Please Note: In addition to state laws, the purchase, sale and (in certain circumstances) the possession and interstate transportation of firearms is regulated by the Gun Control Act of 1968, as amended by the Firearm Owners' Protection Act. Also, cities and localities may have their own firearms ordinances in addition to federal and state laws. Details may be obtained by contacting local law enforcement authorities, and by consulting the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearm's State Laws and Published Ordinances--Firearms, available from the U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington D.C. 20402.
Rifles and Shotguns Handguns _____________________ Permit to Purchase No Yes Registration of Firearm No No Licensing of Owner No No Permit to Carry No Yes
It is unlawful for any person who is convicted of a felony to subsequently possess, receive, or transport or cause to be transported a firearm or offensive weapon.
A permit is required to purchase a handgun. The permit to purchase may be used to purchase more than one handgun. The permit is required for nondealer purchases as well as purchases from a dealer. A permit is not required for antique handguns, handguns not capable of being readily restored to a firing condition, a handgun designated a ``collector's item'' by the Commissioner of Public Safety, transfers between relatives within the second degree of consanguinity or affinity, or by a holder of handgun carrying permit.
A permit to purchase a handgun is obtained by applying to the sheriff of any county. The application shall state the applicant's full name, Social Security number, residence, and age. The permit ``shall be issued to the applicant immediately upon completion of the application.'' A record check is conducted. The permit becomes valid three days after issuance and is good for one year. The whole process of obtaining the permit may be handled by mail. There is no fee for the permit.
Note: Some sheriffs have been requesting thumbprints on applications for purchase permits.
An annual permit to purchase a handgun shall not be issued to any person unless:
It is unlawful to sell, loan, give, or make available a handgun or ammunition therefore to a person under 21. Exceptions to this prohibition are:
Exceptions to the above prohibition are:
Professional permits are issued to guards, bank messengers, peace officers, or other persons whose job ``reasonably justifies that person going armed.'' The permit holder may ``go armed anywhere in the state, only while engaged in such employment, and while going to and from the place of such employment.'' A permit issued to a peace officer authorizes him to go armed anywhere in the state at all times.
A nonprofessional permit ``may be issued'' to a person ``who can reasonably justify his or her going armed.'' Any restrictions are listed on the permit. To obtain a professional or nonprofessional permit, an applicant must be: at least 18 and have never been convicted of a felony, not addicted to alcohol or any controlled substance, and have no history of repeated acts of violence.
The issuing officer ``reasonably determines that the applicant does not constitute a danger to any person,'' and has never been convicted of any felonies or serious assaults except for simple assault and/or harassment.
The application contains the applicant's name, Social Security number (optional), residence, age and information on any felony convictions, addiction to alcohol or a controlled substance, or ``any history of mental illness or repeated acts of violence.'' New applicants are fingerprinted by some licensing authorities. The applicant must successfully complete a firearms instruction course which includes a proficiency test with a handgun. The training program must be approved by the Commissioner of Public Safety, and the Commissioner or county sheriff may conduct it or may contract with a private organization or use the services of other agencies, or may use a combination of the two, to provide such training. The fee is currently $20.00.
Police officers trained at a police academy need not take the training program. The training requirements ``may be waived for renewal permits.''
Antique and replica firearms are exempt from the permit to purchase requirement. The same laws on carrying that apply to modern firearms apply to antique and replica firearms.
State law prohibits the possession of machine guns by private parties. Exceptions are dealers who sell to peace officers or the armed forces, and any firm lawfulfully engaged in improvement, invention, or manufacture of firearms.
Persons found guilty of a forcible felony and who represented that he or she was in the immediate possession or control of a firearm, displayed a firearm in a threatening manner, or were armed with a firearm, shall serve a minimum of five years of the sentence imposed by law and shall not be eligible for parole until such minimum sentence has been served.
A state statute prohibits a unit of local government to regulate the ownership, possession, transfer, transportation, registration, or licensing of firearms otherwise lawful under state law.
Loaded firearms must be secured from minors under 14.
It is unlawful to possess a bullet that explodes or a shotshell or cartridge intended to project a flame or fireball to simulate a flamethrower.
Sources: West's Iowa Code Annotated Sections 110.35, 110.36, and 724.1 to 724.7.
Caution: State firearms laws are subject to frequent change. The above summary is not to be considered as legal advice or a restatement of law. To determine the applicability of these laws to specific situations which you may encounter, you are strongly urged to consult a local attorney.
Compiled by: NRA Institute for Legislative Action 11250 Waples Mill Road Fairfax, VA 22030 (c) 1994, NRA Institute for Legislative Action. NS 01110 Rev. 4/94 5M