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Laws Regulating Tattoo Parlors Vary

By Amy E. Feldman

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - Barbeque. Beer. And free tattoos. What's not to love?

Tattoo artist Reverend Leaf is offering free pig-themed tattoos to guests at a Brooklyn, New York barbeque joint and beer garden called the Arrogant Swine for free. The mind boggles with questions, including: where did he get his divinity degree? I'm guessing not from the Church of Good Ideas. Also, what part of a Miss Piggy tattoo will seem like a good idea the next morning? And finally, is it even legal to get tattooed in a beer garden while probably drunk?

There's no federal law that applies to tattoo parlors, but there are state and local laws that govern tattooing.

State laws vary widely from very strict, like Arkansas, which requires tattoo artists to have training and a certificate from the health department, to states like New Mexico that have no state laws about it.

Most states have laws that prevent minors under the age of 18 from getting tattoos (in Nevada it's 14).

There is no state law that forbids artists from tattooing drunks, which would explain a good many Miss Piggy tattoos, although many local ordinances have licensing and inspection requirements on dyes, sanitary standards, and other safety regulations.

But a word of advice, pray to someone other than Reverend Leaf that you have good enough sense to decide whether and when to get a tattoo before you indulge in the barbeque and beer.

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