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CALIFORNIA LAWS & TAXES
- Electronic cigarette cartridges and solutions for filling electronic cigarettes must be sold in child-resistant packaging.1
- It is against the law to sell or give tobacco and vapor products to anyone under the age of 21. Active military personnel must be over 18.2
- There is an annual licensing fee on e-cigarette retailers of $265 per location, in addition to a one-time fee of $10,000.3
- It is no longer a punishable crime for a minor (under the age of 21) to possess or use tobacco products or paraphernalia designed for the smoking of tobacco and tobacco products under the Tobacco 21 Law of 2016.8
- The use of vapor products is prohibited statewide in workplaces and many public spaces, including restaurants and bars.4 Clayton, Concord, Danville, El Cerrito, Lafayette, Pinole, Richmond and Walnut Creek also ban vaping in multi-unit residences.
- Vaping and smoking are prohibited outdoors on a state beach or unit of the state park system.5
- Vaping or smoking in a car with a minor present is prohibited.6
Tobacco/Vapor Sales Bans: The following jurisdictions have completely banned the sale of e-cigarettes: Alameda County, Antioch, Arroyo Grande, Benicia, Beverly Hills, Calabasas, Carpinteria, Carson, Cerritos, Contra Costa County, Danville, Dublin, East Palo Alto, Hayward, Livermore, Los Altos, Los Gatos, Manhattan Beach, Menlo Park, Monterey County, Morgan Hill, Morro Bay, Orinda, Pacifica, Palo Alto, Pleasant Hill, Pleasanton, Redwood City, Richmond, San Luis Obispo, San Luis Obispo County, San Mateo, San Mateo County (unincorporated areas), Santa Clara County (unincorporated areas), Saratoga, Sebastopol, South San Francisco, Walnut Creek, Watsonville and Windsor.
Tobacco/Vapor 21 Law: Federal law passed December 20, 2019 prohibits sales of all tobacco and vapor products to anyone under the age of 21 years old. FDA stated law became effective on that date. States may choose to continue with current age law at the risk of losing federal funding. Current California law bans the sale of tobacco and vapor products to adults under the age of 21 years old.
Flavor Bans: Federal law prohibits the sale of closed system devices (pods, cartridges) containing e-liquid in flavors other than tobacco or menthol.
In November 2022, California voters approved Proposition 31, upholding a 2020 state law that banned the retail sale of menthol cigarettes and most flavored tobacco products in California.9
Flavored premium cigars, pipe tobacco and hookah are exempt from the law. The ban took effect on December 21, 2022.9
California taxes smoke-free tobacco products, including vapor products sold with nicotine, at a rate of 63.49% of the wholesale cost plus 12.5% of the retail price.7
Updated February 2023