Minnesota does not currently impose a significant number of restrictions on the rights of state residents to own and carry firearms. However, if you are accused of violating one of the regulations that are in place, you could face significant criminal consequences and the potential loss of your right to own a firearm.
When trying to secure a favorable outcome in this type of case, you may benefit from having an experienced Minnesota gun lawyer by your side. A dedicated defense attorney could explain the exact requirements you are subject to under state law, outline what your specific charges might mean for your future, and work to protect your best interests.
How State Law Regulates Gun Rights
Minnesota residents are not required to register firearms with the state, nor are they required to obtain or maintain an owner’s license or submit to a background check prior to completing a private gun purchase. However, anyone who wishes to carry a handgun in public must obtain a permit to carry before they can do so legally.
To qualify for this permit, an applicant must be at least 21 years old, be a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident, have completed approved firearms training, and have neither a history of disqualifying criminal convictions or gang affiliation, as per Minnesota Statutes §624.714. Since Minnesota is a shall-issue state, anyone who meets these criteria must be issued a permit upon submitting the appropriate application form, without having to meet any additional criteria.
Once someone obtains a permit to carry, they are allowed to carry their firearm openly or in a concealed manner. Additionally, under MN Stat. §624.7131, a permit to carry grants the holder the right to purchase and transfer long guns and assault weapons. Shotguns and traditional rifles do not require any kind of permit to purchase. A Minnesota gun attorney who is knowledgeable about these regulations could answer questions about them during a private consultation.
Unlawful Possession of a Firearm
In accordance with MN Stat. §624.713, there are several categories of individuals who are not legally allowed to possess firearms in Minnesota, including:
- Individuals under 18, with certain exceptions
- Anyone convicted of any “crime of violence,” any felony, controlled substance possession within the past three years, domestic violence within the past three years, and certain other offenses defined in Subdivision 1(11)
- Individuals addicted to drugs
- Individuals who have been found mentally ill and/or developmentally disabled
- Unlawful aliens and individuals who have renounced their U.S. citizenship
- Dishonorable military discharges
- Subjects of protective orders
Any such individual found in possession of a firearm may be charged with a gross misdemeanor offense punishable by up to a $3,000 fine and a year in jail. Certain violations may be classified as felony offenses that are punishable by significant prison time.
Under MN Stat. §624.714, a first offense for open or concealed carry of a firearm without the requisite permit is a gross misdemeanor, and subsequent offenses are felonies. A firearm lawyer in Minnesota could help a defendant build a case tailored to their particular circumstances.
Let a Minnesota Gun Attorney Take on Your Case
Violations of the state regulations defining gun ownership and possession can come with harsh consequences. If you are charged with a gun offense, you may never be able to legally possess a firearm again. Hiring a Minnesota gun lawyer could significantly improve your chances of dismissing your charges and moving on from your situation. Call today to schedule your private consultation and learn more.