Housing Laws

Maine Attorney General Janet Mills has stated that “Nothing prevents a property owner or manager from adopting rules that limit or even prohibit smoking.  It is legal for landlords and property managers to adopt smoke-free housing policies to protect residents from secondhand smoke, to reduce property damage and reduce fire danger.”

  • Smoke-free apartment policies are permitted under federal and state law.
  • Common areas of a building, like hallways, stairwells and laundry rooms, must be smoke-free under Maine’s public places smoking law.

Maine Smoking Disclosure Law

An Act to Improve Awareness of Smoking Policies in Maine Rental Housing requires landlords/property owners and managers to notify all existing tenants and all potential tenants, in writing, where smoking is allowed, if anywhere, on the property in a written lease agreement or separate written notice.  This law was signed by Governor Paul LePage in 2011.

  • Landlords/property owners and managers must provide written notification of the current smoking policy, either as a provision of the lease agreement or as a separate written document, to tenants entering into a rental agreement.
  • This law does not require landlords to adopt a smoke-free policy. It is a simple requirement to notify tenants of the smoking policy.
  • This will help make sure tenants are aware of the smoking policy of a the property. It is beneficial to landlords/property owners and managers, as it can help reduce complaints by tenants.
  • The law also states the adoption of smoke-free policies is a legal option for residential properties. This is a choice that can save landlords hundreds, even thousands, of dollars in cleaning and maintenance costs at unit turnover.

US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Smoke-Free Public Housing Rule

In December 2016, HUD published a final rule for each Public Housing Agency to adopt a smoke-free policy.  The effective date of the rule is February 3, 2017, with an 18-month implementation period.

Maine Medical Use of Marijuana Act

In 2010, the Maine Medical Use of Marijuana Act (MMUMA) was enacted. This law allows the use of marijuana for medical reasons it also states “a landlord or business owner may prohibit the smoking of marijuana for medical purposes on the premises, if the landlords or business owner prohibits all smoking on the premises and posts notice to that effect on the premises.”

The information and materials provided by Breathe Easy is  for information purposes only and are not offered or intended to be and should not be construed to be legal advice nor to be a substitute for obtaining legal advice from a licensed attorney.