Started writing this as part of the Team Omega Background. Thoughts?
The Superhuman Activity Regulatory Act
Summary: The SARA provides legal cover for superhuman activities within the United States of America. Similar laws have been enacted around the world, but levels of enforcement vary from nation to nation.
Application: The SARA applies to all humans with a natural-born superpower (determined as an intrinsic physical power not available to baseline humans) who wish to serve as superheroes within the USA AND/OR humans who deliberately render themselves superhuman.(1)
The SARA also covers deliberate (non-governmental) programs to create superhumans, prohibiting them.
Registration: All superheroes are obliged to register with the federal government (Department of Superhuman Activities) and undergo a course covering the basics of national law, which generally end in them being granted the status of deputy law enforcement officials. They are accountable to local state police forces or the superhuman department of the FBI.
Superhumans who do not choose to serve as superheroes are not obliged to register, but in that case they have no more rights or duties as an ordinary citizen and can be legally charged with vigilantism.(2)
Specific Powers and Legal Responsibilities: Possession of certain superhuman powers gives their owner certain additional responsibilities not to misuse their powers. The use of telepathy to read minds is considered a violation of privacy without their formal permission; shape-shifting into someone else’s form and impersonating them is a criminal offense.(3)
Enforcement: In the first instance, superheroes who choose to violate the SARA are handled by law enforcement superhumans or the Federal Task Force [Team Omega].
1) The act did not originally prohibit baseline humans pretending to be superhumans until the 1985 incident in New York where a costumed baseline human was killed by a superhuman who believed him to pose a genuine threat. This practice was banned in 1986 by the Costumed Entity Act.
2) A superhuman who encounters someone in trouble and helps is legally in the clear, but repeated events are generally taken as a sign of unregistered crime-fighting activity and the superhuman is urged to register.
3) A number of telepaths have taken up service with the law enforcement agencies, where they can monitor testimonies and vouch that defenders are telling the truth if granted permission to scan their minds. However, this area of legal knowledge is a gray area and can run afoul of laws prohibiting self-incrimination.