1. Land Owner vs Plantation Owner
This law dates from the time of the Ottomans and consists on the possibility of splitting a land to two different owners; whereas one person owns the land and another owns
the crop growing in that same land. So, if a third person wants to buy the land, he has to take the agreement of both parties and pay two separate price for each of the owners. It was very common for someone to own olive trees planted in a land not his. Another law that is not so different from the first one is the outdated rental law, whereas Lebanese are still renting their premises at the 1967 rates; for example a 220 sqm apartment in Beirut is still rented in 2013 for 120$ …per year.
2. Pigeon Clapper
This law states that a pigeon clapper’s testimony is not valid in court. The nature of his work is considered unethical, as he was considered someone that falsely swear to hide, free or steal other people’s pigeons, which jeopardizes his statement as a witness. He was also considered a womanizer and inadequate for marriage (sic).
3. Parked Car Accident
All the laws related to driving in Lebanon should be reexamined, but some outdated laws are still adapted when it comes to parked cars infractions. For example, if one day your neighbor decided to commit suicide by jumping from the building and it happened that he landed on your car parked down below, you will be arrested and convicted for complicity of murder. An old but exaggerated Lebanese story talks about a car thief in the middle of a robbery and suddenly had a heart-attack on the car’s seat and passed away. In the morning, the car owner was arrested.
4. Lebanese Flag Raise
This law from 1945 prohibits the raise of any flag other than the Lebanese flag. Just two years later, in 1947, was the first time a foreign flag is raised after the independence and that happened at the Beirut Airport with the crowd welcoming the founder of the SSNP coming back from exile. The law is still valid until this day, despite the war, parties’ affiliations or the many fanatic World Cup fans.
5. Two-Piece Swimsuit
An old French law from 1941 prohibits women from wearing a two-piece swimsuit on Lebanese beaches, to also include short skirts and shorts. At that time, such outfit was considered as a sexual incitement. Of course the law is no longer applied but it’s still mentioned within the Lebanese civil laws.
Do you know any weird or funny Lebanese laws?