Gun Laws In The United States By State

Posted: January 14, 2013 in Nitegator

HideAlabama

Main article: Gun laws in Alabama
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 issued? No Yes Alabama is a “may issue” state for concealed carry. Permits are generally issued to qualified applicants.
Open carry permitted? No Yes Open carry is generally permitted. Open carry in a vehicle without a concealed carry license is prohibited.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes “The entire matter of handguns is reserved to the state legislature.”
“Assault weapon” law? No No
NFA weapons restricted? No No

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HideAlaska

Main article: Gun laws in Alaska
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 issued? No Yes 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
Peaceable Journey laws? No No None Federal rules observed.

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HideArizona

Main article: Gun laws in Arizona
Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State permit required to purchase? No No None No
Firearm registration required? No No ARS 13-3101 State law duplicates some of the registration requirements of weapons regulated by the federal National Firearms Act (NFA).
“Assault weapon” prohibition or restrictions? No No None No
Owner license required? No No None No
Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW) permits issued? Yes Yes ARS 13-3112
ARS 13-3102
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 CCW permit may still be obtained and has certain advantages, including reciprocity with many other states having CCW laws.
Open carry allowed? Yes Yes May carry openly without permit/license.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes ARS 13-3108
NFA weapons restricted? No No ARS 13-3101 Arizona law does not prohibit either possession or use of any weapons legally registered as NFA weapons under federal law.
Peaceable journey laws? No No None Federal rules observed.

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HideArkansas

Main article: Gun laws in Arkansas
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 issued? No Yes 5-73-301 – 5-73-320 Concealed carry requires a permit. Handgun open carry is not permitted.
Open Carry? Yes No
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes 5-73-120
NFA weapons restricted? N/A N/A 5-73-120
Peaceable Journey laws?  ? 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;

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HideCalifornia

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No Partial* §26500, §12071, §12082 All firearm sales (except long guns more than 50 years old) must be completed through a dealer. *Handgun purchases require a Handgun Safety Certificate and proof of residency.
Firearm registration? No Yes §12025 and §12031 All handgun serial numbers and sales are recorded by the state (registered) in the Department of Justice’s Automated Firearms System. Long arm serial numbers are not recorded, only the sale. While there is no requirement for California residents to register previously owned handguns or firearms 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. California §12025 states that handguns must be transported unloaded and in a locked box other than the glove compartment or utility box in a motor vehicle. New residents must register handguns (purchased outside of California) with DOJ within 60 days.
Owner license required? No No None
“Assault weapon” law? Yes Yes §12280, §12285 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. 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.
Carry permits issued? Yes Yes §12050 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.
Open Carry? No No §26350
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes §53701 GC Most but not all local restrictions preempted.
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes §12220, §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. AOW’s (Any Other Weapons) permitted, except for “pen guns.”
Peaceable Journey laws? No No None

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HideColorado

Main article: Gun laws in Colorado
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* Denver has an “Assault Weapons” ban. See Section 38-130 of Denver’s Revised Municipal Code*
Owner license required? No No None
Concealed Carry permits issued? Yes Yes CRS 18-12
Open carry? Yes* Yes* CRS 18-12 Legal without permit requirements* except in the City and County of Denver.
Concealed within a vehicle? Yes Yes CRS 18-12, 33-6-125 **Without a round chambered (applies to rifles/shotguns, not pistols).
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes* Yes* CRS 18-12 *Open carry and open car carry of a loaded firearm is prohibited in city and county of Denver, otherwise, local ordinances are preempted by state law
NFA weapons restricted? No No None
Peaceable Journey laws? Yes Yes CRS 18-12-105.6 Denver’s restrictions on transport/possession of firearms in vehicles do not apply to persons travelling to or from other jurisdictions; see Trinen v. City & County of Denver, 53 P.3d 754
Castle Doctrine? Yes Yes A legal resident of a property has the right to use deadly force to defend them self, other occupants, and property from intruders, whether they are armed or not.
Stand Your Ground Law? Yes Yes A person does not have to attempt to retreat from any place where they have a legal right to be before they may defend them self or others with deadly force.

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HideConnecticut

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No Yes CGS 29–36(f),
CGS 29–36(g)
Certificate of Eligibility for Pistol or Revolver required to purchase handguns. Applicants must complete an approved handgun safety course, and pass a NICS background check prior to issuance of certificate. Certificate of Eligibility 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 and hunting licenses.
Firearm registration? No* No* CGS 53–202 Registration required for assault weapons purchased before October 1, 1993. There is a de facto registry of handguns maintained by the Department of Public Safety as any handgun transfer, be it from a dealer or private party, must be accompanied by an authorization number issued by the DPS and a form containing personal and weapon identification (DPS-3-C) must be submitted to DPS and local police. This form is collected and maintained on all long guns purchased from FFL dealers as well, however is not required for the transfer of long guns between private parties.
“Assault weapon” law? Yes Yes CGS 53–202 Partial ban (selective fire weapons, some .50 BMG variants, an enumerated list of specific restricted features and certain brands of semi-automatic assault weapons and weapon “types”.)
No restrictions on magazine capacity.
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits issued? No Yes CGS 29–28 May-Issue by statute, but Shall-Issue in practice. 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 nonresidents may apply for a Connecticut Nonresident CCW permit through the mail.
Open Carry? No Yes May carry openly with permit/license.
State Preemption of local restrictions? Partial Partial CGS 29–28
NFA weapons restricted? Partial Partial CGS 53–202(c) Selective fire assault weapons prohibited, unless purchased before October 1, 1993.
Peaceable Journey laws? No No CGS 29–38 Federal rules observed.

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HideDelaware

Main article: Gun laws in Delaware
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 issued? Yes Yes 11 Del.C. § 1441 Delaware is a “may issue” state for concealed carry. Permits are generally issued to qualified applicants.
Open Carry? Yes Yes Open carry is generally permitted. Local prohibitions in effect before July 4, 1985 are not preempted.
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes* Yes* Complete preemption, except any local ordinances that were in effect before July 4, 1985 are still in effect and are not preempted.
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes Civilian ownership for research purposes only.
Peaceable Journey laws? No No Federal rules observed.

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HideDistrict of Columbia

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, training, and testing of the gun owner are required.
“Assault weapon” law? Yes Yes “Assault weapons”, .50 BMG rifles, and magazines that can hold more than 10 rounds of ammunition prohibited.
Owner license required? Yes Yes The firearm registration process also serves as a licensing process.
Carry permits issued? No No Concealed carry prohibited.
Open Carry? No No Open carry prohibited.
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes Automatic firearms prohibited.
Peaceable journey laws? No No Possession of unregistered firearms prohibited for both residents and non-residents.

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HideFlorida

Main article: Gun laws in Florida
Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State license to Purchase? No No None
Firearm registration? No No None
“Assault weapon” law? No No None
Owner license required? No No None
Carry licenses issued? 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 travelling to and from those activities.
Open Carry? No No Chapter 790.053
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes Chapter 790.33
NFA weapons restricted? No No None
Peaceable Journey laws? No No None Federal rules observed.
Duty to inform? No No None Florida law does not require one to disclose their possession of a firearm on contact with Law Enforcement.

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HideGeorgia

Main article: Gun laws in Georgia
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
Owner license required? No No None
Carry permits issued? Yes Yes OCGA §16-11-129 Concealed or open carry allowed with permit. See also OCGA §43–38–10 which is a special permit for armed security guards.
Open Carry? Yes Yes OCGA §16-11-129
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes OCGA §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.
Unlicensed open carry? Yes No OCGA 16-11-128 A Georgia Weapons License (GWL), or a recognized out-of-state permit, is required for open carry of any handgun outside of one’s home, property, motor vehicle, or place of business.

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HideHawaii

Main article: Gun laws in Hawaii
Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State Permit to Purchase? Yes Yes
Firearm registration? Yes Yes Must be registered with county Police Chief within 5 days of purchase.
“Assault weapon” law? Yes Yes
Owner license required? Yes Yes
Carry permits issued? No Yes Hawaii is a “may issue” state for concealed carry. 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”.
Open Carry? No Yes Open carry is technically permitted with a concealed carry license, but is not generally practiced.
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? No No None Federal laws observed.
Peaceable Journey laws? No No None Federal laws observed.

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HideIdaho

Main article: Gun laws in Idaho
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
Concealed Carry permits issued? No Yes Permit needed to carry concealed, may carry openly in a vehicle or on foot .
Open Carry? Yes Yes May carry openly without permit/license.
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes
NFA weapons restricted? No No Permitted as long such possession is in compliance with all federal regulations
Peaceable Journey laws? No No Federal rules observed.

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HideIllinois

Main article: Gun laws in Illinois
Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? Yes Yes 430 ILCS 65 FOID required.
Firearm registration? No No Chi. Mun. Code §8-20-110 The city of Chicago requires registration of firearms. Residents must complete a firearm safety course, pass a background check including fingerprinting, and pay a $100 permit fee which is renewed every three years. Registration of any handgun assumes an additional one time fee of $15.
“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”, and of magazines that can hold more than 10 or 12 rounds of ammunition respectively.
Owner license required? Yes Yes 430 ILCS 65 FOID required.
Carry permits issued? No No
Open Carry? No No
State preemption of local restrictions? No No
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes 720 ILCS 5/24 Automatic firearms, short-barreled shotguns, short-barreled rifles, and silencers prohibited. AOW (Any Other Weapon) and large-bore DD (Destructive Device) allowed with proper approval and tax stamp from ATF. Historically accurate short-barreled rifles possessed for the purpose of historical reenactment allowed by bona fide members of a nationally-recognized military reenactment organization.
Peaceable journey laws? No No Non-Illinois residents who are permitted to possess a firearm in their home state are not required to have a FOID card.

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HideIndiana

Main article: Gun laws in Indiana
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 limit? No No None
Owner license required? No No None
Concealed Carry license issued? No Yes IC 35-47-2-3 Shall-Issue. Officially “License to Carry Handgun”
Open Carry? No Yes IC 35-47-2-3 May carry openly with license.
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.
Peaceable Journey laws? No No None Federal rules observed.

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HideIowa

Main article: Gun laws in Iowa
Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes
State Permit to Purchase? No Yes 724.15 Concealed Carry permit may be used in lieu of purchase permit
Concealed carry permits issued? No Shall-Issue 724.4 Accepts permits from all states, Iowa residents must have Iowa permit
Open Carry? Yes Yes* *May carry handguns openly with license.
Castle Doctrine No (see Notes) 704707.6 Civil immunity for use of “reasonable force” in self defense
Firearm registration? No No
“Assault weapon” law? No No
Owner license required? No No
NFA weapons restricted? Yes 724.1 Complete prohibition

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HideKansas

Main article: Gun laws in Kansas
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 issued? No Yes
Open Carry? Yes Yes May carry openly without permit/license.
NFA weapons restricted? No No
Peaceable journey laws? No No Federal rules observed.

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HideKentucky

Main article: Gun laws in Kentucky
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
Concealed Carry permits issued? No Yes KRS § 237.110
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
Peaceable journey laws? No No Federal rules observed.

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HideLouisiana

Main article: Gun laws in Louisiana
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 issued? No Yes Louisiana is a “shall issue” state for concealed carry.
Open carry permitted? No Yes Open carry is generally permitted, 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
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes Automatic firearms, short-barreled shotguns, short-barreled rifles, or silencers may not be possessed or transferred without permission of the Department of Public Safety, and must be registered with the Department.

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HideMaine

Main article: Gun laws in Maine
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 issued? No Yes Maine is a “shall issue” state for concealed carry.
Open carry permitted? No Yes Open carry is generally permitted. Open carry in a vehicle is permitted only with a concealed carry license.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes Local governments may restrict the discharge of firearms.
“Assault weapon” law? No No
NFA weapons restricted? No No

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HideMaryland

Main article: Gun laws in Maryland
Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? No No Handgun purchases must be approved by the state police. Buyers of handguns must complete a training course or hold a concealed carry permit. Private sales of handguns are prohibited.
Firearm registration? No Yes The state police maintain a permanent record of all handgun transfers.
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits issued? No Yes Maryland is a “may issue” state for concealed carry. Applicants must demonstrate a “good and substantial reason” to carry a handgun .
Open carry permitted? No Yes Open carry is technically permitted with a concealed carry license, but is not generally practiced.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes Maryland has state preemption for most but not all firearm laws.
“Assault weapon” law? Yes Yes “Assault weapons”, .50 BMG caliber rifles, and magazines that can hold more than 20 rounds of ammunition are strictly regulated in various ways.
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes Automatic firearms must be registered with the state police.

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HideMassachusetts

Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? Yes Yes Firearm Identification (FID) or license to carry required.
Firearm registration? No No
Owner license required? Yes Yes Firearm Identification (FID) or license to carry required.
Carry permits issued? No Yes Massachusetts is a “may issue” state for concealed carry. There are several different types of concealed carry licenses.
Open carry permitted? No Yes Open carry is permitted in some areas, but only with a concealed carry license. Open carry in a vehicle is not permitted.
State preemption of local restrictions? No No
“Assault weapon” law? Yes Yes “Assault weapons” and magazines that can hold more than 10 rounds of ammunition are prohibited unless lawfully possessed on September 13, 1994.
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes The possession of automatic firearms is generally prohibited.

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HideMichigan

Main article: Gun laws in Michigan
Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? No Yes A license to purchase or a concealed carry permit is required for the purchase of a handgun.
Firearm registration? No Yes Handguns must be registered with the city chief of police or county sheriff.
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits issued? No Yes Michigan is a “shall issue” state for concealed carry.
Open carry permitted? No Yes Open carry is generally permitted. Open carry in a vehicle is permitted only with a concealed carry license.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes Local governments may restrict the discharge of firearms.
“Assault weapon” law? No No
NFA weapons restricted? No No

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HideMinnesota

Main article: Gun laws in Minnesota
Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No Yes §624.7131 Permit to purchase required to transfer/purchase “military-style assault weapons” 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. A permit is required for private transfers between individuals for the sale of a pistol or “semiautomatic military-style assault weapon”.
Firearm registration? No No
“Assault weapon” law? No No §624.7131 Persons under the age of 21 prohibited from purchasing handguns. Persons 18 and older may purchase “assault weapons” with a permit to purchase (or permit to carry for persons 21 and older).
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits issued? No Yes §624.714 Shall Issue. Minnesota Permit to Carry a Pistol required to carry handguns. Concealment is permitted but not required, but only handguns may be carried concealed.
Open Carry? Yes Yes §624.7181 May carry openly with permit to carry. A carry permit also allows for open carry of long guns.
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes §471.633 Municipalities may regulate the discharge of firearms within their borders.
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes §609.67 Machine guns and short-barreled shotguns, unless designated Curios & Relics, are prohibited in most cases. Sound suppressors and some destructive devices are prohibited in most cases.
Peaceable Journey laws? No No Federal rules observed.

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HideMississippi

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 issued? No Yes The Mississippi Department of Public Safety shall issue a license to carry a concealed pistol or revolver to a qualified applicant within 45 days. The license is valid for five years. Concealed carry is not allowed in a 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”. A license to carry a concealed pistol or revolver is required for open carry. A license is not required for transporting a concealed or visible firearm in a vehicle.
Open Carry? Yes Yes* *May carry handgun openly with permit/license.
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?

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HideMissouri

Main article: Gun laws in Missouri
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 issued? No Yes Missouri is a “shall issue” state for concealed carry.
Open carry permitted? No Yes Open carry is generally permitted, but may be restricted by local governments.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes Local governments may regulate open carry and the discharge of firearms.
“Assault weapon” law? No No
NFA weapons restricted? No No
Peaceable journey law? Yes Yes

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HideMontana

Main article: Gun laws in Montana
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
Concealed Carry permits issued? No Yes Montana is a “shall issue” state. 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

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HideNebraska

Main article: Gun laws in Nebraska
Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? No Yes A handgun certificate or a concealed carry permit is required for the purchase of a handgun.
Firearm registration? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits issued? No Yes Nebraska is a “shall issue” state for concealed carry.
Open carry permitted? No 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 state preemption for most but not all firearm laws.
“Assault weapon” law? No No
NFA weapons restricted? No No

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HideNevada

Main article: Gun laws in Nevada
Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? No No
Firearm registration? No No Clark County requires the registration of handguns.
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits issued? No Yes Nevada 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 if upon the person.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes Local authorities may regulate the discharge of firearms. Handgun registration in Clark County is grandfathered in.
“Assault weapon” law? No No
NFA weapons restricted? No No

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HideNew Hampshire

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No No NHRS XII §159:14 A concealed carry permit or that the buyer is “personally known” to the seller is required for purchase of a firearm from a non-licensed dealer.
Firearm registration? No No
“Assault weapon” law? No No
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits issued? No Yes NHRS XII §159:6 License is shall-issue.
Open carry? Yes Yes NHRS XII §159:6
NHRS XVIII §207:7
Handgun open carry without license except in a motor vehicle. 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

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HideNew Jersey

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
State permit to Purchase? Yes Yes A lifetime purchaser identification card is required for any firearm purchase. An additional permit is required for each handgun purchase.
Firearm registration? No No The police maintain a record of all handgun transfers.
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits issued? No Yes N.J. Admin. Code § 13:54 New Jersey is a “may-issue” state for concealed carry. 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.”
Open carry? No Yes Open carry is allowed only with a concealed carry permit, and is generally not practiced.
State preemption of local restrictions? No No There is limited state preemption for some firearm laws.
“Assault weapon” law? Yes Yes New Jersey prohibits the possession of “assault firearms”, and of magazines that can hold more than 15 rounds of ammunition. Firearms and magazines acquired before May 1, 1990 and registered with the state are grandfathered in.
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes Possession of automatic firearms is prohibited without a state license, which is generally not granted.

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HideNew Mexico

Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State permit to purchase? No No [citation needed]
Firearm registration? No No [citation needed]
“Assault weapon” law? No No [citation needed]
Owner license required? No No [citation needed]
Carry permits issued? No Yes NMSA 29–19–4 Shall-issue, with completion of 15-hour handgun safety course that includes live-fire instruction. Permit required to carry concealed loaded firearm. 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.
Open carry permitted? Yes Yes
NFA weapons restricted? No No [citation needed]
Castle Doctrine law? No No No statutory protection from lawsuits arising from the use of lethal force in self-defense[citation needed]
“Opt-Out” statute? Yes Yes NMSA 29–19–12; NMSA 30–14–6 Property owners may prohibit the carrying of firearms onto property they lawfully possess by posting signage or verbally notifying persons upon entering the property.
Peaceable journey laws? No No Federal rules observed.[citation needed]

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HideNew York

Main article: Gun laws in New York
Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No Yes S 265.20, S 265.01 No permit is required for long guns. Handguns require a permit. Permits are issued by Superior Courts outside of New York City, with a background check on a “may issue” basis. There is an application fee for each Permit, as well as an amendment fee for each handgun added to the permit.
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 laws enforcement.
Owner license required? No Yes S 265.20, S 265.01 No license is required for long guns. New York State has a handgun ban in place. Exceptions are to those who own a license. They are normally restricted to two types Target & Hunting and Unrestricted Carry. Target and hunting allows carry in that manner. Unrestricted allows carry at anytime. All permits not issued in New York City are not valid in there. Some places in the New York City area will often issue business carry license. These are issued to security guards, armed guards, and people who need to carry for a specific reason. Also some places will issue retired police officer permits. The minimum age to be issued a handgun license is 18 unless you are a former or current member of the armed forces or law enforcement.
Carry permits issued? Yes Yes S 265.20, S 265.01 New York issues CCWs on a “may issue” basis. CCW Issuance is different by county. Generally it is harder to obtain a permit in counties closer to large New York cities. Most Counties that aren’t apart of downstate New York have shall/reasonable issuance policies. You are only allowed to carry in the manner your license allows you to carry. It wouldn’t be a serious offense to carry out of the manner your license was issued in, but could cause it to be revoked.
Assault weapon law? Yes Yes S 265.00, S 265.02 Illegal to import possess anything classified as an “assault weapon” or “large capacity ammunition feeding device”. Exceptions are for anything manufactured before September 13, 1994. Basically an exact mirror of the now expired federal “assault weapon” ban. New York City, Buffalo, Albany, and Rochester have enacted their own “assault weapon” bans. .22 caliber tube feeding devices are exempted. Sale and transfer of “assault weapons” prohibited. The ban imposes what types of features you may have on semi-automatic firearms and magazine capacity.
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes S 265.02, S 265.02 Machine guns, silencers, SBR and SBS are prohibited from the average citizen.
Open Carry? No* No* S 265.35, S 265.01 Open carry is pretty much banned under state law. *However some counties (such as Delaware County) will issue permits to carry, not concealed carry. People often open carry in that county. It is one of the top five rights restricted states.
Castle Doctrine Law? Yes* Yes* § 35.20 *New York has a weak castle doctrine law. It allows self defense against home invasion, but not if conflict can be avoided by retreating.
State Preemption of local restrictions? No No None New York lacks state preemption. 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.
Peaceable Journey laws? Yes Yes S 265.10 With certain restrictions (see below)

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HideNorth Carolina

Subject/Law Long Guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Permit to purchase required? No Yes For handguns, a permit to purchase or a concealed handgun permit is required.
Firearm registration? No No The county sheriff must keep a record of handgun purchase permits.
Owner license required? No No
Carry permits issued? No Yes North Carolina is a “shall issue” state for concealed carry.
Open carry permitted? No Yes Open carry is generally permitted, but may be limited by local governments.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes North Carolina has state preemption for most but not all firearm laws.
“Assault weapon” law? No No
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes A permit to possess an NFA-compliant automatic firearm may be issued at the discretion of the county sheriff.

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HideNorth Dakota

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 issued? No Yes North Dakota is a “shall issue” state for concealed carry.
Open carry permitted? Yes Yes Open carry of long guns is generally permitted. Open carry of handguns is permitted only with a concealed carry permit.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes
“Assault weapon” law? 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.

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HideOhio

Main article: Gun laws in Ohio
Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No No None
Firearm registration? No No None No
“Assault weapon” law? No No None Magazines holding over 31 rounds makes the weapon an “automatic firearm” subject to law accordingly
Owner license required? No No None No
Carry permits issued? No Yes O.R.C. 2923.16 Shall Issue – 12 hour training required
Open carry? Yes Yes O.R.C. 2923.16 Traditional open carry state. Restrictions in motor vehicle.
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes O.R.C. 9.68 Full Preemption – Affirmed by City of Cleveland vs. State of Ohio
NFA weapons restricted? Partial Partial O.R.C. 2923 It is a violation of state law to possess NFA weapons except as permitted by federal law.
Peaceable Journey laws? No No None Federal rules observed.

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HideOklahoma

Main article: Gun laws in Oklahoma
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 issued? No Yes §21-1277, §21-1272, §21-1278, §21-1289, §21-1290 Concealed carry of loaded handguns permitted; open carry will become 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.
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.

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HideOregon

Main article: Gun laws in Oregon
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 issued? No Yes Oregon is a “shall-issue” state.
Open carry? Yes Yes Open carry is generally allowed. Localities may prohibit open carry by persons without a concealed carry license.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes Does not apply to unlicensed open carry.
NFA weapons restricted? No No
Peaceable journey laws? Yes Yes

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HidePennsylvania

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 issued? Yes Yes License to Carry Firearms issued on a “shall-issue” basis.
Open carry? Yes Yes Unlicensed open-carry everywhere except Philadelphia or in/on a vehicle.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes 18 Pa.C.S. § 6120
NFA weapons restricted? No No
Peaceable Journey laws? Yes Yes

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HideRhode Island

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No Yes RI Gen. Stat. 11–47–35 All purchasers of firearms 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.
Firearm registration? No No RI Gen. Stat. 11–47–41
“Assault weapon” law? No No None
Owner license required? No No None
Carry permits issued? No Yes RI Gen. Stat. 11–47–11
RI Gen. Stat. 11–47–18
Rhode Island is a “may issue” state for concealed carry. Licenses may be granted either by local authorities or by the state’s attorney general’s office.
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes RI Gen. Stat. 11–47–58
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 State law mirrors Federal law to a limited degree but does not make any provision for transport of rifles and explicitly states that an individual transporting a weapon must have a valid permit in another state. The State may also adhere to federal law but this is unclear and there does not appear to be any statewide policy.

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HideSouth Carolina

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 issued? No Yes South Carolina is a “shall issue” state for concealed carry.
Open carry permitted? No No
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes
“Assault weapon” law? No No
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes Possession of automatic firearms, short-barreled shotguns, or short-barreled rifles is generally prohibited.

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HideSouth Dakota

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 issued? No Yes South Dakota is a “shall issue” state for concealed carry.
Open carry permitted? No 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
NFA weapons restricted? No No

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HideTennessee

Main article: Gun laws in Tennessee
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 issued? No* Yes 39-17-1351 Permits are “shall-issue”. Concealed or open carry of a handgun is allowed with permit. *Loaded long gun carry is generally illegal. Those with a Handgun Carry Permit(HCP) holders may have loaded longs in a private vehicle so long as there is not a round in the chamber 39-17-1307(e) There are also other exceptions (like for hunting) listed in 39-17-1307
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes 39-17-1314 Tennessee is an anomalous State. The Legislature made a loop hole for cities and municipalities with laws in effect prior to April 8, 1986. The local ordinances in effect before April 8, 1986 pre-empt State law see TCA 39-17-1314(a). Local governments may post signs per 39-17-1359 to prohibit carry on government property, just like private property owners.
NFA weapons restricted? No No None On July 1, 2003 public chapter 275 is in effect. It requires the CLEO, chief law enforcement officer, to sign NFA paperwork in 15 days if the applicant is not prohibited from possessing firearms. see TCA 39-17-1361 .
Peaceable Journey laws? No No None Federal rules observed.
Self-Defense Law Yes Yes 39-11-611 There is not 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.

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HideTexas

Main article: Gun laws in Texas
Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No No None Must be 18+ to purchase a long gun from a dealer or private seller, 21+ to purchase a handgun from a dealer, 18 to generally own and possess a firearm.
Firearm registration? No No None Federal law only; BATFE Form 4473 and NICS background check required to be completed when purchasing from a FFL dealer, which does not legally constitute “registration”.
“Assault weapon” law? No No None Federal law only; with the expiration of the AWB, there are currently no such laws.
Owner license required? No No None Proof of age/identity is required, and a concealed carry permit exempts the buyer from the NICS background check, but no specialized “firearm owner ID” is required to purchase.
Carry permits issued? No Yes GC Ch. 411 Subch H, PC 46.15 Concealed carry of a handgun requires a “shall-issue” permit, and is subject to specific laws governing trespass while armed. Open carry of a handgun is prohibited with some exceptions (hunting, on one’s own property). Open carry of a long gun is not specifically prohibited as PC 46.02 (unlawful carry of weapons) only mentions handguns, however it may be construed as “Disorderly Conduct”.
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes LGC §229.001. FIREARMS; EXPLOSIVES. (a) A municipality may not adopt regulations relating to the transfer, private ownership, keeping, transportation, licensing, or registration of firearms, ammunition, or firearm supplies.Municipal governments can enact regulations on the discharge of firearms (such as noise, nuisance or public safety ordinances); however, those laws are subject to and cannot preempt State law concerning justified use of a firearm.
NFA weapons restricted? No No PC 46.01(9), PC 46.05 State law prohibits ownership outside of NFA compliance, calling possession while in compliance “a defense to prosecution.”
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 46.15(b)(2).
Castle Doctrine? 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.
Stand Your Ground Law? Yes Yes TPC 9.32 A person is allowed to use force to protect themselves from attackers.

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HideUtah

Main article: Gun laws in Utah
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 - None
Carry permits issued? Yes Yes - Open carry allowed without permit and concealed carry allowed with permit.
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes - None
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.
Peaceable Journey laws? Yes Yes 76-10-523 Persons exempt from weapons laws.(g) a nonresident traveling in or through the state, provided that any firearm is: unloaded; and securely encased as defined in Section 76-10-501. Handguns may be loaded in any vehicle under the person’s control.
Castle Doctrine? Yes Yes 76-2-402 Force in defense of person—Forcible felony defined.A person is justified in threatening or using force against another when and to the extent that he or she reasonably believes that force is necessary to defend himself or a third person against such other’s imminent use of unlawful force. However, that person is justified in using force intended or likely to cause death or serious bodily injury only if he or she reasonably believes that force is necessary to prevent death or serious bodily injury to himself or a third person as a result of the other’s imminent use of unlawful force, or to prevent the commission of a forcible felony.

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HideVermont

Main article: Gun laws in Vermont
Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No No No
Firearm registration? No No No
“Assault weapon” law? No No No
Owner license required? No No No
Carry permits issued? No No *May carry open or concealed without permit
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes
NFA weapons restricted? No No

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HideVirginia

Main article: Gun laws in Virginia
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 issued? No Yes Virginia is a “shall issue” state for concealed carry.
Open carry permitted? No 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 Virginia has state preemption for most but not all firearm laws.
“Assault weapon” law? Yes Yes “Assault weapons” are generally permitted, but some restrictions exist.
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes Automatic firearms must be registered with the state police.

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HideWashington

Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant statutes 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 -
“Assault weapon” law? No No -
Constitutional Right to Bear Arms? Yes Yes WA Constitution art. 1 sec. 24
Carry permits issued? No Yes RCW 09.41.050 CCW Reciprocity Washington is a “shall-issue” state and will grant concealed carry permits to all applicants that 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.
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes RCW 09.41.190 RCW 09.41.220 RCW 09.41.225 RCW 09.41.250(1)(c) Machine guns and short-barreled rifles or shotguns are illegal for non-law-enforcement possession. Silencers are lawful to possess and use if registered properly with ATF.
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.

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HideWest Virginia

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 issued? No Yes West Virginia is a “shall issue” state for concealed carry.
Open carry permitted? No Yes Open carry is generally permitted, but some local restrictions are grandfathered in.
State preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes Local laws in place before June 1, 1999 are valid.
“Assault weapon” law? No No
NFA weapons restricted? No No

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HideWisconsin

Main article: Gun laws in Wisconsin
Subject/Law Long guns Handguns Relevant Statutes Notes
Constitutional Right to Bear Arms Yes 1:22 “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 Yes 66.0409
State Permit to Purchase? No No 175.35 48 hour waiting period on handguns
Concealed carry license issued? No Yes 175.60 May carry openly without a license (except in taxpayer-owned buildings, school zones, and “taverns”). Despite the WI AG’s ruling, some local jurisdictions treat open carry as disturbing the peace.
Castle Doctrine Yes 895.62
Firearm registration? No No
“Assault weapon” law? No No
Owner license required? No No 941.29
NFA weapons restricted? Machine Guns restricted, exceptions apply 941.298941.26 Silencers and SBR allowed if NFA rules followed, otherwise felony

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HideWyoming

Main article: Gun laws in Wyoming
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 issued? Yes Yes May carry open or concealed without permit. Permits issued to those who wish to have them.
Open carry? Yes Yes
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes
NFA weapons restricted? No No

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Comments
  1. […] - -(Ammoland.com)- As with most states, Ohio pre-empts  local governments from enacting gun ordinances that are stricter than state […]

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