North Dakota Gun Laws


North Dakota is bordered to the north by Canada, the south by South Dakota, the west by Montana, and the east by Minnesota. It is the third least-populous state in the United States, and agriculture is its largest economic industry.

A. State Constitution

Regarding the right to bear arms, the North Dakota Constitution states:

“All individuals are by nature equally free and independent and have certain inalienable rights, among which are those of …to keep and bear arms for the defense of their person, family, property, and the state, and for lawful hunting, recreational, and other lawful purposes, which shall not be infringed.”


B. Scope of Preemption

The controlling language of North Dakota’s preemption statute is set forth as follows:

“No political subdivision, including home rule cities or counties, may enact any ordinance relating to the purchase, sale, ownership, transfer of ownership, registration, or licensure of firearms and ammunition which is more restrictive than state law. All such existing ordinances are void.”


C. Reciprocal Carry

By statute, North Dakota will recognize another state’s license to carry if that state recognizes North Dakota’s license:

“A person who has a valid license issued by another state to carry a concealed firearm or dangerous weapon in that state and whose state grants to residents of this state the right to carry a concealed firearm or dangerous weapon without requiring a separate license to carry a concealed firearm or dangerous weapon issued by that state may carry, subject to the provisions of this state’s law, a concealed firearm or dangerous weapon in this state, and the other state’s license is valid in this state.”


Since there is no national carry license, as with the other states, some states are reciprocal with North Dakota and some are not. Non North Dakota residents must have a valid concealed weapons license from their home state which is determined by their drivers license and the state must have reciprocity with North Dakota.   contemplating reciprocal carry should check with the official list maintained by the North Dakota State Police at the point in time the reciprocal carry is to occur. States add anddelete states with reciprocity agreements over time. North Dakota’s reciprocity agreement can be viewed here: []


D. Criminal Provisions

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

  • In an establishment that sells alcoholic beverages
  • A gaming (gambling) establishment
  • At a public gathering, which includes:
    o Athletic or sporting events
    o Schools or school functions
    o Churches or church functions
    o Political rallies or functions
    o Musical concerts
    o Publicly owned parks where hunting is not allowed
    o Publicly owned and operated buildings