Tobacco Control



How old do you have to be to sell cigarettes or tobacco products?

There is no age limit, just follow the labor laws.

What are the fines and penalties if I sell to a minor?

Arkansas Tobacco Control fines and penalties to the permit holder are:

  • 1st Offense Not to exceed $ 250.00
  • 2nd Offense Not to exceed $ 500.00 and 2 day suspension
  • 3rd Offense Not to exceed $1,000.00 and 7 day suspension
  • 4th Offense Not to exceed $2,000.00 and 14 day suspension
  • 5th Offense Not to exceed $2,000.00 and revocation of permit

Note: 2nd through 5th offenses are within 48 months of the first offense

Sales clerk fine for the criminal offense is up to $100.00 plus court costs Be sure to check ID’s closely before selling cigarettes or tobacco products!

Do I have to post signs in my store?

Yes. State law requires you to post a “No Sales to Minors” sign at every retail sales counter or cigarette vending machine. These signs are available by downloading from this website, or by sending a self addressed stamped envelope and a letter with how many signs you are requesting to: Arkansas Tobacco Control, 101 East Capitol Ave., Suite 401, Little Rock, AR 72201-3826

When does my permit expire?

All permits expire on June 30 of each year. All permit renewals postmarked after June 30 will be assessed a late fee of double the permit fee plus the permit fee. The expiration date is in the upper left-hand corner of your permit. If the permit has expired, you are NOT allowed to purchase or sell any cigarettes or tobacco products until we have received your payment and issued your permit. Anyone who purchases or sells any cigarettes or tobacco products while their permit is expired is subject to hefty fines and/or permit suspension. When paying for your permit, we only accept CREDIT CARD, CHECK or MONEY ORDER.

Can I use the Permit from the store I just purchased?

Permits are non-transferable and may NOT be purchased with the store. All new owners must receive a permit prior to purchasing or selling any cigarettes or tobacco products.

Can I buy my cigarettes and tobacco from another store, to sell in my store?

You may purchase cigarettes and tobacco products from another retailer, however the cigarettes purchased must be sold at or above the current retail minimum price. A retailer outside an approved border zone cannot buy from a retailer within an approved border zone. You must save your receipts from purchases of cigarettes and tobacco products for at least 3 years.

How can the store down the street sell their cigarettes for less than I can?

The store probably has a buydown in effect, but if you have concerns about it or are not sure they have a buydown, please notify our office and we will check into it. In order to meet lawful competition, a retailer may advertise, offer to sell, or sell cigarettes at a price made in good faith to meet the price of a competitor. In other words, if your store does not have a buydown, you can meet the price of a competitor who does have a buydown, but you cannot sell at a price less than the competitor.

What information must an invoice contain?

A retailer must require from their wholesaler at the time of each purchase or receipt of cigarettes an invoice showing the quantity, kind, and price of the cigarettes and the stamps required to show that the tax has been paid, and date of sale or delivery.

What is the purpose of the Server Awareness Form, and what do I do with it?

The Server Awareness Form is a tool for retailers to insure that their employees know the importance of NOT selling cigarettes or tobacco products to minors. All retailers are required to have every employee, including the owner, read and sign the form. This form is to be maintained in a file and available upon request by an Arkansas Tobacco Control agent.

Can a local civic or church group perform sales to minors compliance checks in the state of Arkansas?

No. State law provides that only the following are authorized to conduct sales to minors compliance checks relating to tobacco:

  1. An authorized agent of Arkansas Tobacco Control.
  2. The Arkansas Department of Health Office of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention to compile statistical data relating to the sale of tobacco products or cigarette papers.

An authorized representative of a business acting pursuant to self-compliance.

How do I transfer tobacco or vapor products from one of my retail locations to another location?

Retailers who operate multiple locations are allowed to transfer tobacco or vapor products from one store to another store within their company. To transfer products, the retailer must have the appropriate supporting documentation on file at both locations.

  1. Retailers must complete a product transfer inventory form outlining exactly what type, brand, and quantity of product is being moved.
  2. A copy of the transfer form should be kept on file at the originating tobacco location with the invoices that show the product was legally purchased at that location.
  3. The transfer form must be kept on file at the new sales location along with copies of the invoices from the original store to verify that the product was purchased and transferred legally.
  4. You must have your invoices and transfer forms on file for at least 3 years in both locations.

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