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Up In Smoke

tleeth.jpgThe Indiana General Assembly has passed and Governor Daniels has signed into law Indiana's first statewide smoking ban which went into effect July 1, 2012. This new law prohibits smoking in public places, places of employment and within eight feet (8') of any public entrance to a public place or place of employment. Smoking is not restricted in outdoor areas even if it is the location where persons are normally employed in their jobs. The restriction only applies to enclosed areas of a structure and eight feet (8') from the public entrance to such places.

Employers must inform their employees and prospective employees about the restrictions on smoking. Owners and employers are obligated to remove ash trays and other smoking paraphernalia where smoking is prohibited. In addition, specific conspicuous signage is required at each public entrance to a public place or place of employment.

There are a few exceptions to the prohibition including casinos, social and fraternal clubs. Under certain circumstances, these facilities can permit smoking, usually in designated areas that prevent the mitigation of smoke to restricted non-smoking areas of the same building. No one under the age of 18 is allowed in a designated smoking area of an exempt facility.

Enforcement of the smoking ban is by the Indiana Alcohol and Tobacco Commission or by a series of other local agencies in cooperation with the Commission. Penalties are infractions under Indiana's civil law enforcement provisions. The owner or manager of a public place is required to ask an individual who is smoking in violation of the law to refrain from smoking and remove that individual if he or she fails to refrain from smoking after being asked to do so. The penalties may be directed at an owner who does not enforce the law as well as those who smoke in violation of the law.

Please contact us at www.hwelaw.com if you have questions regarding this article or if we can be of assistance.

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