The smoking and vaping age was set to rise from 18 to 21 in Washington State on Jan 1, 2020, but due to a new federal law implemented, this change applies for all U.S. States.
Washington’s Gov. Jay Inslee signed this legislation in April, before it was signed as a federal law by the President on December 20, 2019. Washington was the 9th such state to raise the smoking age to 21 before it became a federal law.
It is important to note that this law only raises the age for tobacco and vaping sales, not possession.
According to the Washington Attorney General’s office, those who are between the ages of 18-20 will not be grandfathered in when the laws go into effect, meaning that it will be illegal for those under 21 to purchase tobacco or vaping products of any kind. Those who are caught selling such products to those under the age of 21 will be faced with severe consequences.
Many believe that this change will save thousands of young adult lives. “By passing this bill, the Legislature is saving thousands… from a lifetime of addiction and smoking-relating illnesses,” said Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson.