Plans for a nationwide comprehensive smokefree law were dropped in December 2006.

At federal level, the law for the protection from the dangers of passive smoking (Gesetz zum Schutz vor den Gefahren des Passivrauchens”) took effect on 1 September 2007. Smoking was banned in government buildings and public transport and railway stations. However, smoking rooms (outdoors, e.g. on the platform of train stations also areas without partition) are generally permitted.

Also in 2007 most of the 16 Federal states passed smokefree laws as the competency for the restaurant law rests at the state level. In the course of this, smoking was banned in universities, schools, hospitals, and public authorities in the competency of the State, restaurants, bars, pubs and discos in most States. The regulations are however not uniform. The majority of States allowed for designated smoking rooms to be installed all locations aside from educational institutions and discotheques.

In July 2008, the Federal Constitutional Court ruled that the provisions of two specific States (Berlin and Baden-Württemberg, in each of which a barkeeper had brought forward an exemplary legal suit) from which two are unconstitutional due to the exemptions. The Federal Constitutional Court called on all States to revise their laws by 31 December 2009. Thus, the current status is very transitional. For the time being, smoking is allowed in all restaurants, bars and discotheques that avail of one room only, the others can designate a smoking room.

Smokefree legislation at State level

See Smokefree Partnership

Smokefree resources available in 2009

German Cancer Research Center
Netzwerkbüro Tabakprävention
Smokefree Partnership
European Network on Smoking Prevention

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