What is Self Defence

What Is Self Defence?

What Is The UK Law
For Self Defence?

The law regarding self defence is quite clear, and is based on past common experiences.
It is quite clearly good law and also makes good sense in that if you find yourself in a situation where you are being attacked by another person, you have a perfect right to defend yourself.
It also makes good sense that you defend yourself within reason, and only do only what is reasonably necessary to prevent more harm to yourself.

legal weapons UK  woman knee attack

The law allows you to use self defence in the following situations:

  • Self-defence
  • Defence of another person
  • Protection of property
  • Making a lawful arrest
  • Preventing crime

In all these different situation,
one thing remains constant
you can only use proportional and reasonable force against an attacker.

However, the grounds for reasonable force (including the various forms of martial arts) and under what circumstances that reasonable force is used is something that has to decided by a court of law, remembering, one persons version of reasonable force may be quite different from that of another...

Common Law Use Of Force

Self-defence is available as a defence to crimes committed by the use of force.
So that means if someone is attacking you, then you can defend yourself using reasonable force to stop them and prevent them from causing more injury.
You cannot pull out a machete and start chopping them up..!
By the same token you cannot also pull out a knife that you happened to have in your pocket or any weapon that you decide to use as that would be deemed as an offensive weapon in those circumstances.

What Is Reasonable Force?

One persons idea of reasonable can be quite different from another persons - and herein lies the biggest problem, once again, of how much force is actually reasonable.?

If you were to be attacked, for whatever reason, you have a perfect right in the eyes of the law to use reasonable force in order to defend yourself.

If a member of your family were being attacked you can also use reasonable force to stop the attack.

The same goes for property - you can use reasonable force to prevent someone damaging or stealing your property.

In fact you can use reasonable force to help prevent an attack on anyone, to help prevent a crime and make a lawful arrest.

You have to believe there is a 
genuine reason for using self defence in this way...

AND... the amount of reasonable force used must be in proportion to the attack on you.

That means if you genuinely believe that you are being attacked or about to be attacked you can use reasonable force THAT IS PROPORTIONAL to that threat.

In plain, common sense English, that means if someone is waggling their finger at you and complaining, you can't just grab a chair and smash them to a pulp...!   There is no attack or threat of an attack

It's quite simple - you can only use self defence if you are being attacked or fear an attack, and even then you must only use reasonable force that is proportional to the attack or enough to restrain someone. 

However, You can execute self defence before being attacked.

In some circumstances if you fear an attack is imminent the law says - you do not have to wait to be attacked before using a form of self defence - and you are entitle to use self defence to strike an assailant BEFORE they attack or strike you.

Again, the reasonable force must be proportional to the perceived, imminent attack.

Types Of Self Defence

However, You can execute any reasonable form of self defence BEFORE being attacked.

In some circumstances if you fear an attack is imminent the law says - you do not have to wait to be attacked before using a form of self defence.

You are entitle to use self defence to strike an assailant BEFORE they attack or strike you.

Again, the reasonable force must be proportional to the perceived, imminent attack.


More Self Defence Methods