CHAPTER 243

FORMERLY

HOUSE SUBSTITUTE NO. 1

FOR

HOUSE BILL NO. 93

AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 11, DELAWARE CODE, RELATING TO BODY-PIERCING, TATTOOING, OR BRANDING CONSENT FOR MINORS AND CIVIL AND CRIMINAL PENALTIES.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE (Two-thirds of all members elected to each house thereof concurring therein):

Section 1. Amend Chapter 5, Title 11, Delaware Code by adding a new section to read as follows:

"Section 1113. Body-piercing, tattooing, or branding; consent for minors; civil and criminal penalties.

(a) No person shall knowingly or negligently tattoo, brand or perform body-piercing on a minor unless that person obtains the prior written consent of the minor's parent over the age of eighteen or legal guardian to the specific act of tattooing, branding or body piercing.

(b) No person shall tattoo, brand, or perform body piercing on another person if the other person is under the influence of alcoholic beverages, being beer, wine or spirits, or a controlled substance.

() Consent forms required by subsection (a) shall be notarized.

() (1) A person who violates this section shall be guilty of a Class B
misdemeanor for the first offense or a Class A misdemeanor for a second or subsequent offense. The Court of Common Pleas shall have original jurisdiction over these offenses for those 18 years of age or older, and the Family Court shall have original jurisdiction for those under the age of 18 at the time of the offense.

(2) In any prosecution for an offense under this subsection, it shall be an affirmative defense that the individual, who has not reached the age of 18, presented to the accused identification, with a photograph of such individual affixed thereon, which identification sets forth information which would lead a reasonable person to believe such individual was 18 years of age or older. A photocopy of the identification shall be attached to the information card that a customer shall complete at the time that the tattoo, body piercing or branding is obtained.

(e) A person who violates subsection (a) is liable in a civil action for actual damages or $1,000.00, whichever is greater, plus reasonable court costs and attorney fees.

(f) As used in this section:

(1) 'Body-piercing' means the perforation of human tissue excluding the ear for a non-medical purpose.

(2) 'Branding' means a permanent mark made on human tissue by buming with a hot iron or other instrument.

(0) 'Controlled substance' means that term as defined in Chapter 47, Title 16 of this Code.

(1) 'Minor' means an individual under 18 years of age who is not emancipated.

(2) 'Tattoo' means one or more of the following:

(i) An indelible mark made upon the body of another person by the insertion of a pigment under the skin.

() An indelible design made upon the body of another person by production of scars other than by branding."

(6) Nothing in this act shall require a person to tattoo, brand or body pierce a minor with parental consent if the person does not regularly tattoo, brand or body pierce customers under the age of 18.

Section 2. If any provision of this Act or the application thereof to any person or circumstance is held invalid, such invalidity shall not affect other provisions or applications of the Act which can be given effect without the invalid provision or application, and to that end the provisions of this Act are declared to be severable.

Approved February 10, 1998