If the Bada Bing were BYOB …

… no one ever would have known, because, until recently, New Jersey law prevented such a fact from being advertised. See N.J. Stat. Ann. § 2C:33-27.* Tony Soprano and his cohorts, of course, presumably would not have been dissuaded by the threat of statutory violations. The owners of an actual Atlantic City, New Jersey, adult entertainment establishment, however, were so dissuaded, and they filed a complaint for relief in the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey. That Court issued an opinion on December 21, 2017, where it held that plaintiffs were likely to succeed on the merits in proving that the New Jersey law was an unconstitutional, content-based restriction on speech under either intermediate or strict scrutiny. While the Court granted relief in the form of a status quo preliminary injunction – prohibiting the defendants from enforcing the law and the plaintiffs from violating it – the Court’s ruling was nevertheless an early Christmas gift for plaintiffs and their patrons. The Court’s final decision on the merits almost certainly will expand upon its criticism of the New Jersey statute so, until then, it’s last call for New Jersey’s ban on BYOB advertising.

*The Bada Bing was the fictional adult entertainment establishment in the HBO drama The Sopranos.


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Opinions are my own and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Spilman Thomas & Battle, PLLC,  its employees, or its clients. To contact me, please e-mail jschaeffer@spilmanlaw.com

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