FDA Starts Regulating E-Cigarettes With a Ban of Sale to Minors
Electronic cigarettes—also known as e-cigarettes—are battery operated devices that deliver nicotine to users in an aerosol form. Manufacturers of these devices have marketed them as both a tool to stop smoking cigarettes and an alternative to them. However, they have been relatively unregulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and questions remain about their safety.
FDA’s Ban of E-Cigarette Sales to Minors
E-cigarettes are a multi-billion industry that is increasingly appealing to young adults and minors with the ease of carrying them around and flavors like bubblegum, mocha, and margarita. According to a Washington Post report, young people are now using electronic cigarettes more than smoking traditional cigarettes. According to a 2015 survey, a staggering number of minors use or have at least tried this product, including:
- 5.3 percent of middle graders and 16 percent of high school students reported using e-cigarettes within the 30 days prior to the survey.
- 3 million middle grade and high school students reported using e-cigarettes at least once.
In its first regulation of the electronic cigarette industry, the FDA banned the sale of this product to minors in May 2016, with the ban to take effect in 90 days. The new regulations will require the following:
- The sale of e-cigarettes to anyone under the age of 18 years old is prohibited.
- Retailers will have to verify the purchaser’s age through picture identification.
- Warning labels will need to be placed on the product’s packaging.
- Vending machine sales of e-cigarettes that are accessible to minors will be banned.
- Free samples of the product are prohibited.
- Manufacturers who began selling e-cigarettes after February 15, 2007, will be required to disclose their ingredients and obtain FDA approval of their product. The companies will be able to continue selling their products during the two years they have to submit their application and the one year it could take the FDA to review their application.
Serious questions remain concerning how effective electronic cigarettes are in helping people stop smoking and their long-term health risks. If you believe you or a family member suffered injuries due to e-cigarette use or another defective product, you need an experienced products liability attorney to help you file a lawsuit to obtain the compensation you could be entitled to. Call our firm today at 888.716.8021 to schedule a free consultation to learn about your legal options.
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