Penalties and Seizure


Anyone who is non-compliant with the rules set out in the Smoke-Free Ontario Act can be charged with an offence.

Tobacco Sales Offence Fines
Sell or supply tobacco to a person who is less than 19 years old $490 – $300,000
Sell or supply tobacco to a person who appears to be less than 25 years old $490 – $300,000
Failure to post identification sign, age restriction and health warning signs $240 – $75,000
Display or permit display of tobacco products by means of a countertop display $490 – $300,000
Sell or offer to sell improperly packaged tobacco $490 – $600,000
Display or permit display of tobacco products in manner that permits handling before purchase $490 – $300,000
Promote sale of tobacco products in place where sold or offered for sale $305 – $300,000
Sell or offer to sell a prohibited flavoured tobacco product

$490 – $600, 000

Sell or offer to sell tobacco with a promotional item at retail

$490 – $300,000

Distribute or offer to distribute flavoured tobacco product

$490 – $600,000

Vicarious Liability

Found in Section 3 of the Smoke Free Ontario Act, Vicarious liability means that a store owner can be charged and convicted for the actions of their employees, unless the owner is found by the Court to have exercised due diligence.

  • When an employee is charged with a tobacco sales offence under the SFOA, the store owner or corporation may also be charged.
  • Penalties for stores can be higher than those for an individual.
  • An automatic prohibition shall be issued if there are two or more tobacco sales convictions at the same place of business within a five year period.

Owners and managers should train their employees on the responsibilities of selling tobacco products under the SFOA and are advised to keep employee training records.


Inspectors may seize tobacco products that are prohibited for sale under the Smoke-Free Ontario Act if it is being sold, offered for sale, distributed or offered for distribution.

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