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Government Statistics > Gun Laws > Permits (most recent) by state

DEFINITION: Legislation regarding permits necessary to sell, possess, conceal or purchase a firearm.
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States (A to Z) Description
Alabama No permit is required to purchase firearms. A permit is required to carry a concealed handgun.
Alaska Alaska does not require a permit to purchase firearms. A permit is required to carry a concealed handgun.
American Samoa A license is required to possess, import, or sell firearms. Each license issued shall specify the number, quantity, and description of the arms which may be possessed, imported, or sold, or otherwise transferred. A license to possess must be renewed every year and must be in the licensee's possession when carrying such arms.
Arizona Arizona does not require a permit to purchase firearms. Carrying a concealed weapon requires a permit.
Arkansas Arkansas does not require a permit to purchase firearms. A permit is required to carry a concealed handgun.
California A permit is not required to purchase firearms, but is required to possess a machine gun or an assault weapon. Carrying a concealed firearm requires a license.
Colorado Colorado does not require a permit to purchase firearms. A permit is required to carry a concealed handgun.
Connecticut An eligibility certificate or pistol permit is required to purchase a handgun. Both documents are valid for 5 years, allow unlimited purchases, and will waive the long gun waiting period. Carrying a handgun also requires a pistol permit, with a 60-day permit issued by a local official required as a prerequisite to receiving the 5-year permit issued by the Connecticut State Police (CSP).
Delaware A permit is not required to purchase firearms. A permit is required to carry a concealed handgun.
District of Columbia A valid registration certificate is required for possession or transfer of any firearm.
Florida No permit is required to purchase firearms. A license is needed to carry a concealed firearm.
Georgia Georgia does not require a permit to purchase firearms. A permit is required to carry a concealed handgun.
Guam A Firearms Identification Card is required to own, possess, use, carry, or acquire any lawful firearm.
Hawaii A permit to acquire, valid for 10 days, is required for every purchase of a handgun. A permit to acquire, valid for 1 year, is required for unlimited purchases of long guns. A license is needed to carry a handgun. Certain aliens may obtain a permit to acquire or use a firearm.
Idaho No permit is required to purchase firearms. A permit is required to carry a concealed weapon.
Illinois Illinois requires residents to possess a valid FOID card to purchase firearms or ammunition. The card is valid for 5 years, with no limit on the number of firearms purchased. State law does not provide for concealed firearm permits.
Indiana Indiana does not require a permit to purchase firearms. A handgun license is required for personal protection (carrying), hunting, and target shooting.
Iowa Iowa requires an annually renewed permit to acquire pistols or revolvers, unless the purchaser holds a valid permit to carry firearms. An unlimited number of handguns can be purchased with either permit.
Kansas A permit is not required to purchase a firearm. State law does not provide for a permit to carry a concealed firearm.
Kentucky Kentucky does not require a permit to purchase a firearm. A license is required to carry a concealed firearm.
Louisiana No permit is needed to purchase firearms. A permit is required to carry a concealed handgun.
Maine Maine does not require a permit to purchase firearms. A permit is required to carry a concealed weapon. An offender whose rights have been restored may be issued a possession permit but cannot carry a concealedfirearm.
Maryland A permit is not required to purchase firearms. A permit issued by the secretary of the Maryland State Police(MP) is required to carry a handgun.
Massachusetts Two classes of licenses to carry allow, for 4 years, possession of certain types of weapons: Class A, large capacity firearms, rifles, and shotguns; Class B, non-large capacity firearms, and large capacity rifles and shotguns. A firearms identification card allows, unless otherwise prohibited, possession of rifles, shotguns, ammunition, and chemical mace or similar substances. Certain firearm purchases require a permit that is valid for 10 days.
Michigan Michigan requires a license, which is valid for 10 days, for every purchase of a handgun, unless the purchaser holds a license to carry a concealed handgun.
Minnesota Minnesota allows its citizens to obtain a transferee permit which is valid for 1 year and can be used to purchase an unlimited number of handguns and assault weapons. A permit to carry is required to possess a concealed firearm and also constitutes a transferee permit. In the alternative, a buyer can undergo a background check for each purchase of an unlimited number of handguns or assault weapons.
Mississippi A permit is not required to purchase firearms. A license is required to carry a concealed handgun.
Missouri Missouri mandates a permit to acquire which is valid for 30 days and can be used to purchase one handgun. State law does not provide for concealed firearm permits.
Montana Montana does not require a permit to purchase a firearm. A permit is required to carry a concealed weapon.
Nebraska The transfer certificate needed to receive a handgun is valid for up to 3 years and can be used for an unlimited number of purchases. State law does not provide for concealed firearm permits.
Nevada State law does not require a permit to purchase firearms. A permit is required to carry a concealed firearm.
New Hampshire No permit is required to purchase firearms. A permit is required to carry a concealed handgun.
New Jersey State law mandates a permit to purchase a handgun, which is valid for 90 days and may be renewed for an additional 90 days. A firearms purchaser identification card, which is valid until revoked for a violation of law, is require for unlimited long gun purchases. A permit is required to carry a handgun. A license issued by the superior court is required to purchase or possess an assault weapon.
New Mexico A permit is not required to purchase firearms. State law does not provide for concealed firearm permits.
New York Each handgun purchased requires a license, issued by a designated county or city judicial or law enforcement officer, which specifies conditions for possession and carrying. A license is valid throughout the State, except in New York City, where additional rules of validity apply. Licenses are valid until revoked but have a fixed duration in New York City (3 years) and in Nassau, Suffolk, and Westchester counties (5 years). Purchasing additional handguns requires a license amendment.
North Carolina North Carolina requires a permit, valid for 5 years, to purchase a handgun. A separate permit is required to carry a concealed handgun. A person who may possess a machine gun is required to obtain a permit from the county sheriff.
North Dakota North Dakota does not require a permit to purchase a firearm. A license is required to carry a concealed weapon.
Ohio A permit is not required to purchase firearms. Ohio law does not provide for concealed firearm permits. A person who is qualified to acquire, possess, carry, or use any automatic or sawed-off firearm or zip-gun must apply to the sheriff of a county or safety director or police chief of a municipality for a license or temporary permit.
Oklahoma No permit is required to purchase firearms. A permit is required to carry a concealed handgun.
Oregon Oregon does not require a permit to purchase firearms but does require a license to carry a concealed weapon.
Pennsylvania A permit is not required to buy a firearm. A license is required to carry a firearm concealed.
Puerto Rico The Commonwealth of Puerto Rico requires a license to purchase or carry a firearm.
Rhode Island Rhode Island does not require a permit to purchase firearms. A permit is required to carry a concealed handgun. A person under 18 years of age must have a permit to participate in legal firearm activities.
South Carolina No permit is required to purchase firearms. The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) issues concealed handgun permits and special licenses required for possession, transportation or sale of machine guns.
South Dakota A permit is not required to purchase a firearm. A permit is required to carry a concealed handgun. An application (see below) is required to purchase a pistol if the purchaser does not have a permit to carry a concealed handgun.
Tennessee No permit is required to purchase a firearm. A permit is required to carry a concealed handgun.
Texas No permit is required to purchase firearms. A license is required to carry a concealed handgun.
US Virgin Islands A license is required to possess, transport, or carry a firearm. A purchase coupon is issued to a license applicant when the application is approved. The weapon purchased is brought in to the firearms unit of the Virgin Islands Police Department. Information about the weapon is recorded and listed on the license issued to the applicant.
Utah Utah does not require a permit to purchase firearms. A permit is required to carry a concealed firearm.
Vermont State law does not require a permit to purchase or carry firearms.
Virginia A permit is not required to purchase a firearm. A permit issued by a circuit court is needed to carry a concealed handgun.
Washington A permit is not required to purchase firearms. A license is required to carry a concealed handgun. An alien lawfully present in the U.S. must obtain a license to possess or carry any firearm.
West Virginia A permit is not required to purchase firearms. A license is required to carry a concealed handgun.
Wisconsin A permit is not required to purchase firearms. State law does not provide for concealed firearm permits.
Wyoming A permit is not required to purchase firearms. A license is required to carry a concealed dangerous weapon.
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CITATION

"Gun Laws > Permits by state", Bureau of Justice Statistics, 2003. Retrieved from http://www.StateMaster.com/graph/gov_gun_law_per-government-gun-laws-permits

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COMMENTARY     

Brandan
26th October 2012
@Mathew -- You do not have to have a CDWL to carry a weapon openly. You can keep a loaded firearm -- or any other deadly weapon -- in your vehicle in plain sight, or in any factory installed storage compartment without having a CDWL (KRS 527.020). You can carry a loaded firearm (handgun, shotgun, rifle) on your person as long as it is visible, without obtaining a CDWL. The only places banned from OPEN carry are COURT OF JUSTICE courthouses (this is NOT county courthouses, although some county courthouses share their buildings with the Court of Justice), detention facilities, and K-12 schools. Open carry is allowed by law and the KY constitution in all other locationgs in the state. I have carried in our state capitol many times, which most people find unbelievable. We have firearm preemption which means ONLY the State legislature can regulate firearms, ammunition, or firearm accessories, and government bodies can be sued for regulating the possession, carrying, purchasing, etc., of firearms. If you do obtain your CDWL and carry concealed then there are more places off limits while carrying concealed; these places are not off limits if you uncover and carry openly. I would suggest you go to http://forum.opencarry.org/forums/forumdisplay.php?101-Kentucky to learn more on the open carrying of firearms.
Parker
6th April 2012
@ Chris, Alfred D., et al. Find your answers here:

U.S. federal government ATF law with regard to firearms and unlicensed (non FFL) persons can be found here: http://www.atf.gov/firearms/faq/unlicensed-persons.html#shipping-firearms-carrier
Parker
6th April 2012
@ Chris and Alfred D. Being a state resident is a requirement only for purchase of a handgun, it does not apply to long guns. Also, a person may ship a firearm to himself or herself in care of another person in the State where he or she intends to hunt or engage in any other lawful activity. The package should be addressed to the gun's owner. Persons other than the owner should not open the package and take possession of the firearm. See:
http://www.atf.gov/firearms/faq/unlicensed-persons.html#shipping-firearms-carrier
Chris
13th February 2012
@Alfred D. Yes, this is true. You must have a valid licence from the state in which you are attempting to purchase a firearm. You may not purchase a firearm from any state in which you are not a resident.
joe prescott
2nd October 2011
I travel to new york from florida is there a permit I can get to take my hand gunwith me? I have a New York state cw permit.
Rafael
9th August 2011
"marco rubio 7th May 2011
I have a concealed handgun permit, may I take my pistol and conceal it on the Island of Puerto Rico?"

A difinitive - NO. In Puerto Rico you must apply for and have a Weapons license just to own a gun and in order to carry concealed you must have a Conceal Carry License.

Just moved here from WA state... working my way through the maze of laws and regulations so that I can just own a few guns to target shoot.
Dylan
11th May 2011
Hey Gary,

I live in Wisconsin also. I just bought a shotgun at Gander Mtn. It took me about 30 minutes with only a drivers license. Sorry I don't have a specific answer for you. What city are you in?
marco rubio
7th May 2011
I have a concealed handgun permit, may I take my pistol and conceal it on the Island of Puerto Rico
Gary
1st April 2011
I have attempted to purchase a shotgun on several occasions and am put on delay each time. After the 30 day delay, I have no gun. I have no criminal background and don't know how to get this resolved. I live in Wisconsin. Can someone point me in the right direction to get this resolved?
printmeister
2nd March 2011
Here in MN our carry permit is carry only. no laws on open or concealed. Most people conceal but it is our right to open carry. $100 for 5 year permit.
RICKY
23rd February 2011
MORE LAW ON GUN JUST GIVEING THE IN POWER MAN THE POWER TO DO MORE CRIME.
Matthew Antrim
29th January 2011
In Kentucky do i have to have a concealed carry lisence if i keep the weapon in plain sight for all to see on my hip?
jim
9th January 2011
In order to carry your pistol outside NY you must get a permit from the states you plan to travel to.If you have a NY conceal/carry permit other state permits should not be hard to obtain because of the ludicrous amount of hoops NY has already made you jump through.
Robert Crawford
30th December 2010
I'm from Iowa.with the new law the 1st of the year.What states can I carry a hand gun in and be legal.I drive a truck and would like to carry a hand gun in my truck.
Bullpuckey
28th November 2010
The Missouri information is not correct. Concealed Carry is legal with a permit and has been for several years.
Ceasar Diaz
15th November 2010
The guns not the killer; it's the man.
charles
2nd November 2010
Missouri does allow for concealed carry permits now.
juan pulizzi
19th October 2010
If i am going to start a business and sell guns do i need any legal documents in order to sell them.
David Avedisian
26th September 2010
I am planning to hike from Las Vegas, NV to Pompano Beach, FL. I plan to carry a shotgun (unloaded). Would I be breaking any laws carrying a shotgun across state lines while hiking across the southern tier of the US?
Albert
21st September 2010
I'm just wondering why on earth someone would feel like they needed to have a deadly weapon on them all the time? Seems nuts to me.
Allah
15th September 2010
@ Ted.

You're fine
Mike
12th September 2010
You do not need a permit to carry a firearm in Alaska.
Gene Kennedy
21st August 2010
To view states that honor other states CCW License, check out this link: www.legallyarmed.com
Ted Keefe
16th August 2010
I hold a pistol perment in New York State to carry concealed. Can I transport a pistol to other states while traveling? Does not have to be concealed. I would like to know. Thanks
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