By now the phrase “Constitutional Carry” likely sounds familiar. The general idea is that individuals can now carry a handgun without a license. But, what exactly is going on between Unlicensed Carry and LTCs?
When most people heard about Unlicensed Carry, they probably thought that the whole LTC system was scrapped. That is far from the truth. While the new law amended the LTC system slightly, LTCs still very much exist. Though a license is no longer necessary to carry, there are still benefits to obtaining a license. Put simply, the new law did not repeal the LTC program.
Some Confusing Points Regarding Unlicensed Carry and LTCs
The new law allows most adults who can legally posses guns to carry in public without a license. As expected, this means that those who are not legally allowed to possess guns many not possess or carry without a permit. This includes both federal and state limits on possession. But, what exactly does it mean to be “prohibited” from legally possessing a gun?
Since the law regarding LTCs is still in effect, does that mean that being ineligible for an LTC also means ineligibility for unlicensed carry? The language of the amendments is not exactly clear on this point. To be on the safe side, we recommend avoiding carrying a weapon if you would otherwise be ineligible for an LTC or if your LTC is suspended or revoked.
Why would I even want an LTC? Are there benefits?
This is a very common question. The short answer is: Yes, there are still benefits to obtaining a License to Carry.
Perhaps the main draw of a License to Carry is that it makes purchasing a gun easier. Put another way, it eases the process by either allowing license holders to skip a background check, or by simplifying the check (fewer hoops to jump through).
Another reason is to allow you to carry in states that do not currently have unlicensed carry. “Reciprocity” is the term. This term means that a Texas LTC can be used in states that acknowledge that LTC. Just for illustration (and not complete accuracy), say that you entered Oklahoma without an LTC and that Oklahoma does not have unlicensed carry. By carrying without a valid LTC, you would be breaking Oklahoma law. On the other hand, with a valid LTC you would have permission to carry as long as Oklahoma accepts a Texas LTC.
Some lesser know Benefits of a Texas LTC are:
- Certain protections when accidentally carrying in the secured area of an airport
- Some businesses still restrict carrying on their property only to license holders
- “Campus Carry” did not change, so campuses still require an LTC
- Usable as a separate form of ID (for voter ID purposes, as an example)
One Small Federal Note About Unlicensed Carry and LTCs
Federal law applies regardless of unlicensed or licensed carry. The one small, but important, restriction is that federal law restricts possession of a gun if you have a conviction for any crime that is punishable by more than 1 year of jail or prison. The word “punishable” is very important. That words means that if the range of punishment includes more than 1 year of jail, than you cannot possess a gun even if you did not ACTUALLY receive more than one year of jail.
More about Mimi Coffey & The Coffey Firm
When people look for a Top DWI Attorney or Best DWI Attorney, they look for experience, certification, and respect in the legal community. Mimi Coffey is a nationally-renowned trial attorney, board-certified in DWI by the NCDD. She has been practicing for over 24 years and is an author of multiple DWI Defense textbooks. She is also a national and state-wide lecturer on the law.
The Coffey Firm handles a wide variety of cases, including Unlawful Carrying Weapon (UCW), Assault (including family violence), and Possession charges. We can also help you try to get a DWI off your record or avoid probation revocation.
Mimi is also listed on several “top criminal lawyer near me” directory listings such as Wise County DWI Lawyers, Tarrant County DWI Lawyer, Dallas County DWI attorney, Collin County DWI attorneys and Parker County DWI attorneys. Mimi is a caring DWI Lawyer in Dallas – Fort Worth. She is also involved in the Texas Tech School of Law foundation and enjoys using the skills she has developed to give back to the community.