Delaware Knife Laws

Updated for 2021

To stay safe and legal in Delaware, you must get familiar with its knife laws. Delaware has a variety of restrictions related to the use of knives. It allows open carry of almost any type of knife as long as the individual has a concealed weapons permit. 

Without a concealed weapons permit, an individual can carry only a regular pocket knife with a blade length not more than three inches. There are many other restrictions when it comes to the use of different kinds of knives within the state. 

This article will explore the restrictions imposed under Delaware law to give you a better understanding of the knife laws. So, let’s dig in a little deeper.

What knives are Explicitly Illegal in Delaware

Under Delaware law, any type of knife, apart from a regular pocket knife, that is concealed carried is considered a deadly weapon. It is illegal to conceal carry a ‘deadly weapon’ unless the person has a permit. 

Following knives are illegal in Delaware:

  • Knives with brass knuckles
  • Switchblades and gravity knives
  • Throwing stars
  • Undetectable knives or knives with a blade released by a spring mechanism or gravity

Knife Size Regulations in Delaware

Only a three-inch ordinary pocket knife is legal to carry concealed. Carrying any other knife concealed with a blade length more than three inches is illegal. You may carry knives in the open if they do not fall under the banned category.

Local Municipality Knife Laws in Delaware

It is imperative to know about the laws in Delaware related to carrying knives. Illegal possession of a deadly weapon may be categorized as a felony under state law. 

Further, there is no statewide preemption in the Delaware state so local laws may be more rigid than state laws. The concealment and carrying illegal knife laws are discussed below:

Concealment Carrying Knife Law

An individual can carry legal knives without the permission of the Peace Officer of Delaware. However, a knife owner may not conceal carry a deadly blade or knife in a misleading manner, according to the concealment law of 11 Dei.C. Section 1442. 

Violating the law will fall under Class C and Class D felony, leading to imprisonment for two years in the state jail. Also, under 11- Dei.C. Section 222, assaulting or threatening someone with deadly knives, or any other sharp-edged tool, is punishable for a fine of $2300 and imprisonment for one year. 

Switchblade Knife Laws

According to 11 Dei.C Section 1446, it is illegal to sell, purchase, and carry switchblades with a blade easily opened by a spring mechanism or gravity. The design of such knives usually allows a person to carry out offensive activities with an unclassified misdemeanor. 

Undetectable Knife Laws

As per Dei. C – Section 1446A, it is prohibited to manufacture, import, sell, buy, and carry undetectable knives. An undetectable knife is any knife or instrument used with or without a handguard to inflict physical injury or death to others and is undetectable by a metal detector or magnetometer.

An individual violating the law commits a Class G felony and faces imprisonment for 12 months. Therefore, refrain from manufacturing and selling undetectable knives without a license.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are Karambits Legal in Delaware?

It is legal to carry karambits in Delaware. Under Delaware law, a knife with a blade no longer than three inches is legal to carry. Karambit knife fulfills the criteria and therefore is legal in Delaware.

Are Throwing Knives Legal in Delaware?

Yes, throwing knives are legal in Delaware. However, be sure not to conceal carry a knife with a blade more than three inches in length, unless you have a license.

Are Balisongs Legal in Delaware?

Balisong or butterfly knives are legal in Delaware. You can carry a balisong knife with a 3-inch blade length in Delaware. These knives come with two handles and a counter-rotating blade that a person can close and carry easily.  

Are Swords Legal in Delaware?

Swords, cane knives, and bowie knives are legal in Delaware. These knives can be carried but without concealment and require a permit for carrying in Delaware.

Is it Legal to Carry a Knife on School Grounds or College Campuses?

According to the Delaware state regulations, it is illegal to carry knives, blades, and other deadly weapons in places like schools or colleges, public transports, state parks, government buildings, and federal properties like airports, post offices, and banks.

Can a Minor Carry a Knife in Delaware

As per the Federal Knife Law of Delaware, it is illegal to sell deadly weapons and knives to minors under 18 years. A minor cannot purchase any type of knife or blade without the approval of their parents or guardian.

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