State Law Background
Among other things, North Carolina requires all handgun purchasers to first obtain a license, after undergoing a background check. However, North Carolina does not:
- Require a person to undergo a background check prior to purchasing a long gun from an unlicensed seller;
- Prohibit the transfer or possession of assault weapons, 50 caliber rifles, or large capacity ammunition magazines;
- License or significantly regulate firearms dealers;
- Limit the number of firearms that may be purchased at one time;
- Require firearm owners to report lost or stolen firearms;
- Regulate unsafe handguns;
- Regulate ammunition sales;
- Allow local governments to regulate firearms or ammunition; or
- Provide local law enforcement with discretion to deny a license to carry firearms.
In 2016, North Carolina had the 21st highest rate of gun deaths per capita among the states. North Carolina had the 25th highest rate of crime gun exports among the states in 2016—meaning that crime guns originally sold in North Carolina were recovered after being used in crimes in other states at the 25th highest rate among the states.
North Carolina Firearms Laws
For details about specific firearms laws in North Carolina, choose a topic below, or see all of the firearms laws in this state.