The Smoking, Health and Social Care (Scotland) Act, stating that smoking was banned in enclosed public places such as workplaces, pubs and restaurants, came into force on 26 March 2006. Workplaces also include commercial vehicles, buses and taxis.
The Scottish smoke-free legislation forbids smoking in enclosed places used by the public or where people work. This means that it is now illegal to smoke inside any building, vehicle or structure apart from your own home or car. There are some exemptions to the legislation in Scotland, like bedrooms in residential care homes.
Smokers face a fixed penalty fine of £50 if they light up in these areas or vehicles and a £1000 fine if they refuse to give their name and address to an enforcement officer. You can be prosecuted for failing to pay or for repeated offences which may lead to a fine of up to £2,500.
Business owners can choose to provide areas outside, or partially covered shelters, where people can smoke. Hotel owners may allow smoking in designated bedrooms subject to suitable ventilation.
Proprietors face a £200 fixed penalty fine for not adhering to the legislation. For example, by not putting up signs saying smoking is not allowed on their premises or by not taking reasonable action to prevent someone smoking on the premises. They won't, however, be liable if they've done what they can to stop people smoking – for example, if a customer refuses a pub landlord's requests to put their cigarette out.
For more information on the NHS Health Scotland's tobacco programme please click on the link on this page.
If you have concerns about people smoking in restricted areas or vehicles then please contact the Customer Service Centre at the details on this page.
Smoking enforcement data
Information on smoking enforcement for the past 5 financial years is available to download from this page. Please note this dataset is updated on a quarterly basis and will only be accurate to the date of publication, which is marked on the report.
Page last updated: 1 July 2020