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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Compliance Check Inspections of Tobacco Product Retailers (through 06/30/2021)

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About the Database

Compliance check inspections of tobacco product retailers are conducted to determine a retailer's compliance with the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act), as amended by the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act (Tobacco Control Act) and the Regulations Restricting the Sale and Distribution of Cigarettes and Smokeless Tobacco to Protect Children and Adolescents, found at Title 21 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Part 1140 (21 C.F.R. Part 1140). For information on FDA's tobacco laws and regulations, visit Guidance, Compliance & Regulations.

The Compliance Check Inspections database allows users to search for inspection reports by Retailer Name, City, State, and Zip code. Additional search criteria include:

  • Inspection Result: Choose either “All”, “No-Tobacco-Sale Order”, “Civil Money Penalty”, “Warning Letter Issued”, or “No Violations Observed”.
  • Product Type Purchased by Minor: If a product type is selected, the results will be limited to inspections where a tobacco product was purchased.
  • Decision Date: Enter one date or a date range, or search for all records before or after one specific date.
  • Minor Involved: Choose either “Yes” or “No”.
  • Sale to Minor: Choose either “Yes” or “No”.

The search results table has two different view modes: “Basic” and “Enhanced.”

  • The Basic view, which appears by default, includes the following fields: Retailer Name, Street Address, City, State, Zip, Sale to Minor, Product Type, Decision Date, and Inspection Result.
  • The Enhanced view, which can be selected at the top right of the search results, includes the following additional fields: Minor Involved, Inspection Date (for Warning Letters), Charges (for Warning Letters).1

1Additional information regarding inspections that resulted in a CMP or NTSO is accessible via a clickable link in the database record


Frequently Asked Questions

Q: My search returns the message “0 Inspection Results Returned.”

A: Try the following recommendations:

  • Entering a short search phrase in the Retailer Name field will produce better results than a longer search phrase. Please refer to the following examples:
    • Search for "smart" to find all occurrences of Retailer Name "Smart-Shop" including spellings such as "smart shop" and "smartshop"
    • Search for "Joe" to find all occurrences of Retailer Name "Joe's Place" including spellings such as "Joes Place" and "Joe's Pl."
  • Enter information in fewer fields. For example, instead of entering the city, state, and zip code, enter only the zip code.
  • Confirm the spelling of the retailer name and other words in your search.


Q: My search returns one of the following messages:

  • “Your search query returned over 10,000 results. Please narrow your search for display on the map.”
  • “Your search returned more than 10,000 results. Please narrow your search or Export Data to Excel by Fiscal Year.”
  • “Your search query returned over 5,000 results. Please narrow your search.”

A: The system restricts the number of locations viewed on the map to 10,000 results. The maximum number of records that can be viewed in the Export Results to Excel and Print Friendly reports is 10,000 and 5,000 respectively. To narrow your search results try the following recommendations:

  • Add more information to your search. For example, include the city and zip code for searches or specify a date range.
  • Search for unique words, such as names of retailers.


Q: How do I search for all records before, after, or on a specific date?

A: The search application will return all results before, after, or on a specific date by entering a date in the "Decision Date" field(s).

  • To search for records after a specific date, enter a date only in the first box of the “Decision Date” field. Leave the second box blank.
  • To search for records before a specific date, enter the date only in the second box of the “Decision Date” box. Leave the first box blank.
  • To search for records on a specific date, enter the same date in both boxes.
  • When searching within a date range, dates must be entered in the format mm/dd/yyyy. For example: 05/01/2011.


Q: How are the search results sorted?

A: Search results are initially sorted by Decision Date (descending order). 

You can re-sort the data by clicking on the column headers on the search results table. The data will be resorted by the selected column. Clicking on the same column header a second time will reverse the sort order.


Q: How can I export the dataset? What formats are supported?

A: The dataset can be exported to a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet or PDF file.

  • To export the dataset by fiscal year, click the “Export Data to Excel by Fiscal Year” link. In the pop-up, select the fiscal year you would like to download and click on “Export”.
  • To export search results, click the “Export Results to Excel” link at the top of the search results table.
  • To export to PDF, click the “Print Friendly” link at the top of the search results table.


Q: I am trying to access information that does not appear to be in your database. Do you have additional information, and how can I gain access?

A: There may be additional information on a specific subject. Please see the Freedom of Information web page for information on submitting a request.


Q: Why are the results on the map different than the results provided in the table?

A: There are two reasons the number of records displayed on the map may differ from the number of records displayed in the table:

  • If the address listed for the establishment in the table cannot be reconciled with the Google map application, the record will not appear on the map.
  • The table displays every inspection individually, however, the pins displayed on the map identify individual establishments, not individual inspections. Therefore, one pin may represent more than one inspection result.


Additional Search Tips

  • The Civil Money Penalty and No-Tobacco-Sale Order links that may be included in search results are designed to open in a new browser window. Pop-up blockers may interfere with this feature.
  • Non-standard characters in the data may cause display anomalies in some records, such as an inverted question mark or a small black box appearing in a retailer name. These anomalies should not otherwise impact search results.
  • The search is not case sensitive. Therefore, it does not matter whether you enter words in upper case, lower case, or a combination.