Judge Places Temporary Hold on Michigan Vape Flavor Ban!


Amid Michigan’s vape ban, Court of Claims Judge Cynthia Stephens issued a preliminary injunction to put the ban on hold as of Tuesday Oct. 15. In her ruling, Stephens referenced the fact that Gov. Whitmer and her staff undercut their own assertions of an emergency by delaying the implementation of the flavor ban. Stephens stated that the Department of Health and Human Services had evidence for eight months before declaring an emergency. If it were indeed an emergency, the ban should have been initiated months before.

In addition, Stephens worked with local vape businesses to show that there is evidence that adults would return to using more harmful combustible tobacco products, such as cigarettes, if flavored vaping products were prohibited.

Please see the original article below, published by Kathleen Gray of the Detroit Free Press.


Published 3:47pm ET Oct. 15, 2019 – Updated 4:08pm ET Oct. 15, 2019

DETROIT – The Michigan Court of Claims issued a preliminary injunction Tuesday, stopping the state's ban on flavored vapes, which began Oct. 2.

The harm done to vape businesses, which would have to shut down because of the ban, outweighs the interest of the state in stopping youths from using the products, Court of Claims Judge Cynthia Diane Stephens said in her ruling.

“Not only has plaintiff A Clean Cigarette lost a significant percentage of its sales and closed several stores due to the ban, the ban will force plaintiff to rebrand itself entirely,” she wrote. “In essence, the emergency rules will destroy plaintiff A Clean Cigarette’s business as it currently exists.”

Michigan was the first state to issue a ban on flavored vapes in the midst of health issues surrounding vaping. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is investigating nearly 1,300 cases of lung disease that some officials suspect were triggered by vaping. At least 26 deaths, including one in Michigan, have been attributed to the lung disease. In Michigan, 35 lung disease cases have been reported, according to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

 Michigan ordered that all flavored vape products be removed from store shelves. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced the ban Sept. 3.

“There should be no question that we completely disagree” with the ruling, said Tiffany Brown, spokeswoman for Whitmer.

Several states followed Michigan’s lead in banning flavored vapes or all vape products, and the administration of President Donald Trump indicated that it would implement a ban on the flavored products.

 Stephens said the state was fully aware of the problem nearly a year ago and couldn’t justify the need for the emergency rules.

“Indeed an agency cannot create an emergency by way of its own failure to act,” she wrote. “The court concludes that the record, at least at this juncture, does not substantiate the declaration of an emergency which necessitated dispensing with the … normal rule-making procedures which afford the public meaningful opportunities to be heard.”

The issue doesn't go away. Stephens wrote, "This is not a final order and it neither resolves the last pending claim nor closes the case."


Image Reference: WXYZ Detroit Channel 7 News ABC