suppressors laws by state, are silencers legalsuppressors laws by state, are silencers legal

Are silencers legal? Can I buy a silencer in my state?

Every responsible gun owner understands the importance of knowing and abiding by all applicable federal and state laws. When it comes to firearms, unfortunately, these laws can often be complicated and confusing.

There are many all-encompassing resources online for gun laws, so we wanted to assemble a similar resource for suppressors. In this post, we'll lay out suppressor laws by state and cover the legality of using suppressors for hunting in each state. As of publishing this post, these are the current laws, but always be sure to check with your applicable state just in case there have been changes.

It's important to remember that yes, silencers are legal in 42 states. They don't require any special class of license to own. But there are a lot of relevant federal laws governing the purchase and use of silencers — you can read more about them here — and Silencer Shop is here to help you navigate suppressor laws by state.

If you think you might be interested in purchasing a silencer, feel free to check out our incredible inventory or chat with one of our helpful sales reps.


Suppressor Laws by State


Alabama

Silencers are legal in Alabama.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Alabama.

Relevant laws: Ala. Admin. Code § 220-2-.02(1)(e).


Alaska

Silencers are legal in Alaska.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Alaska.

Relevant laws: Silencers are a prohibited weapon under Alaska Stat. § 11-61-200(h), but registration under the National Firearms Act is an affirmative defense (§11-61-200(c)).


Arizona

Silencers are legal in Arizona.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Arizona.

Relevant laws: Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 13-3101(8)(a)(ii) prohibits silencers, but prohibition does not extend to firearms possessed in compliance with federal law. See also Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 17-251.


Arkansas

Silencers are legal in Arkansas.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Arkansas.

Relevant laws: Ark. Code R. § 5-73-104; House Bill 1488 / Act 720 (2015).


California

Silencers are not legal in California. California is one of the states in which silencers have been banned.

Is there hope for legislative change? The California Senate Public Safety Committee has held hearings on the subject as recently as 2018, but no legislative efforts have come near to restoring Californian's rights. The American Suppressor Association continues to pursue legislation in California and "every state that does not currently allow for suppressor ownership or their use while hunting."

Relevant laws: Cal. Penal Code § 33410-15. Only Class 3 & Class 2 manufacturers may possess a silencer in California.


Colorado

Silencers are legal in Colorado.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Colorado.

Relevant laws: Colo. Rev. Stat. §18-12-102 prohibits silencers, but provides that a "valid permit and license for possession" of a silencer is an affirmative defense.


Connecticut

Silencers are legal in Connecticut.

Hunting? Like in Vermont, silencers are not legal for hunting in Connecticut.

Is there hope for legislative change? State Rep. Doug Dubitsky in January introduced H.B. 5522 "to authorize hunters to use firearms fitted with sound suppressors", but unfortunately the legislation has not moved forward since then. The American Suppressor Association continues to pursue this legislation in Connecticut and in "every state that does not currently allow for suppressor ownership or their use while hunting."

Relevant laws: Conn. Gen. Stat. § 53a-211 prohibits silencers, except when permitted under federal law. See also Conn. Gen. Stat. Ann. § 26-75, which regards hunting.


Delaware

Silencers are not legal in Delaware. Delaware is one of the states in which silencers have been banned.

Is there hope for legislative change? The American Suppressor Association pursues "legislation in every state that does not currently allow for suppressor ownership or their use while hunting." There is no active legislation in Delaware at this time, however.

Relevant laws: Del. Code Ann. tit. 11 § 1444, Del. Code Ann. tit. 7, § 710.


Florida

Silencers are legal in Florida.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Florida.

Relevant laws: Fl. Stat. § 790.001 defines silencers as firearms, but the law is otherwise silent. See also Fla. Admin. Code r. 68A-12.002(3)(b) which regards hunting.


Georgia

Silencers are legal in Georgia.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Georgia.

Relevant laws: Ga. Code Ann. §§ 16-11-122 and 16-11-124 prohibit silencers, but this prohibition does not apply to persons authorized by registration “in accordance with the dictates of the National Firearms Act.” See also Ga. Code Ann. § 27-3-4(9), which regards hunting.


Hawaii

Silencers are not legal in Hawaii. Hawaii is one of the states in which silencers have been banned.

Is there hope for legislative change? The American Suppressor Association pursues "legislation in every state that does not currently allow for suppressor ownership or their use while hunting." There is no active legislation in Hawaii at this time, however.

Relevant laws: Haw. Rev Stat. § 134-8 and § 134-11. Exceptions are made for federal and state law enforcement officers and other officials. See Haw. Rev. Stat. Ann. 134-8(a), which regards hunting.


Idaho

Silencers are legal in Idaho.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Idaho.

Relevant laws: Idaho law is silent regarding silencers.


Illinois

Silencers are not legal in Illinois. Illinois is one of the states in which silencers have been banned.

Is there hope for legislative change? The past few years have seen strong bipartisan support in Illinois for suppressor legalization. In 2016, for example, pro-suppressor legislation passed the Democratic-controlled Illinois House of Representatives.

Illinois H.B. 1891, introduced this spring, could legalize silencers in Illinois, making it the 43rd state to allow silencers. The American Suppressor Association continues to pursue this legislation and "legislation in every state that does not currently allow for suppressor ownership or their use while hunting."

Relevant laws: 720 ILCS 5/24-1(a)(6). See also 520 ILCS 5/2.33(s)., which regards hunting.


Indiana

Silencers are legal in Indiana.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Indiana.

Relevant laws: Ind. Code Ann. § 14-22-6-11 contains relevant hunting regulations. See also House Bill 1563 (2013).


Iowa

Silencers are legal in Iowa.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Iowa.

Relevant laws: Iowa Code §§ 724.1-724.3.


Kansas

Silencers are legal in Kansas.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Kansas.

Relevant laws: Kan. Stat. Ann. § 21-6301 prohibits silencer, but this prohibition “shall not apply to or affect any person or entity in compliance with the national firearms act." See also Kan. Stat. Ann. §32-1002 and SB 152-2011, which regard hunting.


Kentucky

Silencers are legal in Kentucky.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Kentucky.

Relevant laws: Kentucky law is silent regarding silencers.


Louisiana

Silencers are legal in Louisiana.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Louisiana.

Relevant laws: La. Rev. Stat. Ann. §40:1781 defines suppressors, and §14:94 establishes an enhanced penalty for use in connection with a crime. See also La. Rev. Stat. § 56:116.6 and HB 186/SB 212 (2014), which regard hunting.


Maine

Silencers are legal in Maine.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Maine.

Relevant laws: Signed into law in 2021, LD 635 (SP 249) repeals previous requirements for obtaining a permit before hunting with a silencer.


Maryland

Silencers are legal in Maryland.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Maryland.

Relevant laws: Md. Code Ann. § 5-621 establishes an enhanced penalty for use in drug trafficking crime. The law is otherwise silent.


Massachusetts

Silencers are not legal in Massachusetts. Massachusetts is one of the states in which silencers have been banned.

Is there hope for legislative change? Massachusetts H.D. 3853, introduced in the spring of 2021, would legalize suppressor ownership. The American Suppressor Association continues to pursue legislation in Massachusetts and "every state that does not currently allow for suppressor ownership or their use while hunting."

Relevant laws: Mass. Gen. Laws Ann. ch. 269, § 10A. Class 3 & Class 2 manufacturers are permitted to possess a silencer.


Michigan

Silencers are legal in Michigan. Anyone who possesses a silencer in accordance with federal law may possess it in Michigan.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Michigan.

Relevant laws: Mich. Comp. Laws § 750.224 carries a prohibition, but this does not apply to “A person licensed by the secretary of the treasury of the United States or the secretary's delegate.” 


Minnesota

Silencers are legal in Minnesota.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Minnesota.

Relevant laws: Minn. Stat. Ann. § 609.66 Subd. 1a; SF 878 (2015).


Mississippi

Silencers are legal in Mississippi.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Mississippi.

Relevant laws: Miss. Code Ann. § 97-37-31 makes ownership legal for any person “duly authorized under federal law.” The law is silent with regard to hunting.


Missouri

Silencers are legal in Missouri.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Missouri.

Relevant laws: Mo. Rev. Stat. § 571.020 makes it illegal to possess a silencer “in violation of federal law.” The law is silent with regard to hunting.


Montana

Silencers are legal in Montana.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Montana.

Relevant laws: Mont. Code Ann. § 45-8-337 makes it illegal to possess “a silencer that is not registered under federal law.” See also Mont. Code Ann. § 87-6-401(1)(c)., which regards hunting.


Nebraska

Silencers are legal in Nebraska.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Nebraska.

Relevant laws: Nebraska law is silent regarding silencers.


Nevada

Silencers are legal in Nevada.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Nevada.

Relevant laws: Nev. Rev. Stat. § 202.350 bans silencers “unless authorized by federal law.” The law is silent with regard to hunting.


New Hampshire

Silencers are legal in New Hampshire.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in New Hampshire.

Relevant laws: N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 207:4(1) outlaws hunting with a suppressor, but persons issued a depredation permit by the Executive Director of Fish and Game may use one.


New Jersey

Silencers are not legal in New Jersey. New Jersey is one of the states in which silencers have been banned.

Is there hope for legislative change? The American Suppressor Association continues to pursue legislation in New Jersey and "every state that does not currently allow for suppressor ownership or their use while hunting."

Relevant laws: N.J. Stat. Ann. § 2C:39-3(c) prohibits the possession of suppressors; N.J. Stat. Ann. § 23:4-13 bans hunting with suppressors.


New Mexico

Silencers are legal in New Mexico.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in New Mexico.

Relevant laws: New Mexico law is silent regarding silencers.


New York

Silencers are not legal in New York. New York is one of the states in which silencers have been banned.

Is there hope for legislative change? State Sen. Robert Ortt introduced in January a bill removing prohibitions on silencers in the state, but the bill has not come to a vote. The American Suppressor Association continues to pursue this legislation in New York and legislation in "every state that does not currently allow for suppressor ownership or their use while hunting."

Relevant laws: N.Y. Penal Law § 265.02(2) bans suppressors. N.Y. Env. Law § 11-0931 bans the use of suppressors while hunting, except for law enforcement officers performing their official duties.


North Carolina

Silencers are legal in North Carolina.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in North Carolina.

Relevant laws: N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14-288.8(c)(3) makes it legal to own or possess if “in compliance with 26 U.S.C. Chapter 53, §§ 5801-5871.” See also N.C. Gen. Stat §113-291.1(c), which regards hunting.


North Dakota

Silencers are legal in North Dakota.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Nevada.

Relevant laws: N.D. Cent. Code § 62.1-05-01. makes it illegal for person to possess suppressor “unless that person has complied with the National Firearms Act.” See also N.D. Cent. Code § 20.1-01-36, which regards hunting.


Ohio

Silencers are legal in Ohio.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Ohio.

Relevant laws: Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 2923.17(C)(5) makes it illegal to possess a suppressor unless “registered in the national firearms registration and transfer record...” See also Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 1533.04, which regards hunting.


Oklahoma

Silencers are legal in Oklahoma.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Oklahoma.

Relevant laws: Okla. Stat. tit. 29, § 5-201(A)(5) concerns the use of suppressors while hunting. The law is otherwise silent.


Oregon

Silencers are legal in Oregon.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Oregon.

Relevant laws: Or. Rev. Stat. §166.272 makes silencers illegal, unless they are “registered as required under federal law.” The law is otherwise silent with regard to hunting.


Pennsylvania

Silencers are legal in Pennsylvania.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Pennsylvania.

Relevant laws: 18 Pa. Cons. Stat. § 908 makes it illegal to possess a “firearm specially made or specially adapted for concealment or silent discharge,” but it is a valid defense to show that you “complied with the National Firearms Act (26 U.S.C. § 5801 et seq.)”. The law is silent with regard to hunting.


Rhode Island

Silencers are not legal in Rhode Island. Rhode Island is one of the states in which silencers have been banned.

Is there hope for legislative change? A bipartisan group of six Rhode Island state senators (four Democrats and two Republicans) introduced S.0517, which would legalize silencers. The bill is still in committee. The American Suppressor Association continues to pursue this legislation in Rhode Island and in "every state that does not currently allow for suppressor ownership or their use while hunting."

Relevant laws: R.I. Gen. Laws § 11-47-20 concerns both the possession of silencers and their use while hunting.


South Carolina

Silencers are legal in South Carolina.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in South Carolina.

Relevant laws: South Carolina law is silent regarding silencers.


South Dakota

Silencers are legal in South Dakota.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Nebraska.

Relevant laws: S.D. Codified Laws § 22-14-6 makes silencers legal if the owner “Has a valid state or federal license issued pursuant to law for such weapon or has registered such weapon with the proper state or federal authority pursuant to law." The law is silent with regard to hunting.


Tennessee

Silencers are legal in Tennessee.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Tennessee.

Relevant laws: Tenn. Code Ann. § 39-17-1302 is now silent, given S.B. 921 (2017). The law is silent with regard to hunting. See also the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency website.


Texas

Silencers are legal in Texas.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Texas.

Relevant laws: Tex. Penal Code Ann. § 46.05 prohibits silencers except when possessed in compliance with federal law. (Pending legislation could change this status quo). The law is silent with regard to hunting.


Utah

Silencers are legal in Utah.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Utah.

Relevant laws: Utah law is silent regarding silencers.


Vermont

Silencers are legal in Vermont for use at a "shooting sports range."

Hunting? Silencers are not legal for hunting in Vermont.

Relevant laws: Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 13, § 4010.


Virginia

Silencers are legal in Virginia.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Virginia.

Relevant laws: Virginia law is silent (since SB 1383 in 2009). Recent attempts to ban silencers in Virginia have been narrowly averted.


Washington

Silencers are legal in Washington.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Washington.

Relevant laws: Wash. Rev. Code §§ 9.41.250; 9.41.251 makes suppressors legal if “registered and possessed in accordance with federal law.” The law is silent with regard to hunting.


West Virginia

Silencers are legal in West Virginia.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in West Virginia.

Relevant laws: West Virginia law is silent regarding silencers.


Wisconsin

Silencers are legal in Wisconsin.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Wisconsin.

Relevant laws: Wis. Stat. § 941.298 states that possessing a silencer is legal for “[a]ny person who has complied with the licensing and registration requirements under 26 USC 5801 to 5872.” The law is silent with respect to hunting with silencers.


Wyoming

Silencers are legal in Wyoming.

Hunting? Silencers are legal for hunting both game and non-game animals in Wyoming.

Relevant laws: Wyo. Stat. Ann. § 23-3-112 addresses the use of silencers for hunting.