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North Dakotans appreciate their Second Amendment rights, so many cheered when the governor signed several new bills passed by the legislature into law that impacted the rights of residents to carry firearms in public. Amongst these bills is a law making it easier for North Dakotans to carry a concealed firearm. Proponents of gun rights celebrated the passage of this bill, but others wondered whether the law would lead to unintended consequences. Since the law has only recently gone into effect (the measure took effect on August 1, 2017), it remains to be seen whether any of the negative consequences feared by opponents and skeptics of the law will, in fact, come to pass.
The Details of the New Concealed Carry Law
The bill passed by the Legislature and was signed into law by the governor earlier this year removes any requirement that law-abiding North Dakota residents over the age of 18 obtain any special license or permit before being able to carry a concealed weapon in the state. Before the bill’s passage, carrying a concealed firearm in the state without an appropriate permit could lead to a 30-day jail sentence and/or a fine of up to $1,500. Now any law-abiding resident over the age of 18 years and who has had a North Dakota state driver’s license or identification card in force for at least one year, can lawfully carry a concealed firearm on their person without having to obtain or display any other permit or identification. Individuals must disclose to law enforcement officers whether they are carrying a concealed firearm during traffic stops or other encounters with police.
Will the New Law Lead to Additional Violence?
One of the chief concerns is that the law will lead to an increase in violence as more individuals will be inclined to carry – and then use – a concealed firearm. The fear is that by making it easier for individuals to legally carry a hidden firearm, more individuals will be inclined to not only carry but also utilize their firearm in the heat of a dispute or disagreement. However, the law’s proponents believe such concerns are exaggerated and that not many more individuals will carry a concealed weapon than those who had previously obtained permits under the old law.
Need Help Understanding New Laws? Contact an Attorney for Help
This new bill is just one of several hundred that will impact the lives of North Dakotans in various ways. With so many changes, knowing your rights and obligations can be difficult. Trust in the experience of the attorneys of O’Keeffe O’Brien Lyson Foss for help. We are committed to helping North Dakotans take advantage of changes in the law that benefit them and their families, including this amendment to the concealed carry laws of the state. Contact O’Keeffe O’Brien Lyson Foss today online for assistance, or call 701-235-8000 or 877-235-8002.