Anonymous asked in Politics & GovernmentLaw & Ethics · 10 years ago

Is burning money legal in UK?

I was quite shocked to see around £5000 burning in toasters on a show called "Distraction". Don't you think it's weird?

11 Answers

  • Anonymous
    10 years ago
    Favourite answer

    I'm pretty sure it at least used to be a criminal offence to willingly deface coins, but actual notes I'm not sure because technically speaking all a note denotes is an IOU from the Bank of England for that amount. If you burn it then that IOU no longer exists so the bank can no longer owe you that tender. Coins however aren't IOU's.

    i think it works that way at any rate.

  • 4 years ago

    Burning Money

  • Jon
    Lv 7
    10 years ago

    There is no law against destroying banknotes which belong to you, by burning or any other means. (Although I suppose someone who burned their money might come under the Mental Health Act!)

    The TV show probably used fake notes. For one thing, real banknotes are quite resistant to fire.

    As Arbiter says, defacing banknotes is illegal. This is mainly to avoid people being put in the embarrassing position of receiving banknotes with obscene words, disrespectful alterations to the Queen's picture, etc, on them. This does not apply to destroying them altogether.

  • 10 years ago

    I think it is... In the UK it all depends where you are, There are three distinct legal system each with their own laws; There is 1) the England & Wales legal system 2) the Scotland legal system 3) the Northern Ireland legal system. So it all sums up to what UK constituent country you're in... Be safe and ask a Barrister/Solicitor or the Police Service...

    And yes, Alex G., There is a system like this here across the pond...

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  • Rolf
    Lv 6
    10 years ago

    Yes, I think it is weird, but maybe it was a staged performance.

    Nevertheless, if you do burn English paper money, you can send the ashes and anything else that may be in the burnt remains to the Bank of England and they will investigate exactly how much was burnt, and reimburse you. I understand that a similar system is also operating in the US.

  • Anonymous
    5 years ago

    Your last will and testament is a privilaged document so theoretically you may state anything you wish. However any living relatives may, by law submit an application for 'contestation' of your will. It will then go up against a judge who will almost certainly rule that either the will was not written by someone of sound mind or it's too unreasonable to be permitted. thus, such wishes would not be carried out.

  • 10 years ago

    In the UK there is an offence for defacing bank notes, but this relates to writing things on them, not to their destruction.

    The show probably used some form of stage money rather than real currency

  • 10 years ago

    The KLF burned a million quid in 1994:

    They're justified and they're ancient.

  • ?
    Lv 5
    10 years ago

    The money they burnt on the show was fake money. and no it is not illegal to burn money in the UK

  • Anonymous
    10 years ago

    It is actually an offence for which you can be arrested. It is called 'Defacing the wealth of the realm'.

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