Can You Carry A Butterfly Knife In Texas? | Legal Aspects

Are you wondering if you can carry a butterfly knife in Texas? You’re not alone. Many Texans are curious about the laws surrounding the carry of specific types of knives, especially the popular butterfly knife. Let’s explore the answer can you carry a butterfly knife in Texas?

Understanding Texas Knife Laws

In Texas, the rules governing knife possession underwent a significant change in September 2017. The Texas Knife Law Reform Bill (H.B. 1935) made it legal for individuals over the age of 18 to carry many types of knives in public places. This reform included butterfly knives. These are often highlighted in discussions about knife laws. 

What is a Butterfly Knife?

A butterfly knife, also known as a balisong, is a folding pocket knife with two handles that rotate around the blade. It’s often used for flipping and can be opened quickly with one hand. That’s what makes it appealing to knife enthusiasts and collectors.

Can You Carry A Butterfly Knife In Texas? | Yes or No

As per the updated laws, the restrictions on carrying knives with blades longer than 5.5 inches were removed. Since butterfly knives typically feature shorter blades, they fall well within this limit. This means that, yes, you can carry a butterfly knife in Texas if you are over 18 years old.

However, it’s crucial to remember that while you can carry a butterfly knife. There are still specific locations where carrying any knife with a blade longer than 5.5 inches is prohibited.

These include:

  • Schools and university campuses
  • Bars
  • Hospitals
  • Correctional facilities
  • Government buildings
  • Places of worship
  • Sporting events
  • Airports

Violating these restrictions can lead to serious consequences. From Class C misdemeanor to a third-degree felony in places like bars.

Legal Nuances and Considerations

While the general rule allows for the carry of butterfly knives, there are exceptions and nuances. For example, Texas Penal Code § 46.02 restricts the intentional or reckless carry of a location-restricted knife by individuals under the age of 18 unless they are on their own property or inside their own vehicle.

Based on the Texas Penal Code Section 46.02, here are the key points regarding the consequences of violating knife laws:

  • Unlawful Carrying Offenses: It is generally unlawful to carry a knife with a blade over 5.5 inches in certain locations such as schools, polling places, government court buildings, racetracks, secured areas of airports, within 1,000 feet of places of execution on the day of execution, and bars or similar establishments.
  • Misdemeanor Charges: Violations of these regulations can result in misdemeanor charges, which can vary from a Class C to a Class A misdemeanor depending on the specific circumstances of the violation and location.
  • Felony Charges: Carrying a knife in establishments that sell alcohol can escalate to a third-degree felony, leading to more severe legal repercussions including potential prison time.
  • Exceptions: There are specific exceptions where carrying knives is permissible, such as for individuals traveling to or from certain activities. They can be certain professionals in the line of their duty, and under historical demonstration purposes.
 Note: If you’re planning on traveling outside Texas, be aware that other states might have different laws regarding butterfly knives. 

Why Know Your Knife Rights?

For those who enjoy collecting or using knives for sporting activities, understanding these laws ensures that you can continue your hobbies without legal hindrance.


So, can you carry a butterfly knife in Texas? Yes, you can, as long as you’re aware of and comply with specific restrictions based on location and age. Always make sure to double-check the most recent laws and consider legal advice if you find yourself unsure about specific regulations. Carrying a butterfly knife, or any knife, is a responsibility as much as it is a right.

Be informed, and be safe!

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