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Gun laws in the United States by state

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Gun laws in the United States regulate the sale, possession, and use of firearms and ammunition. State laws (and the laws of Washington, D.C. and the U.S. territories) vary considerably, and are independent of existing federal firearms laws, although they are sometimes broader or more limited in scope than the federal laws.

State level laws vary significantly in their form, content, and level of restriction. Forty-four states have a provision in their state constitutions similar to the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which protects the right to keep and bear arms. The exceptions are California, Iowa, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey, and New York. In New York, however, the statutory civil rights laws contain a provision virtually identical to the Second Amendment.[1][2] Additionally, the U.S. Supreme Court held in McDonald v. Chicago that the protections of the Second Amendment to keep and bear arms for self-defense in one's home apply against state governments and their political subdivisions.[3]

Firearm owners are subject to the firearm laws of the state they are in, and not exclusively their state of residence. Reciprocity between states exists in certain situations, such as with regard to concealed carry permits. These are recognized on a state-by-state basis. For example, Idaho recognizes an Oregon permit, but Oregon does not recognize an Idaho permit. Florida issues a license to carry both concealed weapons and firearms, but others license only the concealed carry of firearms. Some states do not recognize out-of-state permits to carry a firearm at all, so it is important to understand the laws of each state when traveling with a handgun.[4]

In many cases, state firearms laws can be considerably less restrictive than federal firearms laws. This does not confer any de jure immunity against prosecution for violations of the federal laws. However, state and local police departments are not legally obligated to enforce federal gun law as per the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling in Printz v. United States.[5][6]

Common subjects of state laws[edit]

Firearm related matters that are often regulated by state or local laws include the following:

  • Some states and localities require that a person obtain a license or permit in order to purchase or possess firearms.
  • Some states and localities require that individual firearms be registered with the police or with another law enforcement agency.
  • All states allow some form of concealed carry, the carrying of a concealed firearm in public.
  • Many states allow some form of open carry, the carrying of an unconcealed firearm in public on one's person or in a vehicle.
  • Some states have state preemption for some or all gun laws, which means that only the state can legally regulate firearms. In other states, local governments can pass their own gun laws more restrictive than those of the state.
  • Some states and localities place additional restrictions on certain semi-automatic firearms that they have defined as assault weapons, or on magazines that can hold more than a certain number of rounds of ammunition.
  • NFA weapons are weapons that are heavily restricted at a federal level by the National Firearms Act of 1934 and the Firearm Owners Protection Act of 1986. These include automatic firearms (such as machine guns), short-barreled shotguns, and short-barreled rifles. Some states and localities place additional restrictions on such weapons.
  • Some states have enacted castle doctrine or stand-your-ground laws, which provide a legal basis for individuals to use deadly force in self-defense in certain situations, without a duty to flee or retreat if possible.
  • In some states, peaceable journey laws give additional leeway for the possession of firearms by travelers who are passing through to another destination.
  • Some states require a background check of the buyer when a firearm is sold by a private party. (Federal law requires background checks for sales by licensed gun dealers, and for any interstate sales.)

Alabama[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? No No
Firearm registration? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required? No Yes Alabama is a shall-issue state for concealed carry. However, the issuing county sheriff can suspend or even revoke concealed carry privileges for wanton disregard of the law.[7]
Open carry permitted? Yes Yes Open carry is generally permitted, but handgun must be securely contained in a holster (belt, inside-the-waist, ankle, or shoulder). However, open carry in a vehicle without a concealed carry license is prohibited. As of August 1, 2013, the law states that: "It shall be a rebuttable presumption that the mere carrying of a visible pistol, holstered or secured, in public place, in and of itself, is not disorderly conduct."
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes "...the Legislature hereby occupies and preempts the entire field of regulation in this state touching in any way upon firearms, ammunition, and firearm accessories.."
Assault weapon law? No No
NFA weapons restricted? No No Any Other Weapons (AOWs) disguised as walking canes are the only illegal firearms in Alabama.
Background checks required for private sales? No No

Alaska[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No No None No
Firearm registration? No No None No
Assault weapon law? No No None No
Owner license required? No No None No
Carry permits required? No No AS 18.65.700 through 18.65.778 May carry concealed without permit, though permits can be issued for those who wish to have them.
Open Carry? Yes Yes May carry openly without permit/license.
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes AS 29.35.145 Municipalities may enact and enforce local regulations only if they are identical to, and provide the same penalty as, State law.
NFA weapons restricted? No No None No
Shall Certify? Yes Yes AS 18.65.810 Shall certify within 30 days.
Peaceable Journey laws? No No None Federal rules observed.
Background checks required for private sales? No No

Arizona[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State permit required to purchase? No No
Firearm registration required? No No ARS 13-3101(B) State law requires compliance with the National Firearms Act, but the state maintains no registry and imposes no additional requirements.
Assault weapon prohibition or restrictions? No No
Magazine Capacity Restriction? No No
Owner license required? No No
Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW) permits required? No No SB 1108 In Arizona, a person over age 21 may legally carry a concealed firearm or deadly weapon without a permit within the state, except for certain prohibited locations, and must disclose the fact to a law enforcement officer if questioned. Although no longer required, a shall-issue CCW permit is still available and has certain advantages, including reciprocity with many other states having CCW laws.[8]
Open carry allowed? Yes Yes May carry openly without permit/license.
State preemption of local restrictions? Partial Partial ARS 13-3108 Explained below
NFA weapons restricted? No No ARS 13-3101 Law makes possession and use illegal but then exempts said weapons and devices if they're registered in compliance with federal law.
Shall certify? Yes Yes ARS 13-3121 Shall certify within 60 days.
Peaceable journey laws? No No Federal rules observed.
Background checks required for private sales? No No On May 1, 2017, Governor Ducey signed a bill that would prevent localities from requiring background checks for private sales.[9]

Arkansas[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No No
Firearm registration? No No
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine Capacity Restriction? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required? No No* 5-73-301 - 5-73-320 Shall-Issue. The Arkansas State Police issue and recognize the Arkansas Concealed Handgun Carry License, as do states that have existing reciprocity with Arkansas.

*Act 746 allows for concealed carry without permit when upon a journey (outside of one's county of residence).[10]

Enhanced concealed carry permits allow for carrying in some forbidden areas such as carrying at public colleges, most public buildings, non-secure locations in an airport, churches, and more.[11][12]

Open Carry? Yes Yes 5-73-120 May open carry without license.
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes 5-73-120
NFA weapons restricted? No No 5-73-205 All NFA items allowed if in compliance with Federal law.

Machine guns may not have ammunition .30 in. or 7.63 mm or bigger unless the gun is registered to an ammunition corporation.

Shall Certify? Yes Yes 5-73-112 Shall certify within 15 days. With the enactment of 41F/P on July 13, 2016 the need for "Shall Certify" legislation has essentially been negated.
Peaceable Journey laws? Yes Yes 5-73-120 (c)(4) Weapons are allowed if the person is carrying a weapon when upon a journey, unless the journey is through a commercial airport when presenting at the security checkpoint in the airport or is in the person's checked baggage and is not a lawfully declared weapon. "Journey" is defined as "travel beyond the county in which a person lives." (5-73-120(B)(3))
Background checks required for private sales? No No

California[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? Yes Yes §26500 [1] All firearm sales must be completed through a dealer. Firearm purchases require a Firearm Safety Certificate and proof of residency unless the individual purchasing the firearm is active duty military or a peace officer under Penal Code Section 830. Military reservists must provide proof of residency in order to purchase a firearm.
Firearm registration? Yes Yes §28150 The California Department of Justice ("DOJ") retains information about the purchaser and seller of all in-state firearm sales and transfers, and requires that any firearms imported into the state be reported to the DOJ.[13] Furthermore, the Attorney General is required by law to maintain a registry containing the fingerprints and identifying information of the transferee, and the unique identifying information of every firearm transferred in the state, pursuant to §11106.[14] All handgun serial numbers and sales are recorded by the state in the Department of Justice's Automated Firearms System, along with those of many long guns. While there is no requirement for California residents to register handguns owned prior to 1991 with law enforcement, §12025 and §12031 enhance several misdemeanor offenses to felonies if the handgun is not on file in the Department of Justice's Automated Firearms System. New residents must register handguns (purchased outside of California) with DOJ within 60 days. As of January 1, 2014, long gun serial numbers are also recorded, where as previously only the sale was recorded. However, it is not required that owners of long guns purchased prior to 2014 register their firearms and it is not a crime to be in possession of an un-registered firearm.
Owner license required? No No None
Assault weapon law? Yes Yes §30500, §30515 Illegal to possess, import, or purchase assault weapons and .50 BMG rifles, unless such weapons were acquired by the owner prior to June 1, 1989. While California's Assault Weapons Ban does allow individuals to obtain, transport or possess banned weapons with permission from the DOJ, the DOJ generally does not grant such permission to ordinary citizens. Legally defined assault weapons and .50 BMG rifles listed by make and model by the DOJ must be registered. Their sale and transfer is prohibited. Military look-alike rifles that are not chambered for .50 BMG and are not on the DOJ roster are legal to purchase or possess, with some restrictions in configuration – known as "banned features". Active-duty military members residing out of state and assigned to duty in California may bring personally-owned assault weapons into the state. The military member's residence must be in a state that permits private citizens to own and possess assault weapons, and the firearms must be registered with the California Department of Justice prior to the servicemember's arrival in California by submitting the registration form with a copy of the member's Permanent Change of Station (PCS) orders and an authorization letter from the installation commander.

With the passage of Senate Bill 880 and Assembly Bill 1135 in June 2016, the state's assault weapon ban has been expanded to include all semi-automatic center-fire rifles and shotguns that have a "bullet button" detachable magazine; effectively repealing a prior law that made "bullet button" magazines required on all newly manufactured weapons with detachable magazines. The sale or transfer of such weapons will be prohibited, effective January 1, 2017. Those purchased prior to January 1, 2017 must be registered with the DOJ by the start of 2018. The definition of types of weapons that are banned has been expanded, the exact definitions should be reviewed at the California DOJ website.[15]

Magazine capacity restriction? Yes Yes §32310

Section 32310 of the Penal Code states: "commencing January 1, 2000, any person in this state who manufactures or causes to be manufactured, imports into the state, keeps for sale, or offers or exposes for sale, or who gives, lends, buys, or receives any large-capacity magazine is punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year or imprisonment". Thus, the offenses listed can be charged as a felony or a misdemeanor at the discretion of the prosecutor.[16] The section continues further by explaining that: "'manufacturing' includes both fabricating a magazine and assembling a magazine from a combination of parts, including, but not limited to, the body, spring, follower, and floor plate or end plate, to be a fully functioning large-capacity magazine". Until January 1, 2014, it was only a crime to "manufacture, import, keep for sale, offer or expose for sale, or give or lend any large-capacity magazine". Assembly Bill 48 was signed by Governor Jerry Brown on October 11, 2013 and expanded previous prohibitions by making it illegal to buy or receive a large-capacity magazine or magazine rebuild kit.[17] Peace officers (under Penal Code Section 830) and "person licensed pursuant to [CA Penal Code] Sections 26700 to 26915" are exempt this prohibition on the purchase and sale of large-capacity magazines for personal use. However, federal law enforcement officers are not exempt and must obtain large-capacity magazines through their agency.[18] In November 2016 California voters approved Proposition 63. The referendum outlaws the possession of magazines that can hold more than ten rounds of ammunition, requires background checks for all ammunition sales, and mandates the reporting of lost or stolen firearms.[19] On June 30, 2017, a federal judge blocked the enforcement of Proposition 63's ban on the possession of magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition, pending the outcome of litigation concerning the ban. Magazines that would have been subject to the Proposition 63 ban are legal for private citizens to keep until the injunction is either lifted and/or the ban is upheld by the courts.[20]

Carry permits required? Yes Yes §26150 "May issue," depending on jurisdiction. County sheriff's or local Police Chief's discretion, many counties are de facto "no-issue", while others are "shall-issue" in practice. CCW permits valid statewide. Out-of-state permits not valid in California. California's may-issue law has been held constitutional by an en banc panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. The Supreme Court refused to hear an appeal of this holding.[21]
Open carry? Partial Partial §26350 Long guns and handguns may be openly carried in unincorporated rural areas where firearm discharge is not prohibited by local ordinance. In a county with a population of less than 200,000 residents, a permit to carry a handgun "loaded and exposed" may be issued by the county sheriff, valid only in the issuing county. A person may also open carry if he or she "reasonably believes that any person or the property of any person is in immediate, grave danger and that the carrying of the weapon is necessary for the preservation of that person or property."[22]
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes §53701 GC Most but not all local restrictions preempted.
Castle doctrine law? Yes Yes California never requires a duty to retreat whether in your own home or not. The state acknowledges a legal presumption that an intruder poses a deadly threat if in your own home or property that is owned and controlled by yourself.
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes §12220, §12020, §12020 Possession of automatic weapons or short-barreled shotguns or rifles prohibited without DOJ "Dangerous Weapons Permit"; permission rarely granted outside of film industry. Suppressors (aka silencers) prohibited. Destructive devices are prohibited unless are designated as curios & relics, in which case a collectors permit can be obtained. The only AOWs that are permitted are smoothbore pistols and firearms with a combination of a smoothbore and rifle barrel.
Peaceable journey laws? No No California courts have ruled that large capacity magazines (LCM) that are disassembled or LCM parts are legal to possess. Otherwise federal rules are observed.
Waiting period? Yes Yes §26815(a)[2], §26950-27140 [3], §27540(a) [4],

§27600-27750 [5]

California has a ten (10) day waiting period for all firearm purchases, transfers, and private sales which must be conducted through a federal and state firearm license holder. That is, upon purchase, the purchaser must wait 10 days after the purchase before the firearm is released to the owner.

On August 25, 2014, the California’s 10-day waiting period for gun purchases was ruled unconstitutional by the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California which found that "the 10-day waiting periods of Penal Code [sections 26815(a) and 27540(a)] violate the Second Amendment" as applied to members of certain classifications (notably holders of concealed carry permits) and "burdens the Second Amendment rights of the Plaintiffs".[23] On December 14, 2016 this ruling was overturned by a three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.[24] The plaintiffs' petition for an en banc rehearing was denied April 4, 2017; a Supreme Court certiorari petition is pending.[25]

Background checks required for private sales? Yes Yes Cal. § 27545 Private party transfers of firearms must be conducted through a licensed dealer, who is required by federal law to conduct a background check and keep a record of the sale.

Colorado[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No No
Firearm registration? No No
Assault weapon law? No No DRMC § 38-130 Denver ordinance bans assault weapons.
Magazine Capacity Restriction? Yes Yes CRS §§ 18-12-302, 18-12-303 After July 1, 2013, magazines holding more than 15 rounds may not be sold, transferred, or possessed unless they were lawfully owned prior to July 1, 2013. Firearms with a tubular magazine which are either chambered in .22 rimfire or operated by lever action are exempt from this regulation, as are magazines "permanently altered" to limit the capacity to 15 or less.
Owner license required? No No
Concealed Carry permits required? No Yes CRS § 18-12-203 Colorado is a shall issue state for concealed carry. Permits are issued by local sheriff offices to county residents.
Open carry? Yes* Yes* CRS § 18-12;
DRMC §§ 38-117(b), 38-118
*Legal without permit requirements except in Denver and other posted areas.
Concealed within a vehicle? Yes Yes CRS §§ 18-12-105(2b), 33-6-125;
DRMC §§ 38-117(f), 38-118, 14-92
No permit is required. Pistols may be carried with chamber and magazine loaded. Rifles and shotguns must be carried with an empty chamber, but the magazine may be loaded.
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes CRS § 29-11.7-103 Local ordinances are preempted by state law, but Denver bans assault weapons and open carry.
NFA weapons restricted? No No CRS § 18-12-102 NFA items are defined as a "dangerous weapon". Subsection 5: "It shall be an affirmative defense to the charge of possessing a dangerous weapon...that said person has a valid permit and license for possession of such weapon."
Peaceable Journey laws? Yes Yes CRS § 18-12-105.6; DRMC §§ 38-117(f), 38-118 Denver's restrictions on transport/possession of firearms in vehicles do not apply to persons traveling to or from other jurisdictions; see Trinen v. City & County of Denver, 53 P.3d 754
Castle Doctrine? Yes Yes CRS § 18-1-704.5 A legal resident of a property has the right to use deadly force to defend themselves, other occupants, and property from armed or unarmed intruders. Known colloquially as the "Make My Day Law", in reference to a line spoken by "Dirty Harry" Callahan in the film Sudden Impact.
Stand Your Ground Law? No No
Background checks required for private sales? Yes Yes CRS § 18-12-112 For private party transfers of firearms, the seller must request that a licensed dealer perform a background check of the buyer, and must get approval of the transfer from the Colorado Bureau of Investigation. Transfers of antique firearms, bona-fide gifts or loans from immediate family members, and transfers to estate executors or trustees are exempt. Temporary transfers are strictly regulated.

Connecticut[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? Yes Yes CGS 29-33(b),
CGS 29–36(f), CGS 29-38m(c)
Certificate of Eligibility for Pistol and Revolvers or Long Guns or Ammunition required to purchase handguns, long guns or ammunition, respectively or a State Permit to Carry Pistols and Revolvers to purchase any of the above. Applicants must complete an approved safety course, and pass a National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) background check and mental health records check prior to issuance of certificate. Certificates of Eligibility are granted on a Shall-Issue basis to qualified applicants, and are valid for five years. There is a 14-day waiting period for the purchase of long guns, with exceptions for peace officers, Active-Duty military members, and holders of carry permits. With the passing of Public Act 13-3, hunting licenses (which take approximately 12 hours to complete versus the eight hours the NRA Basic Pistol Course takes) may no longer be used to purchase ammunition or long rifles. Long guns and ammunition purchased outside of Connecticut are not subject to the long gun and ammunition eligibility requirements (even if one is a CT resident) other than the two-week waiting period must be observed for long gun transfers out of state, unless one has a valid hunting license or carry permit.
Firearm registration? Partial Partial CGS 53–202 Registration required for assault weapons purchased between September 13, 1994 and April 1, 2014 and for machine guns obtained before January 1, 2014.

There is a de facto registry of the sale (including the serial numbers) of handguns and long guns purchased in state that is maintained by the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection (DESPP). Any transfer, be it from a dealer or private party, must be accompanied by an authorization number issued by the DESPP and a form containing personal and weapon identification (DPS-3-C) must be submitted to DESPP and local police. This form is collected and maintained on all guns purchased from FFL dealers as well. The DPS-3-C form is not required for long gun transfers made out of state, and there is no legal requirement/penalty to register firearms purchased out of state or lawfully obtained before April 1, 2014.

Assault weapon law? Yes Yes CGS 53–202 Partial ban. Selective fire weapons, some .50 BMG variants, and semiautomatic center-fire firearms with one defined feature; banned weapons lawfully possessed prior to this date must be registered with DESPP. Registered weapons may only be sold or transferred to a licensed gun dealer, to the State Police or local police department or transferred to a recipient outside of Connecticut. Assault weapons manufactured and lawfully obtained prior to September 13, 1994 no longer require registration with DESPP and may be sold or transferred to non-prohibited persons.[26] Exceptions exist for active and retired law enforcement and military members.
Magazine capacity restriction? Yes Yes 53-202w As of April 4, 2013, magazines holding more than 10 rounds are considered Large Capacity Magazines (LCM), and such magazines manufactured after that date may not be sold or transferred within the state. Existing owners of LCMs may possess such magazines if they declare and register them with the DESPP before January 1, 2014; Owners of registered LCMs may not load such magazines with more than 10 rounds except when inside the owner's home or on the premises of a licensed shooting range. Even if an individual has a permit to carry a pistol or revolver, they can never carry, other than at a shooting range, a pistol that has an LCM loaded with more than 10 bullets. Possessing an unregistered Large Capacity Magazine obtained prior to the ban's effective date is an infraction with a $90 fine for the first offense, and a Class D felony (punishable by up to 5 years in prison and/or $5,000 fine) for subsequent offenses. Unlawfully possessing a LCM obtained after the effective date of the ban is a Class D felony.
Owner license required? No No CGS 23-37a(b) No license/permit is required to own any firearm/ammunition in Connecticut, except for grandfathered assault weapons manufactured and obtained between September 13, 1994 and April 4, 2013.
Carry permits required? Yes Yes CGS 29–28 Shall-Issue, with Limited Discretion. Connecticut's pistol permit law specifies that issuing authorities May-Issue pistol permits to qualified applicants, but the state's courts have generally ruled that permits must be granted on a Shall-Issue basis to applicant's meeting the state's qualifications for a pistol permit, as Connecticut does not require an applicant to "show good cause" for needing a permit. Issuing local authorities have limited discretion to deny a permit when he or she has personal knowledge of the applicant's character that would not otherwise be reflected on a background check. A denial on this basis would have to be justified with supporting evidence showing that the applicant is not of "suitable" character to be granted a pistol permit, but virtually all cases are thrown out if the applicant is not otherwise barred from owning firearms.

Connecticut has a two-step permitting process: a 60-day Temporary permit issued by local authorities and a 5-year Regular permit issued by the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection (DESPP). Issuance of a Temporary permit is technically not a prerequisite to apply for a Regular permit, but in practice an applicant must await a decision from local authorities on the temporary permit application before applying to DESPP for the Regular permit. If the local permit is denied for any reason, instead one files an appeal to DESPP to have the state board re-examine the application. If the state board denies the permit (rare occurrence), a court appeal is possible. Permit needed to carry open or concealed. Exceptions for peace officers and Active-Duty military members. Out of state permits not valid in Connecticut, but non-residents may apply for a Connecticut non-resident carry permit through the mail. Non-residents must have a carry permit issued by a United States jurisdiction to apply.

Open carry? Partial Yes Connecticut is a Licensed Open Carry state. A Connecticut Permit to Carry Pistols or Revolvers allows the carry of handguns openly or concealed any place in the state that is not considered "off-limits" under state law. Despite this, local law enforcement have been known[citation needed] to detain carriers. There have been very few actual arrests and no convictions in recent history as a result of carrying unconcealed however. State law is silent on the open carry of long guns in public either with or without a permit, although some municipalities have enacted ordinances restricting or banning the practice. Various towns and the state police as well have articulated through training memos that open carry is legal and to not harass people who carry openly without some other cause.[27]
Vehicle carry permitted? No Yes A valid Connecticut pistol permit is required to carry a loaded weapon in a vehicle. Otherwise, the weapon must be unloaded and the firearm its ammunition must be stored in separate locked containers during transport.
Duty to inform? No No Connecticut is not a duty to inform state. Those who are carrying a pistol or revolver must carry their permit with them.
Castle Doctrine? Yes Yes No duty to retreat if you are in your home or on property owned by yourself. There is no "stand your ground law" but, courts have granted civil immunity to those with carry permits and used "reasonable force" in the past.
State preemption of local restrictions? Partial Yes CGS 29–28 State pre-emption of local ordinances not explicitly specified in state law, but established by court precedence. Most municipalities have ordinances restricting or banning the discharge of firearms outside of firing ranges or designated hunting areas during hunting seasons. Some municipalities have restrictions or bans on carrying long guns in public places. The City of New London and the City of New Britain previously had ordinances that forbade open carry of hanguns, which have since been repealed in both cities.
NFA weapons restricted? No No CGS 53–202(c) SBR, SBS, DD, suppressors are legal, provided they also comply with the assault weapons provisions, unless purchased before October 1, 1993. Machine guns are legal if purchased and registered with the state before January 1, 2014. Non-selective fire machine guns may be transferred to another resident within Connecticut.
Peaceable Journey laws? No No CGS 29–38 Federal rules observed.
Background checks required for private sales? Yes Yes Private party firearm transfers require that a background check of the buyer be performed by a federally licensed dealer.

Delaware[edit]


Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? No No
Firearm registration? No No
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine capacity restriction? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required? Yes Yes 11 Del.C. § 1441 Delaware is a officially "may issue" state for concealed carry, but mostly shall-issue in practice. Permits are generally issued to all applicants not barred from owning a firearm.
Open Carry? Yes Yes Open carry without permit is generally permitted. A 2014 State Supreme Court ruling recognized that Open Carry was a long standing fundamental right, barring local prohibitions in effect prior to July 4, 1985.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes* Yes* Complete preemption, except for town Ordinance No. 146 (enacted 6-26-1980), which bans the carry of firearms, openly or concealed in Elsmere's town parks. Also the city of Dover did require a permit from the police chief or a state concealed permit to open carry but this was repealed in October of 2015 in keeping with the 2014 State Supreme Court ruling.
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes SBRs and AOWs are legal. The city of Wilmington prohibits possession of SBRs within city limits. Machine guns, suppressors, Destructive Devices and SBS are prohibited for the average citizen.[28]
Peaceable Journey laws? No No Federal rules observed.
Background checks required for private sales? Yes Yes 147th General Assembly: Chapter 20 Private party transfers of firearms to persons other than family members must be conducted though a licensed dealer, who is required by federal law to conduct a background check and keep a record of the sale. A transfer to a person who possesses a valid License to Carry a Concealed Deadly Weapon is exempt from this requirement.

District of Columbia[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
Permit to purchase? Yes Yes The firearm registration process also serves as a permitting process.
Firearm registration? Yes Yes All firearms must be registered with the Metropolitan Police Department. A background check and online training are required.
Assault weapon law? Yes Yes Assault weapons and .50 BMG rifles prohibited.
Magazine capacity restriction? Yes Yes Illegal to possess or acquire magazines of more than 10 round capacity.
Owner license required? Yes Yes The firearm registration process also serves as a licensing process.
Carry permits required? N/A Yes As of October 2017, D.C. is a "shall issue" jurisdiction. See history section below.
Open Carry? No No Open carry is currently prohibited.
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes Automatic firearms, short barreled rifles, short barreled shotguns, and silencers prohibited.
Peaceable journey laws? No No Federal law (FOPA) applies.
Background checks required for private sales? Yes Yes DC Code §7–2505.02 Private party firearm transfers must be conducted through a licensed dealer, who is required by federal law to conduct a background check and keep a record of the sale. This only applies to sales made within the District of Columbia. Sales made by DC firearms owners outside of the District of Columbia must only conform to that state's transfer laws

Florida[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State license to Purchase? No No None
Firearm registration? No No Chapter 790.335 It is a felony under Florida law to create, maintain or publish any list, record or registry of legally owned firearms or law-abiding firearm owners.
Owner license required? No No None
Assault weapon law? No No None
Magazine Capacity Restriction? No No None
Concealed Carry licenses required? No Yes Chapter 790.06 Allows concealed possession of handguns, electronic weapons or devices, tear gas guns, knives, or billies, but not long guns or machine guns per Chapter 790.06(1). Concealed carry only; no open carry of firearms allowed, even with license, except when hunting, fishing, camping, or while practice shooting and while traveling to and from those activities.
Open Carry? No No Chapter 790.053, Open carry of firearms is generally banned except open or concealed carry is allowed for without a license under 790.25 for certain protected places and activities. Exceptions include in the home, place of work, hunting, fishing, camping, or while practice shooting and while traveling to and from those activities.
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes Chapter 790.33
NFA weapons restricted? No No Chapter 790.161 Making, possessing, throwing, projecting, or discharging any destructive device, or any attempt to do so is a felony in Florida.
Peaceable Journey laws? No No None Federal rules observed.
Duty to inform? No No None Florida law does not require one to disclose one's possession of a firearm on contact with Law Enforcement.
Background checks required for private sales? No No None

Georgia[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No No None
Firearm registration? No No None
Assault weapon law? No No None
Magazine Capacity Restriction? No No None
Owner license required? No No None
Carry permits required? No Yes O.C.G.A § 16-11-129 Concealed or open carry allowed with permit. See also O.C.G.A § 43–38–10 which is a special permit for armed security guards.
Open Carry? Yes Yes O.C.G.A § 16-11-126 Open carry of handguns allowed with a license issued under O.C.G.A § 16-11-129.
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes O.C.G.A § 16-11-173 Despite state preemption, several localities continue to have local gun restrictions. Recent court rulings have resulted in many of these ordinances being withdrawn.
NFA weapons restricted? No No None
Peaceable Journey laws? No No None Federal rules observed.
Background checks required for private sales? No No None

Hawaii[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? Yes Yes
Firearm registration? Yes Yes HRS 0134-0002, HRS 0134-0003 Must be registered with county police chief within 5 days of purchase or arrival to Hawaii. Registration not required for black powder and pre-1899 firearms.
Assault weapon law? No Yes Law bans assault pistols with two or more banned features. Does not apply to rifles or shotguns with a barrel length greater than 16 inches
Magazine capacity restriction? No Yes HRS134-8(c)

HRS134-11(3)

Any magazine with a capacity of more than 10 rounds that can be inserted into a pistol is prohibited. Members of organizations are exempt from the pistol magazine limit at places of target shooting.
Owner license required? No No No license required to own any firearms in Hawaii, but all firearms, including those brought into the state by new residents, must be registered.
Carry permits required? No Yes HRS 0134-0009 May-Issue by statute, but No-Issue in practice. The chief of police may grant a permit "in an exceptional case, when an applicant shows reason to fear injury to the applicant's person or property." In practice, Hawaii is "No-Issue," as issuing authorities rarely or never approve applications for permits. In March 2014, the 9th Circuit US Court of Appeals has ruled Hawaii's restrictive concealed carry policy unconstitutional, but the court has allowed the law to remain in effect while the State of Hawaii appeals the ruling.
Open carry? Yes Yes By law, Hawaii is a Licensed Open Carry State, but since licenses are rarely issued, the state is Non-Permissive for open carry in practice. The chief of police may grant a permit "Where the urgency or the need has been sufficiently indicated" provided that the person "is engaged in the protection of life and property." In practice, Hawaii is "No-Issue," as issuing authorities rarely or never approve applications for permits.

No laws against open carrying long guns.

State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes Municipalities may enact and enforce local regulations only if they are identical to, and provide the same penalty as, state law.
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes Machine guns, short barreled rifles, short barreled shotguns, and silencers/suppressors are prohibited from the average citizen. Certain Destructive Devices and AOWs are allowed with proper tax stamp and NFA paperwork from the ATF.
Peaceable journey laws? No No None Federal laws observed.
Background checks required for private sales? Yes Yes HRS §134-2 A person who wants to purchase a handgun or long gun must obtain a permit to acquire the ownership of a firearm, which requires a background check of the applicant.

Idaho[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No No
Firearm registration? No No
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine Capacity Restriction? No No
Owner license required? No No
Concealed Carry permits required? No No Idaho 18-3302 May carry concealed when outside the confines of a city or city limits, and inside a vehicle while engaged in a lawful outdoor activity. As of July 1, 2016, permitless concealed carry within cities is also legal for Idaho residents 21 years and older and active military (as of April 4, 2017). Nonresidents still need a permit to carry concealed within city limits.
Open Carry? Yes Yes May carry openly without a permit in a vehicle or on foot.
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes Cities May regulate the discharge of firearms within their confines or limits.
NFA weapons restricted? No No Permitted as long as such possession is in compliance with all federal regulations
Peaceable Journey laws? No No Federal rules observed.
Background checks required for private sales? No No

Illinois[edit]

Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? Yes Yes 430 ILCS 65 FOID required.
Owner permit required? Yes Yes 430 ILCS 65 FOID required.
Firearm registration? No No
License required for concealed carry? n/a Yes Public Act 098-0063: Firearm Concealed Carry Act Shall-issue with limited discretion.[29] Concealed carry licenses are issued by the state police. Licenses issued by other states are not recognized, but nonresidents from states with "substantially similar" licensing requirements can apply for an Illinois nonresident license.
Open carry? No No
Vehicle carry? No Yes An Illinois concealed carry license is required for Illinois residents. Non-residents may carry in a vehicle if they are eligible to carry in their home state.
State preemption of local restrictions? Partial Partial Public Act 098-0063: Firearm Concealed Carry Act Preemption for the regulation of handguns and handgun ammunition, and for the transportation of all firearms. Preemption for laws regulating assault weapons, unless enacted before July 20, 2013.
Assault weapon law? No No Cook Co. Code of Ord. §54-211
Chi. Mun. Code §8-20-170
Cook County and the city of Chicago have separately banned the possession of assault weapons, as have several Chicago suburbs, prior to the preemption deadline of July 20, 2013.
Magazine capacity restriction? No No No state-level restrictions. Some local jurisdictions have enacted various magazine capacity restrictions.
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes 720 ILCS 5/24
720 ILCS 5/24-2
Automatic firearms, short-barreled shotguns, and suppressors prohibited. Short-barreled rifles allowed only for Curios and Relics license holders or members of a bona fide military reenactment group. AOW (Any Other Weapon) and large-bore DD (Destructive Device) allowed with proper approval and tax stamp from ATF.
Castle doctrine / stand your ground laws? Partial Partial 720 ILCS 5 Illinois has no stand-your-ground law, however there is also no duty to retreat. The use of force is justified when a person reasonably believes that it is necessary "to prevent imminent death or great bodily harm to himself or another, or the commission of a forcible felony." There are some additional protections for defense against unlawful entry into a dwelling.
Peaceable journey laws? Partial Yes Public Act 098-0063: Firearm Concealed Carry Act Illinois has state preemption for the transportation of handguns and handgun ammunition. Non-Illinois residents are granted a limited exception to lawfully carry a concealed firearm within a vehicle if they are eligible to carry a firearm in public under the laws of their own state. Non-residents who are permitted to possess a firearm in their own state are not required to have a FOID card. Some localities have banned the possession of assault weapons.
Background checks required for private sales? Yes Yes 430 ILCS 65 The seller must verify the buyer's FOID card with the Illinois State Police, and must keep a record of the sale for at least ten years.

Indiana[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase? No No None
Firearm registration? No No None
Assault weapon law? No No None
Magazine capacity restriction? No No None
Owner license required? No No None
Carry license required? No Yes IC 35-47-2-3 Shall-Issue. Officially "License to Carry Handgun", which covers concealed and open carry.

As of July 1, 2017, persons who a) are at least 18 years old, b) are protected by a protection order, c) have applied for a license, and d) are not prohibited from possessing a handgun may carry a handgun without a license for 60 days from the date of the protection order being issued.[30]

Open carry? Yes Yes IC 35-47-2-3 May carry openly with license. According to the state's official website, "carrying an exposed firearm in public may be alarming to some people and create unnecessary and unwanted attention to yourself."[31]

On May 9, 2017, the Indiana Supreme Court ruled that detaining an individual based solely upon their possession of a handgun (in order to verify that they are licensed) violates the Fourth Amendment absent any other reasonable articulable suspicion of a crime being committed.[32]

Vehicle carry? Yes Yes IC 35-47-2-3 May carry in a vehicle with license. [33]
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes IC 35-47-11.1-2 Enacted in 2011
NFA weapons restricted? No No IC 35-47-5-10 Federal laws observed.
Shall certify? Yes Yes Shall certify within 15 days.[34]
Peaceable journey laws? No No None Federal rules observed.
Castle Doctrine law? Yes Yes IC 35-41-3-2 No duty to retreat from dwelling, curtilage, or occupied motor vehicle.
Duty to inform? No No IC 35-47-2-24 Indiana law does not require one to disclose possession of a firearm on contact with Law Enforcement.
Background checks required for private sales? No No None

Iowa[edit]

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
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 permit required? N/A Yes 724.4 Iowa is a "shall issue" state. An Iowa carry permit is technically a "Permit To Carry Weapons", and is not limited to firearms. It allows people in Iowa to open or conceal carry any kind of weapon, so long as that weapon is not otherwise illegal to own in Iowa. However, based on the current wording of the statute, state preemption only applies to firearms. As such, residents are advised to be aware of local ordinances that might restrict the possession of knives, swords, or other types of weapons that are not firearms.
Open Carry? Yes Yes 724.7 Iowa issues a "Permit to Carry Weapons" that is necessary to carry a firearm. Firearms may be carried open or concealed. Concealed carry is more typical in Iowa, but open carry is not uncommon.
Castle Doctrine Yes 704

707.6

Civil immunity for use of "reasonable force" in self defense
Firearm registration? No No
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine Capacity Restriction? No No
Owner license required? No No
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes 724.1 Machine guns, destructive devices, etc. illegal.

Suppressors legal as of March 31, 2016.[35] Short barreled rifle/shotgun legal as of April 13, 2017.[36]

Background checks required for private sales? No Yes 724.15 A person acquiring a handgun must have an annual Permit To Acquire pistols or revolvers or a current Permit To Carry.

Kansas[edit]

Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? No No
Firearm registration? No No
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine Capacity Restriction? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required? No No Kansas Chapter 75 Article 7c As of July 1, 2013, you may conceal carry in any public area of state and municipal buildings. This encompasses carrying at public universities (schools were allowed to opt out until 2017; post-2017, only buildings with "adequate security measures" may remain gun-free).

May carry concealed without permit as of July 1, 2015, however permits can be issued for those who wish to have them.

Open Carry? Yes Yes May carry openly without permit/license.
NFA weapons restricted? No No The second amendment protection act Short barreled shotguns, and machine guns must be registered under the National Firearms Act. However a personal firearm, a firearm accessory or ammunition that is owned or manufactured commercially or privately in Kansas and that

remains within the borders of Kansas is not subject to any federal law, suppressor that is manufactured in Kansas and remains within the borders of Kansas are not subject to any federal law, including the NFA. A firearm manufactured in Kansas must have the words "Made in Kansas" clearly stamped on a central metallic part, such as the receiver or frame.

Shall Certify? Yes Yes 48-1906 Shall certify within 15 days.
Peaceable journey laws? No No Federal rules observed.
Background checks required for private sales? No No

Kentucky[edit]

Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? No No
Firearm registration? No No
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine capacity restriction? No No
Owner license required? No No
Concealed carry permits required? No Yes KRS § 237.110 Kentucky issues permits to carry concealed deadly weapons which allows for the concealed carry of both handguns and long guns.
Open carry? Yes Yes May carry openly without permit/license.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes KRS § 65.870 Exception: KRS § 237.115 allows the following entities to restrict concealed carry:
  • Postsecondary educational institutions
  • Any unit of government within the state in buildings that it owns, leases, or occupies – however, concealed carry is allowed in highway rest areas, public housing, and private dwellings
NFA weapons restricted? No No
Shall certify? Yes Yes 237.075 Shall certify within 15 days.
Peaceable journey laws? No No Federal rules observed.
Background checks required for private sales? No No

Louisiana[edit]

Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? No No
Firearm registration? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required? No Yes LRS 40:1379.3 Louisiana is a "shall issue" state for concealed carry.
Open carry permitted? Yes Yes Open carry is generally permitted without a license, but may be restricted by local governments with laws in place before July 15, 1985.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes Local restrictions in place before July 15, 1985 are grandfathered in. Parishes may regulate hunting and the shooting of firearms.
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine Capacity Restriction? No No
NFA weapons restricted? No No Federal rules observed.
Background checks required for private sales? No No

Maine[edit]

Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? No No
Firearm registration? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required? No No 25 MRS §2003 Maine is a "shall issue" state for concealed carry. Constitutional/permitless carry legislation took effect on October 15, 2015.
Open carry permitted? Yes Yes Open carry is permitted.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes Local governments may restrict the discharge of firearms.
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine capacity restriction? No* No 12 MRS §11214
NFA weapons restricted? No No
Shall certify? Yes Yes 25 MRSA §2013(3) Shall certify within 15 days.
Background checks required for private sales? No No

Maryland[edit]

Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? No Yes Md Public Safety Article Section 5-117.1[37] A Handgun Qualification License is required, unless exempted (Active Duty/Retired Military with identification cards, Active/Retired Law Enforcement with department credentials, Federal Firearms Licensees); training is required, unless exempted; fingerprints are required; background checks are required; does not invalidate the requirement to perform a comprehensive background check for every handgun purchase transaction.[37]
Firearm registration? No Yes The state police maintain a permanent record of all handgun transfers. Automatic weapons must be registered with the state police.
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required? No Yes Maryland is a "may issue" state for concealed carry. Applicants must demonstrate a "good and substantial reason" to carry a handgun. Permits are normally very difficult (but not impossible) for ordinary citizens to obtain.
Open carry permitted? Yes Yes Open carry is permitted with a carry license, but is not generally practiced except by uniformed private security officers. Long guns and antique handguns may be carried openly without a license.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes Maryland has state preemption for most but not all firearm laws.
"Assault weapon" law? Yes Yes Md Criminal Law Article Section 4-303
Firearms Safety Act of 2013
Certain models of firearms are banned as assault pistols and assault long guns. It is illegal to possess an assault weapon or a copycat weapon with two or more specified features (folding stock, grenade/flare launcher, flash suppressor) unless owned before 10/1/2013, or received through inheritance from a lawful possessor and not otherwise forbidden to possess.[37]
Magazine capacity restriction? Yes Yes Illegal to purchase, sell or manufacture magazines with a capacity of greater than 10 rounds within Maryland. However, possession of magazines greater than 10 rounds is legal if purchased out of state. These may not, however, be transferred to a subsequent owner unless done so outside the state of Maryland.
NFA weapons restricted? No No Automatic firearms, SBSs, and SBRs must be owned in compliance with federal law. Law is silent in regards to DDs, silencers, and AOWs.
Background checks required for private sales? No Yes GAM Public Safety, §5-124 All private transfers of regulated firearms (handguns or assault weapons) must be processed through a licensed dealer or designated law enforcement agency which must conduct a background check on the buyer.

Massachusetts[edit]

Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? Yes Yes MA Ch. 140 Sec. 129C Firearm Identification (FID) or license to carry required.
Firearm registration? No No Although registration is not specifically required by law, transfers of firearm ownership are required to be recorded with the Massachusetts Executive Office of Public Safety and Security (EOPSS): by the seller if in state, or by the buyer if out of state. The Massachusetts EOPSS also provides the option to register a firearm, although, other than obtaining a firearm from out of state (a transfer of ownership), this is not required by law.
Owner license required? Yes Yes MA Ch. 140 Sec. 129C Firearm Identification (FID) or license to carry required.
Carry permits required? No Yes MA Ch. 140 Sec. 131 Massachusetts is a "may issue" state for carry; the issuing authority must provide written explanation for the denial of any application, which is subject to appeal. The issuing authority is the local police chief for most jurisdictions, who has discretion in issuing carry licenses based on an applicant's suitability and stated need. In most jurisdictions, applicants who pass a background check and complete required training are issued licenses, but the issuing authority may impose varying degrees of restriction on the license (e.g., hunting, carry to/from a range, firearms dealer, or gunsmith, only while on-duty (for security professionals), etc.). Towns closer to large cities (like Boston) are de facto restricted, whereas more rural (and some suburban) towns are more inclined to issue unrestricted licenses. Permits are valid statewide, provided the license-holder complies with restrictions (if any) imposed by the issuing authority.
Open carry permitted? No Yes An individual with a Class A unrestricted license to carry firearms (LTC-A) does not have to conceal a handgun in public. Moreover, in 2013, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled that the holder of a LTC-A license is not responsible for alarm caused by licensed carry of a handgun, and that a permit cannot be revoked for suitability purposes under these circumstances.[38] If police demand to see the permit, it must be produced, per G.L. c. 140, § 129 (c). Failure to produce a LTC upon demand by law enforcement is probable cause for arrest. Open carry of long guns is prohibited, except while hunting.
State preemption of local restrictions? No No There is limited preemption for some laws.
Assault weapon law? Yes Yes A two point "banned features" system is what defines an assault weapon. These assault weapons are prohibited unless lawfully owned on or prior to September 13, 1994. Firearms that do not have two or more "banned features" are legal to purchase with an LTC or in some cases a standard FID so long as magazine restrictions are followed to what your license allows.
Magazine Capacity Restriction? Yes Yes MA Ch. 140 Sec. 121 Illegal to possess magazines of over 10 rounds capacity. Pre-ban magazines manufactured before September 13, 1994 are exempt from this restriction.
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes MA Ch. 140 Sec. 131 Suppressors are restricted only for law enforcement or licensed manufacturers. Some destructive devices are banned at the state level, while others are banned at a local level. DD's can be completely illegal or legal depending on what town you live in. SBR's, SBS's, and AOW's are allowed with proper approval from the ATF. A machine gun license is required to possess a machine gun.
Background checks required for private sales? Yes Yes MA Ch. 140 Sec. 128A The seller must verify the buyer's Firearm Identification Card with the Department of Criminal Justice Information Services.

Michigan[edit]

Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? No Not from FFL Permit required for purchase from an individual if purchaser does not have a CPL or an FFL and the transaction is not processed through an FFL dealer.
Firearm registration? No Yes Handgun sales are required to be registered to local law enforcement.
Owner license required? No No
Carry permit required? No Yes MCL 28.452b Michigan is a "shall issue" state for concealed carry.
Open carry permitted? Yes Yes Open carry is generally permitted.[39] Carry in a vehicle requires a license.[40]
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes MCL 123.1102 City or Charter Township may restrict the discharge of firearms (see MCL 123.1104).
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine capacity restriction? No No
NFA weapons restricted? No No Short barreled shotguns, short barreled rifles, automatic weapons, AOW's, and silencers/suppressors are allowed if in compliance with federal law.
Background checks required for private sales? No Yes MCL 28.422a A person acquiring a handgun must have either a handgun purchase license or a license to carry a concealed handgun. A background check is required to obtain either of these licenses.

Minnesota[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No**** Yes §624.7131 Permit to purchase required to transfer/purchase long guns with a pistol grip and handguns through FFL dealers. A permit to carry also acts as a permit to purchase for Minnesota residents. Traditional rifles and shotguns may be purchased without a permit. There are private seller regulations in Minnesota. Please read here: https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/?id=624.7132#stat.624.7132 . A private seller is guilty of a gross misdemeanor if a private transfer is made to a prohibited person who then uses or possesses the firearm during the commission of a felony crime of violence within one year of the transfer. Minn. Stat. https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/?id=624.7132#stat.624.7132

§§ 609.66, subd. 1f (https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/?id=609.66#stat.609.66.1f) and 624.7132, subd. 12(1)(https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/?id=624.7132#stat.624.7132.12).

Firearm registration? No No
Assault weapon law? No* No* §624.7131 Persons 18 and older may purchase assault weapons with a permit to purchase (or permit to carry for persons 21 and older).
Magazine Capacity Restriction? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required? Yes Yes §624.714 Shall Issue. Minnesota Permit to Carry a Pistol required to carry handguns. Concealment is permitted but not required.
Open Carry? Yes Yes §624.7181 Whoever carries a BB gun, rifle, or shotgun on or about the person in a public place is guilty of a gross misdemeanor. A person under the age of 21 who carries a semiautomatic military-style assault weapon on or about their person in public place is guilty of a felony. However, you may carry a pistol or a long gun openly with permit to carry a pistol because, the law states that the prohibition on carrying does not include the carrying of a BB gun, rifle, or shotgun by a person who has a permit under section 624.714.
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes §471.633 Municipalities may regulate the discharge of firearms within their borders.
NFA weapons restricted? Partial Partial §609.67 Machine guns and short-barreled shotguns, unless designated Curios & Relics, are prohibited in most cases. Some destructive devices are prohibited in most cases. Sound suppressors and short barreled rifles are legal.
Peaceable Journey laws? Yes Yes §97B.045 §624.714, Subd. 9 Any legally possessed gun may be transported in a motor vehicle, provided it is unloaded and cased.
Background checks required for private sales? No No

Mississippi[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No No
Firearm registration? No No
Assault weapon law? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required? No No Code Sections 95-3-1, 45-9-101, 97-37-7, House Bill 506 of the 2011 Mississippi Legislature As of July 1, 2015 the concealed carry law was amended to say "no license shall be required under this section for a loaded or unloaded pistol or revolver carried in a purse, handbag, satchel, other similar bag or briefcase or fully enclosed case."[41]

On April 15, 2016, the law was further expanded to include belt and shoulder holsters and sheaths.[42][43] This effectively allows for constitutional carry in Mississippi. However, some forms of concealed carrying would still require a permit (e.g. Mexican carry or concealed in an ankle holster).

Licenses still available on a shall-issue basis, issued within 45 days. The license is valid for five years. An enhanced license allows for carrying at public universities and other places.

Concealed carry is not allowed in a k-12 school, courthouse, police station, detention facility, government meeting place, polling place, establishment primarily devoted to dispensing alcoholic beverages, athletic event, parade or demonstration for which a permit is required, passenger terminal of an airport, "place of nuisance" as defined in Mississippi Code section 95–3–1, or a location where a sign is posted and clearly visible from at least ten feet away saying that the "carrying of a pistol or revolver is prohibited". With an enhanced carry permit per Mississippi Code section 97-37-7(2) as amended by House Bill 506 of the 2011 Regular Session,[44] the prohibited locations to carry concealed are as follows: any police, sheriff or highway patrol station; any detention facility, prison or jail; courtrooms during a judicial proceeding; any "place of nuisance"; and (not listed in the Mississippi statutes, but still relevant) any place where the carrying of firearms is prohibited by federal law. A license to carry a pistol or revolver is not required for open carry. A license is not required for transporting a concealed or visible firearm in a vehicle.

Open Carry? Yes Yes House Bill 2 of the 2013 Mississippi Legislature The "HB2" Unlicensed Open Carry Law went into effect July 1, 2013. An injunction, declaring the definition of "concealed handgun" unconstitutionally vague, was initially put in place by a Circuit Court Judge in Jackson, MS. The injunction was vacated August 29th, 2013 by the Mississippi Supreme Court.[45]
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes No county or municipality may adopt any ordinance that restricts or requires the possession, transportation, sale, transfer or ownership of firearms or ammunition or their components. However, local governments may regulate the discharge of firearms, the carrying of firearms at a public park or public meeting, or the use of firearms in cases of insurrection, riots and natural disasters.
NFA weapons restricted? No No Permitted as long such possession is in compliance with all federal regulations
Peaceable Journey laws? Yes Yes
Background checks required for private sales? No No

Missouri[edit]

Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? No No
Firearm registration? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required ? No No Missouri is a "shall issue" state for concealed carry. Permitless carry took effect on January 1, 2017.[46]
Open carry permitted? Yes Yes Open carry is permitted. As of October 11, 2014, a valid CCW overrides local laws against Open Carry, state wide.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes Local governments are allowed to regulate open carry and the discharge of firearms (except in self defense); however, ccw permit holders are exempt from ordinances banning open carry.[47]
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine Capacity Restriction? No No
NFA weapons restricted? No No
Peaceable journey law? Yes Yes
Background checks required for private sales? No No

Montana[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No No
Firearm registration? No No
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine Capacity Restriction? No No
Owner license required? No No
Concealed Carry permits required? No Yes/No Montana 45-8-321 Montana is a "shall issue" state for citizens and permanent lawful residents who are 18 years old. The law was challenged for previously denying non-citizens permits.[48] The lawsuit was put on hold to give the legislature to opportunity to pass a bill to include permanent lawful residents. Such bill was signed by the governor on April 7, 2017.[49]

Concealed carry without a permit is generally allowed outside city, town, or logging camp limits.

Open Carry? Yes Yes May carry openly without permit/license.
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes M.C.A 45-8-351 Complete state preemption of firearms laws except localities may regulate the carrying of concealed or openly carried firearms to a public assembly, a publicly owned building, a park under its jurisdiction or a school. Localities may also regulate the possession of firearms by felons, minors, illegal aliens, or the mentally incompetent.
NFA weapons restricted? No No Permitted as long such possession is in compliance with all federal regulations.
Peaceable Journey laws? Yes Yes
Background checks required for private sales? No No Missoula enacted a universal background check ordinance in 2016, however Attorney General Tim Fox has opined that the ordinance is unlawful.[50]

Nebraska[edit]

Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? No Yes Neb. Rev. Stat. § 69-2403 A handgun certificate or a concealed carry permit is required for the purchase of a handgun.
Firearm registration? No No Omaha, Neb., Code § 20-251 et seq.; Lincoln, Neb., Muni. Code § 9.36.030 The City of Omaha requires the registration of all handguns. The City of Lincoln requires reporting of firearms sales other than long guns commonly used for sporting purposes.
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required? No Yes Nebraska is a "shall issue" state for concealed carry.
Open carry permitted? Yes Yes Open carry is generally permitted, but may be restricted by local governments. For open carry in a vehicle, the firearm must be clearly visible.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes* Yes* Nebraska has partial state preemption for most but not all firearms laws. Other than discharge ordinances, local firearms ordinances are preempted for individuals who hold a valid Concealed Handgun Permit (CHP). These local ordinances are still enforceable against non-permitholders.
Assault weapon law? No No
NFA weapons restricted? No No
Background checks required for private sales? No Yes Neb. Rev. Stat. § 69-2403 A person acquiring a handgun must have either a handgun certificate or a concealed handgun permit and has therefore been subject to a background check.

Nevada[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? No No
Firearm registration? No No As of June 2015, Clark County no longer requires the registration of handguns. There is now state preemption for firearm registration.[51]
Owner license required? No No
Concealed carry permits required ? No Yes NRS 202§3657 - Application and PermittingNRS 202§360 - Prohibited Persons Nevada is a "shall issue" state for concealed carry.
Open carry permitted? Yes Yes NV Constitution Article 1 Section 11NRS 503§165 - Carrying loaded rifle or shotgun in or on vehicle on or along public way unlawful; exceptions. Open carry is generally permitted throughout the state. For open carry in a vehicle, the firearm may be anywhere except concealed upon the person without a concealed firearm permit.[52][53]
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes NRS 244§364 - County of 700,000 or moreNRS 268§418 - City of 700,000 or moreNRS 269§222 - Town of 700,000 or more Local authorities may regulate the discharge of firearms. Handgun registration in Clark County was grandfathered in, until SB175 (signed into law June 2nd, 2015) removed the authority of the county to register handguns in Nevada.[54]
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine Capacity Restriction? No No
NFA weapons restricted? No No NRS 202§275  Possession, manufacture or disposition of short-barreled rifle or short-barreled shotgunNRS 202§350  Manufacture, importation, possession or use of dangerous weapon or silencer18 USC §922(b)4 - Unlawful Transfer27 CFR §478.98 - Sales or deliveries of destructive devices and certain firearms. Possession and ownership of an SBR, SBS, machine gun (selective-fire weapon), or silencer, all NFA items, are subject to federal purview and regulation.[55][56]
Background checks required for private sales? Yes* Yes* In November 2016, Nevada voters approved referendum Question 1, changing the law to require background checks for private sales.[57]

*Nevada Attorney General Adam Laxalt opined that the law is unenforceable.[58][59]

New Hampshire[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? No No NHRS XII §159:14
Firearm registration? No No
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine capacity restriction? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry license required? No No NHRS XII §159:6 Constitutional carry legal as of February 22, 2017.[60] Licenses remain available on a Shall-Issue basis for reciprocity purposes.
Open carry? Yes Yes NHRS XII §159:6
NHRS XVIII §207:7
Handgun open carry without license. Loaded long guns prohibited from motor vehicles.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes NHRS XII §159:26 Includes knives.
NFA weapons restricted? No No
Peaceable Journey laws? No No
Background checks required for private sales? No No

New Jersey[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? Yes Yes A lifetime purchaser identification card is required for purchase of rifles and shotguns, as well as for purchases of handgun ammunition. A permit to purchase a handgun, valid for 90 days is required for each handgun purchase. Only one handgun can be purchased within a 30-day period. According to state law, purchase permits/identification cards are supposed to be granted on a Shall-Issue basis, but in practice many issuing authorities require the applicant to justify the need for a firearm before granting approval for the permit/ID card. Some issuing authorities have been known to arbitrarily deny purchase permits and ID cards.
Firearm registration? No Yes* The NJ State Police Firearms Investigation Unit (NJSP FIU) maintains a record of all handgun transfers, except for inherited firearms willed to the transferee, or firearms brought to the state by new residents moving to the state. Firearm registration is voluntary, but since handgun purchase permits are also a form of register, there is de facto mandatory handgun registration for handguns purchased in-state. Purchases by NJ residents must either be from a licensed dealer in NJ or a private individual who is a resident of NJ. In both dealer purchases and private sales, a copy of the purchase permit is sent to the NJSP FIU. A NICS background check at the point of sale is only required for purchases from dealers.
Owner license required? No No No license is required to own any firearm in New Jersey, except an assault firearm or machine gun.
Carry permits required? Yes Yes N.J. Admin. Code § 13:54 No-Issue for ordinary citizens. New Jersey calls its permit a "permit to carry a handgun" and is a "may-issue" by law for firearm carry, either openly or concealed, but permits are rarely or never granted to the general populace. Permit applicants must "specify in detail the urgent necessity for self-protection, as evidenced by specific threats or previous attacks which demonstrate a special danger to the applicant's life that cannot be avoided by means other than by issuance of a permit to carry a handgun." Then it must be approved by both the township's police chief and a NJ judge, whereas the applicant will not know who denied the $200 application to carry. As a result of this tough standard, New Jersey is effectively a "no issue" state unless one is a retired law enforcement officer or an individual with political connections. Armed security officers and armored car drivers typically get restricted permits limited to carry while on duty only. A letter of need from the security company is required.
Open carry? Yes Yes Open carry is allowed only with a permit to carry a handgun and is generally not practiced except by security officers and others who carry firearms on duty. While technically legal to carry long guns with a Firearm Purchaser ID card, it is generally frowned upon by law enforcement, except when hunting. Long guns can be carried unloaded with a valid firearms purchaser ID card, but one can expect to be detained and questioned by law enforcement officials in most places if carrying in this manner.
State preemption of local restrictions? No No There is limited state preemption for some firearm laws.
Assault weapon law? Yes Yes N.J.S.A 2C:39-1[61] New Jersey prohibits the possession of certain named firearms or "substantially identical" firearms deemed to be assault firearms, including possession of parts from which an assault firearm may be readily assembled. Firearms classed as assault firearms but acquired before May 1, 1990 and registered with the state are legal to possess. Police officers may possess assault weapons for duty purposes and may possess personal assault weapons with recommendation by their agency.
Magazine capacity restriction? Yes Yes N.J.S.A 2C:39-1(y)[62] Magazines are limited to 15 rounds for semi-automatic firearms and 6 rounds for semi-automatic shotguns.[63] Police officers may possess "standard capacity magazines" for duty purposes and may possess personal "standard capacity magazines" with recommendation by their agency.
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes N.J.S.A 2C:39-3(a-c)[64]; N.J.S.A 2C:58-5[65] Possession of short barreled rifles, short barreled shotguns, destructive devices, and suppressors are prohibited to the average citizen. Law is silent on AOWs. Possession of a machine gun requires a state license, which is granted on a may issue basis by a county superior court judge. Machine gun licenses are extremely difficult to obtain.
Background checks required for private sales? No Yes N.J.S.A 2C:58-3[66] A person acquiring a handgun must have a permit to purchase a handgun. A person acquiring a long gun must have a firearms purchaser identification card. Private sale of a long gun does not require a background check.

New Mexico[edit]

Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? No No New Mexico does not require any permit to purchase a long gun or handgun.[67]
Firearm registration? No No
Assault weapon law? No No There are no assault weapon laws.
Magazine Capacity Restriction? No No There is no magazine capacity restriction.[68]
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required? No Yes NMSA 29–19–4 Shall-issue to full-time and part-time residents (who hold a valid New Mexico ID/Driver's License), with passage of a criminal history check and mental health records check, and completion of 15-hour handgun safety course that includes live-fire instruction. Active military and law enforcement members and veterans honorably discharged within 20 years of permit application are exempt from training requirement.[69] Permit required to carry concealed loaded firearm on foot. No permit needed for open carry, concealed carry of an unloaded firearm, or transport of a loaded firearm either concealed or openly in a vehicle. Unlawfully carrying a concealed firearm is a petty misdemeanor that is punishable by up to 6 months in a county jail and/or a fine of up to $500. Except for active-duty military members and dependents permanently stationed in the state, New Mexico does not issue CHLs to non-residents.
Open carry permitted? Yes Yes It is legal to open carry a loaded rifle and/or handgun in New Mexico without a permit.[70]
Vehicle carry permitted? Yes Yes A loaded firearm may be carried/transported either openly or concealed in a vehicle without a permit.
Out-of-state permits recognized? N/A Partial New Mexico recognizes permits from states with reciprocity agreements (currently 24 states).[71]
Duty to Inform? No* No* *Although not mandated by state law, it is customary in New Mexico to inform law enforcement officials when transporting firearms. Those who are carrying a loaded pistol or revolver concealed while on foot must carry their CHL with them and present it upon demand by law enforcement.
Concealed Carry on College Campuses? No No NMSA 29-19-8
NMSA 30-7-2.4
Firearms and ammunition may be stored in a locked vehicle while parked on campus, and may be carried while driving in a vehicle on campus, but may not be carried on foot while on campus property. Exceptions exist for university-sponsored shooting events and ROTC programs.[72]
NFA weapons restricted? No No
State pre-emption of local ordinances? Yes* Yes* NMSA 29-19-10* As stated in Article 2, Section 6 of the New Mexico Constitution. *Tribal laws on Native American reservations not pre-empted. Some tribes recognize New Mexico firearms laws, while others do not and have far more restrictive firearms policies. Additionally, some local jurisdictions have enacted ordinances restricting or banning the discharge of firearms within their boundaries.
Castle Doctrine law? No* No* NMSA 30-2-7 New Mexico's self-defense statute (NMSA 30-2-7) is vaguely worded and does not specifically address Castle Doctrine or Stand Your Ground situations.[73] However, Castle Doctrine has been established on a limited basis by a 1946 New Mexico Supreme Court ruling, which states that when a person reasonably feels "threatened with an attack need not retreat. In the exercise of his right of self defense, he may stand his ground and defend himself."[74] Currently, the courts have limited the scope of Castle Doctrine/Stand Your Ground to self-defense situations occurring inside the defender's home, and neither law nor court precedence provides the defender immunity from lawsuits by the aggressor arising from the use of lethal force in self-defense. Additionally, judicial precedence in New Mexico has established that the use of lethal force is not justifiable in defense of one's property alone.
Duty to Retreat? No No
Opt-Out statute? Yes Yes NMSA 29–19–12; NMSA 30–14–6; NMAC 10.8.2.27 Property owners may prohibit the carrying of firearms onto property they lawfully possess by posting signage or verbally notifying persons upon entering the property. Violating these "gun-free" establishments is a full misdemeanor punishable by less than one year in the county jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000 (Criminal Trespass - NMSA 30-14-1).
Peaceable journey laws? No No One may travel through or within New Mexico with a loaded weapon in a vehicle. Federal law pre-empts Native American reservation laws. FOPA is observed.
Background checks required for private sales? No No

New York[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? No Yes S 265.20, S 265.01 No NYS permit is required for long guns. Handguns require a permit. Permits are issued by County or State Supreme Court judges/justices outside of New York City, Nassau and Suffolk Counties, with a background check. Permits for those wanting to carry concealed are issued on a "may issue" basis, whereas permits to merely purchase and possess handguns in the home are issued on a "shall issue" basis. There is an application fee for each permit, as well as an amendment fee for each handgun added to the permit. NOTE: Different laws apply for NYC
Firearm registration? No Yes S 700.00, S 265.01 No registration for long guns. All handguns must be registered under a license. There is a $3 registration fee. Handguns are registered with purchase permit. The serial number and sale is noted down. It is illegal to possess any un-registered firearm. Antique weapons are exempted from this. All handguns must travel in the manner one's license is issued. No record is needed of previously owned handguns with law enforcement. *All rifles classified as assault weapons must be registered with the state by January 15, 2014. NOTE: Different laws apply for NYC
Owner license required? No Yes S 265.20, S 265.01 No license is required for long guns; however, New York State requires a license for handgun ownership. Handgun licenses are normally restricted to three types: residence or business premises permit (must issue generally), Target & Hunting, and Unrestricted Carry. Target and hunting allows carry while engaged in those activities. Unrestricted allows carry at any time. All permits issued outside of New York City are not valid in New York City EXCEPT for retired police and federal law enforcement officers with that status marked on their permit and for armored car guards on duty. The minimum age to be issued a handgun license is 21 unless you are a former or current member of the armed forces or law enforcement. NOTE: Different laws apply for NYC
Carry permits required? No Yes S 400.00 New York counties, and some police departments, issue pistol licenses on a "may issue" basis. Discretionary issuance policies vary widely across the state. Generally, it is harder to obtain a license in counties closer to large New York cities. Most counties that aren't a part of downstate New York have shall/reasonable issuance policies, but may administratively restrict time or place of carry (such as only for target shooting or hunting). It is not a crime to carry a weapon under a Target or Hunting permit for other purposes, but if caught or reported the permit will likely be revoked. Concealed carry without any kind of permit must be charged as a felony unless the weapon is unloaded and no ammunition for it is in possession of the person carrying. All permits are valid throughout the state, except in the City of New York, unless validated by the police commissioner of that city, NY Penal Law 400 (6). While New York law does not allow issuance of pistol licenses to non-residents, 2013 federal appeals court and State appeals court rulings clarified the residency requirement. This clarification allowed those domiciled outside of the state with a part-time residence in New York to be issued a permit at the discretion of the licensing officer.[75]
Assault weapon law? Yes Yes S 265.00, S 265.02 Possession of assault weapons is prohibited, except for those legally possessed on January 15, 2013 and registered with the state by January 15, 2014 or classified as an antique assault weapon. New York City, Buffalo, Albany, and Rochester have enacted their own assault weapon bans. Law enforcement and retired law enforcement are exempt from the assault weapons ban.
Magazine capacity restriction? Yes Yes § 265.02 Magazine size limited to 10 rounds. Law enforcement and retired law enforcement are exempt from the 10 round limit. Also exempt are antique high-quality magazines if registered to an associated antique assault weapon. Under the NY SAFE Act (signed on the 15th of January, 2013 by Gov. Andrew Cuomo) the magazine law was changed. A legal provision that mandated no more than 7 rounds that may be loaded into the magazine was struck down by a federal judge on December 31, 2013.
Title II (National Firearms Act) weapons restricted? Yes Yes S 265.02, S 265.02 Ownership of machine guns, suppressors, short-barreled rifles, and short-barreled shotguns are prohibited to the average citizen. Destructive devices are permitted except for rockets with greater than 3 ounces of propellant, which are prohibited. AOW's are legal to own but are still required to be on a pistol permit. AOW's disguised as non-firearms are illegal.
Open carry? Yes No S 265.35, S 265.01 The law is extremely vague on open carry. Open carry in public is not legal in most instances. While no law specifically bans open carry, a license to carry is issued to carry concealed as per penal law 400. Therefore, pistol permit holders must carry concealed. Open carry permitted while hunting and possibly on one's own property. Open carry of unloaded long guns is not explicitly prohibited by any law, but is generally not practiced.
Castle Doctrine Law? Yes* Yes* § 35.20 *New York has a castle doctrine law. It allows for the "use of (non-lethal) physical force in defense of premises and in defense of a person in the course of burglary." Lethal force is governed under §35.15.
State preemption of local restrictions? No No None New York preempts only handgun licensing.[76] Places such as Buffalo, Rochester, Albany, and most notably New York City have put in more restrictive gun laws, such as licensing of long guns and 5-round magazine limits.[77][78][79]
Peaceable journey laws? Yes Yes S 265.10 With certain restrictions (see below), most notably magazines are not exempt. Some law enforcement agencies (notably the New York State Police) do not recognize the federal Firearm Owners Protection Act, and may detain or arrest non-residents transporting firearms through New York in accordance with FOPA. Individuals in such situations would then have to use FOPA as an affirmative defense to firearms-related charges in court.
Background checks required for private sales? Yes Yes NY Gen Bus L § 898 (2012) For firearm transfers between private parties, a licensed dealer must conduct a background check, provide documentation of the check to the New York State Police, and keep a record of the transaction.[80]

North Carolina[edit]

Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? No Yes For handguns, a Pistol Purchase Permit (issued by the sheriff in the county of one's residence) or a North Carolina issued Concealed Handgun Permit is required. Presenting either of these exempts the buyer from the on-the-spot NICS background check.
Firearm registration? No No Durham County formerly required registration of handguns. This was repealed on June 18, 2014. State law now makes it unlawful for any government entity within the state to maintain a firearms registry.
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required? No Yes North Carolina is a "shall issue" state for Concealed Handgun Permits. N.B. The individual must inform a Law Enforcement officer when addressed he/she is carrying a concealed handgun n. (Gen Stat. § 14-415.12A) [81]
Open carry permitted? Yes Yes Open carry is not specifically limited by State law, but some local governments may have ordinances against openly carried weapons. See state pre-emption section below
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes North Carolina has state preemption for most firearm laws.[82]
Assault weapon law? No No
NFA weapons restricted? No No All NFA weapons (Title II weapons) and silencers/suppressors are allowed, as long as federal rules are followed
Shall Certify? Yes Yes Section 13 (§ 14-409.41) Shall certify within 15 days.
Background checks required for private sales? No Yes Article 52A, § 14-402 A person acquiring a handgun must have either a permit to purchase a handgun or a concealed handgun permit. A background check is required to obtain either of these permits.

North Dakota[edit]

Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? No No
Firearm registration? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required ? No No North Dakota is a "shall issue" state for concealed carry. Permitless concealed carry (for residents only) effective August 1, 2017. Class 1 & 2 permits will still be available. Permit still required to carry in a vehicle or openly.
Open carry permitted? Yes Yes Open carry of long guns is generally permitted. Open carry of a loaded handgun is permitted only by individuals with a valid concealed weapons license. Non permit holders may carry one hour before sunrise until one hour after sunset provided the firearm is unloaded and in plain sight.[83]
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine Capacity Restriction? No No
NFA weapons restricted? No No NFA-compliant automatic firearms must be registered with the county sheriff and the state Bureau of Criminal Investigation.
Shall Certify? Yes Yes 62.1-05 Shall certify within 30 days.
Background checks required for private sales? No No

Ohio[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? No No None
Firearm registration? No No None
Assault weapon law? No No O.R.C. 2923.11
Owner license required? No No None
Carry permits required? No Yes O.R.C 2923.125 Shall Issue – 8 hours of training required, 2 hours of which must include range time. Active duty members of the Armed Forces are exempt from the carry permit requirement.[84]
Open carry? Yes Yes O.R.C. 2923.16

O.R.C. 2923.121

May open carry without a permit if 18 years or older. Restrictions in motor vehicle and licensed liquor establishments.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes O.R.C. 9.68 Full preemption, affirmed by City of Cleveland v. State of Ohio
NFA weapons restricted? No No

O.R.C. 2923.17

NFA items are legal if registered in accordance with the NFA.
Shall certify? Yes Yes O.R.C. 311.43 Shall certify within 45 days.
Peaceable journey laws? No No None Federal rules observed.
Duty to inform? No Yes O.R.C. 2923.126 Any concealed handgun licensee must inform a law enforcement officer immediately upon contact if they are in possession of a loaded handgun. If the licensee is an occupant of a vehicle and there is a loaded handgun in the car, the licensee must also inform the law enforcement officer.
Background checks required for private sales? No No

Oklahoma[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No No - Private sales legal, no waiting period.
Firearm registration? No No None
Assault weapon law? No No None
Owner license required? No No §21-1273, §21-1276, §21-1283, None
Carry permits required? No Yes §21-1277, §21-1272, §21-1278, §21-1290.5 Concealed carry of loaded handguns permitted; open carry became lawful with permit as of November 1st, 2012. Unlicensed public carry of unloaded handguns and long arms by persons eligible to possess firearms is allowed under some circumstances.
Open carry permitted? No Yes §21-1290 Open carry is permitted with a handgun carry license.[85]
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes §21-1289.24
NFA weapons restricted? No No §21-1289.18 Short barreled rifles and shotguns are illegal to possess under state law unless registered under the NFA, ownership and possession of automatic firearms is legal under state law.
Shall Certify? Yes Yes §21-1289.30 Shall certify within 15 days.
Background checks required for private sales? No No

Oregon[edit]


Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? No No
Firearm registration? No* No* *The Oregon State Police will maintain a record of firearms sales from FFL holders for a period of 5 years, after such period these records are destroyed.
Assault weapon law? No No No state laws define or regulate assault weapons.
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required? Yes Yes ORS 166.291 Oregon is a "shall-issue" state for residents. Technically sheriffs "may issue" licenses to non-residents of contiguous states; however, in practice most county sheriffs either adopt very restrictive criteria for issuance to non-residents or simply refuse to issue licenses. Carrying of a concealed firearm is prohibited by ORS 166.250, however holders of a valid Concealed Handgun License are exempt from this law. (see ORS 166.260).

In 2011, the Oregon Court of Appeals ruled that public universities no longer have the authority to prohibit firearms on their grounds, however may still prohibit them inside buildings. This effectively legalized campus carry on grounds.

Open carry? Yes Yes Open carry of firearms is legal statewide in accordance with the Oregon Constitution viewable as the "Oregon Blue Book".
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes Article 1 Subsection 27. ORS 166.170 Except as expressly authorized by state statute, the authority to regulate in any manner whatsoever the sale, acquisition, transfer, ownership, possession, storage, transportation or use of firearms or any element relating to firearms and components thereof, including ammunition, is vested solely in the State Legislative Assembly. (See ORS 166.170)
NFA weapons restricted? No No Possession of NFA restricted firearms and non firearm items is legal but owners must comply with the NFA Regulations
Peaceable journey laws? Yes Yes The State of Oregon recognizes federal law Title 18 U.S. Code § 926A
Background checks required for private sales? Yes Yes SB941 (2015) Private party firearm transfers must be conducted through a licensed firearm dealer while both parties are present. The dealer is required by federal law to conduct a background check and keep a record of the sale.

Pennsylvania[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? No No
Firearm registration? No No* (18 Pa.C.S. § 6111.4) All handgun buyers in the state must undergo a PICS check at the point of sale, a record of which is maintained by the state police in a "sales database". The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has ruled that this is legal under 18 Pa.C.S. § 6111.4, as it is not a comprehensive record of all handgun ownership within the state, as gun owners moving into the state are not required to register their firearms.
Assault weapon law? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required? Yes* Yes* 18 Pa.C.S. § 6109 License to Carry Firearms issued on a "shall-issue" basis. *A LTCF is required to carry a firearm within a City of the First Class (Philadelphia), in a vehicle, concealed on one's person, or during a declared state of emergency.
Open carry? Yes Yes Unlicensed open-carry everywhere except Philadelphia or in/on a vehicle.
Castle Law/Stand Your Ground? Yes Yes [6] Castle Law. No duty to retreat inside castle. No duty to retreat outside castle if confronted with a deadly weapon or an object that appears to be one in a place where the person has a right to be.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes 18 Pa.C.S. § 6120
NFA weapons restricted? No No
Peaceable Journey laws? Yes Yes [7] Non-residents may carry in a vehicle if in possession of a valid carry permit from any state. Otherwise, federal rules observed.
Background checks required for private sales? No Yes All private party transfers of handguns must be processed through a licensed dealer, or at a county sheriff's office. In either case a background check is required.

Rhode Island[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? No Yes RI Gen. Stat. 11–47–35 All purchasers of handguns must complete and pass a safety exam managed by the RI Department of Environmental Management, at which time they will receive a DEM issued "blue card" allowing purchase. Exempt are active duty military members, active and retired law enforcement officers, correctional officers, and persons licensed to carry a concealed firearm by RI Gen. Stat. 11–47–11.[86]
Firearm registration? No No RI Gen. Stat. 11–47–41
Assault weapon law? No No None
Owner license required? No No None
Carry permits required? No Yes RI Gen. Stat. 11–47–11
RI Gen. Stat. 11–47–18
Rhode Island is a hybrid "shall issue" and "may issue" state for carry. Licenses may be granted either by local authorities or by the state's attorney general's office. Licenses granted by local authorities are "shall issue" while those issued by the attorney general's officer are "may issue" under state law. Until recently, most local authorities had been deferring to the attorney general which effectively blocks most issuance, unless one is a retired LEO.

The practice of not issuing permits on a true 'shall issue' basis has been the subject of recent litigation. In April 2015, the Rhode Island Supreme Court has ruled that a police chief must accept and review carry permit applications and must render a decision and the reasons for that decision. More significantly, the court ruled that the issuing authority must "show cause" for denying an applicant a carry license.[87]

Permits issued by local authorities and the Attorney General's office are valid for concealed carry statewide.

Open carry permitted? Yes Yes RI Gen. Stat. 11–47–18 Open carry of handguns is permitted for only those with a carry permit issued by the attorney general. Open carry not permitted for those whose handgun carry permits were issued by local authorities. Long gun open carry with or without a permit is not prohibited by law.
Vehicle carry? No Yes RI Gen. Stat. 11–47–8 Permitted with a valid Rhode Island Handgun Carry Permit. Non-residents may carry in a vehicle with a valid concealed carry permit issued by another state while traveling through Rhode Island without any intent to stop while in the state.
Out-of-state permits recognized? No Vehicle carry only None
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes RI Gen. Stat. 11–47–58
Castle Doctrine Law? Yes Yes [8] No duty to retreat if you are in your home
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes RI Gen. Stat. 11–47–8
RI Gen. Stat. 11–47–20
It is a violation of state law to possess any NFA weapon or silencers with the exception of Class III FFLs.
Peaceable Journey laws? No Yes RI Gen. Stat. 11–47–8 One may possess a loaded handgun in a motor vehicle without a RI permit as long as one possesses a carry permit from another state and is merely transiting through Rhode Island without any unnecessary stops. Long guns must be unloaded in a vehicle. FOPA is observed.
Background checks required for private sales? Yes Yes For all firearm transfers, the buyer must pass a background check.

South Carolina[edit]

Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? No No
Firearm registration? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required? No Yes SC Code 23-31-210 South Carolina is a "shall issue" state for concealed carry.
Open carry permitted? Yes No
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine Capacity Restriction? No No
NFA weapons restricted? No No SC Code 16-23-210 through 16-23-250 Permitted if registered in accordance with federal laws. State law makes possession, storage, and transfer illegal but then grants an exception for "any person authorized to possess these weapons by the United States Department of the Treasury; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms; or any other federal agency empowered to grant this authorization".
Peaceable journey laws? No No None Federal rules observed.
Background checks required for private sales? No No

South Dakota[edit]

Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? No No
Firearm registration? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required? No Yes SD 23-7-7 South Dakota is a "shall issue" state for concealed carry.
Open carry permitted? Yes Yes Open carry is generally permitted. For open carry in a vehicle, the firearm must be clearly visible.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine Capacity Restriction? No No
NFA weapons restricted? No No
Background checks required for private sales? No No

Tennessee[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? No No None No
Firearm registration? No No None No
Assault weapon law? No No None No
Magazine capacity restriction? No No
Owner license required? No No None No
Carry permits required? No* Yes T.C.A. § 39-17-1351[88] Permits are "shall-issue". Concealed or open carry of a handgun is allowed with permit.

As of July 1, 2014, due to the enhanced Castle Doctrine law, a person may keep a loaded handgun or long gun in their private vehicle without a permit.[89]

As of July 1, 2017, persons who can legally possess/purchase a firearm and are protected by a protection order may carry a handgun without a license for 60 days from the date of the protection order being issued.[90][91]

*Loaded long gun carry in public is generally illegal, with exceptions for activities such as hunting in approved areas. Unloaded long gun carry is not prohibited.

Open carry permitted? Yes Yes T.C.A. § 39-17-1307
T.C.A. § 39-17-1308[88]
Open carry of loaded handguns is permitted for those who have been issued a license to carry. Long guns may only be carried unloaded.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes T.C.A. § 39-17-1314[88] State preemption per T.C.A. § 39-17-1314(a).[88] Local governments may post signs per T.C.A. § 39-17-1359[88] to prohibit carry on government property. Local government may not, however, prohibit firearms in locally owned/operated parks and other recreational areas.[92]
NFA weapons restricted? No No None On July 1, 2003 public chapter 275 is in effect.
Shall Certify? Yes Yes T.C.A. § 39-17-1361 Shall certify within 15 days.
Peaceable journey laws? No No None Federal rules observed.
Self-defense law Yes Yes T.C.A. § 39-11-611[88] There is no duty to retreat before using deadly force, as long as you are acting lawfully and are in a place you have a right to be in. It is presumed you had a reasonable fear of imminent death or serious bodily injury if someone unlawfully and forcibly enters a residence, business, dwelling or vehicle.
Background checks required for private sales? No No None

Texas[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? No No
Firearm registration? No No
Owner license required? No No
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine capacity restriction? No No
Carry license required? No Yes GC Ch. 411.172[93] Licensed carry of a handgun requires a "shall-issue" license, and is subject to specific laws governing trespass while armed. People who are barred from licensing include those under age 21, felons, fugitives, people who are "chemically dependent" or "incapable of exercising sound judgment", and those in arrears for taxes or child support.
Open carry? Yes Yes PC 46.02 Long gun and black powder weapon (including handgun) open carry is not forbidden by law, unless in a manner "calculated to cause alarm."
Effective January 1, 2016, individuals with a handgun carry license will be permitted to carry openly, per House Bill 910 of the 2015 legislative session. Non-residents from states whose permits are recognized by Texas will also be allowed to open carry under the new law.
Concealed carry on college campus? No Yes May carry in parking lots, parking garages, outdoor walkways on campus.

Public four-year universities (as of August 1, 2016) and public two-year colleges (as of August 1, 2017) must allow concealed carry in campus buildings as well. Universities will be allowed to designate certain sensitive areas as "gun free zones"; these will be subject to legislative analysis.

State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes LGC §229.001. State law prohibits municipal governments from regulating the ownership, transfer, storage, or licensing of firearms, ammunition, or accessories. Local ordinances can regulate the discharge of firearms (such as for noise, nuisance or public safety), but not in contradiction of state law concerning justified use of a firearm.
NFA weapons restricted? No No PC 46.01, PC 46.05 Texas Penal Code Section 46.05 requires that "explosive weapons", "machine guns", "short-barrel firearms", and "firearm silencers", as defined in Section 46.01, be "registered in the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record maintained by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives or classified as a curio or relic by the United States Department of Justice". Prior to May 22nd 2015, Section 46.05 called "registration pursuant to the National Firearms Act" a "defense to prosecution".[94]
Peaceable journey laws? Yes Yes PC 46.02, PC 46.15 A person may carry a loaded handgun without a permit while in or heading directly to a motor vehicle or watercraft they own or control. The statute does not specifically state the handgun must be concealed while heading to the vehicle or watercraft, and 46.02, which requires concealment of a handgun while in a motor vehicle or watercraft, is not applicable to a person while the person is traveling, pursuant to said activities. 46.15(b)(2).
Castle doctrine/ stand your ground law? Yes Yes PC 9.32 A person is presumed justified in using deadly force to protect themselves against an unlawful, forceful intrusion into their dwelling, or to prevent an unlawful, forceful attempt to remove a lawful occupant from the dwelling, or to prevent certain serious felonies such as burglary or arson. There is no duty to retreat from any place where the shooter has a legal right to be.
Background checks required for private sales? No No

Utah[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? No No
Firearm registration? No No
Assault Weapons law? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required? Yes Yes UT 53-05-704 Carry of a loaded firearm or concealed firearm allowed with permit. May open carry unloaded firearm without permit. May carry loaded handgun in vehicle without permit; loaded long guns in vehicles prohibited.

As of 2004, may carry at public universities.

Open carry permitted? Yes Yes Open carry of firearm without a permit is allowed as long as the gun is at least 2 actions from being fired, e.g., 1) rack the slide to chamber, and 2) pull the trigger

Open carry of a loaded firearm (e.g., a live round of ammunition in the firing chamber) is allowed with a permit

State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes Municipalities may regulate the discharge of firearms.
NFA weapons restricted? No No Possession of NFA firearms in violation of federal law is a third degree felony under state law. However, possession and ownership of NFA firearms and items is legal under state law if federal requirements and laws are followed.
Shall certify? Yes Yes 53-5a-104 Shall certify within 15 days.
Peaceable Journey law? Yes Yes 76-10-523 Persons exempt from weapons laws.

"(g) a nonresident traveling in or through the state, provided that any firearm is: (i) unloaded; and (ii) securely encased as defined in Section 76-10-501." Handguns may be loaded in any vehicle under the person's control.

Castle Doctrine law? Yes Yes 76-2-405 Force in defense of habitation.

"(1) A person is justified in using force against another when and to the extent that he reasonably believes that the force is necessary to prevent or terminate the other's unlawful entry into or attack upon his habitation; however, he is justified in the use of force which is intended or likely to cause death or serious bodily injury only if: (a) the entry is made or attempted in a violent and tumultuous manner, surreptitiously, or by stealth, and he reasonably believes that the entry is attempted or made for the purpose of assaulting or offering personal violence to any person, dwelling, or being in the habitation and he reasonably believes that the force is necessary to prevent the assault or offer of personal violence; or (b) he reasonably believes that the entry is made or attempted for the purpose of committing a felony in the habitation and that the force is necessary to prevent the commission of the felony. (2) The person using force or deadly force in defense of habitation is presumed for the purpose of both civil and criminal cases to have acted reasonably and had a reasonable fear of imminent peril of death or serious bodily injury if the entry or attempted entry is unlawful and is made or attempted by use of force, or in a violent and tumultuous manner, or surreptitiously or by stealth, or for the purpose of committing a felony."

Stand Your Ground law? Yes Yes 76-2-402 Force in defense of person -- Forcible felony defined.

"(1) (a) A person is justified in threatening or using force against another when and to the extent that the person reasonably believes that force or a threat of force is necessary to defend the person or a third person against another person's imminent use of unlawful force. (b) A person is justified in using force intended or likely to cause death or serious bodily injury only if the person reasonably believes that force is necessary to prevent death or serious bodily injury to the person or a third person as a result of another person's imminent use of unlawful force, or to prevent the commission of a forcible felony."

Background checks required for private sales? No No

Vermont[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? No No
Firearm registration? No No
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine restriction? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required? No No Vermont Firearm Laws May carry open or concealed without permit as long as you are a citizen of the U.S. or a lawfully admitted alien, and not otherwise prohibited from possessing firearms under state or federal law.
Open carry? Yes Yes
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes
NFA weapons restricted? No No Vermont legalized suppressors on June 17th, 2015.[95]
Background checks required for private sales? No No

Virginia[edit]

Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? No No
Firearm registration? No No § 18.2-295 (Dead link) Fully-automatic firearms (machine guns) are required to be registered with the state police.
Owner license required? No No Proof of age and citizenship required for the purchase of "assault weapons".
Carry permits required? No Yes § 18.2-308

(Dead link)

Virginia is a "shall issue" state for concealed carry. Permits are issued to non-residents and training is permitted online or in person.
Open carry permitted? Yes Yes § 15.2-915.2

§ 18.2-287.4
§ 18.2-282.

(All dead links)

Open carry is generally allowed without a permit for people 18 years of age and older. The following cities and counties have exceptions that disallow the open carry of "assault weapons" (any firearm that is equipped with a magazine that will hold more than 20 rounds of ammunition or is designed by the manufacturer to accommodate a silencer or equipped with a folding stock) or shotguns equipped with a magazine that holds more than 7 rounds: the Cities of Alexandria, Chesapeake, Fairfax, Falls Church, Newport News, Norfolk, Richmond, and Virginia Beach and in the Counties of Arlington, Fairfax, Henrico, Loudoun, and Prince William. These restrictions do not apply to valid concealed carry permit holders. Stated differently, you may open carry an assault weapon/shotgun with more than 7 rounds with a permit in the aforementioned locations, but do not need a permit to do so in any other locality in Virginia.

For open carry in a vehicle, the firearm must be "properly secured in a container or compartment within the vehicle" (ie glove box, center console, trunk, etc). The container/compartment does not have to be locked, the firearm may be within the reach of the driver or a passenger, and the firearm may be loaded. This does not preempt an employer from prohibiting firearms "at a place of employment if there is a company policy or signage prohibiting firearms on the premises."[96] Furthermore, a "county or city may by ordinance make it unlawful for any person to transport, possess or carry a loaded shotgun or loaded rifle in any vehicle on any public street, road, or highway within such locality." However, this does not "apply to duly authorized law-enforcement officers or military personnel in the performance of their lawful duties, nor to any person who reasonably believes that a loaded rifle or shotgun is necessary for his personal safety in the course of his employment or business."

In addition, a firearm may be considered "open carry" in a vehicle if the firearm is openly visible, though this is not as well established as the "secured in a container/compartment" rule.

State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes § 15.2-915 (Dead link) Virginia has state preemption for most but not all firearm laws.
Assault weapon law? Yes Yes § 18.2-308.2:2

§ 18.2-308.2:01 § 18.2-308.7

Proof of age (18+ for long arms, 21+ for pistols) and proof of citizenship (or permanent residence license) are required for the purchase of "assault weapons". "Assault weapons" are defined as a semi-automatic, centerfire, firearm equipped with a folding/adjustable stock, or equipped at the time with a magazine capable of holding more than 20 rounds, or capable of accommodating a silencer/suppressor.
Magazine restriction? No No § 18.2-287.4

§ 18.2-282.

(All dead links)

Magazines capable of holding more than 20 rounds are legal but, they make the firearm an "assault weapon", subject to law accordingly.
NFA weapons restricted? No No § 18.2-308.8
§ 18.2-308.5
§ 18.2-295 (All Dead links)
Fully-automatic firearms (machine guns) must be registered with the state police. Plastic firearms and some destructive devices (such as the striker 12 shotgun) are prohibited outside law enforcement. SBS, SBR, AOWs, and suppressors are legal with NFA paperwork.
Background checks required for private sales? No No

Washington[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Revised Code of Washington Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No No
Firearm registration? No Partial

RCW 09.41.110(9)(a) and (b)

Retail dealers must record and report all retail pistol sales to local police/sheriff and to state department of licensing.
Owner license required? No No
Constitutional Right to Bear Arms? Yes Yes WA Constitution art. 1 sec. 24
Carry permits required? No Yes

RCW 09.41.050 CCW Reciprocity

Washington is a "shall-issue" state and will grant concealed carry permits to all applicants who meet the criteria. There are no training requirements.
Open carry? Yes Yes RCW 09.41.050 (in vehicle) Open carry is lawful in Washington without any permit. Open carry of a loaded handgun in a vehicle is legal only with a concealed pistol license. Open carry of a loaded long gun in a vehicle is illegal, regardless of CPL possession.
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes

RCW 09.41.290 RCW 09.41.300

State Law does not allow more restrictive local laws.
Assault weapons ban? No No
Magazine capacity rectrictions? No No
NFA weapons restricted? Partial Partial

RCW 09.41.190 RCW 09.41.220 RCW 09.41.225 RCW 09.41.250(1)(c)

Machine guns and short-barreled shotguns—unless purchased before July 1, 1994—are illegal for non-law-enforcement possession. Suppressors,destructive devices and any other weapons are lawful to possess and use if registered properly with ATF. Short barreled rifles are lawful to possess and use if registered properly with the ATF, as of June 12, 2014.[97]
Peaceable Journey laws? No No

RCW 09.41.050 RCW 09.41.060 18 USC § 926A CCW Reciprocity

Federal travel-with-a-firearm laws apply. Some out-of-state CCW licenses valid, otherwise carry must be open or, in a vehicle, unloaded.
Castle Doctrine / Stand your ground law? Not defined - de facto RCW 9A.16.050, RCW 9A.16.110 The Washington State Supreme Court ruled "that there is no duty to retreat when a person is assaulted in a place where he or she has a right to be."[98][99]
Background checks required for private sales? Yes Yes Initiative 594 (2014) Private party firearm transfers must be conducted through a licensed dealer, who is required by federal law to conduct a background check and keep a record of the sale.

West Virginia[edit]

Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? No No
Firearm registration? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required? No No §61-7-4

§61-7-7

As of May 24, 2016,[100] West Virginia became a constitutional carry state. Any person 21 years or older who is legally able to own a handgun may carry the weapon concealed without the need of obtaining a permit. A permit is required for individuals 18-20 years old who wish to carry a handgun concealed. Carry permits are still issued on a "shall issue" basis to anyone who would like one for reciprocity purposes. As of October 2016, there are 37 states that recognize WV permits for those 21 years or older, and of those 35 states, 16 recognize WV permits issued to persons 18 years or older. Note: 2 of the 37 states don't officially recognize the WV permit, but are constitutional carry states, so no permit is required.[101][102]
Open carry permitted? Yes Yes Open carry is generally allowed without a permit.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes §8-12-5a Pursuant to The Enrolled Public Act of Senate Bill 317 by The West Virginia Legislature, as Signed into Law by Governor Tomblin, The Amended Provisions of West Virginia Code Section 8-12-5a(a) Preempt and Preclude Municipalities from Regulating: '...The Carry[ing] of any Revolver, Pistol, Rifle, or Shotgun'. As a Result, a Municipality may no longer Prohibit Open Carry of a Firearm within its Jurisdictional Limits.
Assault weapon law? No No
NFA weapons restricted? No No
Shall Certify? Yes Yes §61-7-16 Shall certify within 30 days.
Background checks required for private sales? No No

Wisconsin[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Constitutional right to bear arms Yes 1:25 "The people have the right to keep and bear arms for security, defense, hunting, recreation or any other lawful purpose."
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes 66.0409
State permit to purchase? No No 175.35
Concealed carry license required? No Yes 175.60 Permit is given on a shall-issue basis. Concealed carry of knives (not intended for use as weapons) is legal without a permit.

Campus carry is allowed, but buildings may be exempted if signs forbidding firearms are posted.

Owner license required? No No 941.29
Open carry permitted? Yes Yes 947.01 66.0409 Open carry of loaded handguns and long guns and knives is permitted without a license.
Castle Doctrine/Self Defense Statutes Yes 895.62 Immunity from prosecution and civil damages in the home, with conditions and exceptions
939.48 No duty to retreat in the "dwelling" or owned/operated place of business. No deadly force solely to protect property. 3rd party protection. If attack is provoked, self defense may only be used if reasonable belief of imminent death or great bodily harm. If attack is provoked deadly force only allowed if all other reasonable means of avoidance exhausted.
940.01 "the state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the facts constituting the defense did not exist in order to sustain a finding of guilt"
Firearm registration? No No
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine capacity restrictions? No No
NFA weapons restricted? No No 941.298

941.26

Machine guns allowed, but may not shoot pistol cartridges and may not be possessed aggressively or offensively. Suppressors, SBR, and SBS are allowed if NFA rules followed, otherwise felony.
Background checks required for private sales? No

Wyoming[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No No
Firearm registration? No No
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine Capacity Restriction? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required ? No No Residents may carry open or concealed without a permit however, permits are issued on a shall-issue basis to those who wish to have them. Non-residents are required to have a CCW permit from a state Wyoming recognizes if they wish to carry concealed.
Open carry? Yes Yes No permit required for both residents and non-residents.
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes
NFA weapons restricted? No No
Background checks required for private sales? No No

US Territories[edit]

American Samoa[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
Permit to purchase? Yes N/A A license is required to purchase long guns or ammunition. Handguns are prohibited for civilian possession despite D.C. v Heller and McDonald v Chicago.
Firearm registration? Yes Yes All firearms must be registered with the American Samoa Public Safety Department.
Assault weapon law? Yes Yes Assault weapons and .50 BMG rifles prohibited.
Magazine capacity restriction? Yes Yes
Carry permits issued? No No The territory does not issue concealed carry permits.
Open carry? No No Open carry is prohibited.
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes Explosive weapons, machine guns, gas guns, short barreled rifles, short barreled shotguns, and silencers are prohibited.[103]
Peaceable journey laws? No No Federal law (FOPA) applies.

Guam[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase Yes Yes 60103, 60106 FOID required.
Owner License Required Yes Yes 60106 FOID required
Firearm registration? Yes Yes 60110
Open Carry Yes Yes FOID required.[104]
Concealed carry license required? No Yes 60109 Shall Issue. Bill 296-32 passed by legislature for shall issue,[105] signed by Governor.[106]
Assault weapon law No No
Magazine capacity restriction? No No
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes SBR, SBS, Machine guns, and silencers are prohibited. Destructive devices and AOW's are legal with NFA tax stamp.
Castle law
Yes[107]


Northern Mariana Islands[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
Permit to purchase? Yes Yes A license is required to purchase guns or ammunition.
Firearm registration? No No Registration of firearms has been ruled unconstitutional.[108][109]
Assault weapon law? No No Ban on assault weapons was ruled unconstitutional.[108][109]
Magazine capacity restriction? Yes Yes No magazines over 10 rounds.[110]
Carry permits issued? No No Concealed carry remains illegal.
Open carry? No Yes The general ban on carrying operable firearms in public was ruled unconstitutional. Lawful gun owners may carry loaded handguns openly as long as other laws are not violated, such as gun-free zones.[108][109]
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes Short barreled shotguns, short barreled rifles, machine guns, suppressors, and grenade launchers are prohibited.
Peaceable journey laws? No No Federal law (FOPA) applies.

Puerto Rico[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
Permit to purchase? No No Firearms purchases are subject to the requirements of US federal law
Firearm registration? No No
Assault weapon law? No No
Magazine capacity restriction? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits required? No Yes May-Issue according to law, but permits are rarely granted to ordinary citizens. Unrestricted concealed carry was technically allowed from June 20, 2015 to October 31, 2016 following a lawsuit challenging Puerto Rico's restrictive gun laws. The lower court ruling striking down many of the territory's laws was appealed by the government to the Appeals Court, which reversed the lower court's decision. The Puerto Rico Supreme Court declined to hear the appeal of the Appeals Court ruling from the plaintiffs in the case, effectively restoring Puerto Rico's restrictive permitting policy for concealed carry.[111]
Open carry? No No Permitless open carry was technically allowed from June 20, 2015 to November 16, 2016 following a lawsuit challenging Puerto Rico's restrictive gun laws. The lower court ruling striking down many of the territory's laws was appealed by the government to the Appeals Court, which reversed the lower court's decision on November 16, 2016. The Puerto Rico Supreme Court has declined to hear the appeal of the Appeals Court ruling from the plaintiffs in the case, effectively restoring Puerto Rico's ban on open carry.
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes Automatic firearms, short barreled shotguns, and silencers are prohibited.
Peaceable journey laws? No No Federal law (FOPA) applies.

U.S. Virgin Islands[edit]

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
Permit to purchase? Yes Yes A license is required to purchase any firearm or ammunition.
Firearm registration? Yes Yes All firearms must be registered with the Virgin Islands Police Department.
Assault weapon law? Yes Yes Assault weapons and .50 BMG rifles prohibited.
Magazine capacity restriction? Yes Yes
Carry permits required? No Yes The territory currently has a "may issue" policy for concealed carry permits. To obtain one, the applicant must meet a stringent set of requirements, so few people receive permits.
Open carry? No No Open carry is prohibited.
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes Automatic firearms and short barreled shotguns are prohibited.
Peaceable journey laws? No No Federal law (FOPA) applies.

See also[edit]

Note: Please see many links in the box at the top of the page called "Firearm legal topics of the United States of America".

References[edit]

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  3. ^ Liptak, Adam (June 28, 2010). "Justices Extend Firearm Rights in 5-to-4 Ruling", New York Times. Retrieved February 21, 2015.
  4. ^ "U.S. Concealed Carry Reciprocity Map on". Usacarry.com. Retrieved November 23, 2011. 
  5. ^ "Printz v. United States, 521 U.S. 898 (1997)". FindLaw. Retrieved November 23, 2011. 
  6. ^ "Printz v. United States". Stephen P. Halbrook. Retrieved March 28, 2010. Congress may not require the States to administer a federal regulatory program 
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  14. ^ "California Penal Code Section 11106", Onecle. Retrieved December 10, 2016. "(2) The registry shall consist of all of the following ... (A) The name, address, identification of, place of birth (state or country), complete telephone number, occupation, sex, description, and all legal names and aliases ever used by the owner or person being loaned the particular firearm as listed on the information provided to the department on the Dealers Record of Sale... (B) The name and address of, and other information about, any person (whether a dealer or a private party) from whom the owner acquired or the person being loaned the particular firearm and when the firearm was acquired or loaned as listed on the information provided to the department on the Dealers Record of Sale...(D) The manufacturer's name if stamped on the firearm, model name or number if stamped on the firearm, and, if applicable, the serial number, other number (if more than one serial number is stamped on the firearm), caliber, type of firearm, if the firearm is new or used, barrel length, and color of the firearm, or, if the firearm is not a handgun and does not have a serial number or any identification number or mark assigned to it, that shall be noted."
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