Posted on January 2, 2012
Last updated July 22, 2013
In our publication Gun Laws Matter 2012: Understanding the Link Between Weak Laws and Gun Violence, the Law Center ranked each state based on a review of state laws in 29 different firearm-related policy areas. Connecticut ranked 4th out of 50 – having enacted some of the strongest gun violence prevention laws. Since that ranking, Connecticut has further improved its public safety laws involving firearms. Among other things, Connecticut:
- Requires a background check prior to the transfer of a handgun or a long gun between individuals other than licensed firearms dealers;
- Requires a background check for all firearm transfers at gun shows;
- Requires firearms dealers to obtain a license, and handgun, long gun and ammunition purchasers to first obtain an eligibility certificate;
- Prohibits the transfer or possession of assault weapons, large capacity ammunition magazines (capable of accepting more than 10 rounds), and certain .50 caliber rifles;
- Imposes a two-week waiting period on long gun transfers from licensed dealers;
- Acts as a “point of contact” state, conducting its own background checks, rather than relying on the FBI;
- Requires the reporting of all individuals prohibited from possessing firearms to the database used for firearm purchaser background checks;
- Requires firearm owners to report the loss or theft of their firearms;
- Allows local governments to regulate firearms and ammunition; and
- Allows local governments discretion to deny a concealed weapons permit.
Connecticut does not, however,
- Limit the number of firearms that may be purchased at one time; or
- Impose design safety standards or microstamping requirements on handguns.
In 2010, Connecticut had the sixth lowest rate of gun deaths per capita among the states. (Even this relatively low ranking means that 209 people died from firearm-related injuries in Connecticut that year.) In addition, based on data published by Mayors Against Illegal Guns, in 2009, Connecticut supplied the tenth lowest number of crime guns to other states per capita, and is a net importer of crime guns.
Connecticut Firearms Laws
For details about specific firearms laws in Connecticut, choose a topic below, or see all of the firearms laws in this state.