(Wasinger Parham, L.C. does not intend to weigh in on the propriety, consequence or effect of any law with this post. We only intend to pass on information that many might find useful, informative or worth reading. It should also be noted that laws, like everything else, are subject to change. There are already efforts to modify or amend the new concealed carry law as it relates to those charged with domestic assault and adult abuse crimes. Further, there may be areas where Federal and State laws are in conflict)
Missouri’s Concealed Weapons Law (commonly referred to as “Concealed Carry”) undergoes some radical changes on January 1, 2017. Originally enacted in 2004, the Concealed Carry law previously required applicants to be trained by certified instructors while submitting themselves to background checks. Upon completion of that training and background investigation and the payment of a fee, permits were issued by the Sheriff of the County in which the applicant resided.
On January 1, 2017, anyone over the age of 18 (with certain exceptions) who owns a gun can carry it openly or conceal it. No permit (and, as a result, no training or background check) is required. Background checks are still required for the purchase of firearms. In fact, one can still seek the training and actually apply for the permit after January 1, 2017. More on that later.
There are still restrictions under the new law that need to be followed (let’s call them a list of “nots” so that the title of this article makes some sense). The failure to understand the law can have some disastrous legal (and safety) consequences. As an example:
1. You are still NOT permitted to carry (concealed or otherwise) firearms in courthouses, jails, law enforcement offices (Highway Patrol, police or sheriff’s departments), polling places, places of worship, bars, businesses expressly prohibiting firearms on/in the premises, meetings of governmental bodies, schools, child care facilities, hospitals, arenas with greater than 5,000 seats, riverboat gambling facilities or where prohibited by federal, state or local law. That’s a long list but is not meant to give you all the places you can’t carry. Please do your homework on this and read the Revised Missouri Statute 571.030.
2. You are still NOT permitted to carry a weapon (concealed or otherwise) in an intoxicated condition;
3. You are still NOT permitted to possess (much less carry) a firearm if you have plead guilty to or been convicted of a felony;
4. Your right to carry in Missouri DOES NOT mean that you can take that gun to another state. People obtaining a Concealed Carry Permit (yes, you can still get one after January 1, 2017) may be permitted to possess or carry a concealed or open weapon in SOME states (look on concealed carry websites for more information. Better yet, read the actual laws of that state). However, the fact that you may be allowed to carry a weapon (without a permit) in Missouri DOES NOT mean that you can elsewhere. Of the eight states that border Missouri, seven recognize a concealed carry permit held by a Missouri resident-Illinois does NOT. None of those states recognize a Missouri resident’s right to carry in their state without a Missouri permit;
5. Some cities (St. Louis being the largest) do NOT allow you to OPENLY carry a firearm (picture the Wild West with a holster). The law, oddly, generally allows you to conceal that firearm in those areas.
We’d encourage anybody that intends to carry a weapon to make sure that they are not only conversant in the law but that they are familiar with the safe and responsible use of that weapon. If not, consider taking a course from a certified instructor.
Weapons violations are serious not only in a legal sense: they are serious in a practical sense. With an expansion of rights it is likely that there will be an uptick in the number of violations of those rights.
Learn the law before you decide to carry a firearm. It doesn’t make sense NOT to.
(as we say with each post neither creates an attorney-client relationship nor is it intended to offer legal advice)
This information is not designed to solicit representation or offer legal advice and does not form an attorney-client relationship.
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