Hoffman Estates v. Flipside, Hoffman Estates

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In Village of Hoffman Estates v. Flipside, Hoffman Estates, Inc., 455 U.S. 489, 494 n.5 (1982), the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously (8-0) upheld the constitutionality of an ordinance requiring a business to obtain a license before selling any items that are "designed or marketed for use with illegal cannabis or drugs."

This case is now often cited for its statement that a facial challenge to a statute requires a finding that:[1]

"the law is 'invalid in toto -- and therefore incapable of any valid application.' Steffel v. Thompson, 415 U.S. 452, 474 (1974)."

Justice Thurgood Marshall wrote the opinion for the Court, with only Justice Byron White concurring separately. Justice Marshall wrote:[2]

"Many American communities have recently enacted laws regulating or prohibiting the sale of drug paraphernalia. To determine whether these laws are wise or effective is not, of course, the province of this Court. See Ferguson v. Skrupa, 372 U.S. 726, 728-730 (1963).We hold only that such legislation is not facially overbroad or vague if it does not reach constitutionally protected conduct and is reasonably clear in its application to the complainant.


  1. 455 U.S. at 494 n.5.
  2. 455 U.S. at 504-05.