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The Oregon Gun Laws Guide Including Open and Concealed Carry

Updated: May 22

If you are an Oregon citizen and you own a gun or are planning to buy a gun in the near future, it’s your responsibility to know all about Oregon gun laws. Oregon is generally considered to be a generous state when it comes to the buying and selling of firearms. However, it’s still a good idea to know what the current laws are in order to protect yourself and other Oregon citizens. In this article, we will give you details about Oregon gun laws involving concealed carry, open carry, reciprocity, purchasing and owning a firearm and how to keep yourself in compliance with Oregon gun laws. If you need a lawyer to help you get your gun rights back, we'll give you a free consultation. Just click the button below or call us at (541) 227-2266.

Gun Laws in Oregon

In Oregon, concealed carry of a handgun is legal only with an Oregon Concealed Handgun License (CHL). You must be at least 21 years old and you must be able to demonstrate your competence with a handgun through military experience, an approved firearm training course, through Law Enforcement or the NRA.

Oregon Concealed Carry Reciprocity

In simple terms, reciprocity means that your concealed carry permit or license is valid beyond just your issuing state. The rights between states are “reciprocated”. Keep in mind that you still need to follow the laws of the state in which you are carrying and that they may be different from your issuing state. Oregon gun laws don’t provide reciprocity to CHL holders from any surrounding states. This means that you can only legally carry a concealed firearm in Oregon with an Oregon CHL. Also, you must be a resident of Oregon to apply for a CHL, or have a compelling interest from an adjoining state. Due to the fact that state laws change so often, we recommend that you(the holder) confirm reciprocity with any state you may be traveling to if you plan to carry concealed while in that state.

Oregon Open Carry Laws

Oregon is an open-carry state. Because of this fact, most citizens are allowed to openly carry a firearm without a permit. Oregon doesn’t prohibit you from openly carrying handguns or long guns on your person in public. However, certain cities like Portland and Beaverton do prohibit the open carry of a loaded firearm. The state of Oregon typically prohibits the knowing possession of a concealed and accessible handgun within any vehicle unless you have a license to carry a concealed weapon. Last year, the Oregon legislature passed a law which states that leaving a handgun unattended in a vehicle and within clear view of people outside is a class A misdemeanor unless you have a concealed carry license.

The state of Oregon also prohibits you from operating an all-terrain vehicle or snowmobile while possessing a loaded firearm. However, those obtaining a concealed handgun permit are exempt from this prohibition.

Portland Gun Laws

Portland, Oregon can regulate certain aspects of its gun and firearm laws. They can dictate where and how you can bring guns and ammunition. The Oregon Constitution protects the right to bear arms. However, the Oregon Supreme Court has ruled that this right isn’t irrefutable. Public bodies in Oregon can come to different agreements on the type of possession of firearms but not the mere possession itself. Laws specific to the city of Portland include:

  • It’s illegal to fire a gun within Portland city. However, there are a few exceptions to this which include instances where you are defending yourself or another person or their property, are a police officer or a hunting/safety instructor, or are firing blanks for athletic events or military ceremonies.

  • Unloaded guns are only allowed to be brought into public places by their legal owners. If you are licensed to carry a concealed firearm, you can bring a gun anywhere in Portland except federal property or a courthouse. These concealed weapons may be loaded.

Can You Open Carry in Portland, Oregon?

Portland has a statute that does not allow the open carry of a firearm unless you have a concealed carry permit.

Buying A Gun In Oregon

In the November election of 2022, Oregon’s Ballot Measure 114 was narrowly approved. Once this is implemented, it will rank among the most stringent in the nation. 

Measure 114 will bring a permit-to-purchase firearm requirement, which will include the following items for prospective gun owners. Currently, this measure is stayed by the Harney County Circuit Court.

  • Prospective gun buyers must secure a permit.

  • There will be a required fee (estimated to be around $65)

  • You must complete a certified firearms safety course which you must pay for yourself

  • You must provide a photo I.D.

  • You must undergo fingerprinting.

  • You must successfully pass a criminal background check.

Waiting Period

There is not a mandated waiting period in Oregon between the time you purchase and receive your firearm. However, in 2022, a ballot measure passed by Oregon voters does mandate that individuals who want to purchase or acquire firearms must first secure a permit. This permit will remain valid for five years, unless it is revoked. Acquiring this permit typically involves completing a firearm safety training course and passing a comprehensive fingerprint-based background check. This permit requirement may also effectively act as a built in waiting period for those without a permit because it slows down their immediate access to guns, particularly. during crisis times.

Background Checks

There was an Oregon law passed in 2015 which states that all unlicensed or private firearm sellers have to run a background check on any private or unlicensed gun purchase. Potential gun buyers are also required to have a background check before purchasing a gun at a gun show. All federally licensed firearm dealers also require background checks from their customers purchasing firearms. Oregon gun laws also strictly prohibit the transfer or sale of a firearm to anyone who is known to not legally be allowed to possess or purchase a firearm.

Can A Felon Be In Possession Of A Firearm In Oregon?

As you might expect, Oregon gun laws state that convicted felons can’t own or possess a firearm. There are no exceptions to this rule. It is considered a Class C Felony if a felon is caught with a firearm. This will carry a maximum of 5 years in prison and a $125,000 fee if you are convicted. You also aren’t allowed to live with someone who owns or possesses a firearm. Even if the gun isn’t owned by you, the fact that the firearm is in your residence is considered the same thing as you owning it yourself.

Can I Carry A Handgun In My Car In Oregon?

In general, Oregon does not allow the knowing possession of a concealed and readily accessible handgun within any vehicle without a license to carry a concealed handgun. “Readily accessible” typically refers to the passenger compartment of the vehicle. There are special provisions that apply to vehicles that have no storage compartment in the vehicle. 

Oregon gun laws also state that a person may own, possess, or keep a handgun within his or her residence. Residences may include a recreational vehicle or vessel while used as recreational quarters.  

Extreme Risk Protection Orders

An Extreme Risk Protection Orders, or ERPO, is a civil order in Oregon that allows family and household members along with law enforcement officers the ability to petition courts to prevent a person who potentially poses a risk from having access to a firearm or deadly weapon for up to one year. This includes a sworn affidavit which alleges that the individual poses a risk to others or to him/herself.

The individual in question needs to have a history of suicidal threats or attempts, a previous conviction, the use of physical force, or evidence of unlawful use of a controlled substance. If the court finds that there is enough convincing evidence, they will issue an ERPO that will prevent the person in question from owning or possessing his or her own deadly weapon or gun.

If the person wants to contest the ERPO, he/she has 30 days from the day he/she received the ERPO to request an order to contest. 

ERPO’s are referred to as “Oregon’s Red Flag Law”. They are one of the newer Oregon gun laws enforced by the state in an effort to strengthen gun safety throughout the state. Hopefully Oregon citizens will see this law as a feasible action plan to keep guns out of the hands of those who shouldn’t have them. Both Multomah County and the city of Portland prohibit endangering a child by allowing access to firearms. The Oregon legislature passed SB554B which states that firearms must be secured unless the possessor or owner is close enough to prevent an unauthorized individual from getting their hands on the firearm. 

New Oregon Gun Laws

Oregon has implemented several comprehensive gun safety regulations. These include no firearms at the state capital, mandatory securing of firearms when not in use, and granting schools and other educational institutions the power to restrict firearms on their premises. 

U.S. District Court Judge Karin Immergut upheld Oregon’s new gun laws. It was ruled that banning large capacity magazines and requiring a permit to purchase a firearm aligned with national historical regulations of firearms for public safety. However, it is different from last year’s Supreme Court ruling which put emphasis on the right to carry firearms outside the home without special permission. It was argued that large capacity magazines are not typically necessary for self-defense and can be regulated, and the permitting system does not deprive Oregon citizens of their liberty, nor does it violate their second amendment rights.

Oregon Gun Laws Conclusion

When it comes to gun laws and gun safety, the state of Oregon is always trying to improve. Since the laws are continually evolving, you must keep up with the latest changes and most current gun laws. 

Oregon has many ways to restore your gun rights. This can allow you to purchase and possess rifles, shotguns and handguns. Depending on the crime(s) of conviction(s), At Oregon Gun Law, we can provide you with the individually tailored guidance you need. As the foremost Second Amendment attorney in Oregon, our office has years of experience representing individuals in restoring their rights to hunt, target shoot, purchase and possess firearms.

If you or a loved one are facing gun-related criminal charges, or simply want to know more about Oregon gun laws, contact us at Oregon Gun Law for a free consultation. Experience has shown us that when firearms are involved in a crime, the stakes are automatically higher. We have years of experience with firearm litigation and can help you navigate your path with confidence. We serve the entire state of Oregon. Give us a call today!

2024 Update

In 2024, the Oregon State Police have updated their policy regarding firearm purchases following a case where a firearm-prohibitive record has been set aside or expunged. The new policy acknowledges that under federal law, Oregon Set Asides do not restore firearm rights.

Although the Oregon State Police have interpreted this incorrectly, their stance will impact firearm purchases until the issue is resolved in the courts. This change does not apply to everyone who has undergone expungements, but individuals are currently experiencing difficulties with purchasing firearms as a result.

If your purchase was denied despite being legally eligible to possess firearms, you may have grounds for legal recourse. Moreover, there are alternative approaches to address this policy in the interim. For instance, firearm rights restoration or felony reduction in certain instances can supersede the policy. At Oregon Gun Law, we advise people who have had firearm-prohibitive cases set aside to postpone firearm purchases. It's beneficial to avoid having a purchase denial recorded on your record.

Changes and What To Do

It's important to remember that nothing in the law has changed here. This is only a change in the bureaucracy and it will be challenged in court. If this applies to you and you have not tried to buy a gun yet, we recommend waiting. If you've been turned down for a gun purchase recently, contact us and we'll help you.

*Nothing herein constitutes legal advice. You should obtain independent legal counsel regarding your specific factual situation.

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1 Comment

We are still waiting on measure 114 to be settled, so all is as it was before that unconstitutional act was ratified. Buy as you please, voice your 2a rights at the ballot box.

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