Anyone who is legally allowed to possess a firearm may open carry in Nevada. People do not need a permit or a license to open carry in Nevada. And it does not matter whether they live in- or out-of-state. A permit is required only for conceal carry.
Open carry v. concealed carry
Open carry is when the gun is visible to others. People typically open carry by either:
- Keeping a handgun in a belt holster (without a jacket covering it)
- Wearing a rifle on a sling
- "Virginia Tuck" - where the holster is half inside the waistband so that the gun butt is visible
- "Mexican Carry" - where the gun is tucked in the waistband without a holster so that the gun butt is visible
Concealed carry is when the gun cannot be seen by others. It does not matter if the outline of the gun is visible through clothes. Examples of concealed carry include:
- Having a jacket cover a gun in a waistband holster;
- Keeping a gun in a purse or backpack
- Carrying a gun in a pocket so that no parts are visible
People need a current and valid CCW permit in order to conceal carry legally in Nevada. The permit may be from Nevada or a reciprocal state. Conceal carrying without a permit (NRS 202.350) is a category C felony. The penalty is:
- 1 - 5 years in Nevada State Prison, and
- Up to $10,000 in fines (at the judge's discretion)
However, simply forgetting to carry a CCW permit carries only a $25 civil fine.
No-gun zones in Nevada
There are certain locations where firearms are prohibited. It does not matter whether they are open- or closed-carried. These include (with some exceptions):
- Airport secure areas (beyond the TSA checkpoints). Examples are Las Vegas's McCarran Airport and the Reno-Tahoe Airport;
- Legislative buildings. Examples include the Nevada Legislative Building in Carson City;
- Federal facilities, such as national park visitor centers and courthouses;
- VA facilities, such as cemeteries and hospitals;
- Post offices. This includes parking lots as well;
- Nevada System of Higher Education. Examples are UNLV and UNR. This includes parking lots as well;
- Public schools. This includes parking lots as well. And federal law forbids guns within 1,000 feet of school zones;
- Child care facilities (public or private);
- Military bases (with exceptions); and
- Hoover Dam
At Red Rock, people may have unloaded firearms.
In places where state and federal laws permit guns, "no guns allowed" signs have no legal weight. But the manager of the location can still ask the gun carrier to leave. If the carrier refuses, he/she faces charges for trespass (NRS 207.200). This is a misdemeanor, carrying:
- Up to 6 months in jail, and/or
- Up to $1,000 in fines
Trespass cases typically occur in casinos.
U.S citizens v. immigrants
In general, green-card holders may possess firearms. Non-immigrant visa holders usually cannot, but there are exceptions. And illegal aliens usually cannot possess guns.
Otherwise, the same open carry rules apply to both citizens and non-citizens.
Note that gun crimes are usually deportable. Therefore, immigrants should take special care to follow firearm laws.