James A. Atkins


For the first time, the Supreme Court, in Village of Hoffman Estates v. Flipside, Hoffman Estates, Inc., rendered an opinion concerning the validity of a regulatory drug paraphernalia law, which was challenged as being impermissibly vague and overbroad. In Hoffman, a unanimous Court upheld the ruling of the District Court for the Northern District of Illinois and reversed the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. The court of appeals held that a municipal ordinance requiring businesses within the municipality to obtain a license if they sold any items "designed or marketed for use with illegal cannabis or drugs" was facially vague and overbroad. Since the challenged ordinance in Hoffman was regulatory in nature, at least one commentator has suggested that the ruling may be of minimal significance. This note will examine the decision rendered by the Court in Hoffman and its predictive value, if any, on the question of future facial challenges to drug paraphernalia laws.



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