The U.S. Congress passed the Federal Cigarette Labeling and Advertising Act (FCLAA) in 1965. The act prohibits cigarette advertising on any electronic medium, and requires the Surgeon General's warning to be placed on all tobacco advertising, packages, and billboards.

In 2001, the Lorillard Tobacco Company challenged Massachusetts regulations that restricted the sale, promotion and labeling of tobacco products. The U.S. Supreme Court found that the FCLAA preempts all local and state regulation of outdoor and point of sale advertising, thereby making it virtually impossible for any tobacco advertising restrictions to be imposed other than by a Congressional act.