California Cigarette & Tobacco Product Retailer’s License
Changes To Tobacco Licensing Laws
Learn what you must do to be properly licensed and how much it will cost.
California Business & Professions Code Sections 22971-22973
Effective January 1, 2017
The California Cigarette & Tobacco Products Retailer’s License is $265/annually per location.
RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE TOBACCO RETAILER
As a retailer of cigarettes and/or tobacco products, you must:
- Obtain a Seller’s Permit.
- Maintain a valid California & Tobacco Products Retailer’s License.
- Conspicuously display your license at each retail location in a manner visible to the public.
- Submit a California Resale Certificate to your distributor or supplier.
- Keep complete and legible purchase invoices for cigarettes and tobacco products for four (4) years.
- Keep purchase invoices at each licensed location for at least one year after the date of the purchase or sale.
- Allow the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration (CDTFA) staff or law enforcement officers to review your purchase invoices upon request.
- Purchase and sell only those cigarettes and roll-your-own (RYO) tobacco authorized in sale in California as listed on the Office of the Attorney General’s California Tobacco Directory.
- Purchase cigarettes and tobacco products only from California licensed distributors or wholesalers. Retailers many not purchase cigarettes or tobacco products from other retailers. Wholesalers may not purchase their products directly from an importer or manufacturer. Retailers with a distributors license may not purchase from a manufacturer or importer who carries a distributors license.
- Only purchase cigarettes affixed with valid California tax stamps and California tobacco products tax-paid products.
CITY TOBACCO LICENSES
Many cities in California have passed ordinances that require tobacco retailers to obtain a local license, in addition to the state required license, to sell tobacco products.
FEES & REQUIREMENTS
Please note that each city ordinance has different requirements and fees associated to obtain a local tobacco license. For more information, visit your county website or contact your county official.
LIST OF CITIES WHICH REQUIRE A LOCAL LICENSE
The following cities have an ordinance in place which requires an additional local license to sell tobacco products: