Do You Need a Gun Permit to Shoot at a Gun Range in New York?

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As a general rule, the denser the population in a state is, the stricter the gun laws will be. This is evidenced in New York. As one of the most populous states in the country, it also has one of the most restrictive gun laws when compared to other rural and less populous states.

If you are looking to visit a gun range in New York, then you might be wondering whether you will be required to have a permit in order to shoot at a range in the area. Read on to find out the answer to this question as well as learn more details concerning gun laws in New York.

Do You Need a Gun Permit to Shoot at a Gun Range in New York?

Yes, you do need a gun permit to shoot at a range in New York because it is a may-issue state where weapon permits and licenses are issued by the court system or county sheriff at the local level.

Close up of a rifle

Pistol Licenses in New York

The Guns To Carry website indicates that New York state has seven different types of restricted pistol licenses. The application procedure may differ from one county to another. These pistol licenses will each allow you to use your gun in slightly different ways:

  • Premise dwelling license: This license allows an individual to possess a firearm in their dwelling or household
  • Premise business license: This one allows a storekeeper or merchant to possess a firearm in their place of business.
  • 1st or 2nd Judicial Department, Justice of The Supreme Court or Judge of NYC Criminal or Civil Court: This permit gives permission to the aforementioned individuals to carry a concealed firearm.
  • Employee of Corrections: This permit allows a regular employee of a correctional facility in the state to carry a concealed firearm
  • Proper cause: This is a special license that can be issued irrespective of one’s place of possession or employment as long as a justifiable proper cause is given for the issuance of the firearm license to the applicant.
  • Antique pistols: This license allows the possession of antique pistols.

Getting a Gun Permit in New York

Since New York State is a may-issue state, the application process will often need more information as compared to getting a permit in a shall-issue state. Furthermore, the issuance of the license is fully dependent on the decision of the issuing officer.

Man using his scope and needing a gun permit to shoot at a gun range in New York

If you do not yet own a firearm and you would like to purchase one before you visit a gun range in New York, then it is important to note that there are certain restrictions related to the buying and selling of firearms in the state.

The USSCA website reports that one is required to undergo a background check and have firearm registration and a permit to purchase before you can buy a handgun and various gun accessories from a private individual. If you are a non-resident of New York looking to visit a gun range in the area, you also need to be aware that New York does not recognize permits from any other state.


An article in the Daily Gazette reports that New York has among the strictest gun laws as well as one of the lowest gun death rates. There is a robust system of gun laws in place to ensure the maximum safety of the inhabitants of the state.

This means that if you are a gun owner living in New York, you will need to be extra diligent and patient when it comes to applying for a New York Pistol License (NYPL), which will then allow you to be able to shoot a firearm at your local shooting range.

James Forrester is a lifelong gun and firearms owner, and an even bigger advocate for gun safety. He created with the purpose of sharing helpful tips and educating others on how to keep guns and weapons safe and secure.