Gun laws in Iowa
|Subject/Law||Long guns||Handguns||Relevant Statutes||Notes|
|State Preemption of local restrictions?||Yes||Yes||724.28||A political subdivision of the state shall not enact an ordinance regulating the ownership, possession, legal transfer, lawful transportation, registration, or licensing of firearms when the ownership, possession, transfer, or transportation is otherwise lawful under the laws of this state|
|State Permit to Purchase?||No||Yes||724.15||Permit To Carry may be used in lieu of Permit to Acquire when purchasing a handgun|
|Concealed carry permits issued?||No||Shall-Issue||724.4||Accepts permits from all states, Iowa residents must have Iowa permit|
|Open Carry?||Yes||Yes||724.7||Iowa issues a "Permit to Carry Weapons" that is necessary to carry a firearm. Iowa law does not generally require that firearms be concealed.|
|Castle Doctrine||No (see Notes)||704||Civil immunity for use of "reasonable force" in self defense|
|"Assault weapon" law?||No||No|
|Magazine Capacity Restriction?||No||No|
|Owner license required?||No||No|
|NFA weapons restricted?||Yes||724.1||Nearly complete prohibition|
On January 1, 2011, Iowa became a "shall issue" state for a permit to carry weapons on one's person. Applicants must successfully complete an approved training course.
Iowa will honor any valid permit issued by any other state. Persons do not have to be a resident of the state from which the permit was issued. However, an Iowa resident must have an Iowa Permit To Carry in order to lawfully carry a firearm on his or her person in Iowa.
A Permit To Acquire (PTA), obtained from the sheriff of the county of the applicant’s residence, is required when purchasing or otherwise acquiring a handgun, either from a dealer or from a private party. A Permit To Acquire shall be issued to qualified applicants aged 21 or older. The PTA becomes valid three days after the date of application, and is valid for one year. A PTA is not required when purchasing an antique handgun, defined as one made in or before 1898 and including post-1898 replicas of matchlock, flintlock, or percussion cap pistols. The PTA becomes valid 3 days after the application is submitted, to allow time for a criminal records check of the applicant, and is valid for 1 year.
Iowa residents with a Permit To Carry (PTC) can use the PTC in lieu of a PTA when acquiring a handgun. The PTC is valid for 5 years.
Iowa has enacted state preemption of firearms laws, so local units of government may not restrict the ownership, possession, or transfer of firearms, or require their registration.
Under Iowa law, private citizens may not possess automatic firearms, short-barreled rifles (barrels under 16 inches), short-barreled shotguns (barrels under 18 inches), any firearm "other than a shotgun or muzzle loading rifle, cannon, pistol, revolver or musket" with a bore of more than 6/10 of an inch (unless it is an antique made in or before 1898), or any explosive, incindiary or poison gas destructive device. Sound suppressors ("silencers") may not be possessed unless the possessor is engaged in "an approved city special deer population control plan" and the suppressor is Federally registered.
- Governor Culver Signs Bill Standardizing Weapon Permit Process, April 29, 2010
- "Legal Community Against Violence – Iowa State Law Summary". Lcav.org. November 2, 2011. Retrieved November 23, 2011.