What are some jackknives
The pocket knife: what is legally allowed?
The classic pocket knife is a useful companion for many people, which can often be found in the handbag, backpack or suitcase. However, many knife owners are largely unfamiliar with the legal principles such as knife law or the ban on wearing. With this article we would like to shed some light on the legal situation so that you know in the future which knives you can take with you when and how.
Carrying ban and weapons law: two laws regulate (pocket) knives
In addition to the ban on carrying certain knives issued in 2008, some others fall under the general weapons law of the Federal Republic of Germany. The well-known Swiss Army Knife is and will of course be allowed. Basically, to put it a little exaggeratedly, one can say that the knife with which one can just sharpen a stick while grilling is permitted.
The knife as a weapon: prohibitions by the weapons law
Butterfly knives, drop knives and some switch knives fall under the weapons law and are forbidden. Any switchblade knife with a blade popping out, longer than 8.5 centimeters or sharpened on both sides is considered a weapon. Fist knives are also prohibited with the exception of people with a hunting license.
Cutting and thrusting weapons such as daggers, swords or throwing knives are allowed in their possession to adults, but may not be carried in public. The sale and transfer of these weapons is also prohibited by law, although this can be lifted by the local police for markets and festivals. Deceptive cutting and thrusting weapons whose function cannot be recognized and which imitate another object (for example the knife in a walking stick) are illegal.
The ban on wearing according to §42a WaffG
Due to the ban on carrying, individual pocket knives have been restricted. Fixed knives with a blade length of over 12 centimeters, any knives classified as cutting and thrusting weapons and folding knives that can be folded out with one hand may not be carried in public. Carrying it with you in a place that is not directly accessible (for example your rucksack) is not a problem. Even if the ban on carrying does not provide for specific rooms in which the sole carrying of knives is prohibited, for safety reasons at public events a ban was imposed.
Exceptions confirm the rule: knives for the maintenance of customs
A special permit for a knife is usually for a so-called "recognized purpose". If this is the case, for example due to the job, carrying a knife is permitted. The same applies to the use of knives to maintain customs or through other qualifications such as a hunting license. However, it should be mentioned that the individual federal states interpret the aspect of maintaining customs very differently and should be asked in each individual case.
Which knife you can safely own and carry
All folding knives with a two-hand operation and fixed knives with a blade length of less than 12 centimeters are legally permitted (unless the Weapons Act applies). Jackknives can also be longer.
Basically we recommend: Pocket knives are practical, but even the permitted knives should only be carried with you if use is very likely.
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