Knife laws vary greatly between states, and even sometimes change drastically between different locations within a state. It’s important to know what the local laws are before you carry a knife outside of your home.
Fortunately, the laws across the state of Minnesota are fairly uniform. The default knife laws for any area are those covered in state statute 609.66. Individual cities and counties are free to adopt their own regulations, and in heavily populated areas like Minneapolis you will want to check up on local statutes to be safe. But in most of the state, the terms of statute 609.66 will apply.
So what are these terms? Basically, it’s legal to own just about any type of knife except for a switchblade. That includes balisong or butterfly knives. When it comes to carrying them outside of the home, however, there are a few more restrictions to be aware of.
Generally speaking, state law says that knives of any length can be carried. A knife only becomes illegal to carry if intent to harm with it can be demonstrated, and the burden of proof of that is entirely on the state. If a knife is legal to own, it is legal to carry for utility purposes. The law becomes more restrictive in certain settings, however, such as schools and courthouses. In these settings, carrying a knife that is regarded as being designed expressly to harm others may get you in trouble regardless of intent.
Again, it is important to check with your local state or county to ensure that they do not have their own regulations that supersede these state laws. But in general, Minnesota knife laws are not very restrictive provided you exercise common sense and responsibility. If you need further advice regarding any sort of weapons charges, feel free to contact us.
DISCLAIMER: The information contained in this article does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. Please contact attorney Kirk Anderson for an initial consultation.