by Carl Donath

After following rec.knives for a while, it became obvious that a quick summary of knife laws would be handy. Here's what little I've been able to glean from my reading.

My goal is to find the clear portion of what is flat-out legal and easily summarized. I realize most states confuse the issue unmercifully; I'll let others figure out how to push the limits.

WARNING: This document is created from hearsay and whatever laws I could find. For legal advice, ask a lawyer. I could be lying. I only provide this to try to slightly improve the general lack of information on this subject. YOU are responsible for your own actions. If you don't know exactly what the laws are for any state or locale you are in, GO FIND OUT. ( is a good start, containing pointers to all state legislative sites.) I haven't updated this for a while, so consider it a cursory guide.


State (hyperlink goes to detailed explaination) BTW So many places forbid sharp things in schools that this sentence is the only place I'll mention this: assume posession of knives in schools - even colleges - is illegal.
Use this as guidance: kids have been suspended for mere posession of nail clippers.

US Knife Law Summary

State Knife Law Summaries

Arizona California Conneticut Florida Georgia Indiana Mississippi Missouri Maryland Nebraska New Jersey New York Nevada Ohio Rhode Island Tennessee Texas Virginia Washington Wisconson



Summary: No knives or sharp instruments of anykind.