Gun laws in Colorado follow the ‘Shall Issue’ principle, which means that licenses aren’t for the non-residents. However, if a good cause is a reason for owning the same, permits are issued. The most obvious reasons include property in Colorado or instances of frequent traveling. 

The local sheriff issues the gun law permits; however, it is limited to resident permits only. In the case of non-residential licenses, all licenses are granted by the Department of Public Safety. The best thing about the Colorado Gun Law is the fact that applicants trying to get a permit must demonstrate firearm handling competence. 

For individuals looking for historical relevance, Colorado gun law changed to Shall Issue from May Issue, way back in 2003. Another aspect that needs attention is the permit renewal. Colorado laws state that the concerned individual must be at least 21 to get the permit renewed. Most importantly, handgun competence needs to be established beforehand. The person must be a resident of Colorado and shouldn’t have been accused of any criminal activity under any circumstance. 

Colorado CCW Basics


There is a basic set of requirements any applicant willing to procure a Hand-gun must satisfy to get the Hand-gun license

  1. The applicant must be a minimum of 21 years of age on the date of application
  2. The applicant must be a resident of Colorado state
  3. Must have demonstrated the ability to handle Handguns
  4. Must have a clear criminal record in recent years
  5. Must not have any charges or offenses in the past three years
  6. Must not be chronically or mentally ill in recent years



  1. The applicant will have to submit the completed application form, with all valid information.
  2. If the applicant is not a resident of the state, the applicant is expected to submit proof of residence along with the application form.
  3. The applicant may choose either a regular or temporary permit as per requirements.
  4. The applicant may have to produce a firearms training certificate within ten years post the submittal of this application.
  5. All the information will be verified and validated after the application submission.




  1. The renewal process may be done 120 days from the date of expiration of the existing permit. 
  2. The renewal or rejection is solely dependant on the discretion of the County Sheriff.
  3. Every suspended application will receive the reason for suspension through the mail.
  4. The overall renewal fee shall not be more than USD 50.



New CHP Application:


CCIC Fingerprint registration

USD 17.50


USD 13.00

FBI Fingerprint check

USD 22.00










Temporary/ Emergency Permit application

    TOTAL USD 30.50

 CCIC Fingerprint check

USD 17.50


USD 13.00


Colorado CCW Basics

Must Notify Officer


Colorado concealed carry laws does not mandate an individual to inform law enforcement officer about them carrying a firearm. When demanded, the carrier is expected to show the valid license along with photo identification proof.

The Law

No Weapon Signs Enforced


“No Weapons” indications are not a part of the Colorado concealed carry laws. Unless they are off-limits with "No Weapons" sign on, entering a private property with the sign, on is not a punishable or penal offence.

But it is always recommended not to enter a private or public property where "No Weapon" sign is displayed with a firearm.

Vehicle Carry

If the individual has a valid permit, he/ she can carry the firearm in his vehicle either loaded or unloaded. In the case of long guns, the firearm must be unloaded.

Without a permit, firearms may not be carried in a means of public transport.

The Law


Open Carry


Open carry is legal as per Colorado Gun laws. But you might need a valid permit if you are carrying a firearm in public transport. While open carry is permitted in most parts of the state with a valid gun license.

The Law

Purchase & Possession


A state permit is not required for the purchase of a shotgun, rifle, or handgun.

Dealers of all retail sales, rentals or exchanges of handguns, must keep a detailed record.  The dealer record must include the following: the name, age, occupation, address, and the caliber, make, finish, serial number of the handgun, and the date of the handgun transfer along with the name of the employee who made the transfer. All records must be accessible to law enforcement at all times.

A gun show vendor must complete a background check for every transfer of a firearm; through the national instant criminal background check system, for every prospective transferee. An approval of firearms transfer must be obtained through the Colorado Bureau of Investigation through a gun dealer who is licensed.  It is illegal to transfer any firearm if any part of the transaction occurs at a gun show, without first obtaining a background check of the prospective transferee, through a licensed dealer. Firearms that are classified as relics, antiques, or curios under federal law do not require the mandatory background check.

A person who resides in the state of Colorado, who is legally qualified, may purchase or receive delivery of a firearm from another state that is contiguous with Colorado, as long as the sale complies with the regulations set forth in both states and the seller and the purchaser have each complied with federal laws that apply to interstate transfers and transactions.


It is illegal for any person who is a convicted felon, or has been convicted of conspiracy, or an attempt to commit a felony, or a misdemeanor where domestic violence occurred or has been an adjudicated delinquent for a felony to possess a firearm.

It is illegal for any minor under the age of 18 to possess a handgun, and it is illegal to allow or permit a juvenile to possess a handgun. Exceptions to this include: minors in attendance of a hunting safety course or firearms safety course, or participating in legal target shooting, or hunting or trapping with a valid permit, or traveling to or from any of these activities, with an unloaded handgun or while on property that is controlled by the juvenile's parent, legal guardian or grandparent and with the permission of the parent or legal guardian to possess a handgun, or while at the residence of the juvenile, with parental (legal guardian) permission for use in self-defense.

Carrying a Firearm

It is illegal to carry a concealed handgun on or about the person, with the exception of carrying at the person’s residence, place of business, or on property owned or controlled by him/her.

No permit is required to carry a handgun, where it is legal to carry a firearm, as long as it is not concealed. If a handgun is in the possession of a person in a private automobile or other mode of conveyance and is carrying for legal use, it is not considered a concealed firearm. A handgun for use in legal hunting activity within the state is not considered a concealed weapon. The following persons are exempt from the required permit to carry a concealed handgun: peace officers of Colorado, U.S. probation officers, law enforcement officers employed by agencies outside of the state of Colorado (with reciprocal requirements) and retired peace officers meeting prescribed criteria.

A concealed handgun permit will be issued by a sheriff to an applicant who is 21 years of age or older, a legal resident of the state of Colorado, is not a chronic alcohol or drug abuser, is not addicted to a controlled substance, is eligible to possess a firearm, has not committed perjury on ay application for a permit to carry a concealed handgun, is not under a restraining order at the time of application, or under a permanent restraining order, and can demonstrate competency with a firearm.

It is at the discretion of the sheriff whether to deny the permit if it is believed that the applicant would pose a threat to self or others based on previous documented behavior. The sheriff may further suspend a permit in cases where he/she believes that the permit holder no longer meets the criteria above and until the sheriff believes the matter in question has been fully resolved. In cases of a denial or revocation, there is an appeals process and judicial review.

The permit will be valid for a period of five years at which time it can be renewed. The permit is valid in all areas of the state where it is legal to possess a firearm. A permittee can legally be disarmed by a peace officer temporarily, during a lawful stop. A permittee may not carry a concealed handgun into any place prohibited by federal law including a public building where a security screening for firearms is conducted and grounds of a public school. A permittee may, however have a handgun in his/her vehicle and in a compartment of the locked vehicle if he/she is not occupying the vehicle. 

A school district employee may carry a concealed handgun onto school property in the course of his/her work as a security officer while on duty. A permittee may legally carry a concealed handgun on school district owned property that is undeveloped and used for hunting or other sport shooting.

A Sheriff is authorized to issue a temporary emergency permit to any person he believes to be in immediate danger. A person obtaining a temporary concealed handgun permit must meet with the same qualifications as one applying for a permanent permit except, that they need only be 18 years of age and do not need to demonstrate competence with a handgun. The temporary use permit will be valid for a period of 90 days and can be renewed one time.

A photo ID must accompany the permit at all times the permittee is in possession of the handgun.  The Sheriff will maintain a list of permit holders and may share information with other law enforcement agencies regarding the permit and it’s validity. No sheriff may share information contained in a list of permittees with other law enforcement agencies for the purpose of creating a database that is statewide, on or after July 1, 2007.

Any permit issued to carry a concealed handgun or weapon by a person at least 21 years of age, by a state that recognizes the validity of a Colorado permit, will be valid in the state the same way a Colorado permit would be. Any permit that was issued under the concealed carry law that existed before May 18, 2003, will expire permanently on June 30, 2007, or the expiration date of the permit, whichever comes first.  If the aforementioned permit application included a background check, as well as a set of fingerprints, the permittee can apply to renew his/her permit. Otherwise, he/she must reapply for a new permit.

It is illegal to carry any firearm other than a handgun in a motor vehicle unless the chamber is unloaded.  Firearms carried on a snowmobile must be in a case or inserted into a scabbard and be unloaded. It is illegal to possess or carry any firearm without legal authority on the grounds of a general assembly, legislative property, or within any building including the chambers, galleries, or offices of the general assembly, or where any legislative hearing or meeting is held, or the offices of any employee, member or officer are located. It is further illegal to carry a firearm on the campus of any university, college, school or seminary, with some exceptions.

Antiques & Replicas

There is no state provision for antiques, curios, or replicas of firearms. They are treated as regular firearms for purposes of possession and carrying.

Machine Guns

A machine gun refers to a firearm that shoots consecutive shots with one function of the trigger and without reloading. Thought it is illegal to possess a machine gun, it is considered an affirmative defense if the person charged with possession is a peace officer or a member of the armed forces acting in accordance with his/her duties or that the person possesses a valid permit and license to have within his/her possession, a machine gun.

Range Protection

Shooting ranges are protected from any civil action or criminal prosecution resulting from noise, as long as the range is operating under normal circumstances.  

§ 25-12-109. Exception--sport shooting ranges--legislative declaration--definitions

(1) The general assembly hereby finds, determines, and declares that the imposition of inconsistent, outdated, and unnecessary noise restrictions on qualifying sport shooting ranges that meet specific, designated qualifications work to the detriment of the public health, welfare, and morale as well as to the detriment of the economic well being of the state. The general assembly further finds, determines, and declares that a need exists for statewide uniformity with respect to exempting qualifying shooting ranges from the enforcement of laws, ordinances, rules, and orders regulating noise. As the gain associated with having a uniform statewide exemption for qualifying sport shooting ranges outweighs any gains associated with enforcing noise regulations against such ranges, the general assembly further declares that the provisions of this section, as enacted, are a matter of statewide concern and preempt any provisions of any law, ordinance, rule, or order to the contrary.

(2) As used in this section, unless the context otherwise requires:

(a) “Local government” means any county, city, city and county, town, or any governmental entity, board, council, or committee operating under the authority of any county, city, city and county, or town.

(b) “Local government official” means any elected, appointed, or employed individual or group of individuals acting on behalf of or exercising the authority of any local government.

(c) “Person” means an individual, proprietorship, partnership, corporation, club, or other legal entity.

(d) “Qualifying sport shooting range” or “qualifying range” means any public or private establishment, whether operating for profit or not for profit, that operates an area for the discharge or other use of firearms or other equipment for silhouette, skeet, trap, black powder, target, self-defense, recreational or competitive shooting, or professional training.

(3) Notwithstanding any other law or municipal or county ordinance, rule, or order regulating noise to the contrary:

(a) A local governmental official may not commence a civil action nor seek a criminal penalty against a qualifying sport shooting range or its owners or operators on the grounds of noise emanating from such range that results from the normal operation or use of the qualifying shooting range except upon a written complaint from a resident of the jurisdiction in which the range is located. The complaint shall state the name and address of the complainant, how long the complainant has resided at the address indicated, the times and dates on which the alleged excessive noise occurred, and such other information as the local government may require. The local government shall not proceed to seek a criminal penalty or pursue a civil action against a qualifying sport shooting range on the basis of such a noise complaint if the complainant established residence within the jurisdiction after January 1, 1985.

(b) No person may bring any suit in law or equity or any other claim for relief against a qualifying sport shooting range located in the vicinity of the person's property or against the owners or operators of such range on the grounds of noise emanating from the range if:

(I) The qualifying range was established before the person acquired the property;

(II) The qualifying range complies with all laws, ordinances, rules, or orders regulating noise that applied to the range and its operation at the time of its construction or initial operation; (III) No law, ordinance, rule, or order regulating noise applied to the qualifying range at the time of its construction or initial operation;

Colorado Concealed Carry Reciprocity

Colorado's Reciprocity States

States that will honor a Colorado CCW permit

Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming

Colorado honors these state ccw permits

Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming

States that will not accept a Colorado ccw permit

California, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Washington


It is illegal to possess a gun if under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance. It is illegal to fire a weapon from any motor vehicle or aircraft. It is illegal for any person to possess a firearm, (with full knowledge), if the manufacturer's serial number or other identification mark, or other number has been removed. 

It is illegal to possess a rifle that has a barrel shorter than 16 inches and an overall length less than 26 inches or a shotgun that has a barrel under 18 inches and an overall length less than 26 inches, but it is considered an affirmative defense to a charge of possession if the accused person is a peace officer acting in accordance with his or her duties, or the person has a permit and license that is valid, for its possession.

It is illegal for local governments to maintain a list or database or other records of persons who exchange or purchase firearms or leave a firearm at an establishment for repair or sale on consignment, or persons who transfer firearms, unless designated as a federally licensed firearms dealer; or of the serial numbers or description of any firearms. It is illegal for local governments to enact any ordinance, regulation, or other law that make the sale, purchase, or possession of a firearm illegal, that another person may lawfully purchase, sell, or possess under federal or state law.  A local government may lawfully prohibit the carrying of a firearm, openly in any building or an area within the jurisdiction of the local government, as long as signs are posted in public entrances, informing persons that the open carry of a firearm is prohibited.

No legal action may be taken by any person or entity against any firearms manufacturer, importer, or dealer, (unless a product liability) for any injury whether physical or emotional or physical damage or death resulting from discharge of a firearm or ammunition. A person or public entity may not bring an action, other than a product liability action, against a firearms manufacturer, importer, or dealer for any remedy arising from physical or emotional injury, physical damage, or death caused by the discharge of a firearm or ammunition.  Under no circumstances may a firearms or ammunition manufacturer, dealer or importer be held liable, as a third party, for the action of any other person.

Any product liability suit involving a firearm or ammunition must be brought as the result of injury, damage, or fatality from the actual discharge of the firearm and not the inherent capability of the firearm to cause injury, damage or fatality.  The availability of firearms and ammunition in the stream of commerce does not constitute liability for the cause of injury, damage or fatality resulting from third party use.

Colorado Off Limits Statues

(1) (a) A permit to carry a concealed handgun authorizes the permittee to carry a concealed handgun in all areas of the state, except as specifically limited in this section. A permit does not authorize the permittee to use a handgun in a manner that would violate a provision of state law. A local government does not have authority to adopt or enforce an ordinance or resolution that would conflict with any provision of this part 2
(b) A peace officer may temporarily disarm a permittee, incident to a lawful stop of the permittee. The peace officer shall return the handgun to the permittee prior to discharging the permittee from the scene.
(2) A permit issued pursuant to this part 2 does not authorize a person to carry a concealed handgun into a place where the carrying of firearms is prohibited by federal law.
(3) A permit issued pursuant to this part 2 does not authorize a person to carry a concealed handgun onto the real property, or into any improvements erected thereon, of a public elementary, middle, junior high, or high school; except that:
 (a) A permittee may have a handgun on the real property of the public school so long as the handgun remains in his or her vehicle and, if the permittee is not in the vehicle, the handgun is in a compartment within the vehicle and the vehicle is locked.
 (b) A permittee who is employed or retained by contract by a school district as a school security officer may carry a concealed handgun onto the real property, or into any improvement erected thereon, of a public elementary, middle, junior high, or high school while the permittee is on duty.
 (c) A permittee may carry a concealed handgun on undeveloped real property owned by a school district that is used for hunting or other shooting sports.
(4) A permit issued pursuant to this part 2 does not authorize a person to carry a concealed handgun into a public building at which:
 (a) Security personnel and electronic weapons screening devices are permanently in place at each entrance to the building;
 (b) Security personnel electronically screen each person who enters the building to determine whether the person is carrying a weapon of any kind; and
 (c) Security personnel require each person who is carrying a weapon of any kind to leave the weapon in possession of security personnel while the person is in the building.
(5) nothing in this part 2 shall be construed to limit, restrict, or prohibit in any manner the existing rights of a private property owner, private tenant, private employer, or private business entity.
(6) the provisions of this section apply to temporary emergency permits issued pursuant to section 18-12-209.

L. 2014: (3)(b) amended, (HB 14-1291), ch. 165, p. 579, Section 1, effective May 9. 

(1) It is unlawful for any person to:
(a) Hunt any wildlife from a snowmobile;
(b) Operate or ride on any snowmobile with any firearm in his or her possession, unless such firearm is unloaded and enclosed in a carrying case or inserted in a scabbard, or with any bow unless it is unstrung or cased, but this paragraph (b) does not apply to any person to whom the division has issued a permit for the control of predators such as coyotes, foxes, bobcats, and the like;

L. 2019: (3)(b) amended, (HB 19-1026), ch. 423, p. 3700, Section 30, effective July 1.

A person commits a class 6 felony if, without legal authority, he has any loaded firearm or explosive orincendiary device, as defined in section 9-7-103, C.R.S., in his possession in, or carries, brings, or causes to be carried or brought any of such items into, any facility of public transportation, as defined in section 18-9-115 (4).

L. 77: Entire section added, p. 976, § 7, effective June 29.L. 89: Entire section amended, p. 841, § 89, effective July 1

Those with a valid permit/license can carry into the airport but not into the sterile areas of the airport. Your valid permit/license is your legal authority. The only reference to firearms in the DIA Rules/Regulations states a Permit/License holder can’t carry into secure areas of the airport. Secure areas would be past the TSA security checkpoint and anywhere else in the terminal or grounds off limits to passengers.