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What are the Gun Laws in New Mexico?

A Synopsis of State Laws on Purchase, Possession and Carrying of Firearms

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State Requirements

Rifles and Shotguns
  • Permit to purchase rifles and shotguns? No.
  • Registration of rifles and shotguns? No.
  • Licensing of owners of rifles and shotguns? No.
  • Permit to carry rifles and shotguns? No.
Handguns
  • Permit to purchase handgun? No.
  • Registration of handguns? No.
  • Licensing of owners of handguns? No.
  • Permit to carry handguns? Yes.

Caution: This summary is meant for general purposes only. Firearm laws frequently change.

Purchase

No state permit is required to purchase a rifle, shotgun or handgun. Residents of states contiguous to New Mexico may purchase firearms in New Mexico. Residents of New Mexico may purchase firearms in states contiguous to New Mexico.

Possession

No state permit is required to possess a rifle, shotgun or handgun.

It is unlawful, without prior approval from the bus company, to board or attempt to board a bus while in possession of a firearm upon the person or effects and readily accessible while on the bus. This does not apply to duly elected or appointed law enforcement officers or commercial security personnel in the lawful discharge of their duties.

It is unlawful for a felon to receive, transport, or possess a firearm.

Felon is defined as:

  • A person who has been convicted of a felony offense by a court of the United States or of any of its states or political subdivisions;

  • And less than ten years have passed since the person completed serving his sentence or period of probation for the felony conviction, whichever is later;

  • And the person has not been pardoned for the conviction by the appropriate authority;

    And the person has not received a deferred sentence.

It is unlawful for a person under 19 to possess or transport a handgun, except when the person is:

  1. Attending a hunter’s or handgun safety course;

  2. Engaged in target shooting or in organized competition;

  3. Legal hunting or trapping;

  4. Participating in or practicing for a performance by a nonprofit organization formed under I.R.S. Code 501(c)(3);

  5. Traveling with an unloaded handgun to or from one of the above activities;

  6. On real property under the control of the person’s parent, grandparent, or guardian and while under their supervision.

A handgun is subject to seizure and forfeiture by a law enforcement agency when the handgun is possessed or transported by a person in violation of the offense of unlawful possession of a handgun by a person.

Carrying

It is unlawful to carry a concealed loaded firearm anywhere. This does not apply to:
  1. Carrying in a person’s residence or on real property belonging to him as an owner, lessee, tenant or licensee;

  2. Carrying in a private automobile or other private means of conveyance, for lawful protection of person or property; or

  3. Carrying by a peace officer in the lawful discharge of his duties; or

  4. By a person in possession of a valid concealed handgun license issued by the Department of Public Safety.
Concealed handgun means a loaded handgun that is not visible to the ordinary observations of a reasonable person. Handgun means a firearm that will, is designed to or may readily be converted to expel a projectile by the action of an explosion and the barrel length of which, not including a revolving, detachable or magazine breech, does not exceed twelve inches.

The Department of Public Safety shall issue a concealed handgun license to an applicant who:

  1. Is a citizen of the United States;

  2. Is a resident of New Mexico or is a member of the armed forces whose permanent duty station is located in New Mexico or is a dependent of such a member;

  3. Is twenty-one years of age or older;

  4. Is not a fugitive from justice;

  5. Has not been convicted of a felony in New Mexico or any other state or pursuant to the laws of the United States or any other jurisdiction;

  6. Is not currently under indictment for a felony criminal offense in New Mexico or any other state or pursuant to the laws of the United States or any other jurisdiction;

  7. Is not otherwise prohibited by federal law or the law of any other jurisdiction from purchasing or possessing a firearm;

  8. Has not been adjudicated mentally incompetent or committed to a mental institution;

  9. Is not addicted to alcohol or controlled substances; and

  10. Has satisfactorily completed a firearms training course approved by the department for the category and caliber of handgun that the applicant wants to be licensed to carry as a concealed handgun.

The department shall deny a concealed handgun license to an applicant who has received:

  • A conditional discharge, a diversion or a deferment or has been convicted of, pled guilty to or entered a plea of nolo contendere to a misdemeanor offense involving a crime of violence within the ten year period preceding application;

  • Been convicted of a misdemeanor offense involving driving while under the influence of intoxicating liquor or drugs within five years immediately preceding the application for a concealed handgun license;

  • Been convicted within the ten year period preceding application of a misdemeanor offense involving the possession or abuse of a controlled substance;

  • Or been convicted of a misdemeanor offense involving assault, battery or battery against a household member.

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