Wisconsin Knife Laws

Summary

Much like its neighbor’s, Minnesota’s, Wisconsin’s laws are wordy and difficult to decipher sometimes.  However, unlike Minnesota’s, its own laws are far more lenient.  Wisconsin doesn’t prohibit any knives and concealed-carrying is generally not a problem for anyone who has never been convicted of a felony and is of sound mind.

What Kinds of Knives are Legal in Wisconsin?

Wisconsin doesn’t restrict the owning or carrying of knives, so you can carry anything from a pocket knife to a Bowie knife, a butterfly knife to a switchblade.

  • If you’re not prohibited from owning firearms, you can own any knife you want
  • If you’re not prohibited from owning firearms, you can carry any knife you want, openly or concealed
  • If you’re not a minor, you can own or carry any knife you want

What Kinds of Knives are Illegal in Wisconsin?

While the definition of ‘dangerous weapon’ doesn’t include knives, it’s generally agreed upon that someone who has been prohibited from owning firearms or other dangerous weapons, also can’t own knives.  Wisconsin uses the wording ‘going armed’ in its laws to refer to concealed-carrying, and that could easily be applied to carrying a knife.

  • If you’ve been prohibited from owning firearms (usually through a felony conviction or mental incompetence), you cannot own or carry knives
  • You cannot bring your knife to school or a courthouse
  • Minors cannot own or carry knives

Relevant Statutes

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