Of all the United States Vermont has one of the lowest restrictions on
firearms. No state permit is necessary to purchase rifles, handguns, or
shotguns. Rifles, shotguns, and handguns do not need to be registered.
Vermont does not have an assault weapon law for any kind of firearm.
Firearm owners are not required to be licensed to have rifles,
shotguns, or handguns.
No permits are needed to carry handguns, rifles, or shotguns. No permit
is necessary to carry a concealed weapon and no open carry permit is
needed. There are not NFA weapons restrictions for Vermont shotguns,
rifles, or handguns. There are, however, state preemptions for local
restrictions for both handguns and long guns. No restrictions through
the Federal Bureau of Investigation's National Instant Check system are
necessary for firearm transactions.
Gun Control Laws
Because Vermont has so little restriction on firearms, only certain
laws apply. It is a state requirement that all gun dealers keep filed
records of any and all handguns purchases. Vermont citizens are
prohibited from carrying a firearm onto courthouse property or school
property. Vermont law prevents local law enforcement from regulating
the transfer of, the possession of, the registration of, the ownership
of, or the licensing of any kind of firearm.
Vermont allows state citizens to carry concealed firearms or openly
carry firearms without requiring a permit, which is called the Vermont
Carry. A majority of the United States do not allow non-residents to
possess or obtain firearms under some circumstances or at all. Vermont
instead does not distinguish a difference between those who are state
residents and those who are not state residents. Vermont law allows all
individuals inside state borders to fully use their rights to bear arms
Vermont was made the fourteenth state in 1791 and soon adopted a
constitution that was based on the Bill or Rights and the United States
Constitution. The 1793 constitution guarantees the necessary freedoms
for citizens and allows individuals the right to bear arms for
self-defense. Vermont law takes this constitution very literally, even
over two hundred years later.
Most states require that individuals be at least eighteen years of age
to possess a firearm. Vermont stipulates that individuals only need to
be of age to possess a firearm. This age is sixteen. After the age of
sixteen, an individual is permitted to lawfully purchase firearms and
to possess a loaded firearm on him or herself while in public. Those
who are under the age of sixteen first need to acquire parental or
guardian permission to carry a loaded firearm. Minors who do not obtain
the proper permission will be subject to juvenile delinquent matters
through the state.
Felony offense convictions and being dishonorably discharged from the
military will prohibit individuals from purchasing firearms when a
federal instant check is run. Other infractions and illegal activities
will also prohibit individuals from possessing firearms. Taking a
concealed weapon on school or courthouse property will result in a year
of imprisonment or a fine of one thousand dollars. All firearms are to
remain concealed unless being used for self-defense purposes.