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Legislative
& Legal
Signs are protected as "speech" by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, but the level of protection varies. The United States Supreme Court has recognized that commercial speech is entitled to the protection of the First Amendment. In 1976, the Supreme Court asserted, "The fact that the advertiser's interest in a commercial advertisement is purely economic does not disqualify him from protection under the First and Fourteenth Amendments. Both the individual consumer and society in general may have strong interests in the free flow of commercial information." Virginia State Board of Pharmacy v. Virginia Citizens Consumer Counsel, 425 U.S. 748 pp. 761-773 (1976).
CITY
ORDINANCES
VARIANCES
TIME, PLACE
& MANNER
COPYRIGHTS,
PATENTS & TM
The United States Supreme Court has ruled that content-neutral time, place and manner restrictions on commercial speech are permissible if they:

1) are justified without reference to the content of the speech; 2) if the restrictions serve a significant government interest; and 3) leave open ample alternative channels for communication of the information. For more information, see Time, Place & Manner Defined.

A city cannot regulate the content of your sign or the messages you are trying to deliver; however, there are existing regulations. For more information, see City Ordinances and Variances.

Copyrights, patents and trademarks are intellectual property rights that may also exist in the creation of a sign. For more information, see Copyrights, Patents & Trademarks.
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