The following is a comprehensive compilation of the laws on switchblades (also called automatics) in the United States. This chart covers both overall federal law and each state law. These laws are for non-law enforcement citizens, as nearly all laws contain some sort of exemption for police.
- Possession = Refers to the legality of merely owning or having direct control over a switchblade, even if kept at home.
- Sale = The legality of merchants and private citizens offering switchblades for sale or selling them. Usually includes any transfer of ownership, even gifts. Note that such laws almost always only affect the seller; no state law affects the buyer of such a transaction.
- Open Carry = legality of carrying a switchblade unconcealed and in plain view of others.
- Concealed Carry = legality of carrying a switchblade in a concealed manner on one's person (or most of the time, in a car).
- Balisong considered same thing? = Refers to if the wording of the law considers switchblades and balisongs to be the same thing. If "Yes," balisongs are subject to all the same restrictions as switchblades listed for that state. If "no" they are covered by a separate law and may or may not be legal. Blanks indicate the state has no laws about either.
- If possession itself is illegal, then all others become illegal by default.
- If possession is legal, but sale is not, it effectively becomes impossible to legally obtain a switchblade from within that state (since federal law prohibits inter-state sale). One must physically travel to another state to legally purchase.
|State||Possession||Sale||Open Carry||Concealed Carry||Balisong considered same thing?|
|US Federal Law||Legal||Illegal when sold over state lines or imported from outside the US||Legal||Legal||Yes|
|Arizona||Legal||Legal||Legal||Legal if over 21 years old|
|California||Legal||Legal if blade is <2"||Legal if blade is <2"||Legal if blade is <2"||Yes|
|District of Columbia|
|Florida||Legal||Legal||Legal||Illegal (Legal with gun permit)||N/A|
|Georgia||Legal||Legal (if over 18)||Legal if blade is <5"||Legal if blade is <5"|
|Pennsylvania||Illegal (ex. Curio)||Illegal (ex. Curio)||Illegal||Illegal||No|
|Texas||Illegal (ex. Curio)||Illegal (ex. Curio)||Illegal||Illegal||Yes|
|Vermont||Legal||Legal if blade is <3"||Legal||Legal||No|
|West Virginia||Legal (if over 18)||Legal||Legal (if over 18)||Illegal||No|