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Exclusions to Carry a Firearm

Minnesota state law (Statute 624.714) establishes criteria for Permit to Purchase a Handgun/Transfer Ownership, Permit to Carry, and Renewal of Permit to Carry.  The Gun Permit Unit background investigation process involves a review of each application as it applies to state and federal criteria.  Current permits to carry are also monitored for compliance to state and federal law.

Provided below is listing of some exclusion criteria.

Crimes of violence

The following crimes are defined by law as crimes of violence. Persons convicted of felony-level offenses for these crimes (or an attempt to commit them) are ineligible for permits to carry a pistol (or to possess any firearm) for life unless those rights are specially restored. Conviction for a similar crime in another state also applies.

  • Murder
  • Manslaughter
  • Aiding suicide or attempted suicide
  • First through fourth degree assault
  • Crimes committed for the benefit of a gang
  • Use of drugs to injure or to facilitate crime
  • Simple or aggravated robbery
  • Kidnapping
  • False imprisonment
  • Criminal sexual conduct in the first through fourth degrees
  • Malicious punishment of a child
  • Neglect or endangerment of a child
  • Commission of a crime while wearing or possessing bullet-resistant vest
  • Firearm theft
  • Motor vehicle unauthorized use
  • Theft/looting
  • Theft of a controlled substance, an explosive, or an incendiary device
  • First or second degree arson
  • Burglary in the first through third degree
  • Drive-by shooting
  • Unlawfully owning, possessing, or operating a machine gun or short barreled shotgun
  • Riot
  • Terrorist threats
  • Harassment and stalking
  • Shooting at a public transit vehicle or facility
  • Violations of the controlled substance laws

Felony conviction

A person convicted of a felony level crime is ineligible for a permit to carry a pistol until the person’s civil rights are restored. The time period may be longer for persons expressly prohibited from possessing firearms, a condition of a pardon, expungement, or restoration of civil rights. Certain anti-trust and other business practice violations are excluded.

Specified gross misdemeanors

A person convicted of the following crimes as a gross misdemeanor is not entitled to possess a firearm for three years from the date of conviction:

  • Crime committed for the benefit of a gang
  • Assaults motivated by bias
  • False imprisonment
  • Neglect or endangerment of a child
  • Burglary in the fourth degree
  • Setting a spring gun
  • Riot
  • Harassment
  • Stalking

Controlled substance crimes

A person convicted of a misdemeanor or gross misdemeanor controlled substance crime, or hospitalized or committed for controlled substance abuse, is ineligible for a permit to carry a pistol unless the person obtains a doctor's certificate, or other satisfactory proof, that the person has not abused a controlled substance for two years.

Domestic Assault/Order for Protection Violation/Stalking/Harassment

A person convicted of domestic assault, an Order for Protection (OFP) violation, stalking, or harassment may not possess a pistol for three years from the date of conviction, under state law.  A person with an active OFP or harassment restraining order may not carry a firearm during the time the order is active.  If the person used a firearm in committing the crime, the court may extend the restriction to any type of firearm for a period from three years to life. Under federal law, a person convicted of misdemeanor domestic assault may not possess a firearm unless a pardon has been granted or their right to possess a firearm has been restored.

Assault crimes (non-domestic)

A person who is convicted of assault twice in three years may not possess a pistol for three years from the date of the second conviction.

Person charged with a crime

A person charged with a crime that would prohibit them from carrying a firearm if convicted of that crime may not receive, ship, or transport a pistol or assault weapon until the Court issues final disposition of the charge.

Other Exclusions

The people listed below may be prohibited from possessing a pistol or firearm under state law:

  • Persons charged with a crime of violence and placed in a pretrial diversion program
  • Persons who flee from a state to avoid prosecution or testifying
  • Persons who are "an unlawful user" of a controlled substance
  • Persons who have been committed as mentally ill, mentally retarded, or mentally ill and dangerous
  • Persons who have been found incompetent to stand trial or not guilty by reason of mental illness
  • Persons currently committed as chemically dependent
  • Peace officers informally admitted to treatment facilities for chemical dependency
  • Fugitives from justice
  • Illegal aliens
  • Persons dishonorably discharged from the armed forces
  • Persons who have renounced U.S. citizenship

The Ramsey County Sheriff's Office may also deny the application if there is clear and convincing evidence that there exists a substantial likelihood that the applicant is a danger to self or the public if authorized to carry a pistol under a permit.



Ramsey County Sheriff’s Office
Minnesota's First Law Enforcement Agency - Established 1849

Sheriff Matt Bostrom