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 See our Gun Dealers policy summary for a comprehensive discussion of this issue. 

 Federal law requires firearms dealers to obtain a license from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives (ATF), although resource limitations prevent the ATF from properly overseeing all its licensees.

New Mexico does not require firearms dealers to obtain a state license or otherwise significantly regulate dealers.

However, legislation enacted in 2019 generally requires firearm sales between unlicensed people (those who are not federally licensed firearm dealers) to be conducted through a licensed dealer who is required to conduct a background check.1

For laws:

  1. N.M. Stat. Ann. § 30-7-7.1. Unlike some other states that have closed the background check loophole, however, this background check requirement applies only to “sales” of firearms, which includes transfers made for a fee or other consideration but not to other instances in which a person transfers ownership of a firearm.[]