FIND GUN LAWS BY STATE

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR Bryan L. Ciyou is a trial and appellate attorney at the Indianapolis law firm of Ciyou & Dixon, P.C. He earned his BA with distinction and graduated through the honors program, along with his JD,... Read More

Idaho Gun Laws

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Introduction

Idaho is located in the Rocky Mountains in the northwest United States. It has a little over 1,600,000 residents. At the northernmost portion, Idaho has a short boundary with British Columbia, Canada. The other states it borders are Montana and Wyoming to the east. Utah and Nevada bound it in the south.  Oregon and Washington are the states that make up its western boundary. Open carry is legal in Idaho even without a license to carry.

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A. State Constitution

Regarding the right to bear arms, the Idaho Constitution states:

“The people have the right to keep and bear arms, which right shall not be abridged; but this provision shall not prevent the passage of laws to govern the carrying of weapons concealed on the person nor prevent passage of legislation providing minimum sentences for crimes committed while in possession of a firearm, nor prevent the passage of legislation providing penalties for the possession of firearms by a convicted felon, nor prevent the passage of any legislation punishing the use of a firearm. No law shall impose licensure, registration or special taxation on the ownership or possession of firearms or ammunition. Nor shall any law permit the confiscation of firearms, except those actually used in the commission of a felony.”

[http://gunla.ws/id1]

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B. Scope of Preemption

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

“Except as expressly authorized by state statute, no county, city, agency, board or any other political subdivision of this state may adopt or enforce any law, rule, regulation, or ordinance which regulates in any manner the sale, acquisition, transfer, ownership, possession, transportation, carrying or storage of firearms or any element relating to firearms and components thereof, including ammunition.”

[http://gunla.ws/id2]

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C. Reciprocal Carry

Idaho will recognize another state’s license to carry if the licensee has it in his or her physical possession:

“The requirement to secure a license to carry a concealed weapon under this section shall not apply to the following persons: (g) Any person who has a valid permit from a state or local law enforcement agency or court authorizing him to carry a concealed weapon. A permit issued in another state will only be considered valid if the permit is in the licensee’s physical possession.” [http://gunla.ws/id3]

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D. NFA Items

Idaho permits ownership of all NFA items, provided they are legally obtained pursuant to federal law. Hunting with suppressors is legal.

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E. Carrying Firearms in Vehicles

Idaho allows anyone who is legally allowed to possess firearms to carry them openly in a motor vehicle without a permit. Someone without a permit may carry a long gun, but handguns may not be carried concealed within city limits unless they are either disassembled or unloaded and secured in a locked container.

[http://gunla.ws/id4]

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F. Self-defense Laws

Idaho has a Castle Doctrine but no SYG law. There is no duty to retreat when attacked in Your dwelling or place of work, and You may use deadly force in self-defense if You reasonably believe it is imminently necessary to prevent death or SBI, a forcible felony, or to stop the unlawful & forcible entry into Your dwelling by someone who intends to commit violence against an occupant of that dwelling. Idaho requires that deadly force in the defense of others be used as a last resort. You must, in good faith have endeavored to decline any further struggle before using deadly force. [http://gunla.ws/pdxq]

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G. Constitutional Carry

As of 6/1/16, Idaho permits Idaho residents who are at least 21 years old and not legally prohibited from owning firearms to carry a handgun without a permit, openly or concealed. Note that it was already legal for Idaho residents who are at least 18 years old and not legally prohibited from owning firearms to open carry a handgun, or to carry a concealed handgun as long as You are outside of city limits. The new law allows permitless concealed carry within city limits by Idaho residents who are at least 21, which had previously required a permit. [http://gunla.ws/id6]

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H. Duty to Inform

No. Idaho does not require individuals to inform a LEO of a permit or license to carry but if an Officer asks about a weapon, by law, an answer must be supplied. You must have a valid identification at all times in which You are in actual possession of a concealed weapon or firearm and must display proper identification upon demand by a LEO.

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I. Criminal Provisions

Under Idaho law, a license to carry a handgun does not permit carry in any of the following places or circumstances:

  • Discharge any firearm from or across a public highway
  • Carry a concealed weapon when intoxicated or under the influence of an intoxicating drink or drug. People can carry weapons in bars, so long as they do not drink.
  • Carry a concealed weapon in a courthouse, a juvenile detention facility, or a jail
  • Carry a concealed weapon in a public or private school
  • Possess a firearm while on school property, including stadiums or other structures on school grounds, at a school sponsored activity, or on school provided transportation, regardless of location
  • Possess a firearm negligently or carelessly where the actions would result in discharge and injury to an individual.
  • The Board of Regents of the University of Idaho, the Boards of Trustees of the state colleges and universities, the Board of Professional-Technical Education and the Boards of Trustees of each of the community colleges have the authority to prescribe rules and regulations relating to firearms regarding their respective properties.

For a list of places where carrying firearms is prohibited, see:

[http://gunla.ws/id7]

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J. Do “No Gun Signs” Have the Force of Law?

No. “No Firearm” signs in Idaho do not have the force of law unless they are posted on property that is specifically mentioned in state law as being off limits to those with a permit/license to carry. However, as a possessor with a real property interest, a retailer, has the right to limit, and qualify the right to enter the property, subject to not carrying a handgun. It would be improper to enter, and the licensee would be subject to ejection for possession of a handgun thereat. Failure to leave once requested would subject the licensee to arrest for criminal trespass.

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K. Carry in Restaurants That Serve Alcohol

Yes. You are allowed to carry into any establishment that serves alcohol, including bars. You are prohibited from carrying while you consume alcohol or are under the influence of alcohol.

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L. Open Carry

Open carry is legal in Idaho. Places listed in the “Criminal Provisions” above apply to those who open carry. You may carry openly without a permit in a vehicle or on foot.

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FIND GUN LAWS BY STATE

Table of Contents

About the author
ABOUT THE AUTHOR Bryan L. Ciyou is a trial and appellate attorney at the Indianapolis law firm of Ciyou & Dixon, P.C. He earned his BA with distinction and graduated through the honors program, along with his JD,... Read More