California Enacts Nation’s Strictest Teen Tanning Law


Children under the age of 18 have been banned from indoor ultraviolet (UV) tanning in California.  On October 9, Governor Jerry Brown signed the bill replacing the Filante Tanning Facility Act of 1988, which allowed minors aged 14 and older to tan with the permission of a parent or guardian. Senator Ted W. Lieu proposed what has become the nation’s strictest tanning law. It will go into effect in January, 2012.

Close to 2.5 million teens tan indoors in the US every year, increasing their risk of developing melanoma by 75 percent. Indoor tanners are also 2.5 times more likely to develop squamous cell carcinoma, and 1.5 times more likely to develop basal cell carcinoma.

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures,* some 32 states limit minors’ access to tanning beds; many have statutes similar to California’s Filante Act. Currently, Texas has the strictest teen tanning law: children under the age of 16.5 are not permitted to tan indoors, and older minors must have the written consent of a parent or guardian.