Starting January 1, 2015, it is illegal to smoke on all restaurant and bar patios, whether covered or not.
A restaurant or bar patio is defined as an area:
Uncovered patios created by a branch of the Royal Canadian Legion before November 18, 2013 are exempt from this law. "Uncovered" means that the patio is not covered in whole or in part by any physical barriers, whether temporary or permanent, that protects from rain, the movement of air, or both. However, the new smoking law will apply to any patio created by a legion after November 18, 2013, and any covered or partially covered legion patio.
Restaurants and bar owners or employers are required to ensure that the smoking laws are respected.
Every owner and employer of a restaurant or bar must:
Local public health units will carry out inspections and respond to complaints regarding the smoking of tobacco inside restaurants and bars, and on their patios.
An individual who violates the prohibition on smoking inside a restaurant or bar, or on a restaurant and bar patio may be charged with an offence, and if convicted, could face a maximum fine of $1,000 (for a first offence) or $5,000 (for any further offence).
An employer or owner of a restaurant or bar who fails to fulfill their responsibility under the law may be charged with an offence and if convicted, could face a maximum fine:
This fact sheet is intended as a quick reference only and should not be considered to be legal advice. For more information, please contact your local Public Health Unit.
You may also obtain information by calling toll-free:
Hours of operation: Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
For specific information on smoking laws on bar and restaurant patios, contact your local Public Health Unit.
For more information on the Smoke-Free Ontario Act, please visit the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care website: Ontario.ca/smokefree