Understanding the Smoke-free Illinois Act

As of January 1, 2008, the Smoke-Free Illinois Act requires that public places and places of employment must be completely smoke-free inside and within 15 feet of entrances, exits, windows that open, and ventilation intakes. This includes but is not limited to:

  • Public places and buildings, offices, elevators, restrooms, theaters, museums, libraries, educational institutions, schools, commercial establishments, enclosed shopping centers and retail stores
  • Restaurants, bars, taverns and gaming facilities
  • Lobbies, reception areas, hallways, meeting rooms, waiting rooms, break rooms and other common-use areas
  • Concert halls, auditoriums, enclosed or partially enclosed sports arenas, bowling alleys, skating rinks, convention facilities, polling places and private clubs
  • Hospitals, health care facilities, health care clinics, child care, adult care or other similar social service care
  • No less than 75 percent of hotel or motel sleeping quarters rented to guests
  • Public conveyances, government-owned vehicles and vehicles open to the public

Posting of Signs; Removal of Ashtrays

(410 ILCS 82/20) Sec. 20.

  1. “No Smoking” signs or the international “No Smoking” symbol, consisting of a pictorial representation of a burning cigarette enclosed in a red circle with a red bar across it, shall be clearly and conspicuously posted in each public place and place of employment where smoking is prohibited by this Act by the owner, operator, manager, or other person in control of that place.
  2. Each public place and place of employment where smoking is prohibited by this Act shall have posted at every entrance a conspicuous sign clearly stating that smoking is prohibited.
  3. All ashtrays shall be removed from any area where smoking is prohibited by this Act by the owner, operator, manager, or other person having control of the area.

(Source: P.A. 95-17, eff. 1-1-08.)

What are the penalties?

  • A person who smokes in an area where smoking is prohibited can be fined between $100 and $250.
  • A person who owns, operates or otherwise controls a public place or place of employment who violates the act can be fined not less than $250 for the first violation, not less than $500 for the second violation within one year after the first violation, and not less than $2,500 for each additional violation within one year after the first violation.

Where can I file a complaint?

Complaints can be filed with the Illinois Department of Public Health on the Web at www.smoke-free.illinois.gov or by telephoning the Department’s toll-free Complaint Line at 1-866-973-4646. Complaints also can be made to a state-certified local health department or local law enforcement.

Where can I get information on quitting smoking?

The Illinois Tobacco Quitline is a FREE resource for tobacco users who want to quit for good. Registered nurses, respiratory therapists, and certified tobacco-treatment counselors are on call 7 days a week, Monday – Friday 7AM – 9PM and Saturday and Sunday 9AM – 5PM CST to answer all your tobacco-related questions and provide the support you need to break the habit. Habla español? We serve a diverse client base, with Spanish-speaking counselors and live translation services for more than 200 languages.

If you smoke and want to quit, you can call the Illinois Tobacco Quitline toll-free at 1-866-QUIT-YES (1-866-784-8937) or visit www.quityes.org

How can I learn more about the Smoke-free Illinois Act?

For more information, visit www.smoke-free.illinois.gov or telephone the Illinois Department of Public Health’s Office of Health Promotion at 217-782-3300.

Click here to view PUBLIC HEALTH (410 ILCS 82/) Smoke Free Illinois Act: http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=2893&ChapterID=35