Is it Legal to Carry a Gun in My Car in Nevada?

Just like the our country’s federal Constitution, Nevada’s state constitution has a “right to bear arms” provision. It can be found in Article 1, Section 11. Specifically, Nevada’s constitution provides:

"Every citizen has the right to keep and bear arms for security and defense, for lawful hunting and recreational use and for other lawful purposes."

Beyond this provision, Nevada state statute N.R.S. 268.418 expressly states that no city may pass an ordinance that would trump state law on the regulation of firearms. Thus, only the state legislators can pass firearm laws in Nevada—local governments are not granted this power—subject to certain limited exceptions.

North Las Vegas Gun Law

North Las Vegas, however, has enacted a strict law regarding the carrying of firearms in one’s vehicle. Specifically, the city’s ordinance 9.32.080 states it is unlawful for anyone to carry a firearm in his or her vehicle, unless it falls under specific scenarios. Of note, it does not appear that one of the exceptions is having a CCW permit. The restriction from having a firearm in the vehicle, according to the North Las Vegas ordinance, does not apply to “ordinary tools or equipment carried in good faith for uses of honest work, trade or business, or for the purpose of legitimate sport or recreation.” Notwithstanding this city ordinance, the likelihood of this law withstanding judicial scrutiny should someone challenge it in court is low as it is likely preempted by Nevada state law.

Nevada Carrying Concealed Weapons Permits

In the state of Nevada, most law-abiding adults are eligible to obtain a CCW permit. Of note, it is illegal throughout the entire state to carry a concealed handgun without a CCW permit. The requirements for obtaining a CCW permit in Nevada include:

  • The applicant should be at least 21 years of age,

  • The applicant should not forbidden from possessing a firearm under state or federal law, and

  • The applicant has successfully completed a pre-approved firearm safety course.

Nevada residents must apply for the CCW permit through the nearest sheriff’s office. It may take law enforcement up to six months to process the application. Once the CCW permit is issued, it is valid for five years.

Nevada Legal Help

In short, in Nevada, there is no specific state law that forbids carrying a loaded handgun in your vehicle. That being said, loaded long guns (shot guns and rifles) are not allowed. If you do decide to carry a firearm in your vehicle in Nevada, unless you have a carrying concealed weapons (CCW) permit, the gun must be visible if it is on your person. If you or someone you know has any other questions about Nevada law restricting the possession and use of weapons, contact the knowledgeable attorneys at Parry & Pfau. With years of experience representing clients in Las Vegas and across the state of Nevada, these skilled lawyers can guide you every step of the way. Click here to schedule your initial case evaluation.

(image courtesy of Christopher Burns)