Special Report

States With the Best and Worst Gun Laws

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11. Delaware
> Gun law grade in 2020: B
> Gun death rate: 9.97 per 100,000 people (11th lowest)

Delaware requires residents to have a concealed-carry permit for handguns. It does not require owner’s licenses, firearms registration, or purchasing permits. However, the state senate recently voted to require permits and safety training for handgun buyers. Delaware has no assault weapons ban, but magazines holding more than 17 rounds are prohibited.

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12. Virginia
> Gun law grade in 2020: B
> Gun death rate: 11.65 per 100,000 people (19th lowest)

Virginia allows for the concealed carry of a handgun with a permit with some location exceptions, such as houses of worship and courthouses. Some cities also ban concealed carry. The state does not generally prohibit open carry of firearms.

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13. Pennsylvania
> Gun law grade in 2020: C+
> Gun death rate: 11.65 per 100,000 people (19th lowest)

Philadelphia requires a license to openly carry a firearm, but the rest of Pennsylvania does not. As with other states with open-carry or concealed-carry allowances (licensed or otherwise) there are exceptions to the rule: Firearms are not allowed in such places as casinos, houses of worship, and bars. The state does not regulate assault weapons.

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14. Minnesota
> Gun law grade in 2020: C+
> Gun death rate: 8.12 per 100,000 people (8th lowest)

Minnesota requires permits for both open and concealed carry of handguns, and there is some regulation of certain semi-automatic “military style” assault weapons. The state generally prohibits the carrying of rifles and shotguns in public, with some exceptions.

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15. Colorado
> Gun law grade in 2020: C+
> Gun death rate: 14.22 per 100,000 people (18th highest)

Colorado does not require purchasing permits, firearms registration, or owner’s licenses, but it does require a concealed-carry permit for handguns. With some exceptions, such as hospitals and sporting arenas, people can openly carry a firearm in public. Though it regulates large-capacity magazines, the state has no special rules regarding assault-style weapons.