Are No-Smoking Policies Legal in Multiunit Housing?

 

More than 6,500 multiunit apartments and condominiums in Colorado have adopted policies restricting smoking in all units, common areas, balconies, patios, and entrances. Many of these also prohibit smoking on the entire grounds.

Visit mysmokefreehousing.com for the most up-to-date list.

 

The Colorado Clean Indoor Air Act was updated in 2019.  It allows housing providers to make any part of their property non-smoking in section 25-14-206 (1) and prohibits smoking in all indoor common areas in section 25-14-204 (p & u). The law also covers vaping and marijuana smoking.

 

25-14-206. Optional prohibitions. (1) The owner or manager of any place not specifically listed in section 25-14-204, including a place otherwise exempted under section 25-14-205, may post signs prohibiting smoking or providing smoking and nonsmoking areas. Such posting shall have the effect of including such place or the designated nonsmoking portion thereof, in the places where smoking is prohibited or restricted pursuant to this part 2.

 

HUD requires housing authorities with public housing to have a smoke-free policy and encourages the implementation of no-smoking policies in other HUD-subsidized housing.

 

Condominiums and HOA rules may require a vote of the majority of the owners and/or Board approval to institute a no-smoking policy for anything other than common areas.

 

Policies that restrict or prohibit smoking in apartments or condominiums units are similar to policies that restrict pets, noises, odors, and other nuisances.

 

Is There a Constitutional Right to Smoke?

 

According to the Tobacco Control Legal Consortium

 

There is no right to smoke according to the U.S Constitution and no court has ever found that people who smoke are a protected class.

 

The “right to privacy” in the U.S. Constitution includes only marriage, contraception, family relationships, and the rearing and educating of children.

 

While certain groups of people — such as groups based on race, national origin and gender —receive greater protection against discriminatory acts under the U.S. Constitution than do other groups of people, people who smoke have never been identified as a protected class.

 

No-smoking policies are not discriminatory because smoking is a behavior, not a condition of birth and can be overcome or stopped.

 

 

This fact sheet is provided as a public service and is not intended as legal advice.

           

For more information on smoke-free housing,

visit mysmokefreehousing.org