You Can Not Legally Cover Your Face in Alabama … But Do It Anyway

Apr 10, 2020 | Allen A. Ritchie

Al Personal Injury Attorney Ritchie

Alabama Personal Injury Attorney Ritchie


Let me give you a little bit of Alabama law history to argue about while confined.

Here we go.

It is generally illegal in our state to cover your face in public. I say generally because Mobile altered the law; so that, you guessed it, we could wear masks during Mardi Gras.

The reason for this law is to prevent the Klu Klux Klan and other white supremacist groups from wearing hoods to disguise themselves. The law was enacted in 1949, after WW II, when soldiers were back in the state and the state wanted to appear to be more progressive. It was later adopted by several other Southern states.

The writers of this law never thought the coronavirus crisis would hit, and people would be encouraged to use masks on the public street for safety.

So here is your question for the people you are quarantined with – should you obey the law or do what is right?

The punishment is real and could be a fine up to $500 or up to a year in jail.

Outside of the coronavirus crisis, the Alabama anti-mask law is still being used. In 2017, protesters at Auburn University were forced to remove masks and bandanas during the protest of a white supremacist speaker. The following year, a protester related to the Riverchase Galleria shooting in Hoover was arrested for wearing a mask.

Now relax, the AL Attorney General’s office has encouraged law enforcement to use “common sense” during the pandemic. So, it is highly unlikely that anyone is going to jail during the crisis.

I suggest that you pick one side to argue and let someone else pick the other side. Hey, you can only watch so much YouTube.

If you are hurt in a traffic accident or suffer a personal injury, you can talk to us at the Law Firm of Eiland and Ritchie for free. We want to help you get back on your feet. We are working remotely mostly but are always available.

Also, join us on NBC 15 LawCall here in Mobile every Sunday night at 10:30 right after the news. We will take your calls live. We are experimenting with new ways to do the show and still follow the CDC guidelines. You might want to see what we have come up with.

Allen Ritchie

Alabama personal injury lawyer