Laws keep a society, community or a country from falling apart. They are there to ensure the safety and security of the people and to maintain a system without flaws. But every now and then, we hear about laws instituted in different places that makes us ask the question; Why!? We have collected 25 laws from around the world that have gotten a bit out of hand. Some of them might even make you question how they ever got written into law. Without further ado, here are some strange laws to keep in mind next time you book a trip.
1. In Pennsylvania, the law forbids you from tricking someone with a dollar bill.
Tying a dollar bill to a string and pulling it away when someone tries to pick it up is the oldest trick in the book. Apparently, it is against the law for someone to pull the old trick in Pennsylvania.
2. In Victoria, Australia, it is illegal to change a light bulb unless you are a qualified electrician.
We have all encountered at least one broken lightbulb in our lives and we have changed it without putting much thought into it. Apparently, if you change your own lightbulb in Victoria, Australia, you are considered a rebel. Only qualified electricians are allowed to change lightbulbs and those who get caught will face fines up to 10 Australian dollars. (source)
3. Melbourne, Australia has strict laws about vacuuming your house.
In Melbourne, Australia, it is illegal for one to vacuum the house between 10 PM and 7 AM during weekdays and 10 PM and 9 AM during the weekends. Although the law is instituted to limit noise, who would even have the energy to vacuum during these hours?
4. In Milan, Italy, people have to smile at all times.
A law in Milan, Italy, states that its citizens must smile at all times. The only exception is for funerals and hospital visits. Anyone caught disobeying the law will face a hefty fine.
5. In Japan, it is illegal to be fat.
In January 2008, Japan passed the “Metabo Law”. The objective of the law is to reduce the number of obese people within the country. According to the law, men and women between the ages of 45 and 74 have to undergo yearly examinations to determine their waistlines. If a man or woman fails to be under the limited size, they will have to undergo medical treatment to reduce their size. The irony about the law, is that it exists within a country that brought us Sumo wrestling. (source)
6. In China, buddhists cannot come back from the dead, unless the government says so.
It’s hard enough to become a “living Buddha” in China but they decided to lay down a reincarnation law for anyone who becomes one. According to the ruling of the Communist Party, the supernatural affairs of Tibetan Buddhist figures, will be determined by them. This means that they determine who can and cannot be reincarnated. (source)
7. In Saudi Arabia, it is illegal for any woman to drive a car.
Women in Saudi Arabia are not allowed to drive cars. Although the country has not put forward an official law forbidding women from ever entering the driver seat, their religious beliefs do prohibit it. According to Saudi clerics, female drivers “undermine social values”. (source)
8. Saudi Arabia does not have a minimum age for marriage.
The citizens of Saudi Arabia are not bounded by any age laws. This allows the men to marry women who are five times younger than themselves. In 2008, the Saudi Arabian court refused an 8-year-old girl’s plea for a divorce from her 58-year-old husband.
9. In the UK, it is illegal to hold a salmon under suspicious circumstances.
The Salmon Act of 1986 makes it illegal for anyone in the UK from holding a salmon under suspicious circumstances. The law also forbids people from holding trout, eels, lampreys, smelt and freshwater fish. The law may sound a little fishy but it’s true. (source)