Legal

Airsoft is a modern shooting sport. Airsoft guns themselves are legal in many parts of the world, although some countries have specific restrictions such as maximum muzzle energy, against using the trademarks of real firearms and special marking requirements (such as bright orange barrel tips).

Australia

Airsoft guns are currently unobtainable in Australia under state and federal law. As legislation and regulations stand airsoft guns are often grouped with prohibited military style assault weapons or machine guns because of their appearance and automatic manner of operation. State and federal laws also prohibit the possession or importation of (firing) replica weapons of the class airsoft guns usually replicate. If you obtain an Airsoft firearm in another country(i.e.USA)and attempt to take it back to an Australian state or territory where it is legal to possess such a firearm you may encounter a problem at customs if flying in to another state where it is illegal(i.e Victoria)to own such a firearm before continuing on your journey to your home state or territory.

Airsoft guns are illegal to own or possess without appropriate license or permit in most states of Australia under state and federal law. Each Australian state has slightly different regulations on airsoft replicas. The regulations of some states are as follows:

New South Wales

 

All replica or imitation firearms are classified as prohibited firearms and it is illegal for an individual to own or possess one in NSW without the authority of a permit, and permits for prohibited firearms are restricted to people and/or organisations who have a specific purpose, for example Theatrical Armourers. NSW Police Ballistics Unit have classified the Airsoft range as prohibited firearms due to their similar appearance to actual firearms.

Queensland

 

Airsoft replicas that have automatic firing and/or similar appearance to prohibited automatic military style assault weapons or machine guns are prohibited to own or possess. Other single shot and semiauto airsoft replicas are classed under License Categories A, B & H.

South Australia

 

Airsoft firearms that have a velocity 1 metre from the muzzle of under 180 foot per second are not firearms in South Australia hence not restricted. Airsoft firearms above 180 foot per second 1m from the muzzle are firearms and depending on calibre for long arms will be either an A or B class firearm. Hand guns are H Class.

Victoria

 

Airsoft articles are not permitted in Victoria under the Victorian Legislation and Victoria Police will not issue any authorisation for their importation.

Western Australia

 

Airsoft articles are not permitted in Western Australia and Western Australian Police will not issue any authorisation for their importation.

Currently single shot spring powered airsoft guns commonly referred to as sniper rifles (that do not replicate automatic weapons) and gas powered hand guns (without automatic function) may be (technically) imported into some Australian states, such as Queensland. To own, possess or import these devices one does not require appropriate license.

Austria

Airsoft guns and pistols with more than 0.08 joule can only be purchased in firearms or airsoft shops only, and all users have to be at least 18 years old.

Belgium

In Belgium, airsoft replica guns are not restricted. Weapons that launch a projectile without the use of a combustion/fire are unrestricted. This includes those used for Airsoft and Paintball. However if a weapon is shorter than 60 cm, or has a barrel shorter than 30 cm and shoots with more than 7.5 joules of energy (measured 2.5 meters from the muzzle) it is classified as a firearm and needs registration.

In general, all events must take place in private locations. Organizations may host airsoft events under the condition that they are not affiliated with ideological or religious agendas.

There is no clear law on how to transport airsoft replicas, but it is commonly accepted among players to transport your replicas as if they were real firearms, as to avoid any chance of hassle with the authorities. This means that the replicas must be covered while transporting them through public domain, in a gun-bag for example.

The use of gun-mounted lasers or night-vision scopes/sights is illegal for civilians, however the use of regular scopes/sights (even illuminated ones) and night-vision -goggles- isn't. This is because gun-mounted lasers and night-vision scopes/sights are looked upon as being only useful in military context or for assassination (which is, of course, illegal).

Brazil

Airsoft is a very recent shooting sport in Brazil. In the past, due to lack of regulation, airsoft was usually misinterpreted as a firearm clone or replica. Nowadays, airsoft is legal but there is still some regulation needed. The final law is near completion by Federal Authorities and is expected to be published in the first quarter of 2010. Based on the current minutes that have gone public, airsoft is considered a gun subjected to control depeding upon certain characteristics: Gas powered airsoft guns should have a special permit for transportation nationwide. Spring guns do not need any transportation permit other than in fabric, airports or harbours. People under 18 are not allowed to buy airsoft guns and commercial entities/importers are obliged to retain documentation of airsoft buyers for 5 years. An Orange tip is required in order to differentiate it from firearms. There is still strong restrictions to import accessories such as holographic sights, red dots and magazines.

Bulgaria

Airsoft is a legal sport in Bulgaria and there are no restrictions placed on the guns apart from a parents' permission for people under 18. As airsoft guns are considered air guns by the Bulgarian law, no documents, licenses or anything else is needed to possess them. There are no restrictions about lasers, flashlights etc. Moreover, there is no need for the end of the barrel to be painted in orange (like in the United States). There are neither restrictions about the power of the air guns/airsoft guns nor about carrying them in public areas.

Shooting in "protected" (quote from the law) areas is forbidden. Protected areas are schools, administrative buildings and other public property as well as public areas.

Canada

Under the Canadian Firearms Program, airsoft guns that closely resemble real firearms are classified as replica firearms, and are prohibited. Clear plastic, miniaturized versions, or models resembling antique firearms may be allowed on a case-by-case basis.

Any firearm, including air guns, that has

a muzzle velocity greater than 152.4 metres per second (500 ft/s)

a muzzle energy greater than 5.7 joules (4.2 ft·lbf)

 

is considered a firearm for the purpose of the Firearms Act and must be registered. Airsoft guns meeting one of these two requirements are also treated as firearms under the Criminal Code and are subject to safety regulations when transported.

However, the Canada Border Services Agency generally seizes all airsoft guns imported by individuals,only allowing importation to merchants with a Business Firearms Licence endorsed for replica firearms. Still, some online retailers provide sections for Canadian buyers that nominally meet regulations.

An airsoft gun is treated just as if it was a real firearm when used to commit or attempt a crime.

In Ontario and British Columbia, the minimum age to purchase airsoft is 18. Children under age must be supervised by someone over 18.

Transportation of replica firearms

From CBSA Memorandum D19-13-2, 23 June 2009:
175. An individual may transport a restricted or prohibited firearm in a vehicle only if the restricted firearm is unloaded, rendered inoperable by means of a secure locking device, and in a locked container that cannot be readily broken open or into or accidentally opened during transportation. If the prohibited firearm is an automatic firearm that has a bolt or bolt carrier that is removable, the bolt or bolt carrier must be removed.

176. If the restricted or prohibited firearm is transported in an unattended vehicle, the firearm must be stored as stated above and the container must be securely locked in the trunk or similar compartment that can be securely locked. If the vehicle is not equipped with a trunk or similar compartment, the container must not be visible from outside the vehicle and the vehicle or part that contains the restricted or prohibited firearm must be securely locked.

China

In the People's Republic of China, airsoft guns have been legal for years in mainland China. However, policemen cannot differentiate between real and airsoft guns, so have resorted to illegally confiscating them. Common knowledge among local Chinese people is that airsoft is illegal, although this is only because of the policemen have been misinforming them. There is also an urban myth in which a criminal can turn an airsoft gun into a fully functional, .45 caliber shooting pistol/rifle that will not explode when fired. Despite local pleadings, the government refuses to accept any method of distinguishing real guns from airsoft, such as the clear gun or orange tip method.

It is legal in China's SARs (Special Administrative Regions, such as Macau and Hong Kong), but may not be fired with a muzzle energy above two joules of kinetic energy. Moreover, the use of airsoft guns has begun to go underground there as well. Several cargo companies have already refused to ship them. In Hong Kong, you are only allowed to play airsoft in private areas and non-country park areas. Airsoft guns may not be revealed in public. Still, airsoft guns can be sold legally to people of unrestricted age. Manufacturing and import/exporting airsoft is also legal and free in Hong Kong and Macau.

Denmark

Airsoft guns are mentioned in the Danish "Våbenlov" (arms control legislation). You have to be at least 18 years old to buy, hand over or possess airsoft guns. They may be used on police-approved sites, with a permission slip, at the age of 16. A firearms certificate is not required. All airsoft guns have to be transported concealed in a bag or in the trunk etc.

Finland

Airsoft guns are not treated as firearms in law, but visible transportation of any replica firearms in public areas is forbidden. All replica firearms must be covered with something, for example, a firearm case, when moving on public area. Land owner's permission is needed to play airsoft in any area.

Minors (under the age of 18) are able to purchase airsoft guns only with written permission from their legal guardians.

France

Visible transportation of replica firearms in public areas is forbidden. They must be covered with something, for example, a firearm case. Land owner's permission is needed to play airsoft in any area.

Minors (under 18) can only buy airsoft guns which are under 0.08 joules in power. Minors can not use guns over these 0.08J. Airsoft guns may only have a power under two joules, otherwise they are no more qualified as airsoft replicas but firearms and owners should follow the French weapons law (dated 1995).

Germany

Airsoft guns under 0.5 joule are considered toy guns and can be sold to all persons above three years of age. Distributors agreed to raise the limit to at least 14 years of age. This has been realized and the limit is thus 14 years. All airsoft guns between 0.5 joule and 7.5 joule must be bolt-action or semiautomatic only and can only be sold to people who are 18 years or older. These are considered "free" firearms. As a result, sales of guns of more than 0.5 joule are allowed only in firearms shops and guns must be marked with the trader's weapon abbreviation and a F-in-a-pentagon mark as well as the airsoft gun caliber (such as 6 mm BB). All airsoft guns with powers over 0.5 joule of energy, need to be semi-automatic only and carry the F-in-a-pentagon and associated markings to be legal in Germany, rendering all other Airsoft guns with more than 0.5 joule of energy illegal. Visitors or persons, who plan to move to Germany can obtain the required markings on existing Airsoft guns from one of the localized seven "Beschussamt" - authorities in Germany. There is a specific procedure for that, including the firearms prior to be converted to semi-auto (if necessary) and to be sent in from abroad only. There is no need for the end of the barrel to be painted in orange.

While the possession and trade of legal airsoft guns is generally and unrestrictedly allowed, the use of Airsoft guns in a game is (at least) hotly debated. That is why some players using guns with more than 0.5 joule muzzle energy leave Germany to play in countries like France, Belgium, Denmark or the Czech Republic. Players are allowed to carry and fire Airsoft guns on private property only, with specific measures in place to prevent Airsoft fire to leave the perimeter. There is a significantly growing number of privately owned or commercially operated Airsoft skirm sites in Germany (2010). It is strictly prohibited to carry or display Airsoft guns in public, although several exceptions may apply - e.g. film making or at police registered events. Legal Airsoft guns can be carried legally unloaded in locked containers such as a bag or a firearms case.

Target-illuminating devices and lasers must not be attached to guns, but are legal otherwise. For example, the possession of a flashlight is allowed, even shooting with the flashlight in one hand and the gun in the other, but attaching it via mount ring to the rail system of a gun is not. Devices made specifically for the purpose of being attached to a gun (like certain flashlights with integrated fore grip for mil-spec rail) are prohibited.

More information can be found at Airsoft FAQ on laws in Germany, which covers more complicated issues like the "Kleiner Waffenschein", issues with the OWiG §118 in Bavaria and a definition of the term "combat shooting."

Greece

Airsoft is basically an underground sport in Greece because the law is a little foggy. According to the law, airsoft guns fall in the same general category of air guns, which are not real firearms, and are free to be purchased from specialized shops. However, the purchase and use of airsoft guns is not permitted for people under 18 years old

It is prohibited to have any replica gun in public sight. This is treated similarly to illegal possession of a real firearm.

The use of lasers, scopes, flashlights or any other pointing devices on any firearm is prohibited by the law.

Indonesia

In Indonesia, there are no strict rules about airsoft and there is still no consideration by the government as to whether airsoft guns are treated as "toys" or are equal to real guns. However, airsoft were first brought to Indonesia circa 1996 - 1997. The founders of Indonesian airsoft communities put some restrictions on airsoft games, for example, airsoft players are prohibited to upgrade their gun to above 100 m/s or they will be rejected from the community. Moreover, anyone who wants to buy an airsoft gun, must be at least 18 years old and know the regulations and rules about the airsoft gun.

Some events have occurred that are perceived as endangering the continuity of the hobby, such as some robberies in which airsoft replicas were used. Therefore, in order to control its growth, there is a government-authorized club called Perbakin (Indonesian Shooting Club) which is currently appointed by police to accommodate airsoft as a new-born sport. However, this information about Perbakin may be inaccurate, as an anonymous tip informs us that Perbakin do not have any agenda whatsoever relating to airsoft

It is most likely that airsoft will be under IPSC supervision since one of the sport's types can be categorized as IPSC (practical shooting) and not just only as skirmish (war game). However, this statement may only be a wishful thinking considering how little attention the government is paying to airsoft activities. The government hasn't approved skirmish as a sport, they only permit target shooting and IPSC only. In other words, if you want to play airsoft, you should become a member of this Perbakin Club and not participate in skirmishes.

[edit] Ireland

The status of airsoft in Ireland was changed after the 2006 Criminal Justice Act, which amended the previous Firearms Acts from 1925, 1963, 1972 and 1990. Where once authorization or a license was required for all devices which fired a projectile from a barrel, the law now defines a firearm as (amongst other things):

an air gun (including an air rifle and air pistol) with a muzzle energy greater than one joule of kinetic energy or any other firearm incorporating a barrel from which any projectile can be discharged with such a muzzle energy

 

The aim of this change was to establish a classification of firearms in order to eliminate the legal oddity where toy suction cup dart guns and the like were legally classified as firearms, thus bringing Ireland into line with the rest of the EU. In this case, one joule was used as the limit, as opposed to seven joules in Germany, twelve foot-pounds force (8.9 J) in the UK and so on. The one-joule limit most likely arose from UK case law where it was found that energies in excess of one joule were required to penetrate an eyeball (thus causing serious injury). As a result, airsoft devices under one joule of power have been declassified and have become perfectly legal to possess and use within Ireland. No airsoft site in Ireland would allow any player to use an airsoft device in excess of one Joule.

Israel

Airsoft guns are classified as "toys" which makes airsoft legal to import, manufacture and sell. This law is not very well enforced, however, and it is possible to find retailers who import MPEG level airsoft guns and also AEG level airsoft guns.

Israeli airsofters have created an airsoft association in an attempt to make airsoft legal - Girit "Girit Airsoft Association in Israel"("????? – ????? ???????? ??????"). Girit is cooperating with the Israeli Shooting Federation, joining it shortly as a member and cooperating with other governmental authorities in an attempt to make airsoft legal in Israel. For more information you may refer to http://www.airsoft.org.il

Girit Airsoft Association has established cooperation with USAPSA, Ukrainian, Slovenian, Swedish and Czech airsofters. An Israeli national airsoft tactical shooting competition took place near Beit Berel March 2007.

At Jul 2010, the Israeli airsoft association "Girit" has finished negotiations with the Israeli government. Since then, every assosciation (or Tacticball Club Member) can carry airsoft gear (guns, parts, etc.) at home. Also transportation and carrying of airsoft gun may be done only if a tip of the barrel painted in red or orange color.

Italy

Airsoft guns and pistols are allowed a muzzle velocity below 100 m/s (328 ft/s) i.e. equivalent to a muzzle energy equal or minor to one joule. Under the law, airsoft guns are not classified as firearms, but as toys. You can buy and sell them both from stores and from another private citizen, either domestically or from abroad. Internet purchasing and mail shipping is legal and unrestricted. No license or registration is required. There is no mandatory minimum age to purchase airsoft and/or use it during a regular match. The Italian Ministry of Interior only recommends that their sale be restricted to people over the age of 18 or 14 if accompanied by a parent or legal tutor or if the replica is not particularly realistic or powerful (i.e. low-grade airsoft products).

Red tips must be present on the barrel ends of the airsoft gun when they are imported and sold by a store. Once you own the airsoft gun, you may remove the red tip. However, the similarity between genuine firearms and airsoft replicas is close enough to provoke interaction with law enforcement personnel if an airsoft gun is mistaken for its real counterpart. Airsoft used to commit a crime is treated as if you had the real gun, assault weapons carry an extra mandatory sentence in addition to the regular punishment for the crime committed.

Usage and open carriage of air soft guns in public places is forbidden. You can play on a private property away from public sight or in a well-delimited private or state property after having asked the local authorities for a limited-time permit (usually from six to 48 hours) and having alerted the local police command to avoid alarmed citizens calling for emergency.

As the law limits the muzzle energy that an airsoft replica can develop before being classified by law as an air gun, modifying an airsoft gun to deliver more power or to shoot anything other than 6 mm BB plastic pellets is a felony.

Japan

In Japan, airsoft guns are legal, but may not shoot with a muzzle energy above .98 joules.

Legal requirements are set on airsoft model manufacturers to prevent any possibility of a replica firearms being converted into an actual firearm. Standards include (but are not limited to) use of low-melting point metals and non-ballistic plastics in structural components and incompatibility of mechanical components with actual firearm components and mechanisms. The overall litmus test used by the Japanese National Police Authority is whether the replica firearm can be made to chamber and fire an actual round of ammunition. These standards have proven successful within Japan, as it has been found that criminal elements discovered that it is significantly easier to purchase an actual illegal firearm in comparison to modifying a comparatively fragile replica into a functional firearm. Due to this reality, most crimes involving a threat of physical violence are perpetrated with edged weapons, as firearms seen in public are (by default) believed to be toys by the public at large.

Luxembourg

All airsoft guns are treated under the national weapon law and demand a personal user certificate.

Lithuania

Registration of any sort is not required for airsoft firearms. However, they are only available for purchase to people over 18 years. Airsoft players have established unofficial set of rules, which regulates the behavior of players belonging to the community.

Malaysia

Airsoft guns are classified as real weapon counterparts which makes airsoft illegal to own, import, manufacture and sell.

Netherlands

The law places full restrictions on airsoft firearms rendering possession illegal. When one looks at the Dutch law on this subject, airsoft is not explicitly mentioned and the characteristics of airsoft firearms would place the firearms in Category IV of the Dutch gun laws (legal to own and operate without a license). However, the Dutch Ministry of Justice can make exceptions, which it has for airsoft firearms. The reason given for this is that the firearms look so realistic that they can be used for intimidation and police might react with too much force when they encounter an airsoft firearm (use force like it is a real gun). Therefore, airsoft firearms that are 1:1 replicas and/or realistic have been placed in Category I (illegal without any possibility of acquiring a permit).

The sport itself has the same legal status as paintball, but since Airsoft players prefer 1:1 realistic replicas, a lot of Dutch players travel to Belgium instead.

Recently though, a Dutch airsoft association called NABV (Nederlandse Airsoft Belangen Vereniging/Dutch Airsoft Interests Association) has managed to get a confirmation from the Dutch Ministry of Justice that the STAR Ika Zuchi AEG is not considered a replica that can be used for intimidation, making it one of the first airsoft guns which can legally sold and owned in the Netherlands. Unlike most Airsoft guns, it is not a realistic weapon, but an adult sized science fiction style rifle.

New Zealand

Single-shot and semi-automatic (all automatic firearms require a special restricted endorsement) air-powered firearms are legal to possess and use in New Zealand, provided that the person is either over 18 years of age or 16 with a firearms license. A person under 18 may not possess an air gun, but may use one under the direct supervision of someone over 18 or a firearms license holder (Direct supervision requires that the licence holder be able to take control of the firearm at all times, so they must remain within arms reach)

It is illegal to use these firearms in any manner that may endanger or intimidate members of the public (pointing, brandishing etc.) except where there is reasonable cause such as an airsoft game.

Police, New Zealand, Airguns Factsheet, retrieved 2007-07-24

Norway

The Arms control legislation (Våpenforskrift) requires that one has to be at least 18 years old to buy, hand over, possess and use airsoft guns. A firearms certificate is not required.

Using an airsoft firearm in while committing a crime receives the same punishment as the one you would receive for using a real weapon. The police are allowed to treat you as if you were carrying a real gun, as many airsoft rifles are difficult to tell from their real counterparts.

One is also required to carry firearms inside a bag, or some other kind of container to conceal the firearm from the public. In addition there are some restrictions on the usage of uniforms in public, airsoft explosives and smoke grenades during gameplay.

Philippines

In general, Airsoft in the Philippines is embraced by all ages and the sport is acknowledged by the public. In order to play the sport, airsoft guns must be serialized and registered. Players must also sequester a permit to legally transport their guns to authorized game sites. The permit to transport is restricted to the Luzon and Visayas regions only and should be renewed yearly. Unregistered airsoft guns may be confiscated.

Remaining Legal Issues

Letter of Instruction 1264, a Presidential Directive, signed by former President Ferdinand Marcos in 1982, bans the import, sale and public display of gun replicas. Also under Philippine Law, a memo from the Chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP) amending the PNP rules and regulations cannot overrule, repeal or amend a Presidential directive. Only the legislative body, the Supreme Court or the current President can do so.

The PNP has been given the authority to classify what constitutes a gun replica and airsoft guns were deemed different from replicas, therefore the common legal interpretation is that there may be no need to repeal LOI 1264 in order to achieve full legalization of airsoft in the Philippines.

Despite the differences in legal interpretation, traders and players are able to conduct business and play freely as long as they comply with the requirements of the Philippine National Police.

Portugal

With the new revision of the "Guns and Ammunition Act" (Lei 17/2009), airsoft guns are no longer considered as such. Currently, the formal definition of an airsoft gun is Reprodução de Arma de fogo para praticas recreativas (in English: Recreational Firearm Replica). However and in order to be characterized as a Recreational Firearm Replica, their muzzle energy must not exceed 1,3 J (equivalent to a muzzle velocity of 375 fps with 0,2g BBs). The minimum age to purchase and use this replicas is 18 years old, however, a 16 years old may be allowed to buy and use them with a written parental consent. One must be a member of an APD - Associação de Promoção ao Desporto (in English: Sport Promotion Association).

Recognition of this APD is made by the IDP - Instituto do Desporto de Portugal (in English: Portuguese Sports Institute) as it represents the State. The Guns and Ammunition Act also states that after being approved by the IDP, the APD must be enlisted as such by the Portuguese law enforcement authority, the police called PSP - Polícia de Segurança Pública. There are two main APDs for airsoft in Portugal, the FPA - Federação Portuguesa de Airsoftand the APA - Associação Portuguesa de Airsoft.In addition, replicas have to be painted either in fluorescent yellow or fluorescent red and in compliance with the following criteria:

Long guns (≥ 60 cm)- 10 cm from the barrel tip and 100% of the stock.

Short guns (≤ 60 cm)- 5 cm from the barrel tip and 100% of the grip.

 

Romania

Law nr. 295 from 2004 (Regimul Armelor ?i Muni?iilor) regulates all use of firearms and associated ammunition. The law is quite unclear (in what concerns airsoft firearms) as to whether this kind of firearm classifies as "non-lethal weapon" or "toy." The law regulates the use of air-powered firearms (e.g. sport/competition use that use a metal projectile) under "non-lethal" category and solely requires that you are at least 18 years old and register your firearm at the police precinct nearest to your location.

The law specifies that usage of night vision (infrared) or laser aiming devices designed for military use is completely restricted to members of the army and associated entities even if the aiming device is used on a lower-restriction category firearm (e.g. such as on an airsoft gun). The law, however, does not restrict in any way the use of aiming devices not designed for military use.

Furthermore, the law specifies that, should you attempt to use a non-lethal or replica gun to perform (or attempt to perform) armed robbery, you shall be prosecuted as if a real gun had been used.

Airsoft and paint ball replicas cannot be covered by Law nr. 295/2004 regarding the Guns and Ammo regime (Regimul armelor ?i al muni?iilor). They are not listed in the law's annex as a gun because of their destination and mode of operation. Therefore there is no need for an authorization to buy, own and use them.

A new addition to the law 295/2004 was made at 17 February 2008 called OUG 28/2008 which add further restrictions to the forms and regulations.

Since 23 February 2010, in Romania, based on an airsoft competition and its regulation, airsoft is officially a sport,not only a welfare activity.

Since June 2011, Airsoft replicas have been inserted in firearms and associated ammunition law as non-lethal weapons which does not require any authorization to buy/sell/own, used for recreational purposes - "E" class in weapons classification. The use of metal projectiles is prohibited by law.

The main airsoft forum in Romania is found at: http://www.airsoftromania.com, there you can find almost everything about Airsoft in Romania: legal issues, games and events, communities and clubs, even english section of the forum.

Slovakia

Airsoft guns have a status similar to the Czech Republic and Slovenia, where they are considered to be firearms. All firearms are governed by law 190/2003. Here, airsoft guns fit into firearm class D (§7b) and no permit is needed. The use of airsoft guns is allowed by players that are least 18 years old. Guns may not have an energy greater than 15 joules. The use of laser sights or night vision scopes is forbidden, attaching a laser sight to any firearm makes it a class A (prohibited) firearm. The owner of a gun is required by law to secure the firearm when not using it.

Slovenia

One has to be at least 18 years to buy airsoft guns.

If the velocity of an airsoft gun is below 100 m/s (328 ft/s) i.e. equivalent to one joule, it is considered to be a toy. If the velocity is higher than 100 m/s (328 ft/s), the airsoft gun is classified as a section D firearm in the Firearms control legislation of Slovenia. Additionally Air Soft Clubs and National Shooters Association in Slovenia recommends that airsoft gun velocities should not be above 100 m/s (one joule).

Singapore

In Singapore, airsoft guns used to be legal with no age limit to purchase them. One year after the sport was introduced in the country it was banned due to safety issues. A petition was created hoping to legalize airsoft again but it closed because the petition was not convincing as it was a free and user-based petition. Currently, only a few clubs in Singapore have managed to set up IPSC shooting using airsoft guns with permission from the government and firearm licenses. Currently, the clubs allow purchasing of airsoft pistols, but these are not allowed to be taken back home. Besides shooting targets, the only skirmishing field in Singapore is Frontline Airsoft at Spain

In Spain, airsoft is not regulated due to the outdated gun law. This law is at this moment (2010-dec) in an uptating process and it´s supposed to take the sport as legal. They fall in the category of "replica weapons" of this law and should not be carried away from home. The fine if caught carrying the replica is normally 300€ and the seizure for a few days of the gun. However, in some areas the local authorities lets airsofters play on private zones with their permission. It is legal to buy, possess and sell airsoft replicas and accessories, but sometimes there have been problems with customs.

 

Sweden

One must be at least 18 years old to buy and use airsoft firearms. Minors (under the age of 18) can practice targetshooting under supervision. In order to possess a CO2, air or spring operated firearm without a license, the impact energy of a projectile fired at a distance of four meters (from the muzzle) must be less than ten joules. If it is semi or fully automatic, the impact energy must be less than three joules.

Any other propellant then Air or CO2 is illegal to own.

Switzerland

In Switzerland, airsoft guns used to be unregulated and were treated as toys. As of 12 December 2008, the law was changed to classify them as weapons(note: not as firearms).

Airsoft firearms may not be sold to (or possessed by) persons who are under 18 who have a criminal conviction. Additionally, airsoft firearms may not be sold to individuals from Albania, Algeria, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia, Turkey or Sri Lanka.

The import of airsoft firearms is restricted to companies and individuals who hold weapons import licences. Private individuals can apply for a permit to import up to three firearms which is valid for six months.

Commercial sales are legal providing the purchaser is not prohibited under any of the above restrictions. For private sales to take place, there must be a written contract between both parties. Both parties are required to retain the contract for a period of ten years.

As they contain no propellant, there is no restriction on the purchase or import of airsoft BBs.

It is illegal to carry any airsoft firearms in a public place, however it is permissible to transport them directly between a player's home and an event site.

Further information can be found at the Swiss Airsoft Federation website.

United Kingdom

There are currently certain restrictions on the possession of airsoft replicas, which came in with the introduction of the ASBA (Anti-Social Behaviour Act 2003) Amendments, prohibiting the possession of any firearms replica in a public place without good cause (to be concealed in a hard gun case or sealed container only not to be left in view of public at any time). The prohibition of self-contained gas cartridge firearms can arguably apply to Moscarts and BB-Shower grenade systems. However, a formal case precedent has yet to be set.

There were initial concerns among the airsoft community that the Violent Crime Reduction Bill (passed an Act in November 2006) would in future prevent airsoft skirmishers from buying realistic imitation firearms. However, on 20 September 2006, the Association of British Airsofters (ABA) received a letter from Tony McNulty (Minister of State for Security, Counter-Terrorism, Crime and Policing at the Home Office) saying that he has "decided to provide a defence for airsoft skirmishing in relation to the ban on the sale etc. of realistic firearms." There has been confirmation that airsoft will receive an exemption.

According to Section 36 of the VCRA (Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006), which came into effect on 1 October 2007, RIF's (Realistic Imitation Firearms) may not be sold, imported or manufactured.Unrealistic imitation firearms (IF's) must be more than 50% transparent, bright red, bright orange, bright yellow, bright blue, bright green, bright pink or bright purple or have dimensions of no more than a height of 38 millimetres and a length of 70 millimetres (as defined in the Home Office regulations for the VCRA). Defences to the act are available for the following:

a museum or gallery

theatrical performances and rehearsals of such performances

the production of films and television programmes

the organisation and holding of historical re-enactments

crown servants.

 

The notes for the VCRA state the following: "The regulations provide for two new defences. The first is for the organisation and holding of airsoft skirmishing. This is defined by reference to "permitted activities" and the defence applies only where third party liability insurance is held in respect of the activities." and "The defence for airsoft skirmishing can apply to individual players because their purchase of realistic imitation firearms for this purpose is considered part of the "holding" of a skirmishing event."

The airsoft defence is based on whether or not a person is a skirmisher. One of the measures put in place by retailers was the forming of a centrally recorded and maintained database. This system is managed by the United Kingdom Airsoft Retailers Association or UKARA (Founding members of this organisation were Airsoft Armouries, Airsoft World Ltd,Firesupport Ltd., Ironfoot Industries, RedWolf Airsoft (UK) Ltd., Wolf Armouries, Zeroone Airsoft and J.D. Airsoft Ltd.).UKARA shares the database of registered skirmishers with the member retailers allowing quick and easy verification that the purchaser is allowed to buy a RIF under the VCRA skirmisher defence. To qualify for UKARA a person must be a regular skirmisher (i.e. skirmish three or more times in no less than two months, and typically at one site) in order to be registered and the airsoft site they register/skirmish at must hold public Public Liability Insurance. Once a skirmisher is registered, they receive a membership card and must produce this before buying or trading airsoft firearms from these retailers, although this is not a legal requirement.

As long as a person can prove that they are an airsoft skirmisher, they may purchase RIFs. This can be done successfully by either joining UKARA (although this is not a legal requirement, and as such, is not recognised by the Home Office as having any legal authority over airsoft skirmishers) or other means, such as ordering a RIF from outside the UK and ensuring the parcel is marked in such a fashion that if Customs were to stop the parcel they can check the purchaser's validity to purchase said RIF.

Two-tone variants of the Airsoft Gun are also available, where the majority of the surface of the gun is bright red, bright orange, bright yellow, bright blue, bright green, bright pink, or bright purple. These colour variants allow for the purchase of an Airsoft Gun in the UK from an airsoft distributor without the need to be registered, although their use in skirmishes is discouraged and at some sites, banned. Airsoft is not prohibited to persons under the age of 18. To take your airsoft into a public building you have to be 18 ,but no licence is needed ,for airsoft if classified as a toy. (Information provided by the airsoft laws institute of the UK, all following laws apply to adults and children and should not be taken for granted)

United States

Under Federal Law, airsoft guns are not classified as firearms and are legal for all ages. This is also the case for the laws in each state. However, in some major cities and population centers the definition of a firearm within their respected ordinances includes propulsion by spring or compressed air, thus making airsoft subject to applicable laws. For example, airsoft guns within the state of California can only be bought by a person above the age of 18. However, no laws indicate an age requirement to sell airsoft guns. The seller must only verify that the buyer is 18 or older.

A 6 mm minimum orange tip must be present on the barrel end of the airsoft gun (or clear/transparent body) to identify it as such for any commercial sales.[15] Once sold, local laws may vary on whether or not the orange tip must be kept. In many places no laws exist restricting one from removing or replacing the orange tip, but one should check the local laws before making such a modification.

Airsoft guns' trademarks must be removed where the manufacturer does not have an existing license agreement with the manufacturer of the real fire arm. For example: Classic Army has a licensing agreement with ArmaLite, so the trademarks can stay on imported replicas of ArmaLite's weapons. In practice, enforcement is hit or miss. You might get an "unlicensed" gun through customs with trademarks intact, while a licensed gun might be held in customs by an uninformed customs agent. House Resolution 607, sponsored in early 2007, would have changed this if passed (it was not), allowing imports to retain trademarks even if there is no agreement between the real firearms manufacturer and the replica manufacturer.

In addition, the similarity between genuine firearms and airsoft replicas is close enough to provoke interaction with local law enforcement personnel if an airsoft gun is carried openly in public.[citation needed] If someone were to, for example, attempt a robbery with an airsoft gun, they would be charged as if the airsoft gun were a real firearm.[citation needed]

New York City requires that all realistic toy or imitation firearms be made of clear or brightly colored plastics. Furthermore, New York City makes possession of any pistol or rifle or similar instrument in which the propelling force is a spring or air unlawful without a license. See New York City Administrative Code § 10-131(b) and New York City Administrative Code § 10-131(g)(1)(a).

Michigan allows the purchase of airsoft guns. However, they must have an orange tip on the barrel.

Texas allows airsoft guns to be owned, but most cities require that the airsoft guns be discharged only while outside city limits.

Some cities in Illinois consider shipping or distributing airsoft guns illegal. It is officially now legal to remove the orange tip of the airsoft gun.

In Minnesota, it is illegal for a child under the age of 14 to possess an airsoft gun unless under the supervision of a parent or adult. It is also illegal for any child under 18 to purchase an airsoft gun without parental permission. In Saint Paul and Minneapolis, airsoft guns cannot be carried in public unless they either have an orange tip, are clear or brightly colored. Airsoft guns also cannot be carried in public if they have a laser attached. It is legal to possess airsoft guns in these cities as long as they are transported in a closed and fastened gun case (in accordance with Minnesota firearm transportation laws) and unloaded. The vast majority of municipalities in Minnesota ban the firing of an airsoft gun within the city limits.

Arkansas has passed a bill which went into effect in January 2010[18] which mirrors the federal law on airsoft guns in that it bans the sale or transport airsoft guns without orange tips, a transparent/translucent body, or colored other than black/brown/blue/silver/metallic. Also, those guns that are clear are still ok to sell or transport. The bill bans "imitation firearms", but has the following to say about the definition of "imitation firearms" in section 2B:

"Imitation firearm" does not include: (1) A nonfiring, collector replica of an antique firearm developed before 1898; (2) Traditional BB, paintball, or pellet-firing air guns that expel a projectile through the force of air pressure; or (3) A device: (A) For which an orange solid plug or marking is permanently affixed to the muzzle end of the barrel for a depth of not more than six millimeters (6 mm); (B) For which the entire exterior surface is predominately colored other than black, brown, blue, silver, or metallic; or (C) That is constructed of transparent or translucent materials that permit unmistakable observation of the complete contents of the device.

 

Therefore, the bill does not ban imitation firearms (including airsoft guns) that are predominately colored something other than black, brown, blue, silver or metallic, nor imitation firearms that are built of predominately transparent or translucent materials, allowing anyone to determine the contents of the firearm, nor those which have bright orange tips which indicate that they are a "toy" and not a real firearm.

Airsoft, Softair, Airsoft Parts, Airsoft Gun, BB Gun, Airsoft Electric Gun AEG, Gas Blowback Guns, Spring Guns, Combat Gear and more with Worldwide Shipping .
Disclaimer: All Airsoft Guns are NOT real firearms. All airsoft guns sold to US customers are affixed with an orange tip or paint permanently.

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