Montana Gun Laws

Gun Control Laws in Montana

The gun laws for Montana govern the use, sale, possession, and transfer of firearms in the state. Montana is a “Shall Issue” state, and their gun laws are “Unrestricted.” Compared to most of the country, Montana has very permissible gun rules. The state issues concealed carry permits to residents only. The county sheriff’s office issues permits within 60 days of applying. Although you have a lot of freedom with carrying, you cannot take your gun into banks, government buildings or any place that serves alcohol. Montana is heavy into reciprocity with other states. In most areas, you can conceal carry even without a permit. You can carry within a vehicle but not on your person. Montana retains the right to enforce gun laws at the state level and counties may only regulate firing weapons and public carry in specific instances. There are numerous laws regarding suing a weapons manufacturer or dealer. Some guns are exempt from federal regulations.

State CCW Quick Facts

  • Shall Issue State gun policy
  • Yes Open Carry Permitted
  • No Constitutional Carry
  • Yes-In Restaurants That Serve Alcohol Carry In Restaurants
  • Yes Carry In Vehicle
  • Residents License issued to
  • 31 # of states that honor Montana license
  • 44 # of state licenses that Montana honors
  • 4 Years license is valid
  • 60 $ cost of the license
  • 18 Minimum age for license permit

Montana’s policy is Shall Issue in practice and its license is issued to residents. You can carry a handgun in: state parks, state and national forests, road side rest areas, vehicles, all areas of the state not listed as forbidden.

Montana CCW Reciprocity Map

Reciprocity is offered between states so that gun permit owners can transport their weapons across state lines. These thirty-one states offer reciprocity to Montana residents

Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. In turn,

Montana honors gun permits from these states

Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming, and New York City.

  • Permit honored
  • Permit not honored
  • Issuing state

Montana Concealed Carry Permit and Laws

Montana is a very unrestricted state regarding gun laws, and they operate on a “Shall Issue” basis. Although open carry and concealed carry are legal, permits are required for specific circumstances and traveling out of state. You are allowed to carry in your vehicle as long as the gun is not on your body. You do not have to legally notify an officer if you are carrying. You do not need to obey any “no weapons” signs either. You can openly carry in most areas of the state. You can also carry in state parks and restaurants. You cannot, however, carry in places that serve alcohol. You cannot carry in schools or on school property or any government buildings. You cannot carry on trains or in any financial institutions like banks. You cannot carry on any state-owned property either. Montana law states that permit is required when "wholly or partially covered by the clothing or wearing apparel.”

CCW Eligibility: Qualify or Pre-Qualify?

To qualify for a concealed permit in Montana, you must be eighteen years old and have lived in Montana for at least six months. You must be a legal U.S. citizen and demonstrate your abilities to use a firearm. You must also have a valid, photo ID like a driver’s license when you apply. New permits cost $60, and renewals cost $35. You must also take an 8-hour firearms training course and bring the certificate with you. Active or retired members of the military or law enforcement are exempt from these rules and regulations. You cannot carry even with your permit if you are drinking alcohol.

Montana Gun Background Check

Montana is not a “point of contact” state and does not require licensed dealers to run a state-level background check on someone when purchasing a gun. Dealers, however, must comply with federal regulations and contact the FBI to run a background check using the NCIS system before selling to any Montana resident. Montana residents who have a permit to carry concealed are exempt from this rule and don’t need to have an additional background check performed. Montana does not require private sales of firearms to use background checks either. When you undergo a background check, it will include fingerprinting as well.

  • Permits
  • Handguns
  • Long Guns
  • Total

MT CCW and Pistol Permit Information

State Concealed Carry Requirements

  • Must be at least 18 years old
  • Have been a Montana resident for six months
  • Be a US citizen
  • Demonstrate familiarity with a firearm
  • Have a valid form of photo ID issued by the state, such as a drivers license
  • Federal law requirements

Gun CCW Permit Application

  1. Complete a training course if needed.
  2. Download the application from under the FORMS tab or pickup from your local Sheriffs office.
  3. You will need these documents; Three completed and signed reference forms Photo ID Certificate from firearms course
  4. File your application at the Sheriffs office.
  5. You will be notified by mail if your application has been approved.

CCW Renewal

  • The permit must be renewed for additional 4-year periods upon payment of a $25 fee for each renewal and upon request for renewal made within 90 days before expiration of the permit. The permit and each renewal must be in triplicate, in a form prescribed by the department of justice, and must, at a minimum, include the name, address, physical description, signature, driver’s license number, state identification card number, or tribal identification card number, and a picture of the permittee.

MT Concealed Carry License Fee information

Permit typeFees when getting a new permitRenewalCurrent license amendmentFingerprint scan feeFee for firearm classesAdditional state fees
Permit to carry concealed weapons$50.00$25.00$5.00N/ACounty sheriff may charge applicant additional $5 fingerprinting fee

Places Where You Can & Can’t Carry a Gun in Montana

State parksAny room where alcoholic beverages are sold, dispensed and consumed
State and national forestsAny building that used for instruction or student activities
Road side rest areasPortions of a building used for state or local government offices
VehiclesA bank, credit union, savings and loan institution, or similar institution
All areas of the state not listed as ForbiddenOn trains
Any place where the carrying of firearms is prohibited by Federal Law

Montana CCW Contact

Montana Bureau of Firearms


Monday – Friday:N/A


Address:Office of the Attorney General
Department of Justice
215 N Sanders St.
City:Helena, MT 59601
Phone:(406) 444-2026

Reference Links

Counties in Montana