Citation(s) from the GunPolicy.org literature library
Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. 2021 ‘Licensing in North Carolina.’ Owner Responsibilities. San Francisco, CA: Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. 20 September
Licensing of Gun Owners and Purchasers in North Carolina
North Carolina law provides that no person may purchase or receive a handgun without a permit to purchase a handgun or a concealed handgun permit. Once obtained, a permit to purchase a handgun, issued by the sheriff of the county in which the purchaser resides, is valid for up to five years and may be used to purchase one handgun. To obtain a permit, an applicant must be a resident of the county in which he or she is applying. North Carolina law also provides that a permit will be denied to an applicant falls into one of certain categories…
The sheriff must verify, before the issuance of a permit, that it is not a violation of state or federal law for the applicant to purchase, transfer, receive, or possess a handgun. The sheriff must determine the criminal and background history of any applicant by:
- Accessing computerized criminal history records as maintained by the State Bureau of Investigation and the Federal Bureau of Investigation;
- Conducting a national criminal history records check;
- Conducting a check through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS); and
- Conducting a criminal history check through the Administrative Office of the Courts.
An applicant must also present evidence that he or she is of good moral character and desires the weapon for protection, target shooting, collecting or hunting. The sheriff must inform the applicant whether he or she is granting or denying a license within 30 days of the application.
The sheriff of each county must keep a record of all permits to purchase a handgun, including the name, date, place of residence, and age of each person to whom a permit is issued.
New residents of North Carolina do not need a license to bring their handguns into the state…
[Editor's note: The Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence regularly updates its webpages with new data as US gun regulation evolves state by state. For the most up-to-date information on US gun laws, please refer to the Giffords URL below]