Don't get a legal fright this Halloween 

Halloween is set to be bigger than ever this year. People in the UK now spend more on Halloween than they do on Valentine's Day. Tesco last year sold around 3 million pumpkins. Whether you enjoy the spooky events or like to keep your distance, there's a legal side to Halloween activities that's good to know.  

1. Trick-or-treating: Is it ok? People in Britain can't agree about trick-or-treating. Millions do it every Halloween, but 45 per cent see it as an "unwelcome American cultural import", a 2015 YouGov poll found.


  • There's no legal minimum age limit for a child to go out on their own. But be careful. Find out more from the NSPCC.
  • Trick-or-treating is not illegal. But the police have powers to deal with anti-social behaviour. Learn more at Age UK.

  2. Horror movies rated 18+: Can under-18s watch them? Whether you're a horror film fan or not, there's no denying they can make big money at the box office.


  • Films classified as 18+ are suitable only for adults.
  • No one younger than 18 is allowed to watch 18+ rated films in a cinema, or rent or buy copies of them.
  • These controls do not apply to watching 18+ rated movies in your home. Find out more from the British Board of Film Classification.

  3. Are your Halloween goods faulty? It doesn't matter if it's a dodgy zombie outfit or a pair of vampire fangs that don't work. If you buy faulty goods, consumer rights protect you.


  • The law says goods you buy must be of satisfactory quality, fit for purpose, and as described when you buy them.
  • Act quickly to get a full refund. Find out more from Which?

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