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Knife Laws

§ 42a Ban of lead of appearance weapons and certain portable objects (Germany)

  1. It is illegal
    1. apparent weapons,
    2. Slash and strike weapon Annex 1 chapter 1 subparagraph 2 No. 1.1 or
    3. Knifes with one-hand fixable blade (one-hand-folder) or fixed blade knife with a blade length over 12 cm.
  2. Annex 1 not applies
    1.for the use to take photo-, shoot films-, or television features theatre performance,
    2. use for the transport in an enclosed space,
    3. for the lead of this objects paragraph 1 No. 2 and 3, provided there is a legitimate interest in doing. The far-reaching regulation is unaffected.
  3. A legitimate interest paragraph 2 No. 3 is, when the lead of this objects connected with a professional practice, heritage, sport or a general accepted purpose.

In detail, this means:

The regulations to acquisition and possession of knives as well as the classification certainly knive types as prohibition items were not chance by the amendment. Everything that was legal to sell before, is still legal today; everything that was legal to exhibit, is still legal to exhibit!

The different to then is the lead of fixed blade knife (not folding) that have a blade length of more than 12 cm, Slash and strike weapon and one-hand fixable blade knives is regulated by law. (The transport in an enclosed space is not to see as leading.)

According to our understanding are "one-hand-fixed" knives, which had a mechanism to open the knife with one hand and had a blade arrest. If a knife only had one of this characteristics, it isn`t affected by the § 42a.

Slash and strike weapons are objects, which purpose is to use it as a weapon, like e.g. a double-edge dagger or a bayonet. A simple suitable of an object don`t make a weapon of it. A kitchen knife also can use as a weapon, but the purpose is decisive for the classification as a commodity, that`s the reason why a kitchen knife isn`t classificatory as a weapon.

The legislator admits leading only by presentation of a legitimate interest for all these objects. For all these (fixed blade knives that have a blade length of more than 12 cm, one-hand-fixed knives and Slash and strike weapons)

This legitimate interest is define as leading "in connection with the sport, the professional practice, custom care or an generally accepted purpose"

The so called "general accepted purpose" is nowhere specifity export. (Self-defense - although it is a fundamental social right - the legislator do not accept this as purpose!)

At this point we want to explicit indicate that, the legislator did not speak from an "officialy" or "legal approved" purpose. The formulation "general accepted purpose" suggest that here is the meaning of the normal public feeling or rather the healthy common sense, in addition of this is the leading from a pocket knife in different situation usual and attached.

Because this definition is very large stretched and spongy formulated, so it cannot excluded that e.g. a controlling official had another restrictive interpretation.

However the legislator has taken up this general "approved purpose" in the law anyway with. This is the reason why blanket appointment doesn`t work for example "all one hand folder are general forbidden" or "the leading of a one hand folder is general forbbiden" patently false.

Who want to keep out of a confrontation can demount the opening assistant (as far as technically possible). If the questionable knife is no longer open by one hand it do not including in the restriction of § 42a. Many of our knives have a suitable tool to remove the thumb button (at least temporarily).

As a responsible citizen you can decide by oneself how you would like to use your knife. Of course the dismantling the thumb button has the slightly tasteless flavor of hurrying ahead obedience, this is the result of the inaccuracy of the law. We would like to point out over again to the fact that carrying the doubtful knives is legal with regard to the text and the defined consideration. You should never lose sight of your rights.