State Gun Laws

Arkansas Gun Laws

Arkansas Gun Laws

Arkansas gun laws do not necessitate the registering of any shotgun, rifle, or handgun. However, machine guns are required to be registered under Federal law, as well as with the Secretary of State. Arkansas gun law defines a machine gun as a weapon that can discharge five shots automatically or semi-automatically by a single action on the triggering mechanism.

Arkansas gun law does not require a state permit for the purpose of purchase or possession of a firearm. An individual may be eligible to purchase firearms as long as he/she is at least 18 years. Minors must have expressed consent by a parent or legal guardian responsible for their well being to purchase a firearm. 

In terms of possession, Arkansas law has more rules and regulations. It is considered unlawful for any person who has been convicted of a felony crime, been deemed as mentally unfit by law, or has been committed to a mental institution involuntarily to be in possession of a firearm.

It is also been deemed that any handgun possessed by a person physically on him or herself, or in a vehicle occupied by that person, that can be easily used as a weapon to inflict harm against another person, as unlawful. However, they are some exceptions:

If the person is on his own private property, or place of business where he has a vested interest in.

The person is affiliated with law enforcement or the military. This also extends to any person who may be requested to assist in a particular situation by a law enforcement or military official during his/her duty. This also includes security officers and prison guards.

 The person is transporting the firearm. This includes traveling to and from hunting activities, sporting activities, and educational firearm-related courses and classes.

If the person is a minor that possesses an unloaded firearm, and is under the supervision of a parent, legal guardian, or qualified firearm instructor.

Arkansas gun laws allow for the carrying of a concealed handgun, only with a license or permit. The application for the license is made directly to the state police. The license is valid for a total of fours years, and may include up to three handguns. The license to carry a concealed handgun must be presented with another form of valid identification in order to be considered within the constraints of the law.

Qualified individuals for the license must be at least 21 years old, a resident of the state of Arkansas for over a year, never been convicted of a felony or violent act, never attempted or threatened to commit suicide, and never been voluntarily or involuntarily committed to a program because of alcohol, domestic violence, or drug substance abuse. The statute involving drugs and alcohol is also more specific. In relation to a controlled substance, an applicant must not have been found guilty of a crime or submitted in to a program in the past three years.

With alcohol, it involves no more than two crimes in the past three years. Even though licensed carriers of handguns are legal by law, they are restricted as well. They can not enter public places such as police and law enforcement facilities and buildings, schools or colleges, or any place of business that sells alcohol for consumption on its premises–except for restaurants. 


California Gun Laws

California Gun Laws

California gun laws are among the most complex that exist in the country today. Like many other states in the United States, California gun laws do not require permits to purchase firearms, or the registration of rifles and shotguns.
However, California gun law does require the registration of handguns and firearms that are considered “assault weapons.” The various law enforcement agencies in California record every single purchase of firearms that fall in to these two categories. The registration procedure also includes all new California residents as well, for they are only given a total of 60 days to register the necessary firearms upon moving to the state.”
This is an obvious attempt to curtail some of the firearm activity in urban areas–specifically handguns and “assault weapons”–by various gang-related individuals. The mandatory registration for these types of firearms will make it much easier to locate the owner of a gun or weapon in the case of a criminal investigation. 
The purchase of firearms by California gun laws also seem to present more stringent guidelines and regulations than other states. The sale of all firearms, including private sales, must be processed through a licensed and certified firearms dealer of California. An actual application must be filled for the sale of a fire arm with an authorized dealer; this also extends to any transfers of ownership, loans, and rentals as well. An application contains information regarding the purchaser as well as the firearm.
Purchasing a firearm in California is not a simple process. First, any individual seeking to purchase a firearm within the state of California must provide appropriate identification; either a driver’s license or state-issued I.D. card, and another form providing proof of residence in the state. People who are not residents of the state of California will not be able to purchase firearms within its borders. A Handgun Safety Certificate must also be obtained in order to purchase a firearm, specifically handguns, which is given only after successfully passing a written test.
The written test is administered by certified instructors of the California Department of Justice, and is valid for five years. Furthermore, a thumb-print must also be provided at the time of submitting an application. The entire application is then processed–at a fee provided by the buyer–by the California Department of Justice, which conducts a thorough and rigorous background check for every prospective firearms purchaser. There is an imposed ten-day waiting period for all firearms purchases. If the purchase is approved, the dealer must register the actual transfer of ownership of the firearm and keep it on record.
The purchaser then has a limit of 30 days to pick up the weapon from the dealer. If the weapon is not picked up by the buyer within that time frame, the entire purchasing process must be repeated all over.  A firearm purchase is strictly limited to one weapon. A person seeking to buy multiple firearms can not apply for a another purchase within thirty-days of a previous firearm purchase. Also, a person can not accept delivery of another weapon within thirty-days of having purchased another firearm.
The regulations regarding the possession of firearms by California gun laws are similar to those of other states. A convicted felon, people with a history of mental illness, drug addiction, and/or mental instability are all ineligible to posses fire arms in California. The restriction is also expanded to include individuals with misdemeanor charges of a violent or forceful nature. Minors that have committed crimes that, if tried as adults, would have been felonies, or pertain to a violent nature are not allowed to possess any firearms until they reach the age of thirty.
No minor under the age of sixteen may possess a handgun, unless under the supervision and accompaniment of a parent or legal guardian while participating in activities that involve firearms; expressed written consent is also acceptable. This restriction also includes any kind of ammunition as well, not just firearms.
Under California gun laws, the carrying of loaded firearms in public is strictly prohibited. The only exceptions are, if the person is shooting at a range or hunting within the premises of a shooting club, is within the confines of his private property or place of business, is within reasonable concern for his/her life, and if a lawful arrest is occurring.
The carrying of concealed weapons is allowed under law, as long as the individual has a permit. This also includes handguns in holsters that are easily visible. When a firearm is located in a vehicle, it is permitted to be only in the trunk or in a secured and locked case or container to be considered as “unconcealed.” Guns placed under seats or in a glove compartment, under California gun laws, in considered to be “concealed.”
“Assault weapons” also have their own special regulations and restrictions under California gun law. It is strictly illegal to sale or transfer “assault weapons”–or a .50 caliber BMG rifle–in any way shape or form.
According to California gun laws, an “assault weapon” is defined as any firearm listed in the original provision of the Roberti Roos assault weapon law, any weapon in the AK and AR-15 series or other similar series, and lastly, any weapon that is classified as an assault weapon by the Department of Justice.
It is not illegal to possess an assault weapon in California, but it must be appropriately registered with the state. At this point in time, registration for these types of weapons has ended in California, and individuals in possession of unregistered assault weapons must relinquish them over to the authorities.
To legally dispose of a assault weapon, a person must sell it to a dealer certified to deal with that specific type of firearm, give it to the proper authorities, take it out of the state, or completely destroy the weapon.
Assault weapons may only be possessed at the registered owner’s private residence, private property, or place of business. Specialized shooting clubs may also possess assault weapons, given the proper documentation. Also, in California, it is illegal to possess more than ten rounds of ammunition for any kind of assault weapon.

Colorado Gun Laws

Colorado Gun Laws

Colorado gun laws do not require the registration of any particular type of firearm. However, firearms dealers are required to keep records regarding any kind of transactions involving firearms. The records must include the party's name, age, occupation and residence, as well as any pertinent details of the firearm involved in the transaction.

An employee must also validate the date as well as provide his/her name on the record as well. The record book is to be made readily available to the authorities at any given time for inspection and investigative purposes. Many people may also be compelled to purchase at gun shows or other similar events.

However, it is illegal for gun show vendors to actually transfer firearms to prospective buyers at a gun show. The only way in which such a sale can be completed is if the vendor can obtain a background check of the buyer and get approved by the Colorado Bureau of Investigation. A qualified buyer, under Colorado gun laws, may also purchase or receive delivery of firearms in neighboring states, as long as the details of the sale comply with both states' regulations on the purchase of firearms and the person is a Colorado resident.

Like other states in the United States, Colorado law prohibit the possession of firearms to those individuals who have been convicted of a felony or of a misdemeanor pertaining to domestic violence. Generally speaking, only adults over the age of 18 are permitted to posses firearms. Minors under the age of 18 are legally permitted to be in possession of a firearm if:

The person in question is involved in hunting or sporting that involves firearms, is attending or traveling to/from the required courses or classes to be licensed in hunting or trapping, and the firearm is not loaded.

The minor is under the supervision of a parent or legal guardian at the place of residence and has permission to posses a handgun.

It is only required to obtain a permit in the case of carrying a concealed handgun, but otherwise, there is none required to carry rifles or shotguns, as long as that person is in their place of residence, place of business, or private property, and the weapon is not concealed. Unlike other states, Colorado gun laws do not consider a handgun to be concealed if it is found in an automobile, regardless of where it actually is in the car, or while engaged in hunting activities.

As long as the firearm is in the possession of the person legally allowed to carry it, it is not deemed illegal. Furthermore, the firearm must be unloaded, the exception being only for handguns. When firearms are on snowmobiles, the weapon must be unloaded as well, and also be in a case or container. Another unique feature of Colorado gun laws is that it allows for law enforcement officers to carry concealed weapons, regardless if they are on active duty or retired.

Colorado gun law requires that applicants for a permit, to carry a concealed handgun, be at least 21 years old, show proficiency with a handgun, be a legal resident of the state, and is not under any kind of restraining order at the time the application is submitted. Also, any kind of history of abusive use of alcohol or controlled substances will also render any prospective applicant ineligible.


Connecticut Gun Laws

Connecticut Gun Laws


Connecticut gun laws, unlike other states, do require the registration of certain types of firearms. The majority of firearms are exempt, but all weapons that can by classified as assault weapons must be registered with the state. However, there is no permit required in the purchase of firearms, for the exception of handguns.

Under Connecticut gun laws, a person to be considered eligible for a firearm purchase must be 21 years of age, deemed as a person lawfully and otherwise capable of handling a firearm safely–as per federal statutes, laws, and regulations–and a handgun eligibility certificate for those seeking to purchase handguns. The certificate must be issued by the Commissioner of Public Safety, and there is a two-week waiting period from the date the application is submitted.

Once the application is approved, it is issued by the Commissioner of Public Safety pending receipt of a background check from the Federal Bureau of Investigations. The handgun eligibility certificate is then issued to the prospective firearms purchaser within 60 days of the commissioner have received the FBI background check. The handgun eligibility certificate is valid for up to five years from the day it is issued.

It is also required that all firearm buyers complete a safety course, as well as be finger-printed, and pay all fees associated with obtaining a firearm. The waiting period is waived for those individuals who are in law enforcement and its various agencies, members of the armed forces, and to those who hold a valid Connecticut hunting license.

Under Connecticut gun laws, there is no permit required for the possession of firearms. However, it is illegal for a convicted felon to be in possession of a firearm. Also, those with juvenile delinquency records may also be deemed as incapable of being in possession of a weapon, depending on the crime. Some of the crimes that bar past juvenile delinquents from possessing firearms include:

     The illegal possession of a controlled substance.

     Second-degree stalking, rioting, or unlawful restraint.

     Third-degree assault.

     Negligent Homicide.

     Court-ordered confinement for mental illness or mental instability in the prior year.

Connecticut gun laws also prohibit illegal aliens, or those people unable to provide for proper identification as a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, the liberty to possess firearms.

A permit is not required to carry handguns, either on one's person, or in an a vehicle. However, a permit is necessary to carry a handgun, regardless if the weapon is concealed or not. Essentially, a permit is required to carry a handgun outside of one's place of residence.

The permit is required when transporting a handgun, regardless of where the person is going or coming from. According to Connecticut gun laws, a permit to carry handguns must first be obtained on the local level.

An individual can apply for the permit at the local police department or town hall. To be eligible, an applicant must be at least 21 years of age, a legal resident of the United States, must have a home or work address in the local town that he/she is applying to, and is otherwise deemed as a capable to properly handle a handgun.

Assault weapons are illegal to possess under Connecticut law, unless the firearm was acquired before 1993, and obtained registration for the weapon before 1994 from the Connecticut State Police. Assault weapons are only allowed to be in possession by those holding the necessary registration, and only at the following locations:

     The owner's residence, place of business, or private property.

     On the premises of sanctioned and commissioned Connecticut gun clubs.

     Locations where the exhibition of an assault weapon is for educational purposes

     While transporting an assault weapon between the aforementioned locations.


Delaware Gun Laws

Delaware Gun Laws

Delaware gun laws do not restrict the purchasing
of firearms–which include rifles, shotguns, and handguns–to be subject to the requirement of a permit.
The only discrepancy that exists is that to purchase rifles and shotguns, you must be at least 18 years of age, while for purchase of a handgun, the individual must be at least 21 years of age. In order to be eligible to purchase a firearm, a prospective buyer must submit him/herself to a mandatory criminal background check. Furthermore, an adult record check is also required.
The only types of firearms that are exempt from necessitating any kind of background checks are those considered to be antiques or replicas. Individuals that are involved in law enforcement, as well as those possessing valid permits to carry concealed weapons, are also exempt from background checks as well. It is considered illegal to transfer or sell any kind of firearm to minors under the age 18, without consent from a parent or legal guardian.
Delaware gun laws also do not require any kind of permit for the possession of shotguns, rifles, or handguns. Individuals that are barred from possessing firearms are those that have a felony conviction. This is also extended to include misdemeanor offenses of a violent nature.
However, people with misdemeanor convictions may be eligible to possess and purchase firearms after fives years from the date of conviction. All convictions involving narcotics or controlled substances also render possession of firearms illegal to those with this type of criminal record. People that exhibit a history of mental instability or illness are also prohibited from possessing firearms. Under Delaware gun laws, air guns and BB guns are also included.
It is stated that no minor under the age of 16 may be in possession of a firearm, including air guns and BB guns, unless under the direct supervision of an adult. Furthermore, it is to be considered a misdemeanor charge for anyone to have in possession ammunition or projectiles intended for use with air guns or BB guns larger than that of a standard BB shot.
Under Delaware gun law, it is illegal for any person to carry a concealed firearm–whether it is loaded or unloaded–without the proper license. The application for the permit to carry a firearm must be processed by the Prothonotary of the Superior Court representing the county of residence of the applicant. Furthermore, the applicant must also provide five references from individuals residing in that area, attesting to the applicants moral character and reputation, correct age, and the necessity of the applicant to carry a concealed weapon is valid and warranted.
Each reference must write the letter  personally and sign it in order for the application to be approved. The license, when first issued, is valid for two years, and may be renewed every three years after the initial period. The central requirement of transporting shotguns and rifles–in automobiles, aquatic vehicles, and farm machinery–is that they must be unloaded to be considered under proper provision and observation of Delaware gun law.

District of Columbia Gun Laws

District of Columbia Gun Laws

The District of Columbia gun laws are among the most strict in the United States. It is important to note that the District of Columbia has two sets of laws that regulate everything pertaining to a gun license or gun permit, and their various applications and restrictions. One code of law is imposed by Congress, as part of the D.C. Code.
This section delineates the rules and regulations regarding the purchase, possession, and the carrying of firearms. The other grouping of laws was imposed by the D.C. City Council. These laws pertain to the registration of firearms, permits to firearm owners, and also the prohibition of the purchase or sale of new handguns. Under this code of law, it is also prohibited for a person to to bring or transport any handgun through D.C.
The registration of all firearms is required in the District of Columbia. Furthermore, firearm owners are also required to obtain a gun license for any shotgun, rifle, or handgun. The purchase of firearms within the city limits are strictly restrictive to the sale and purchase of only shotguns and rifles.
The sell or purchase of handguns is prohibited by D.C. gun laws. The sell or purchase of rifles or shotguns can only be conducted by licensed dealers in D.C. The actual delivery of the weapon is contingent to the approval of the firearm’s appropriate registration, which is decided by the Metropolitan Police Department.
Ammunition may only be bought or sold according to the specifications of that registered rifle or shotgun. No person is allowed to purchase ammunition for another weapon not specified with the gun permit, license, or registration.
In order to be able to possess rifles and shotguns, D.C. firearm legislation requires than an individual must first obtain a registration certificate or gun license. The registration certificates are issued by the Metropolitan Police Department. In order to be considered eligible to possess a firearm, an individual must be at least 21 years of age.
An adult over the age of 18 may be eligible, as long as the person has expressed written consent from a parent or legal guardian, as well as a signed statement of liability. Applicants are also required to have a valid District of Columbia driver’s license and pass a vision test. Individuals that are not eligible to possess firearms in D.C. include:
Those convicted of a violent or weapon-related crime
Those who physically are considered unable to handle a firearm
Individuals that have been convicted of narcotics charges, been deemed as an alcoholic, required to be committed to a mental hospital, or acquitted of a crime by reason of insanity are all ineligible. Furthermore, all of the aforementioned situations must have not occurred within the past five years.
Any person that is moving to the District of Columbia must also file for registration of any firearms they may possess. The office of Identification and Records Division must be notified, and the weapons are subject to the necessary gun license or gun permit required to own said firearms. The application for registration must be filed within 48 hours of notifying the proper authority.
This does not apply to handguns, because the possession of handguns, unless registered, is illegal in D.C. Handguns in D.C. all require that they be registered before February 5, 1977. No handgun registration was available after that date. Therefore, given the nature of the statute, it is illegal to possess or transport any handgun that was not registered before the specified date. As a result, all Non-residents to the District of Columbia are prohibited from possessing or carrying a handgun.
The only exception is that the individual must provide substantial proof that the firearm in question is in possession because of a sporting or recreational activity. With regards to traveling, the authorities have, out of ease and practicality, stated that a person transporting a firearm through D.C. may do so if the individual does not stop within the city limits, the firearm is unloaded, and transported in the trunk of the vehicle.
A gun license or gun permit is required to carry a firearm. This excludes handguns, for carrying this type of weapon is illegal in D.C. All firearms must be kept within the property of the owner’s place of residence or business. The firearm must be unloaded and locked with a specially designed trigger lock.
To have the gun at home and disassembled is also allowed. The only exception is when the firearm is being used for recreational or sporting events, as allowed by law. Any individual to be in possession of a firearm in which the manufacturer’s name or number have been altered or removed will be considered as having committed the act, which is illegal under D.C. gun laws. It also prohibited to carry a gun within 1000 feet of a public or private school, its immediate surroundings, facilities, or structures, and affiliated programs or events.

Arizona Gun Laws

Arizona Gun Laws

In accordance with Arizona gun laws, the registration of firearms is not necessary.

In addition, there is no requirement of permits or application for license to purchase, posses, or carry firearms. The sole exception pertains to the carrying of firearms, where a permit is needed to carry a concealed handgun.

The general guidelines for purchasing a firearm are basic: first, it is illegal to sell or transfer any kind of firearm to a minor, unless written consent by the parent or legal guardian can be produced; this also includes any kind of ammunition. Secondly, it is illegal to sell a firearm to a “prohibited possessor.” Arizona law defines the term “prohibited possessor” as :

Any individual convicted of a felony which can be classified as violent and the use of a deadly force was involved. This also includes minors who have committed such an offense, within a 10 year period from the date of the crime.

At the time of possession, the individual is currently under probation due to a conviction for a felony or domestic abuse charge, or is currently under parole.

A person currently serving out a prison sentence.

A minor unaccompanied by a parent, legal guardian, or qualified hunting or firearms instructor; the exception to the rule applies to the transportation of an unloaded firearm for hunting and practicing, between 5:00am and 10:00pm, to an area where shooting firearms is allowed.

Arizona gun laws, therefore, restrict the possession of firearms in adherence to the definitions of a “prohibited possessor.” Other regulations exist, such as no person will knowingly be in possession of a firearm that does not have the manufacturer’s serial or has been altered or destroyed in anyway, unless a member of the appropriate law enforcement or military. The exception to this rule would be any museums or a qualified and certified person allowed to handle such firearms for educational¬†purposes at specified institutions.

Carrying firearms, according to Arizona gun laws, is generally allowed as long as the weapon is not concealed. Of course, there are certain rules and regulations in place in order to insure a level of public safety.

No person is allowed to carry a concealed firearm in Arizona, unless the appropriate permit can be reproduced. A “concealed weapon,” as defined by Arizona gun laws, refers to handgun to that is not in plain sight or easily visible. A handgun in a belt holster that is visible or carried in luggage is not considered concealed.

To qualify for a permit to carry a concealed weapon, an individual must be over 21 years of age, a resident of the state, submit fingerprints for a background check, complete a firearm safety program, and provide for the necessary fees and costs. The permit is only valid for four years, and must also be renewed every four years.

Although a permit is required to carry a concealed handgun, there are exceptions present under Arizona gun law. One restriction is that no person can carry a firearm to public events unless otherwise specified by law. This excludes events that involve hunting or similar activities. This is also extended to other public facilities, such as schools.

The exclusion regarding to schools applies only to unloaded firearms in a car or other means of transportation that is under the use of an adult; if not being operated, the firearm must not be visible and the car locked. A firearm may also be approved by a school-sanctioned program to be on the property.