Passing the SB97 audit is highly important, because the eCig and Vapor Industry now has new age restriction regulations that must be followed. You don’t want to end up getting your business into big trouble because you weren’t up to date on the latest regulations. Fortunately, there are ways you can get help, so you can pass the audit and keep your business moving forward. If you’re selling eCigs or vape products in the state of Texas, you should know that October 1st, 2015 set out a new list of rules for making sure a customer is old enough to purchase those products.
Now, anyone under 18 can’t purchase these products legally, and that’s a big change. Prior to the October 1st, 2015 deadline, minors could buy eCigs and vape products, and there were no legal restrictions in place to stop them. There were some stores that chose to restrict who they sold these products to, and they often refused to sell them to minors, but they did not legally have to make that choice. Now they must not only make that choice, but they also must comply with everything in SB97. If the are not in compliance, they can be fined or otherwise penalized.
For businesses that didn’t have any self-imposed restrictions already in place, an even bigger change will be needed. These businesses may want to read the entire Senate bill, to make sure they aren’t making any mistakes, but there are other great ways to make sure they get all the information they really need to pass the audit. Verifying a person’s age doesn’t seem too difficult, since it’s easy to look at a driver’s license or other form of ID to make sure the person buying the eCigs or vape products is really old enough to do so.
A major part of the problem for businesses occurs when they are selling online or from a phone order. They have to get proof of age, and that’s more than just a button to click or a statement to say “yes” to. The proof is more complicated than that, and a lot of companies may decide that they don’t want to deal with any of that. If your company is planning on continuing to sell eCigs and vape products over the phone or through an online site, you’ll need to be clear on just exactly what SB97 requires of you and how to get the proper verification information.
You also need to know what to do with that information and how to store it, in case you’re audited and have to produce the information for inspectors or regulators. Not having the proper proof of age for any online or phone orders of eCigs or vape products can mean fines and other problems. Until you’re sure exactly what to do to ensure compliance, selling any eCig or vape products over the phone or online might need to be suspended. That can help protect your business, and keep you from getting into trouble in an SB97 audit.
Best Rate Merchant Service is committed to helping your business succeed. For information on how we can help you navigate SB 97, contact us today. We look forward to hearing from you!