Knife Laws In Missouri

Missouri knife laws easy to understand but they are not knife friendly. Most knives are allowed to own, but switchblades are illegal to buy, own or sell.

However, it’s legal for one-armed individuals to own switchblades with blades length of 3” or shorter. It’s legal to carry a legal knife except in some locations such as schools.

Conceal carry is restricted except carrying of regular folding pocket knives of 4” blade length or shorter concealed.​

Knife Laws in Missouri

Most of cities and towns in Missouri have their concealed carry laws which vary from the state laws. Some of these cities and towns limit the blade length to less than 3.5” while others limit to 2.5”.​



It’s legal to own and carry different types of knives in Missouri. The legal knives include; throwing stars, throwing knives, throwing axes, buck knives, pocket knives, dirks, bowie knives, stilettos, daggers, boot knives, swords, disguised knives, sword canes and anything else apart from switchblade.

If all the occupants cannot reach a knife in a vehicle, then it’s not carried and therefore legal and to satisfy this requirement, the blade needs to be stored in a locked container.

Switchblades are legal if a spring or detent is available which creates a bias towards closure.


It’s legal to carry legal knives in public. If a knife is not clearly recognizable and visible by an approaching person, then it’s said to be illegally concealed.

Switchblades are illegal, however, not wholly. Missouri applies the United States Code when it comes to a switchblade. The law allows those with one arm to own switchblades as long as the length of that blade doesn’t exceed 3” in length. In this case, the switchblade act as a utility knife when you don’t have another hand.

Length Limit

There are few limits imposed on the length of a knife blade at Missouri State. Open carry and knife ownership don't have a length limit. Conceal carry laws restricts the knife blade to 4” while a one-armed individual may own a switchblade whose blade doesn’t exceed 3” long.

Conceal Carry

Section § 571.030 of Missouri code forbids concealed carry of a knife. A knife is defined in section § 571.010 as any weapon or bladed tool apart from the regular folding pocket knife which has a blade length not exceeding 4”.

According to United States law, an ordinary pocket knife is a knife with its entire blade folding into its handle, manually opened and has a single edge.

Other Knife Laws in Missouri

Lack of preemption rule in Missouri State makes carrying of knives from one municipality to another tricky. Most ordinances apply the state law while others place different blade length limits.


The Missouri knife laws are relatively relaxed when it comes to ownership of knives. One can own any type of knife except a switchblade. However, you can still own a switchblade if it’s less than 3” long and if you have one arm. The knife laws also allow for open carry of legal knives.