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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

News Release

Headquarters, St. Paul Field Division

For Immediate Release

Friday, April 28, 2017
Contact: Ashlee J. L. Sherrill, Public Information Officer

Minnesota Permit to Carry to Qualify as Alternative Background Check

ST. PAUL, Minnesota —Minnesota residents with the state’s Permit to Carry may now be able to purchase a firearm from a licensed dealer without the normally required background check.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives has determined that the Minnesota Permit to Carry complies with the background check requirements set forth in the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act of 1998.

Minnesota Permits to Carry with an expiration date of Aug. 1, 2019, or later, will qualify as an alternative to the normally required FBI National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) background check. Federal firearms licensees must ensure transferees’ permits have a qualifying expiration date in order to by-pass the NICS background check.

To announce the determination, ATF Assistant Director Marvin Richardson penned an open letter to all Minnesota FFLs regarding the change in procedures. The letter outlines procedures FFLs must follow in order to be in compliance. The letter also notes that this new change only applies to the Minnesota Permit to Carry and not the Minnesota Permit to Purchase.

ATF is the lead federal law enforcement agency with jurisdiction involving firearms and violent crimes, and regulates the firearm industry. More information about ATF and its programs is available at

For information regarding Minnesota firearms laws, visit the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension website at


Field Division: Headquarters, St. Paul Field Division