You’ve probably heard one or two thoughtless words slip out in traffic. However, you have to be very careful here, because insults can quickly lead to fines.

Important to know: An insult is not an administrative offense. In order to be punished for this, it is necessary that the other party files a complaint, i.e. submits a criminal complaint to the police.

It is clear that you should be careful, especially when making aggressive statements about law enforcement officers. Because you can quickly insult an official. There is no explicit legal definition for insulting civil servants, but as a rule such insults end up in court much more quickly and are punished more severely.

While in the past a “lick me” was punished with a manageable 300 euros, a court sentenced someone to 2,500 euros for saying “you old pig” to a civil servant. When it comes to the term “bull,” the courts are usually lenient. Only in rare cases do they impose a fine.

By the way: “Oberförster” also once ended up before the Tiergarten district court on charges of insulting civil servants – but the Berlin public prosecutor’s office dismissed that. In the underlying case, a man called out to a police officer who was carrying out a traffic stop as he passed by: “Mr. Chief Forester, that’s the way to the forest!”

But not only words, but also gestures can be severely punished as insults to officials. The famous finger has already cost a defendant 4,000 euros, and flipping an official the bird has already cost 750 euros.

Insults in traffic between civilians are usually measured in daily rates. Anyone who receives a complaint of insult should seek advice from a lawyer before commenting. Especially if he feels he has been wrongly reported.

The original for this article “You should avoid these insults in traffic” comes from