What are the Laws to Buy a Gun in Minnesota?

February 21, 2018 11:23 AM

(ABC 6 News) - With the national debate on gun laws ramping up, ABC 6 News looked into Minnesota's laws for purchasing firearms.

"They'll come in here and decide what they want and depending on what it is, I'll ask for the credentials I need," said Gary Schoenmann, owner of American Gunsmith and Gun Shop.


In Minnesota, permits to purchase firearms are free and last up to a year. Permits to carry last for five years and the cost is capped at $100. Permit applications are first submitted to the local sheriff's office, where their records staff conducts a background check.

"One of the disqualifiers is if you've been committed to a facility because of mental illness,” Dodge County Sheriff Scott Rose said. “So if a judge orders you committed to a facility, that will show up on the background checks that we do."

If you're approved, you can legally buy a gun when you receive your papers, but there are some conditions.

"It depends on what they're purchasing to start with, it depends on their age," Schoenmann said.

Minnesota state law requires you to be at least 18 years old to buy a firearm. If you're between the ages of 18 and 21, you can only buy a semi-automatic weapon if it is fully assembled and you need a permit. If you’re 21 or older, you need a permit to purchase or carry a handgun or semi-automatic rifle. Anyone 18 or older can buy a shotgun or rifle without a permit.

"At that point, we have the federal form that they fill out," Schoenmann said.
But even if another round of background checks come back clean, Schoenmann said it's up to him to make the final decision.

"If I didn't feel comfortable about transferring a firearm to them, I personally as a business owner and FFL (Federal Firearms License) holder, I have a right to refuse the transfer, regardless of what they're credentials are," Schoenmann said.


Elise Romas

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