Here is a sampling of some interesting laws that are set to take effect on January 1, 2012:


  • No Caffeinated Beer--In response to deaths and other events, the production, distribution and sale of beer to which has caffeine added is illegal.
  • Shark Fin ban--The sale, trade or distribution of shark fins is largely prohibited, similar to a new Oregon law also set to take effect.


  • Acid Attack-- This new law prohibits the possession or carrying of certain substances regulated under the Federal Caustic Poison Act,  specifically those which bear the warning “causes severe burns," and are capable of causing serious injury. The legislation is a response to several high-profile acid attacks where the victims were severely disfigured.
  • Drug Dealer ER Fines-- Establishes that people found guilty of manufacturing or delivering drugs that precipitated an emergency response will be liable for the expense of the emergency response, and must also pay additional new fines. This might have interesting implications in tort law cases.
  • Hunting Fees for Terminally Ill Individuals --Waives hunting fees for terminally ill individuals and allows terminally ill youth to hunt outside of an established season if approved.
New York
  • Move Over Law/Amber Light Law--requires cars to slow down and if possible switch over a lane, for all vehicles stopped along roadways, including tow trucks, maintenance trucks, etc. This law in response to two police officers who were killed when their patrol cars were pulled over on the side of the road.
  • Dignity for All Students Act-- sets in place requires schools to develop policies and guidelines to deal with bullying, and mandates professional training for at least one staff member in each district.
  • Drink Special Ban--New law bans any daily drink specials, such as with a happy hour, for example.