What You Need To Know About Minnesota’s Gun Laws in 2022
Nowadays, more states are implementing new gun laws such as conceal-and-carry laws. If you are wondering about the gun laws in Minnesota, then you’ve come to the right place. At the end of this guide, you will have a better understanding of the Minnesota Gun Laws and be able to comply with those laws.
The gun laws in Minnesota function on a shall-issue policy with the permits being given out at a local level. The state is preemptive over local laws with regard to firearms and permits from other states are also honored if the state’s law is similar to Minnesota’s.
Minnesota is one of the few states that doesn’t have a constitutional provision regarding gun ownership and since it doesn’t permit conceal-and-carry, you will need to get a permit to carry a firearm openly. In order to get a permit to carry, you will need to be over the age of 21 and must finish a firearms training course.
Additionally, you will need to be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident and not be prohibited from having a gun under federal or Minnesota laws.
When and Where It’s Illegal to Carry Guns in Minnesota
Even if you have a permit to carry a handgun or other weapons, there are some situations and places that will make carrying guns illegal. However, these restrictions are not applicable to law enforcement officers or antique guns kept as a collection.
Carrying a Handgun in Public Without a Permit or While Under the Influence
If you carry a handgun in a public place without a state permit, you can be charged with a serious misdemeanor. This law is applicable regardless of whether the gun is near you or in a motor vehicle, snowmobile, or boat. If you were convicted of the same offense before, carrying a firearm without a permit will become a felony.
The requirements for a carry permit are as stated earlier. In addition to those requirements, you must not be listed in Minnesota’s criminal gang database too if you want to get a carry permit.
Even if you have a permit, you must not carry weapons in a public place while under the influence of alcohol, controlled drugs, or any intoxicant. You will be charged with a misdemeanor if you do not comply with this law.
Carrying a Rifle in Public
When you carry a rifle, shotgun, or even a BB gun in a public place, it is also considered a gross misdemeanor, or felony if it’s a repeated offense.
The exception is if you have a gun carry permit, the firearm is not loaded and completely secured in a closed and fastened case, you are on state land or waters for legal hunting or target shooting purposes, or the firearm is being carried to or from a gun shop or somewhere for hunting or other legal activities.
Possession of Firearms in Schools and Courthouses
If you are possessing any form of a dangerous weapon on K-12 school property and or a school bus, it is considered a crime in Minnesota. It would only be a misdemeanor if you are a valid permit holder, if not, it would be considered a felony. A misdemeanor charge is also inevitable even if you have an imitation or BB gun on school property.
Besides that, it is also a felony for carrying dangerous weapons in a courthouse or some state buildings. There are some exceptions, but it is usually for authorized personnel and handgun permit holders.
When and Where It’s Legal to Carry Guns in Mn
Now that you know some of the common situations and places where it’s illegal to have a weapon, let’s take a look at circumstances and places where it’s legal to carry a weapon.
- In a motor vehicle. If you have a Minnesota license to carry or have a permit from a state Minnesota recognizes, you can have a concealed carry in a vehicle. Otherwise, the concealed carry has to be unloaded and stored in the closed trunk or in an enclosed case, gunbox, or securely tied package.
- In state or national parks, forests, and Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs). The same conditions as above are applicable in this situation, but firearms are prohibited in certain places such as the Bayport WMA in Washington County, the Hastings WMA in Dakota County, and the Raguet WMA in Scott and Carver Counties.
- In bars or restaurants that serve alcohol. There is no statute that says it’s illegal to concealed carry in a bar or restaurant. However, you are still required to not be under the influence, and by “under the influence”, it means less than 0.04 blood alcohol level.
- In an employee parking lot. An employer or a postsecondary institution is not allowed to restrict the lawful carry or possession of firearms in a parking facility or parking area.
Illegal Weapons Possession by Certain People
Other than situations and places that are prohibited from possessing a firearm, certain people are also prohibited from possessing any weapon in Minnesota. These people include those who:
- were convicted of a felony, violent crime, or drug crime
- have been recently convicted of domestic assault with a firearm, stalking, and certain other crimes
- are under a protection order for domestic violence or domestic child abuse
- are being charged with a violent crime and are currently under a diversion program
- are illegal drug users
- were subjected to a chemical dependency treatment and have yet to complete the treatment
- are found to be mentally ill or developmentally disabled, and are considered a danger to the public
- are in the U.S. illegally
- were dishonorably discharged from the U.S. military.
Additionally, minors (those under the age of 18 years old) are not allowed to have handguns or semiautomatic assault weapons if they haven’t completed a safety and marksmanship course. They are also not allowed to carry if not under proper supervision by a parent or during training, competition, target practice, or shooting range.
Illegal Possession of Stun Guns and Tasers
Besides firearms, stun guns and tasers (also known as “electronic incapacitation devices” in state law) are also the go-to self-defense weapons for many adults in Minnesota to defend themselves or their property.
The same law is applicable when it comes to using a stun gun or a taser for those people that were mentioned above. Violation penalties also range from gross misdemeanors to felonies.
Banned Weapons in Mn
There are certain types of weapons banned in Minnesota and that include:
- machine guns or kits that convert guns into machine gun
- short-barreled shotguns
- “Saturday night special” pistols, which usually refer to a cheap type of handgun constructed of poor-quality materials
- any firearms that have the serial number removed or modified.
The range of violation penalties is also the same as the penalties that were mentioned above.
Illegal Use of Weapons
The Minnesota law also mentions the illegal use or handling of guns as well as other dangerous weapons. The illegal use are as follows:
- using or handling a gun in a reckless manner which in a way, endangers other people
- intentionally pointing a gun at someone else, regardless if it’s loaded or unloaded
- keeping a loaded firearm in a place that a child will likely gain access to and have no reasonable preventive steps are taken to stop it from happening
- giving a firearm or ammunition to a minor without the consent of the minor’s parent or the police.
The crimes mentioned above are usually charged with a misdemeanor or gross misdemeanor, but when it comes to illegally giving a gun to a minor, it is considered a felony crime.
Minnesota Concealed Carry Permit Information
Here’s what you need to know as an applicant for a permit to carry in Minnesota.
- Be at least 21 years old and above.
- Fill in a form.
- Not restricted from the carry or possession of a firearm under Minnesota law.
- Not listed in the criminal gang investigation system.
- Be a resident of the county from where he/she is applying for a permit (non-residents may apply to any Minnesota county sheriff).
- Provide a certificate of completed authorized firearms course.
- Comply with federal law requirements.
If you are applying for a new permit to carry, the fee will be determined by the county sheriff, but it will not exceed $100. As for the renewal permit, it will not exceed $75, provided it’s applied for before the expiration date of a current permit.
Validity and Processing Time
The Minnesota permit to carry lasts for 5 years, while the processing time that applicants can expect is 30 days.
Permit Application Process
The application for a permit can be made simple by following these steps:
- Be sure to complete a training course within 1 year of your application.
- Get the form from your county sheriff’s office.
- Submit the completed application form along with a photocopy of the proof of successful completion of the firearms training. You are also required to provide a photocopy of your driver’s license or state ID card or the photo page of your passport.
- Pay the necessary fee.
- You will be informed when your application is approved.
Requirements to Learn and Train Guns in Minnesota
The Minnesota statute requires proof of having received training from a certified instructor in the safe use of a handgun for permit applications. It also needs to be done within 1 year of the original or renewal application. In order to know that you’ve enrolled for the proper course, it should consist:
- Instruction in the fundamentals of pistol use.
- Successfully going through an actual shooting qualification exercise.
- Knowledge of the fundamental legal aspects of pistol possession, carry and use, including personal defense and the restrictions on the use of deadly force.
Legal Assistance for Weapons Charges
If you are facing weapons charges in Minnesota, it will be a good idea for you to consult with criminal defense lawyers as quickly as possible. Criminal defense lawyers will be helpful in this situation because you can better understand the state’s law that applies to your situation.
Sometimes, the state changes its laws as well, so it is a good idea to talk to a lawyer first if you’re worried about actual or potential weapons charges.
Now that we’ve come to the end of this guide, we hope the information that was given can help you better understand the Minnesota gun laws. Bear in mind, that this is not going to be as comprehensive as what a lawyer can provide, so if you are facing gun-related legal issues, be sure to consult with an attorney as soon as possible.
Is my Minnesota driver’s license linked to my Minnesota carry permit?
Yes. If you are pulled over by a law enforcement officer, he/she will be informed that you are a concealed carry permit holder when he/she runs your driver’s license number.
Are there non-resident permits in Minnesota?
Yes. Not only are Minnesota residents allowed to apply for carry permits, but you can also follow the same process to apply for carry permits in Minnesota even if you’re a non-resident.
Is a permit required to purchase a handgun in Minnesota?
If you intend to buy a pistol through a Federal Firearms Licensee (FFL), you are required to have a Minnesota Permit to Carry a Pistol or a Permit to Purchase/Transfer a Firearm. If you do not have any of the permits mentioned, the FFL must perform a background check.
Can I possess a handgun on my private property without a permit?
Yes. You do not need a permit to handle or carry a pistol in your home because you are legally entitled to carry a firearm, to keep or carry a firearm at a business, dwelling house, premises, or on land possessed by you.
Is there a Hunter Harassment Law in Minnesota?
Yes. A person is not to prevent or disrupt another person from taking or preparing to take a wild animal if that person is doing it in a lawful manner.
Hello there, it’s Michael here. A gun lover since young, served the country for the last 20 years. I started the blog to share my experience and gun-related knowledge accumulated throughout the years. Hopefully, you will find something useful over here or just have fun! You can learn more about me here.