Attorneys general have two primary roles when enforcing the terms of the tobacco Master Settlement Agreement (MSA):
- Ensuring compliance with annual payments.
- Monitoring industry actions.
Attorneys general have initiated court proceedings against tobacco companies that have violated the terms of the MSA. Enforcement actions brought against tobacco companies can include claims of violations, such as:
- Outdoor advertising.
- Targeting youth by advertising in magazines with significant youth readership.
- Distributing tobacco branded merchandise.
- Distributing free cigarettes without verifying identity and age of recipients.
- Materially misrepresenting the health consequences of using tobacco products.
- Marketing to youth through appealing packaging and advertising.
- Using cartoons in the advertising or marketing of tobacco products.
- Failing to report U.S. cigarette sales to the Independent Auditor under the MSA.
- Defaulting on the annual MSA payment owed to the Settling States.