Just as important as making sure that you have chosen the correct level of protection in the correct style for the situation you will find yourself in is knowing the law on body armor for your location. Some countries have specific guidelines about how body armor may be bought and sold, and it is your responsibility to be aware of any restrictions in place where you live. These are the restrictions in some major areas:
- In Australia it is illegal to possess body armor without authorisation in certain territories (South Australia, Victoria, Northern Territory, ACT, Queensland and New South Wales).
- In certain Canadian provinces (Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba and Nova Scotia) a license is required to possess body armor, though there are no such restrictions in the rest of the country.
- In the European Union, ballistic protection that is considered ‘for main military usage’ is forbidden to civilians.
- In the UK there are currently no restrictions on purchasing and owning body armor.
- In the United States it is legal to purchase and possess body armor, apart from a few exceptions:
- In Connecticut, body armor can only be purchased face-to-face, and cannot be purchased online, over the phone, or by mail.
- In New York, the ban of body armor for private citizens is being debated;
- In some states such as Kentucky, committing a crime while wearing or even possessing body armor is a crime in and of itself;
- In Louisiana, it is illegal to wear body armor on school property.
Ensuring that you are adhering to your region’s laws is paramount before purchasing and possessing body armor.