Puerto Rico is a shall-issue unincorporated U.S. territory with concealed weapons permits issued by the Office of Weapons licenses.
A valid weapons or gunsmith license is required to acquire, buy, transport, sell, donate, transfer, have, possess, guard, carry, use and drive with weapons, firearms, ammunition and any regulated firearm accessories.
Concealed carry is legal for residents with a Puerto Rico Weapons License (WL) issued under the Puerto Rico Arms Act of 2020 (PRAA), a license issued previously under Law 404-2000 or for non-residents with any valid state permit, once the NPPR Commissioner establishes a MOU with the state. Puerto Rico authorities have indicated that as of January 29, 2021, no MOUs have been established, but they believe they will be in 2021. Puerto Rico requires the completion of a firearms use and management course prior to issuance of a WL. Only residents that are at least 21 years old may obtain a WL. Only one concealed firearm may be carried at a time, although more than one firearm can be carried while on the premises of an authorized shooting club or places where hunting is practiced. Law enforcement officers may use government-assigned weapons without a license. In addition, members of the United States Armed Forces and the Puerto Rico National Guard may use those weapons assigned to them while they are on official duty without a WL. Active duty military veterans that meet the qualifications can obtain or renew their pistol permits free of charge. In terms of reciprocity, Puerto Rico honors all out-of-state concealed carry permits, however, there is some confusion as to whether Puerto Rico’s universal reciprocity is in force or whether a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with each state is a prerequisite as stated in [Art. 2.18].
Traveling with Handguns to Puerto Rico Not Quite Yet! Per Article 2.18, once the NPPR Commissioner establishes a MOU with the state, any person who meets the established requirements and intends to introduce one or more weapons and/or ammunition to Puerto Rico must inform the Division of Weapons Registry and License Issuance by completing Form PPR-1062 (Notification of Intention to Introduce Weapons and/or Ammunition) within five business days before the introduction of weapons and/or ammunition to Puerto Rico. When feasible, the notification will be made through the following link: http://www.policia.pr.gov. In these cases, firearms will be registered in the REAL Plus System.There is also confusion as to whether anyone intending to travel to Puerto Rico with their handgun must provide notice five business days prior [Art. 2.18] or whether the airline can simply submit the form prior to the flight [Art. 11.01].
However, Article 11.01 states that any commercial airline that flies to Puerto Rico and that has received firearms and/or ammunition from a passenger to transport them to any airport within the limits territorial of Puerto Rico as part of the person’s luggage, must notify the Puerto Rico Police Bureau at the time that said firearm and/or ammunition is to be delivered to the passenger. The airline will require the passenger to complete Form PPR-1053. The form must be sent by email to [email protected] or sent through the following link: www.policia.pr.gov.
In terms of self-defense, any person who defends his/her person, dwelling, property or rights is justified in using reasonable and proportionate force when he or she believes there is peril of imminent danger and to avoid or repel the danger. That is provided they have not provoked the attack and no more damage is inflicted than is necessary to avert or avoid the injury.
When alleging self-defense to justify deadly force, it is necessary to have reasonable grounds to believe that the person was in imminent or immediate danger of death or serious bodily harm. To justify the defense of dwelling, the circumstances shall indicate trespassing or for the purpose of committing a crime. To justify defense of property or rights, the circumstances shall indicate an attack that constitutes a crime or that poses serious danger of damage or imminent loss.
Liability Any person who, in order to protect his or her own or another’s right from an imminent danger not provoked by him or her and otherwise inevitable, infringes a duty or causes damage to another’s legally protected interest, shall not be liable, provided that the damage caused is less than the damage being prevented and does not cause the death or the serious and permanent injury to a person.
Can you carry a concealed handgun in a vehicle in Puerto Rico?
Yes. Residents with a Puerto Rico Weapons License or non-residents with any valid state permit are allowed to transport more than one firearm at a time, if the other weapons are unloaded in a closed case that does not reflect its content, provided it is not in plain sight.
Weapons and ammunition must be transported within closed cases that do not reflect the content or are hidden.
Can you carry a firearm in an airport in Puerto Rico?
Per federal law, an individual may not have a weapon on or about the person or accessible property when entering or in a sterile area of an airport or when attempting to board or onboard an aircraft for which screening is conducted. Airports in Puerto Rico must have signs posted in Spanish and English indicating that anyone without a valid weapons permit issued in any state, enclave, possession or territory of the United States of America who brings a firearm to Puerto Rico, must give immediate notice to the Ports Authority Security Office and an officer of the Police Bureau of Puerto Rico upon arrival. The Ports Authority Security Office and/or an Authorized Agent will inform the individual on how to proceed with his or her weapon.
Do you have a duty to inform a police officer that you're carrying a concealed firearm in Puerto Rico?
The Puerto Rico Arms Act of 2020 does not address if there is a duty to inform a law enforcement officer that you're carrying a concealed firearm in Puerto Rico.
Magazine Limits For Handguns?
Does Puerto Rico have magazine capacity restrictions for handguns?
Does Puerto Rico have ammunition restrictions?
Yes. Anyone with a weapons license may only purchase ammunition of the calibers that can be used by their registered weapons, unless they rent weapons of a different caliber while at a shooting range. Also, if a person purchases more than 20,000 rounds of ammunition in a year, the police chief may investigate to ensure the ammunition and firearms were purchased for lawful reasons. In addition, only licensed gun dealers are allowed to import ammunition.
Is a permit required to purchase a handgun in Puerto Rico?
No. However, a concealed carry permit or a gunsmith license is required in order to acquire, buy, transport, sell, donate, loan, transfer, have, possess, guard, carry, use and drive with weapons, firearms, ammunition, and any permitted firearm accessories.
Temporary transfers of firearms and ammunition between licensees is allowed, although the Weapons Licensing Office must be notified within 48 hours of any transfer for periods of more than 72 hours. If the temporary assignment extends for more than 30 days, the firearms must be returned to the registered owner or the registration must be formally transferred to the new owner.
Are background checks required for private gun sales in Puerto Rico?
No, however, all purchases or transfers of firearms will be made through Form PPR 379 (Request for Purchase or Transfer of Firearms). In order to carry out the transfer it will be necessary to verify that the weapon license or gunsmith license is in force and that the firearm is legally registered.
Yes. Any acquisition, purchase, sale, donation, assignment or form of transfer of ownership of a firearm and ammunition must be done by a person with a gunsmith license and will be registered in the Electronic Registry of the Puerto Rico Police Bureau.
In addition, any loss of control, possession or custody of a firearm and/or ammunition, must result in notification, as soon as possible, but always no more than 48 hours after which the person becomes aware of the loss by filing a complaint with the Police Bureau.
What is the minimum age to possess and transport a handgun in Puerto Rico?
21, as a Weapons License is required. However, a Special License for Minors from the Weapons Licensing Office authorizes a minor — that is at least 7 years old — to practice shooting with firearms, provided they have authorization from a parent, guardian or custodian, who has a valid weapons license.
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State Constitutional Provision
The right to life, liberty and the enjoyment of property is recognized as a fundamental right of man.
ARTICLE II, § 7
Puerto Rico HAS NO STATE CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT TO KEEP AND BEAR ARMS.
Puerto Rico Concealed Carry Reciprocity With Other States
Which states’ permits does Puerto Rico honor?
The Puerto Rico gun law indicates that Puerto Rico honors permits from all states, enclaves, possessions or territories of the United States of America, however, it is unclear if signed MOUs with each of the states is required prior to Puerto Rico honoring those permits.
Puerto Rico Concealed Carry Reciprocity With Other States
Anyone who can legally possess a firearm may carry it concealed in permitless carry states without a permit/license. The minimum age* for permitless carry is shown. Check each state’s page for more information and any restrictions that may apply.
*PC-18 = permitless carry if at least 18 years old
*PC-21 = permitless carry if at least 21 years old
There are fee exemptions for international high performance PR target shooting athletes, government employees that are required to carry firearms, auxiliary police, and active and former law enforcement officers, provided their retirement has been honorable and they have served in that capacity for at least 10 years.
Yes. Non-residents must include a notarized affidavit with their application which is then notarized in Puerto Rico before a notary.
A licensee must inform the Weapons Licensing Office of a change of residential or postal address within 30 days of the change. A link to a change of address form can be found here.
Submit an affidavit with an explanation stating the reason why you need a duplicate license to the Weapons Licensing Office. A link to a duplicate permit request form can be found here. There is a $50 fee.
Moving to Puerto Rico and interested in applying for a resident permit? How soon can you apply? Puerto Rico issues licenses to residents and non-residents. You can apply for your permit to the police area command where you reside, the Arms Registry and Licensing Issue Division at Headquarters or online.
Moving from Puerto Rico and have a Puerto Rico resident permit? Does that permit transfer to your new state? Is there a grace period during which your Puerto Rico permit remains valid? If a person with a Puerto Rico pistol permit establishes residency in another state, the pistol permit expires upon the establishment of residence in the other state.
PR requires training on the use and handling of firearms in order to obtain a WL. The Police Bureau will certify and qualify the instructors who will offer the courses on the use and handling of weapons. The Police Bureau will recognize instructor certifications issued by private institutions that meet the minimum requirements established by the Commissioner through regulation. Certified instructors will issue a Use and Management Certificate, which will certify the participation and compliance in the course of Use and Management of Firearms. The training must contain a theoretical part and a practical part. The certificate is valid for one year.
License renewals require a practical shooting test at the shooting range. The participant will perform a minimum of 50 shots with a minimum passing score of 70 percent.
Puerto Rico Concealed Carry Permit Renewal Process
How to Renew a Puerto Rico Concealed Carry Permit
Complete a practical shooting test at the shooting range. The participant will perform a minimum of 50 shots with a minimum passing score of 70 percent.
You may begin the renewal process six months before and will have up to 30 days after the expiration date of the weapons license. The non-renewal of the weapons license after 30 days after expiration will carry an administrative fine of $25 per month up to a maximum of six months. If you do not renew after six months, the Commissioner will cancel the license and seize your weapons and ammunition. Once expired over six months, a person may reapply, pay any outstanding fines and recover any seized weapons, if the Commissioner had not disposed of them, as provided by law.
Complete Form PPR-329 and use the online portal or take it to an Area Command.
You will be notified by mail if your application has been approved within 15 days of receipt of a complete application.
Law enforcement officers (LEOs) and retired LEOs may choose to carry under the Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act (LEOSA), often referred to as HR 218. Under 18 U.S. Code §§ 926B & 926C, qualified LEOs and qualified retired LEOs, or those separated from service in good standing, can carry a concealed firearm in any jurisdiction in the United States, regardless of state or local laws, with some exceptions. For details, check out our Federal Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act (LEOSA) page.
The Commissioner is empowered to issue a photo identification, pursuant to LEOSA to all qualified aw enforcement officers, active or retired, that are authorized to carry firearms. The applicant must complete Form PPR-1064 and provide the necessary documents: the firearms use and handling certification received within the last 12 months, two passport-style photographs and pay the fee. Complete application packages should be submitted online, taken to the local Area Command or the Division of Arms Registry and License Issue of the General Headquarters. If all requirements are met, and ID card will be issued within five business days.
Where Can I Carry a Concealed Firearm in Puerto Rico?
Carry in my vehicle without a permit/license? No.
Carry in places of worship? There is no state statute prohibiting concealed carry in places of worship. However, since places of worship are private property, they may post signs prohibiting firearms.
Where Can't I Carry a Concealed Firearm in Puerto Rico?
Places off-limits even with a permit/license
School, university and technical institute of higher education (including parking areas and green areas) and those buildings outside said campus belonging to the institution of higher education, and within a 100 meters perimeter from campus or off-campus university buildings (Referenced in the Gun Law definitions, but not anywhere else in the statute)
Did We Miss Something? Here at the USCCA, it is our mission to provide responsible gun owners with the tools they need to be educated and trained. Our team is constantly working to provide you with the most up-to-date and comprehensive list of self-defense laws available for every state.
If you have any questions that you don’t see answered here — let us know! Just email [email protected] and we will be sure to get your question resolved. Your feedback matters to us, and we appreciate you helping to make this page the best possible resource for responsible gun owners!
The information contained on this website is provided as a service to USCCA, Inc. members and the concealed carry community, and does not constitute legal advice. The original Puerto Rico Weapons Law document is in Spanish so a third-party website using Google Translate was used. Therefore, we do not guarantee the English document to be 100% complete or accurate. We attempt to address all areas of concealed carry laws in all states, we make no claims, representations, warranties, promises or guarantees as to the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information disclosed. Legal advice must always be tailored to the individual facts and circumstances of each individual case. Laws are constantly changing, and as such, nothing contained on this website should be used as a substitute for the advice of a lawyer.
If you have any questions regarding USCCA Membership, Delta Defense, handguns laws or the lawful process of carrying concealed, please contact the award-winning Delta Defense Customer Engagement Team.
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