Stun Gun Laws By State


In the United States, personal safety is a top priority for many individuals. With concerns about personal security on the rise, it’s no wonder that people turn to self-defense devices like stun guns. These electrical gadgets can provide a temporary advantage in potentially dangerous situations, giving individuals a chance to escape harm without causing lethal harm to their assailants.

However, before you rush to buy a stun gun, it’s crucial to understand the specific laws governing their ownership and use in your state. This article will serve as your comprehensive guide to stun gun laws by state, ensuring that you’re well-informed and legally compliant when considering these self-defense tools.

State Laws and Stun Guns

Stun gun regulations aren’t uniform across the United States. They can vary significantly from one state to another. In some cases, federal laws intersect with state regulations, making it even more important to grasp the distinctions.

Licensing and Permits for Stun Gun Ownership:
Most states do not require a permit to purchase or own a stun gun, but there are exceptions. To ensure you’re abiding by the law, it’s crucial to delve into your state’s specific requirements.

Types of Stun Guns and Their Legal Implications:
Not all stun guns are created equal. Some may be considered more dangerous or have additional legal restrictions. Understanding the differences can help you make an informed decision.

List of states Where Stun Guns are Legal

  • Alabama
  • Alaska
  • Arizona
  • Arkansas
  • Colorado
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Idaho
  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Louisiana
  • Maine
  • Michigan
  • Mississippi
  • Missouri
  • Montana
  • Nebraska
  • Nevada
  • New Hampshire
  • New Mexico
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • South Carolina
  • South Dakota
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Utah
  • Vermont
  • Virginia
  • Washington
  • West Virginia
  • Wisconsin
  • Wyoming

There are few restrictions on stun gun possession and use in these states. However, some local jurisdictions within these states may regulate stun guns. It is advisable to always check the latest local laws before purchasing or carrying stun guns.

States Where Stun Guns Are Prohibited

While stun guns are generally legal in most states, two outliers stand out: Hawaii and Rhode Island. These states have outright bans on stun gun ownership, even for self-defense purposes. It’s also worth noting that local regulations can further complicate matters, so it’s wise to investigate both state and local laws.

Stun Gun Ownership and Age Restrictions

To purchase a stun gun legally, you typically need to be 18 years or older. Additionally, the method of purchase, such as online transactions, might come with its own set of legal considerations. Carrying a stun gun also has specific restrictions in certain places, which you should be aware of.

Laws Regarding Stun Gun Use

Stun guns are categorized as dangerous weapons in most states, subject to specific regulations regarding their usage. It’s important to know that some states prohibit the use of stun guns against law enforcement officers. Before using a stun gun, it’s imperative to read the user manual thoroughly to ensure safe and effective utilization.

Permit Requirements for Stun Guns

While most states don’t require permits for stun gun ownership, local ordinances can create additional complications. It’s essential to be aware of any such regulations to avoid legal troubles.

Traveling with Stun Guns

If you’re planning to travel with a stun gun, you must understand the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) regulations. Stun guns are generally not approved for carry-on luggage on airplanes due to their classification as dangerous weapons. However, they can be transported in checked baggage if certain safety measures are followed. Always check with your airline before traveling with a stun gun to avoid any unpleasant surprises.

Can You Travel with a Stun Gun?

  • It is legal to transport stun guns in checked luggage on domestic flights within the U.S. Stun guns are prohibited from being carried on your person or in carry-on luggage.
  • You must declare the stun gun to the airline and store it safely in your checked baggage unloaded with the safety on. Pack it securely to prevent accidental discharge.
  • Make sure the stun gun is legal in both your departure and arrival state. Possessing or using a stun gun is illegal in some states like Hawaii, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, etc.
  • When driving, keep the stun gun securely packed and unloaded preferably in the trunk or locked case. Follow all state and local laws on possession and transport.
  • Use caution when traveling internationally. Many foreign countries ban stun guns entirely. Always check regulations at your destination before crossing borders with a stun gun.
  • Improper handling or transportation of a stun gun could lead to confiscation, fines, or criminal charges depending on applicable laws. Research regulations thoroughly before traveling.


In a world where personal safety is paramount, stun guns can provide an added layer of protection. However, their legality varies significantly across states, and ignorance of the law is not an excuse. Before purchasing or carrying a stun gun, make sure to thoroughly research your state’s laws and any local regulations. Stay informed, exercise responsibility, and prioritize your safety within the bounds of the law.


  1. Are stun guns legal in all 50 states?
    • Stun guns are legal in most states, but Hawaii and Rhode Island have outright bans. Always check your state’s laws.
  2. Do I need a permit to carry a stun gun?
    • Most states do not require permits, but local ordinances may apply. Research both state and local regulations.
  3. Can I use a stun gun against law enforcement officers?
    • Using stun guns against law enforcement is prohibited in many states. Familiarize yourself with your state’s laws.
  4. Are stun guns TSA-approved for air travel?
    • Stun guns are not allowed in carry-on luggage, but they can be transported in checked baggage. Check with your airline beforehand.
  5. How can I ensure the safe use of a stun gun?
    • Read the user manual thoroughly and follow the safety guidelines provided by the manufacturer to ensure proper use.