults over 21, vaping is legal in Connecticut but subject to certain restrictions.
Where is Vaping Banned in Connecticut
While vaping is legal for adults in Connecticut, the state has prohibited vaping in all areas where smoking is banned, including:
- Workplaces (both public and private)
- Restaurants, bars, casinos
- Hotels and motels
- Schools, colleges, universities (public and private)
- Healthcare facilities like hospitals and nursing homes
- Public parks
- Correctional facilities
- Public transit including buses, trains, taxis and livery vehicles
Penalties for Vaping in Prohibited Areas
Those caught vaping in non-smoking or prohibited areas in Connecticut can face legal penalties, especially if repeated violations occur:
- First offense: Warning or fine of $50 to $100
- Second offense: Fine of $100 to $250
- Subsequent offenses: Fine of $250 to $500 per violation
For underage vaping or providing vape products to minors, additional consequences may apply including community service, license suspension, and mandatory cessation programs.
Recent Changes and Proposed Bills
To curb youth vaping rates, Connecticut passed legislation effective October 1, 2019 raising the minimum age for sale of tobacco and vaping products to 21, including flavored e-cigarettes. Several additional bills around vaping have also been introduced, including measures to tax vape products, further restrict advertising, and prohibit vaping in multi-unit housing complexes. However, none have yet been signed into law.
Legal Age to Vape in Connecticut
As of October 1, 2019, you must be at least 21 years of age to legally purchase or possess any vape devices, e-liquids or other e-cigarette products in Connecticut. This includes products both in-store and online. Those under 21 found with vape products risk legal penalties including fines, community service and license suspension. Retailers that sell vape products to minors also face consequences like fines, mandatory employee training and potential loss of license.
While vaping and e-cigarette use remains legal for adults over 21 in Connecticut, the state has put certain restrictions in place, especially around youth access and use. By raising the minimum age for sale to 21, banning flavored vapes and vaping in public spaces where smoking is prohibited, Connecticut aims to limit the appeal of e-cigarettes to teens and young adults and encourage more informed choices.
However, with vaping rates still on the rise and health impacts coming to light, Connecticut may opt to pass additional measures regulating the vape industry in the coming months and years. For now, those over 21 can continue to vape legally in Connecticut but should do so mindfully and stay up to date with any changes in state laws or regulations.
- Is vaping legal in Connecticut? Yes, for adults over 21. Those under 21 are prohibited from purchasing or possessing vape products.
- What is the minimum age to vape in Connecticut? 21 years old. This applies to purchasing vape products both in stores and online.
- Where is vaping prohibited in Connecticut? Vaping is banned in all smoke-free areas like workplaces, restaurants, bars, hotels, parks, transit, schools and healthcare facilities.
- What are the penalties for underage vaping in Connecticut? Those under 21 caught vaping face fines of $50 to $500, community service, license suspension and mandatory cessation programs.
- Does Connecticut tax vape products? Currently no, but bills have been introduced to establish an excise tax on e-cigarettes and vaping products. None have yet passed into law.
In summary, while vaping remains legal for adults over 21 in Connecticut, certain restrictions do apply around when and where people can vape. The state has also taken action to curb youth vaping through raising the minimum legal age to purchase to 21 and banning flavored vape products. However, vaping laws in Connecticut may continue to evolve as health impacts come to light and rates of use change. For the latest updates, check the official Connecticut state legislature website.