General overview of Gun Laws in Nevada
In 1982, the Nevada constitution was amended such that the citizens were given the right to keep and bear arms for security and defense, lawful hunting, recreational use and for other lawful purposes. (See, Article 1, Section 11 of the Nevada Constitution).
Concealed vs. Open CarryAlthough the Nevada Constitution was amended to keep these rights for the citizens of Nevada, the legislature has put restrictions on certain types of weapons such as concealing a firearm without a permit. Clark County, for instance, requires handgun registration. In 1959 the legislature made it a class D felony to conceal a weapon on your person and in 2003 it became a class C felony (more serious). (See, NRS202.350) A concealed weapon is defined as carrying a firearm concealed upon your person including containers carried by that person. For instance briefcases, purses, fanny packs, etc. It does not matter whether the firearm is loaded or unloaded. What is not considered concealed is a firearm loaded or unloaded that is in your car but not on your person. For instance if you have it in the glove box or under your seat, because it is not on your person, it is not considered concealed. Nevada is also an open carry state. In other words, you may carry your handgun openly on a belt or in a holster. Please be very careful with this because, if your jacket or shirt or other object even partially hides the weapon, it could be considered concealed.
Law allowing Concealed WeaponsIn 1995 the law authorizing concealed weapons permits was standardized and a statewide procedure for the issuance of the permit was created. In Nevada you are entitled to a concealed weapon permit unless you do not meet the requirements. In other words, the state can only deny your application for a concealed weapon permit if you fall under one of the specifically prohibited delineated categories, such as having an outstanding warrant or a crime falls under the statute. (See, NRS 202.3657) Even with a concealed weapon permit, there are locations that do not allow weapons on the premises. Generally speaking: schools, government buildings, airports, and those places where it is posted that carrying a concealed weapon is specifically prohibited.
Prohibited PersonsIn Nevada, the minimum age for possessing or transporting firearms is 18. However, the federal government and Nevada have adopted certain rules which disallow a "prohibited person" from possessing or transporting firearms. Generally speaking: felons, persons who are adjudicated or committed to be mentally ill, any person with a blood alcohol content over .10, unlawful use of drugs, is illegally in the United States, etc. (See, NRS 202.360). A firearm in the state of Nevada is defined as loaded or unloaded operating or inoperable. (See, NRS 202.360). These definitions also apply if you are selling a firearm or ammunition, such that you may not do so to a prohibited person. (See, NRS 202.362).
Domestic Violence and Gun OwnershipInterestingly enough, the Nevada statues do not prohibit those persons convicted of domestic violence from owning weapons specifically, however, most court orders that involve domestic violence prohibit the possession of firearms. As a result, those persons convicted of domestic violence or have current restraining orders against them typically are prohibited as well. However, the federal Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) which encompasses provisions added to federal statutes does not allow someone "...who has been convicted in any court of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence, to ship or transport in interstate or foreign commerce, or possess in or affecting commerce, any firearm or ammunition; or to receive any firearm or ammunition which has been shipped or transported in interstate or foreign commerce. " (See, 18 USC 922(g)(9)) What this means is, if you have a firearm in your possession, after you have been convicted of a domestic battery, you could be prosecuted in federal court and face up to 10 years in prison and fines up to $250,000.00. This could even be constructive possession (i.e. living at a house wherein your roommates have guns and you have access to those guns).