Knife Laws In Alabama


Knife Laws In Alabama

Alabama is one of those states where you can relish your knives without a permit. You can buy knives of your choice and can expand your collection. Nevertheless, there is a certain legal restriction on a few knives which fall under the category of “forbidden and illicit”. Although knives are mostly used by anglers and hunters for hunting, camping, skinning, and gutting.

What is the inclination of Alabamians regarding knives?

Apart from over the kitchen counter activities, the knife is also used as a defensive tool to beat bad luck. In Alabama mostly, people are enthused to keep survival knives to rescue them. A situation does define the action when a chopping knife turns into a dangerous weapon to rescue. Nevertheless, sometimes a sharp knife owned by the wrong person could harm people. That’s why, like different countries Alabama also put legal restrictions on carrying, buying, and selling “particular knives”. And it is always nice to abide by the rules and legislation of the state/country or region.

State Knife Law in Alabama

The Alabama Knife Law makes its citizens knife-bound and puts legal vital rules and limitations. The state wants the residents to know and understand the law before involving themselves in the sale/ purchase of knives. You can not engage in the sale, purchase, or carry an illegal knife, if do, then could be the prey of violating the Federal Law. Breaching the knife law can cause a penalty in terms of money, and can be imprisoned under the Switchblade Knife Act. So, it would be out-of-the-woods to learn the knife legislation of your state. However, Alabama is one of the city slickers in the United States that is notorious for its knife-based delinquencies. This led to the call-up of strict regulations, limitations, and penalties which fall under Alabama Knife Law by the Federal Government.

Federal Law

According to Section 26 of the Alabama Constitution,

“Every citizen has a fundamental right to bear arms in defense of himself or herself and the state.”


The said law follows a few conditions to know

  • You can neither sell nor purchase a knife from a minor under 18 years old
  • You cannot transit a knife through a minor no matter for the reason
  • You are legally restricted to ask for age proof or ID before selling a knife if you have second thoughts about the seller or a buyer

Knife types that are legal in Alabama

Except for a few knives, almost all knives are allowed to carry, buy, sell or keep following the legal limitations and exceptions. As a citizen or a migrant, you have the legal right and freedom to use these knives.

Let us dig deep to know the all-allowed knives

• Balisongs/Butterfly Knives

Balisongs Knife is also known as butterfly knives or a fan knife that can be placed in a pocket, pouch, or tool kit. You are free to carry the blade and use it in your defense after getting the license.

• Switchblade knives

These are automatic push-button knives that are similar to sliding blades. Moreover, the mechanism is based on a spring fixed with it for opening and closing the blade. These knives are used for cutting woods and thick ropes and are highly suggested for camping knives.

• Dirks/ Stiletto Knives

Stiletto Knives can not be used by a common man as it requires training to use the hefty tool. It is a thrashing dagger with an extremely sharp blade that is connected by a heavy handle. The knife business dealers in the state can manufacture it with a license or proper permission. As well as the armed forces who are on duty have the exception to using the knife during duty hours. It is not allowed to use by the general public unless you are trained and a licensee of the tool.

• Double-Sided Knives

These are also called knuckle knives and generally are used as rescue knives. Moreover, it looks like a small dagger that is easy to carry and use.

• Small Pocket Knives

There are different types of pocket knives that you can happily carry, such as

  • Clip-Point Blade
  • Toothpick Knives
  • Pen-knife
  • Drop-Point Blades
  • Sheepsfoot Knife
  • Talon Blade

All are foldable and easy to carry pocket knives. These are generally used for cutting and chopping fruits and vegetables and people love to use them as home-cook knives.

Lawful Limitations for Using Knife as per Length

According to the Alabama Knife Law,

“The blade length of the knife should not exceed 4 inches while you are carrying a knife in public places. The state law strongly emphasizes keeping knives that are smaller in size and can be carried in pockets or bags. It is to be remembered that the law is strict and will not let you escape in case found guilty of having a long knife without a license. Moreover, you can be arrested and penalized for $500.”

Knife types that are illegal in Alabama

There are a few knives that are illegal in the eye of the state’s law and not permissible to use, buy, sell, lend and carry for both the citizens and the visitors of Alabama.

Let us discuss and comprehend the types of knives that are strictly not allowed.

• Gravity Knives

The gravity knife is a slim and lean knife that can easily be concealed, so it is restricted to use in Alabama. Moreover, any misleading act is charged as a crime.

• 11” Butcher Knife

This large dangerous and dangerously sharp 11-inch Butcher-knife is unlawful to use in Alabama because of its extreme sharpness. If you are a fisherman or involved in a knife business or a professional butcher, you need a license first.

• Bowies

Bowie is not okay to carry in Alabama. You can own one, you can carry one concealed on your property but you cannot be concealed carry a Bowie. Why Bowie knife is a conundrum? It needs to peep into the history and read about the famous Jim Bowie to know the reason for its illegal status in Alabama.

According to the abstracts of the history,

“As late as the struggling years of the 19th century battling in America was still in vogue for settling disputes among men, especially in honor-bound cultures like the South and Greater Appalachia. One of the opted weapons was large sword-like knives to resolve clashes. Bowie took part in rash fights, that’s why the Alabama state pursued to curb the violence by slapping a blanket ban on the “weapon” obliquely related to the chaos.”

The Bowie Knife is a fixed-blade knife. Apart from fighting it is used slicing meat or fish in the kitchen. It is also used in camping, nevertheless, you can only keep it with the permission of law and license, otherwise, it is illegal.

• Machete

An ax-looking knife has a broad sharp blade. It is illegal to use in Alabama because it is an awful weapon and can be harmful.

Legal Guidelines to Keep the Knives

According to the Section 13A-11-50 of Alabama Knife Law,

“Except as otherwise provided in this Code, a person who carries concealed about his person a bowie knife or knife or instrument of like-kind or description or a pistol or firearm of any other kind of an air gun shall, on conviction, be fined not less than $50.00 nor more than $500.00, and may also be imprisoned in the county jail or sentenced to hard labor for the county for not more than six months”

You can keep some knives with you as per Carrying Law, but you need to follow a few legal guidelines. You can move around carrying some knives openly by attaching them to the waist belt with the permission of the federal police.

According to Section 13-A11-55

“Indictment for Carrying Weapons, you cannot hide and carry any weapons like a sharp knife and throwing knife whether you are a migrant or citizen of Alabama, U.S.”

As per Section 13A-11-74 of Alabama Knife Law,

“Any person should not, knowingly or by mistaken, harm someone with a deadly weapon; it is a serious criminal offense.”

Penalties for Breaching the Regulations of Alabama Knife Law

Breaching the law is an offensive crime. Therefore, is the state’s responsibility to make and enforce laws to keep peace and harmony in the state. Being a citizen or migrant, it is your sole responsibility to abide by the law to get rid of dire compensation. In case of violation, the stated down legal actions are taken.

• Violating the Section 13A-11-50 of Alabama Knife Law

You will be fined $50 to $500 and will be sentenced to six months in jail. Moreover, he or she may be forced into hard-labor chastisement for the state or country for the 6 months imprisonment.

• Violating the Section 13A-11-55 of Alabama Knife Law

You will be charged $250 or more because you will fall under Class A misdemeanor which is a misleading act. So, hiding facts or a weapon is a bad idea; do not hide the Bowie and other sharp knives; carry them openly with permission if you are above 18 years.

• Violating the Section 13A-11-74 will term under Class C felony

It is a grave offense and he or she will be convicted to custody for 2 years with hard-labored work for the country.

No legal binding on the following parties

  • There are no legal restrictions for armed forces they can keep any weapon with them as per the Federal Law of Alabama.
  • The business dealers of knives can carry different types of blades with a license but have a limitation to selling to everyone in the state.

Legally Restricted Places to Carry Knife

As the knife types that are kept illegal are dreadful weapons and can cause harm, that’s why they are restricted to carry in certain places. Especially, the educational institutions no one can take any weapon to any educational concern.

Take a short look at the places where carrying knives is forbidden though concealed or unconcealed.


The most important place where knives are strictly prohibited by law in schools.

Alabama state law § 13A-11-72 provides

That is a felony to knowingly and with intent to do bodily harm carry or possess a deadly weapon on the premises of a public school. For purposes of this statute, “deadly weapon”: means a firearm or anything manifestly designed, made, or adapted to inflict death or serious physical injury, and such term includes, but is not limited to, a bazooka, hand grenade, missile, or explosive or incendiary device; a pistol, rifle, or shotgun; or a switch-blade knife, gravity knife, stiletto, sword, or dagger; or any club, baton, billy, blackjack, bludgeon, or metal knuckles.”

According to the § 13A-11-72

“Restrictions specify an element of knowing criminal/bodily harm intent, one should be aware that § 16–1–24.1 (Safe school and drug-free school policy. . .) allows, and encourages, school districts to establish policies to address, among other issues, the problem of weapons at schools. One should refrain from the possession of any knives on school property unless it is authorized by the policy as promulgated by the applicable school district.”

The other banned places are

  • Public Transport
  • Public Events
  • Court
  • Police Station
  • Airport
  • Planes
  • Ship

Penalties for Carrying the Knives on Prohibited Places

The law restricts people to visit certain places without knives or other life-threatening weapons.  Breaching the law is a serious crime and it deals with accordingly.

According to The Federal Switchblade Act,

“Corporate police have banned transporting knives and blades through air or flight. So, there is a tough checking into the airport and deck while traveling. This law is equal to court, police stations, and public transport or events. There is no chance to carry knives in police stations and courts because of tough checking; and if you try to carry hidden knives at public transport, courts, or events then you will be punishable under the above-mentioned Section 13-A11-55, Indictment for Carrying Weapons and Section 13A-11-50 of Alabama Knife Law (Concealed Law). If you are a business dealer of a knife then you can show your license to carry a knife in goods ship, send it by carriage flight or carry it to public transport like bus or metro.”

As per Section 16-1-24.1 of Alabama Knife Law,

“If any student or teacher carries a knife to school or other educational institutes then he or she will be rusticated or expelled with a fine. Any outsider who carries knives to school without permission would be convicted to jail for six months or will be charged $200 to $500 according to Section 16-1-24.1.”

Final Thoughts

There is no second thought on the relevance of a knife but some rules are attached to particular knives for all the right reasons. So, it would be a sensible approach to have little ideas about the state’s law and limitations before getting involved in the sale /purchase of knives. Being a responsible citizen, you should abide by the laws of your state, and voilating the law may compensate you in various ominous ways.

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