The State of Handgun Laws in the Lone Star State

Many people who haven’t even been to Texas know that the state is known for its gun culture. Whether at the shooting range or for self-defense, many Texans are gun-owners. With the conversations surrounding gun rights and the Second Amendment gaining more and more momentum each day, it is important for Texans — and those visiting the state — to understand the complex gun laws in effect in the state.

Whether you’re a gun-owner or have never held a gun in your life, take a look at this blog post to learn more about the state of gun laws in the Lone Star State.

Obtaining a Gun in Texas

Much of the conversation surrounding gun culture revolves around who is able to obtain a gun and how. An individual in Texas is eligible to carry a concealed handgun if:

  • The person is at least 21 years old
  • Has not been convicted of a felony offense
  • A legal resident of the state of Texas for at least six months before submitting their application for a gun license
  • Has not been convicted of a Class A or Class B misdemeanor
  • Not dependent on any drugs or alcohol
  • Is capable of exercising sound judgment in regard to the proper use and storage of a handgun
  • Fully qualified under both state and federal law to purchase a handgun
  • Is up to date on their child support payments, if applicable
  • Not a fugitive for a felony or a Class A or B misdemeanor

It is important to note that Texas does not require a background check for private gun purchases.

What Types of Guns Can You Own?

In addition to eligibility requirements, many have discussed exactly what type of guns individuals are allowed to lawfully own. Under Texas law, there are no restrictions on what type of gun an individual is able to purchase, as long as they are eligible to purchase a gun. Therefore, individuals who are eligible to make private gun purchases in the state are eligible to purchase assault weapons — such as a semi-auto AR15, FAL, G3/HK91 rifle.

Campus Carry

The “Campus Carry” law was a big source of controversy in the Texas political landscape when it was first signed into law. Under this law, students at public four-year or two-year universities are legally allowed to carry concealed handguns within buildings on campus. Universities are allowed to make exceptions for student safety, but cannot prohibit the lawful carrying of handguns on campus.

Unlawful Carrying of a Handgun

Of course, life happens. If you have been accused of carrying a handgun unlawfully, you have rights. Reach out to a Texas attorney with experience in handling gun crime cases, like the Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter, immediately. An attorney is well-versed in the certain laws regulating gun ownership in Texas and will be able to best represent you in court.

Unlawfully carrying a gun is typically charged as a Class A misdemeanor. This charge could come with a fine up to 4,000 dollars and up to a year of jail time.