New Mexico Gun Laws


New Mexico is bordered by Arizona to the west, Colorado to the north, and Texas to the east, with corners touching Utah and Oklahoma. New Mexico has a rich history, and houses the second-highest percentage of Native Americans in the United States.

A. State Constitution

Regarding the right to bear arms, the New Mexico Constitution states:

“No law shall abridge the right of the citizen to keep and bear arms for security and defense, for lawful hunting and recreational use and for other lawful purposes, but nothing herein shall be held to permit the carrying of concealed weapons.”


B. Scope of Preemption

The controlling language of the New Mexico preemption statute is set forth as follows:

“No municipality or county shall regulate, in any way, an incident of the right to keep and bear arms.”

C. Reciprocal Carry

By statute, New Mexico will recognize another state’s license to carry if that state recognizes New Mexico‘s license:

“The department shall promulgate rules necessary to implement the provisions of the Concealed Handgun Carry Act. The rules shall include: E. provision of discretionary state authority for the transfer, recognition or reciprocity of a concealed handgun license issued by another state if the issuing authority for the other state: (1) includes provisions at least as stringent as or substantially similar to the Concealed Handgun Carry Act; (2) issues a license or permit with an expiration date printed on the license or permit; (3) is available to verify the license or permit status for law enforcement purposes within three business days of a request for verification; (4) has disqualification, suspension and revocation requirements for a concealed handgun license or permit; and (5) requires that an applicant for a concealed handgun license or permit: (a) submit to a national criminal history record check; (b) not be prohibited from possessing firearms pursuant to federal or state law; and (c) satisfactorily complete a firearms safety program that covers deadly force issues, weapons care and maintenance, safe handling and storage of firearms and marksmanship.”

Since there is no national carry license, as with the other states, some states are reciprocal with New Mexico and some are not. Anyone contemplating reciprocal carry should check with the official list maintained by the New Mexico Department of Public Safety at the point in time the reciprocal carry is to occur. States add and delete states with reciprocity agreements over time.

D. Criminal Provisions

Under New Mexico law, a license to carry a handgun is not valid in any of the following places or circumstances, whether it is issued by New Mexico or a person is carrying pursuant to a reciprocity between his or her state of license and New Mexico:

  • Into or on premises where to do so would be in violation of state or federal law
  • On school premises
  • On the premises of a preschool
  • In a courthouse or court facility
  • In a courthouse or court facility
  • Tribal land
  • Public buses
  • Airport security zones
  • Any Federal property
  • On private property if the owner posted signs or verbally communicates that firearms are prohibited.
  • While consuming alcohol or while impaired by the use of alcohol or other substances.


  • The current law allows you to carry only one (1) concealed firearm. You can carry one (1) concealed and 50 openly but not 2 concealed.

New Mexico Statutes can be accessed at: