IPCPR Legislative | Restrictions in Colorado

Restrictions in Colorado


Smoking, Age and Sampling Restrictions in Colorado

In Colorado, smoking is not permitted in any indoor area, including public meeting places, elevators, government-owned or –operated means of mass transportation (buses, vans, and trains), taxicabs and limousines, grocery stores, gymnasiums, jury waiting and deliberation rooms, courtrooms, child day care facilities, health care facilities, places of employment, food service establishments, bars, gaming facilities, indoor sports, arenas, common areas in public and private buildings, bowling alleys, pool halls, public buildings, auditoria, theaters, museums, libraries, public and nonpublic schools, other educational and vocational institutions, and the entryways of all buildings and facilities listed.


Colo. Rev. Stat. § 25-14-204


Colorado law allows local authorities to enact, adopt, and enforce more stringent smoking restrictions.


Colo. Rev. Stat. § 25-14-207



The following are exempt from the ban on smoking, subject to conditions:

  • Private homes, private residences, and private automobiles, except when used for child care or day care purposes
  • Limousines under private hire
  • Designated hotel or motel rooms
  • Any retail tobacco business, defined as a sole proprietorship, corporation, partnership, or other enterprise engaged primarily in the sale, manufacture, or promotion of tobacco, tobacco products, or smoking devices or accessories, either at wholesale or retail, and in which the sale, manufacture, or promotion of other products is merely incidental
  • A cigar-tobacco bar, defined as a bar that, in the calendar year ending December 31, 2005, generated at least 5% or more of its total annual gross income or $50,000 in annual sales from the on-site sale of tobacco products and the rental of on-site humidors, not including any sales from vending machines. In any calendar year after December 31, 2005, a bar that fails to generate at least 5% of its total annual gross income or $50,000 in annual sales from the on-site sale of tobacco products and the rental of on-site humidors shall not be defined as a “cigar-tobacco bar” and shall not thereafter be included in the definition regardless of sales figures
    • A cigar-tobacco bar cannot expand its size or change its location from the size and location in which it existed as of December 31, 2005. A cigar-tobacco bar must conspicuously display a sign at least four inches by six inches in size stating: “Smoking allowed. Children under 18 of age must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.”
  • An airport smoking concession
  • The outdoor area of any business
  • A place of employment that is not open to the public and that is under the control of an employer who employs three or fewer employees
  • A private, nonresidential building on a farm or ranch that has an annual income of less than $500, and
  • The areas of assisted living facilities:
    • That are designated for smoking for residents
    • That are fully enclosed and ventilated, and
    • To which access is restricted to the residents or their guests

Colo. Rev. Stat. § 25-14-204
Colo. Rev. Stat. § 25-14-205

Colorado law does not provide a specific application procedure to qualify for exemption from the smoking ban. Localities may have specific requirements.

In Colorado, it is illegal for a person under 18 years of age to purchase, attempt to purchase, or possess any cigarettes, tobacco products, or nicotine products. Colorado law contains no specific exception for minor employees of retail tobacco stores. Similarly, it is illegal to give, sell, distribute, dispense, or offer for sale a cigarette, tobacco product, or nicotine product to any person who is under 18 years of age.


Colo. Rev. Stat. § 18-13-121
Colo. Rev. Stat. § 25-14-301


Any person who sells or offers to sell cigarettes, tobacco products, or nicotine products must conspicuously display a warning sign at least 3 inches high and 6 inches wide that reads as follows:





Colo. Rev. Stat. § 24-35-503


Colorado law allows any statutory or home-rule municipality to enact an ordinance that imposes more stringent youth access restrictions.


Colo. Rev. Stat. § 18-13-121(3)
Colo. Rev. Stat. § 25-14-301(4)

Federal regulations prohibit free samples of cigarettes and limit free samples of smokeless tobacco products to certain age-restricted venues under several conditions.


Regulations Restricting the Sale, Distribution, and Marketing of Cigarettes, Cigarette Tobacco, and Smokeless Tobacco: Consumer Fact Sheet


In Colorado, no retailer may sell or offer to sell individual cigarettes, or any pack or container of cigarettes containing fewer than twenty cigarettes, or roll-your-own tobacco in any package containing less than 0.60 ounces of tobacco.


Colo. Rev. Stat. § 24-35-503


Tobacco samples are subject to the tobacco products tax and licensing requirements, as the term “sale” is defined to include a gift by a person engaged in the business of selling tobacco products, for advertising.


Colo. Rev. Stat. § 39-28.5-101


Colorado state law contains no specific provision concerning state preemption of samples, so local communities may more stringent laws or ordinances on tobacco sampling.

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