Tattooing and body piercing, or also known as body modification, has become increasingly popular in recent years.  These activities present a minimal risk if the tattooing or piercings are done by a trained individual following the proper precautions. The Vanderburgh County Health Department has implemented Chapter 5.45 of the City of Evansville Municipal Code and Chapter 5.06 of the Vanderburgh County Code that govern body modification. These statutes require licensure of tattoo artists, body piercers and associated establishments and also set operational requirements for tattoo and body piercing establishments.

Permit Information

To be permitted in the city or county an artist/establishment must:

  • Be in compliance with local ordinances Chapter 5.45 of the City of Evansville Municipal Code & Chapter 5.06 of the Vanderburgh County Code
  • Provide a certificate of professional liability insurance in the amount of $500,000
  • Provide Certificate of annual Blood Borne Pathogen Training
  • Provide Certificate of CPR/First Aid Training
  • Obtain a Health Department Tattoo & Body Piercing Permit for the establishment (includes one artist license) $300.00
  • Obtain a Health Department Tattoo & Body Piercing for each additional artist $100.00
  • Permits are valid from January 1 to December 31.
  • Contact the Vanderburgh County Health Department with questions or concerns @ (812) 435-5695 or
Underground Unlicensed Shops

Never have any type of body modification done at an unlicensed shop or by an unlicensed artist, sometimes called “scratchers.”  Often working out of homes, garages, bars or other facilities, “scratchers” do not follow the same precautions as a legitimate artist.  Any unlicensed body modification increases the chances you will:

  • Contract an infectious disease such as Hepatitis C, Strep or HIV
  • Have allergic reactions
  • Experience scaring
  • Have MRI Complications

Unlicensed artist are subject to a fine of $100.00 per day and/or per violation.  Report any unlicensed body modification to the Vanderburgh County Health Department at (812) 435-5695.  Reports can be made anonymously.

Tattoo & Body Piercing Frequently Asked Questions
Tattoo & Body Piercing Establishment Forms