Are Lock Pick Sets Legal?

Even in the survival and prepping world, there is a common notion that lock pick sets are illegal to own. It’s ultimately up to the individual state, but in general this is actually a misconception. Lock pick sets are not illegal to own in every state and there is no federal law that prohibits ownership of lock picks across the board.

Here are the general rules of permission


  • It is generally allowed to pick a lock which you have been given permission to pick.
  • It is always legal to pick locks that belong to you.


  • It is illegal to pick locks that do not belong to you without permission.

Here are the general rules of possession

  • Most state governments require that law enforcement and/or a jury need to prove criminal intent before possession of lock picking tools can be prosecuted as illegal. There are certain areas where mere possession is considered ample evidence that you planned to do something illegal.
  • Your possession of lock picking tools is much more likely to be drawn into question if you have them on your person when you are arrested for doing something else illegal. Our advice to combat this risk? Don’t do anything illegal.
  • Laws vary from state to state. Lock picks are illegal to possess in the following states:

Lock picks are illegal to possess/transfer in the following countries:

Different Laws for Different Lock Pick Sets

Also be aware that different laws may apply to different types of lock pick sets. This includes auto jigglers/try out keys, bump keys, bypass tools, handcuff keys, etcetera. As a consumer you are responsible for checking and complying with your local laws.

Are Lock Pick Sets Legal? is written by TIHK Team for

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