Changes in Age Verification Regulations in Delaware: Photo ID for Online Purchase Required

We’re sure you’ve heard that Delaware has new age verification regulations regarding the online sale of tobacco, vape, and other nicotine products. This new law in Delaware took effect in July, 2019 and changed who can legally purchase tobacco and nicotine products in the state (Bill Details).

Highlights of the New Age Verification Law

While most of the buzz is around increasing the legal age to purchase these products from 18 to 21, the state of DE has also updated some other aspects of the age verification regulations, including what they consider “proof of age”:

“Proof of age” means a driver’s license or other government-issued identification with a photograph of the individual affixed thereon that indicates that the individual is 21 years old or older.

This is fairly straight forward. Companies selling tobacco or nicotine products online need to capture a government-issued photo ID at the point of purchase to meet the new age verification regulations.

In addition to obtaining document verification during the purchasing process, the requirements for delivery methods have been updated. Online retailers of age-restricted products must also secure a signature upon delivery and verify that the signer of the package is the person who ordered the products and is of legal age (21+) as well.

…delivers the tobacco product or tobacco substitute… by a postal or package delivery service method that either limits delivery to that purchaser and requires the purchaser to sign personally to receive the delivery.

Other Aspects of the Regulation

In an effort to prevent underage use of tobacco and nicotine, this new age verification regulation also revokes a parent’s ability to purchase nicotine products for their children.

Other tobacco-related items also fall under this new age verification regulation including accessories like rolling papers and filters. Vape products and accessories fall under the “tobacco substitute” category, which is also covered under the new regulation.

a. “Tobacco product” means any product that  contains tobacco, including, but not limited to,  is made from or derived from tobacco or that contains nicotine, including:  cigarettes, cigars, pipe tobacco,  snuff  hookah tobacco, chewing tobacco, snuff, snus,  or smokeless tobacco and is intended for human consumption  or use by any means including smoking, heating, chewing, absorbing, dissolving, inhaling, or ingesting.

b. “Tobacco product” also means a component or accessory used in the consumption of a tobacco product, including filters, rolling papers, and pipes.

Minimum Age Verification Regulations in Other States

Increasing the age to legally purchase tobacco products on the local, municipal, and state level is a popular trend. More than 475+ localities across 29 states have raised the age to 21 as well (Tobacco Free Kids).

If you’d like to hop on a call to discuss your compliance efforts around this new regulation, and how Veratad can help you meet the new requirements with the collection of a photo ID online, we’d be happy to arrange a complimentary consultation to review your age verification processes.