What exactly is the Hobby Protection Act?


The dime in the picture is from the website of Anti-Counterfeiting Educational Foundation

One of the areas that I love to collect is coins.  Not too long after diving into coins, I heard of something called the Hobby Protection Act.  This had me baffled—what exactly is the Hobby Protection Act and how does it apply to coins?

The Hobby Protection Act was passed in 1973 by the United States Congress.  This act covers imitation political items (like buttons and posters) and even imitation Numismatic items (like coins, tokens and even paper money).

The Hobby Protection Act states that any imitation (or reproduction) political or numismatic item is made, it must be marked a certain way.  When it comes to political items, it must have the year it was made on it with all 4 digits on it.  With coins, it must have the word COPY somewhere on the design.

What is the reason for this act to get created?  The main reason is that it’s to help protect collectors from deceptive reproductions.

So, it pays to look at the design so you don’t over pay for an item.  Have you ever run across a political or numismatic item marked like this?

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