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Workplace Smoking Rules in Maine

Filed under Managing the Workplace. Fact checked on June 22, 2012.

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Employers in Maine must comply with these state rules regulating smoking in the workplace.

In Maine smoking in the workplace is prohibited, except in designated smoking areas, if prohibited by a written employer policy. An employer's policy may prohibit smoking in the workplace completely.

Employers covered: Employers with one or more employees.

Written policy requirements: Employers in Maine must establish a written policy concerning smoking and nonsmoking by employees in their business facilities (defined as a place of employment; a structurally enclosed location or portion of a structurally enclosed location at which employees perform services for their employer), unless the business facility also serves as a personal residence, except that a personal residence or apartment is a business facility during the period of time that an employee is physically present. In order to protect the employer and employees from the detrimental effects of smoking by others, the policy must prohibit smoking except in designated smoking areas.

The policy may designate smoking areas, or it may prohibit smoking throughout a business facility. The employer must post and supervise the implementation of the policy, and provide a copy of the policy to any employee upon request. An employer may solicit help from the Bureau of Health in developing a smoking in the workplace policy. The law does not apply to any business facility where policies concerning smoking have been mutually agreed upon by the employer and all employees.

Posting requirements: Signs must be posted conspicuously in buildings where smoking is regulated by law. Designated smoking areas must have signs that read "Smoking Prohibited" with letters at least one inch high. Places where smoking is prohibited must have signs that read "No Smoking" with letters at least one inch high or the international symbol for no smoking.

No smoking areas: Smoking is prohibited in Maine in all enclosed areas of public places made available to the public, with certain exceptions.

Permitted smoking areas: A smoking area may be designated in an enclosed public place so long as no sales, services or other commercial or public activities are conducted in that area.

Designated smoking areas must be physically separated from nonsmoking areas.

Smoking is not prohibited in enclosed areas of public places when the facility is not open to the public.

Exceptions from the prohibition against smoking exist for:

  • private residences, except when used for child care
  • tobacco special stores
  • certain motel and hotel rooms
  • tobacco used in religious ceremonies
  • smoking as part of a theatrical performance or production
  • in off-track betting and other racing facilities
  • public places where beano or bingo games are being conducted

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