Nevada State CCW and Firearms Laws
Overview of Nevada Firearms Laws
Nevada has a preemption statute (NRS 244.364) which makes it illegal for any county, city, or town to enact more restrictive firearms legislation than that contained in the Nevada Revised Statutes. It does allow cities and counties with over 400,000 residents to retain handgun registration laws enacted prior to 1989, but requires that they give residents 60 days in which to register a firearm after moving into that city or county, and 72 hours to register a newly purchased handgun. It also allows cities and counties to make laws prohibiting discharge of a firearm within certain areas, and most counties and larger cities and towns have such laws. Note: In spite of the state preemption statute, the city of North Las Vegas prohibits the possession, in a vehicle, of any "deadly weapon" (NLVCO 9.32.080). North Las Vegas also does not recognize the right of open carry, and anyone openly carrying a firearm within city limits runs the risk of arrest and confiscation of their firearm.
A concealed firearms permit issued by any Nevada county is good throughout the entire state, with the exception of certain prohibited places defined by statute (NRS 202.3673). Nevada law requires you to have your CCW permit and NV driver's license or state-issued identification card in your possession when carrying a concealed firearm, and to show them to any law enforcement officer upon request (NRS 202.3667); additionally, if your permit was issued in Clark County, you must also have the handgun registration card ("blue card") for the firearm you are carrying. Carrying a concealed firearm without a CCW permit is illegal throughout the state (NRS 202.350), and is a gross misdemeanor on the first offense and a felony on the second and any subsequent offenses.
A concealed firearms permit may be revoked by the issuing sheriff if the permit holder engages in activities that would normally result in the denial of a CCW application, or is convicted of a crime involving the use or threatened use of force or violence (NRS 202.3657). "Flashing" or unnecessary display of the firearm can not only cause your CCW permit to be revoked, it may also result in charges being filed for "drawing a deadly weapon in a threatening manner" (NRS 202.320) depending on all the circumstances surrounding the incident.
Nevada has no state law regarding open carry. This means that open carry of a firearm is technically legal throughout the state, since preemption prevents cities and counties from enacting any law against it. As noted above, however, the city of North Las Vegas maintains that open carry is prohibited within city limits, and while you cannot be convicted of any crime simply for openly carrying your firearm, North Las Vegas police will harrass and likely arrest you for doing so. Both Boulder City and Henderson also have ordinances prohibiting weapons in certain areas within city limits, but it is unclear how aggressively they enforce these laws; under the state preemption statute these city laws would appear to be null and void in any case, but expect to be contacted by police and possibly even arrested if you choose to carry a firearm openly in these cities. Open carry within the city of Las Vegas and the more heavily populated areas of unincorporated Clark County will probably also get you harrassed by the police, although it is legal by state statute and there are no county or city laws prohibiting it. In the rural areas that make up most of Nevada, open carry is not an issue.
Clark County is the only Nevada county that requires registration of handguns. Residents must register any newly purchased handgun within 72 hours after acquiring it, and new residents must register any handguns they own within 60 days of establishing residency (CCO 12.04.200). Concealed firearms permit holders who live in Clark County must, when carrying a firearm, have in their possession the handgun registration card, aka "blue card," for their weapon, in addition to their CCW permit and Nevada driver's license or identification card.
Pursuant to NRS 202.3673, a CCW permit holder may not carry a concealed firearm in the following locations:
- Any facility of a law enforcement agency.
- A prison, city or county jail, or detention facility.
- A courthouse or courtroom.
- A public airport and/or a public building that is located on the property of a public airport.
- A public building that has a metal detector at each public entrance.
- A public building that has a sign posted at each public entrance indicating that no firearms are allowed in the building.
- Any facility of a public or private school without written permission.
- Any facility of a vocational/technical school, or the University of Nevada, or Community College System without written permission.
- Any other building owned or occupied by the Federal Government, the state, or local government.
- Any other place where carrying a concealed firearm is prohibited by state or federal law.
The statute contains a specific exception for employees of public buildings.
While "No Firearms" signs on buildings other than public buildings as defined in NRS 202.3673 do not have the force of law, you should respect the wishes of property owners who do not want firearms on their property. If a property owner or his representative asks you to leave, and you refuse to do so, you may be arrested and charged with trespassing.
No Duty to Retreat
In May of 2011, Nevada's governor signed AB321 into law. This bill amended NRS 200.120, which deals with the use of deadly force, by specifying that a person who uses deadly force to defend himself has no legal "duty to retreat" prior to doing so as long as he:
- Is not the original aggressor;
- Has a right to be present at the location where deadly force is used; and
- Is not actively engaged in conduct in furtherance of criminal activity at the time deadly force is used.
State and National Parks
Per NAC 407.105, carry of a concealed firearm is legal in state parks as long as you have a valid CCW permit. Open carry is not permitted in state parks. As of February 22, 2010, it is legal to carry a firearm within the boundaries of a National Park provided you are in compliance with the laws of the state in which the park is located (pursuant to Section 512 of Public Law 111-24). This means that both open and concealed carry are legal within national parks located in Nevada. It is still a violation of federal law to possess a firearm inside any national park building with "no firearms" signs posted at public entrances.
Nevada Firearms and Self-Defense Laws
Nevada Revised Statutes
The short titles of each statute are listed below; click on a statute to read the entire text. This is not intended to be a complete or exhaustive list of all Nevada firearms and self-defense laws.
- NRS 200.120 - “Justifiable homicide” defined.
- NRS 200.130 - Bare fear insufficient to justify killing; reasonable fear required.
- NRS 200.160 - Additional cases of justifiable homicide.
- NRS 200.200 - Killing in self-defense.
- NRS 202.253 - Definitions pertaining to firearms.
- NRS 202.257 - Possession of firearm when under influence of alcohol, controlled substance or other intoxicating substance; administration of evidentiary test; penalty; forfeiture of firearm.
- NRS 202.265 - Possession of dangerous weapon on property or in vehicle of school or child care facility; penalty; exceptions.
- NRS 202.280 - Discharging firearm in or upon public streets or in places of public resort; throwing deadly missiles; duties of civil, military and peace officers; penalties.
- NRS 202.285 - Discharging firearm at or into structure, vehicle, aircraft or watercraft; penalties.
- NRS 202.290 - Aiming firearm at human being; discharging weapon where person might be endangered; penalty.
- NRS 202.300 - Use or possession of firearm by child under age of 18 years; unlawful to aid or permit child to commit violation; penalties; child 14 years of age or older authorized to possess firearm under certain circumstances.
- NRS 202.320 - Drawing deadly weapon in threatening manner.
- NRS 202.350 - Manufacture, importation, possession or use of dangerous weapon or silencer; carrying concealed weapon without permit; penalties; issuance of permit to carry concealed weapon; exceptions.
- NRS 202.360 - Ownership or possession of firearm by certain persons prohibited; penalties.
- NRS 202.3653 - Definitions pertaining to concealed firearms.
- NRS 202.3657 - Application for permit; eligibility; denial or revocation of permit.
- NRS 202.366 - Investigation of applicant for permit; issuance or denial of permit; expiration of permit.
- NRS 202.3662 - Confidentiality of information about applicant for permit and permittee.
- NRS 202.3663 - Judicial review of denial of application for permit.
- NRS 202.3665 - Duties of sheriff upon receiving notification that applicant or permittee has been charged with or convicted of crime involving use or threatened use of force or violence.
- NRS 202.3667 - Permittee to carry permit and proper identification when in possession of concealed firearm; penalty.
- NRS 202.367 - Duplicate permit; notification to sheriff of recovered permit; penalty.
- NRS 202.3673 - Permittee authorized to carry concealed firearm while on premises of public building; exceptions; penalty.
- NRS 202.3677 - Application for renewal of permit; fees; demonstrated continued competence required.
- NRS 202.3678 - Application for certification as qualified retired law enforcement officer; law enforcement agency required to offer certain officers opportunity to obtain qualifications necessary for certification; fees.
- NRS 202.3688 - Circumstances in which holder of permit issued by another state may carry concealed firearm in this State; holder of permit issued by another state subject to same restrictions and requirements as holder of permit issued in this State.
- NRS 244.364 - Limited authority to regulate firearms; restrictions concerning registration of certain firearms in county whose population is 400,000 or more.
- NRS 268.418 - Limited authority to regulate firearms; restrictions concerning registration of firearms in city in county whose population is 400,000 or more.
- NRS 269.222 - Limited authority to regulate firearms; restrictions concerning registration of firearms in town in county whose population is 400,000 or more.
Nevada Administrative Code
- NAC 407.105 - Possession or use of weapons in state parks.