and Responsible Law Enforcement
The American Knife & Tool Institute promotes a reasonable and responsible approach to legislation regarding knives and the enforcement of knife laws. We strive for clarity of law and definitions. Clear, objective legislation is the foundation of a free people. Without clarity, inconsistent enforcement occurs, and law-abiding citizens are subjected to unnecessary anxiety. Individuals should not have to fear the legality of valuable tools used daily in their lives. They should not be expected to know and understand knife laws in multiple jurisdictions where they may travel for work or recreation with their knife or edged tool. Follow Current Knife Law Bills
AKTI encourages knife legislation that:
- Is not based on the possession of a certain knife design, style, or blade length, but on the actions and intent of the user. For more information, see the Expanded Introduction to the AKTI Approved Knife Definitions.
- Is based on clear definitions that minimize unexpected interpretations and inconsistent enforcement for situations where it has been determined that laws governing possession must exist. Legislators, law enforcement, and criminal justice may be guided by the industry’s AKTI Approved Knife Definitions and the AKTI Protocol for Measuring Blade Length.
- Is consistent throughout all cities and counties within a state. For more information, see About Knife Preemption.
- Is easily understandable by citizens.
AKTI monitors current and pending legislation in all 50 states and on the federal level for issues that need attention, and we’ll let you know when you need to Act Now! and what you need to do to support sensible knife legislation.
We need your help in contacting us about county or local issues. We have successfully changed knife laws to keep Americans from being considered criminals for carrying the knives they use in their everyday lives.
Check out AKTI News for articles and the latest information on AKTI’s efforts.
Read more about H.R. 2892 and the successful change in 2009 to the Federal Switchblade Act of 1958 to keep U.S. Customs from defining nearly all folding knives as illegal switchblades and make de facto criminals of millions of knife owners.
- The Legal Edge: What Every Knife Owner Should Know
- Check out the Resources section for Definitions, Knife Measuring Protocol, and other valuable information.
- Find out about the State Knife Laws where you live, work, or travel. Be sure you know the laws about Auto-Open Knives.
- See sources on Contacting Legislators or Finding Knife Laws for more information.
- We subscribe to a service that helps alert us to knife-related issues. AKTI members have access to the legislation and regulations we are watching. For more information, check out the AKTI Members Only section.
- Read through our Highlights in AKTI’s History and Success Stories for more about our fight to keep knives in American lives.
United States Knife Laws by State
Click on a state above to see specifics for each jurisdiction.