Steps That You Should Take To Avoid Accidentally Tattooing A Minor

When you work as a tattoo artist, there are several steps that you have to carefully take to avoid legal issues. One step is to always ensure that your tattooing equipment is sterilized so that you don't give any client an infection, for example. You also need to be aware of your state's laws regarding tattooing a minor.

In many states, those under the age of 18 can get tattoos, but they need consent from their parent or guardian. If you were to tattoo a minor, his or her parents could potentially come after you legally, which will cost you time and money. Here are some steps that you should take to avoid accidentally tattooing a minor.

Ask For ID

The number one thing that you need to do when a prospective client who looks young approaches you in your shop to get work done is ask him or her to show you an ID. Someone who is underage and attempting to trick you into giving him or her a tattoo will obviously be unable to provide this proof of age and will likely leave your shop.

It's important to carefully inspect the ID card to ensure that it's not a fake. Teenagers will sometimes carry fake ID cards, so look at the printing quality and don't be afraid to compare the look of the card to your own ID card to ensure that they're similar.

Ask A Couple Of Questions

It's possible that the minor could have a fake ID that you aren't able to discern isn't real. While you're talking with the prospective client about getting some ink, don't be afraid to throw some questions his or her way.

For example, note the birth date on the ID card, and then ask the client when he or she was born. The average person can answer this question without hesitation, and if the person stumbles over it, it could be a sign that he or she is trying to dupe you.

Remember That It's Better To Be Safe Than Sorry

If you have even the tiniest inkling of doubt about the age of a prospective tattoo client, your best bet is to refuse to serve him or her. There are many other tattoo shops, and the person can go to visit them. Don't get distracted by the idea of making some money off the client. A $50 tattoo isn't going to be worth it when you face a lawsuit because the client was indeed underage, and you didn't trust your gut. Should you find yourself in this situation, hire a criminal defense attorney.