Smoking Ban

Effective May 1, 2010, smoking will no longer be allowed in food establishments. Places that serve food will no longer have the choice of offering smoking and non-smoking sections. Any person that owns, operates, manages or has control over such a place is required to post “no smoking” signs at the entrances and within every area where smoking is prohibited. All ashtrays and other smoking paraphernalia must be removed. If a patron smokes in violation of the new law, that person is to be informed they are violating state law and is subject to penalties and asked to refrain from smoking. The business must then refuse to serve the person until the person stops smoking. The patron must also be asked to leave the establishment if they continue to smoke.

The local health departments are authorized to determine compliance with this law and to investigate any complaints. A food establishment is defined as an operation where food is processed, packed, canned, preserved, frozen, fabricated, stored, prepared, served, sold, or offered for sale. Food establishment includes a food processing plant, a food service establishment, and a retail grocery.

There are a few exceptions to this new legislative mandate. Cigar bars, tobacco specialty retail stores and casino gaming areas that are in existence on the effective date of this law are exempt from this smoking prohibition. However, there are new reporting requirements for these businesses which are required in order for the business to maintain its exemption. It also appears from the statute that these types of businesses which are established after the effective date will not be exempt from the smoking prohibition.

Smoking bans are not new in Michigan. For years, smoking has been prohibited in buildings owned or operated by state or local governmental agencies and other places used by the general public.

Curtis & Curtis, P.C. is a full service law firm located in Jackson, Michigan providing superior legal services and advice to individuals, families and businesses throughout mid-Michigan since 1901.

This publication is provided for general informational purposes only and does not constitute formal legal or other professional advice. No attorney-client relationship is created with you when you read this information. The above information may be changed without notice and is not guaranteed to be complete, correct or up-to-date, and may not reflect the most current legal developments. If you have any questions or need assistance, please contact Curtis & Curtis, P.C.

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