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35 Laws in Los Angeles That Are Strange but True

35 Laws in Los Angeles That Are Strange but True

Everyone knows L.A. is an interesting city with its fair share of quirks, but these weird laws in Los Angeles are bound to surprise you. Team


4 min read

November 17, 2020

Characterized by Hollywood stars, beautiful state parks, bustling streets, and a buzzy art scene, L.A. is nothing but interesting. Like many other cities in California, Los Angeles also has its fair share of interesting quirks, fun facts, and strange laws. So, whether you're planning a visit to the city or you're a current resident, make sure you abide by these weird laws in Los Angeles

Weird Laws In Los Angeles

1. In Los Angeles, there is a historical ban on wearing zoot suits, which are distinctively styled with high-waisted, wide-legged, tight-cuffed trousers, and a long coat with wide lapels and padded shoulders. This ban was enacted by the Los Angeles City Council following the Zoot Suit Riots in 1943, a series of race-related conflicts. The riots highlighted significant tensions between servicemen stationed in Southern California and the Mexican-American youth who popularized the zoot suit fashion, leading to the controversial prohibition that aimed to reduce violence.

2. One of the strange laws in California states that it's illegal for a balloon to fly more than five feet high. In fact, it's illegal to release more than one mylar or foil balloon at the same time, even if it's for advertising purposes. 

3. If you're a parent of two children in Los Angeles, then tough luck. You can't bathe two babies in the same bathwater at the same time in L.A.

4. Los Angeles takes bathing seriously—there’s more than one law relating to bathing. For instance, if you bathe in someone else’s bathwater, it’s considered an illegal act in L.A. Bathhouses are against the law, too. 

Thinking of taking a warm, relaxing bath? When you do, make sure you're bathing in your own bathwater.

5. Though this should go without saying, you cannot hold a bullfight in your backyard in L.A. (California’s weird facts always make for great conversation starters, don’t they?)

6. If you're an avid moth hunter, take note of one of the strangest laws in Los Angeles: You can't hunt moths in L.A. under street lights—better try somewhere else.

7. Toads are not for licking. After scientists discovered toads may have poisonous skin, it became illegal to lick a toad in Los Angeles. (Maybe this rule is better off also being applied to frogs.)

8. We're not sure who would think to do this, but it is illegal to pour salt on a highway in Hermosa Beach.

9. Until 2012, it was illegal to throw your Frisbee after the lifeguard specifically asked you not to do so. In fact, if a lifeguard had clearly asked you to stop throwing a football, Frisbee, or another beach toy for safety reasons, you'd be fined up to $1,000 if you failed to comply. Guess you should always listen to the lifeguard.

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10. Think before you shed tears while on the witness stand in court. Los Angeles law prohibits crying while you're on the witness stand. So, whether the tears are real or fake, try to stay away from the waterworks while in the courthouse. 

11. Tired of going to a house party where you have to pay admission? Well, L.A. has you covered, college kids: It's illegal to charge entrance at any house party held in Los Angeles.

12. Women should take off their coats before getting behind the wheel. It's forbidden by law for women to be seen driving with their winter coats on. 

13. Thinking of skateboarding in a library? Think again. It's illegal to skateboard or rollerblade in a courthouse or library in L.A.

Keep the skateboarding outdoors in L.A.—it's illegal to skateboard inside libraries and courthouses.

14. While washing your neighbor's car may seem like a random act of kindness they would appreciate, make sure to ask them before you do it. In Los Angeles, it's illegal to wash your neighbor's car before getting their permission.

15. Residents of Downey should be careful about where they wash their cars. It's against the law to wash your car on the street.

16. In Alhambra, you can't park your motor vehicle on the street overnight unless you have a permit.

17. In Walnut, it's not permitted to put rocks or sand on your driveway.

18. In Arcadia, peacocks have the right of way when crossing streets and driveways—they are considered town citizens, after all. So, make sure to be respectful of the birds the next time you see them crossing. 

In Arcadia, always let the peacocks cross the road safely. After all, they're law-abiding citizens, too.

19. It's forbidden by law to ride your bicycle through a swimming pool.

20. Don’t report so fast. It's illegal in Los Angeles to report a motel with a cockroach problem to the postal service.

21. If you have a garage attached to your house in Long Beach, then you should know that it's illegal to store anything aside from your vehicle in there.

22. Also in Long Beach, it's illegal to curse on a miniature golf course, no matter how heated the game is.

23. Dog owners in the city of Glendale should be aware of the following Los Angeles law: It's illegal for owners or caretakers to take their dogs into an elevator in an office building (unless you have a service dog).

If you're in Glendale, you best make sure that adorable puppy of yours isn't in the elevator.

24. Pasadena business owners should know that it's unlawful for the boss and secretary to be alone in the same room.

25. It used to be illegal to drive more than 2,000 sheep down Hollywood Boulevard.

26. In the city of Los Angeles, it's illegal for a man to slap his wife with a strap more than two inches wide without her consent.

27. In Los Angeles County, all the food brought to a children’s camp must be approved by the camp director before being consumed.

28. Santa Monica laws state that it's illegal to play percussion instruments on the beach.

As tempting as it sounds, no you may not play percussion instruments on the Santa Monica beach.

29. In Los Angeles, it's illegal to blow smoke in someone else’s face. 

30. Smoking in El Monte? You should know that sandboxes cannot be used as ashtrays.

31. It's also illegal to have a pinball machine in your house in El Monte. Additionally, mock horse-racing games are not allowed either.

32. You can't buy your waitress a drink in El Monte. The law states that it's prohibited for waitresses to consume drinks bought by their customers.

33. In Glendale, you have to be at least 18 years old to buy a wax container.

34. Also in Glendale, it's illegal to jump into a passing car, unless the vehicle is going below 65 mph.

35. More on cars in Glendale: It's illegal to drive your car in reverse.

Looking for more? Read on to learn about new California laws added in 2020.

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