Minnesota State Knife Laws (2021)

There are several reasons why one may want to carry a dependable cutter on when out and about in the North Star State. To begin with, Minnesota is the place where you want to explore your true north. It's a state of mind they say. MN is a playground for outdoor lovers who seek to discover the unknown and the hidden. Here, no matter which path you follow, they can all lead to your True North. If that sounds vague, wait until you read the legal scriptures surrounding knife laws. The knife laws in Minnesota are cryptic and can take a team of trained legal experts to decode. Here we break them down in plain English, so you know which knife is safe to carry when you're on the trail searching your true north.


Fortunately, the law surrounding knives is pretty uniform in MN. This means it doesn't vary widely from location to location. These statewide laws are covered in state statute 609.66. However, in densely populated areas like Minneapolis, you may want to check up on local statutes to be on the safe side. This is because individual cities and counties have the freedom to adopt their own regulations. Nonetheless, the guidelines below will give you a clear idea as to which knives are legal to own and carry.

Knives That Are Legal and Illegal In Minnesota    

In MN you can own a vast array of knives. Knives that are legal to own are:
     -Balisong knives
     -Dirks, stilettos, daggers, and other stabbing knives
     -Disguised knives like comb knives and pen knives
     -Bowie knives
     -Throwing stars and throwing knives
     -All other knives without a lever or button function are legal to own      



Restrictions on Knife Carry
Again, the knife laws are pretty relaxed as to which knife you can carry legally.

  • Utility purpose knives like pocket knives and kitchen knives are legal to carry.
  • Knives like Bowie knives and Balisong knives, ones that can be used as weapons are legal to carry as long as there is no intent to harm others.
  • It is illegal to heedlessly use a knife that can be used as a weapon.
  • It is illegal to carry a knife that is primarily a weapon and not a tool with intent to harm.
  • Knives are strictly prohibited on school grounds and school buses


These are the basic guidelines to follow when owning or carrying a knife in Minnesota. If your purpose of carrying a knife is not to harm but to use it as a tool, you can choose from a wide range of knives (except automatic knives). If you intend to harm, you are not allowed to carry a knife.


What Is A Dangerous Weapon?
Subd. 6. Dangerous weapon.“Dangerous weapon” means any firearm, whether loaded or unloaded, or any device designed as a weapon and capable of producing death or great bodily harm, any combustible or flammable liquid or other device or instrumentality that, in the manner, it is used or intended to be used, is calculated or likely to produce death or great bodily harm, or any fire that is used to produce death or great bodily harm.