Texas Constitutional Carry Takes Effect September 1, 2021

Under the new law, Texans will longer need licensing to carry a handgun

CORPUS CHRISTI, TX – On June 16, Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed House Bill 1927, allowing constitutional carry to take effect on September 1, 2021. House Bill 1927 will allow Texans, age 21 and over, to carry handguns openly or concealed without obtaining a state-issued license, so as long they are not excluded from possessing a firearm by another federal or state law.

Currently, Texans must obtain a license to carry a handgun, either openly or concealed. The permit requires up to six hours of training, a written exam, and a shooting proficiency exam. Prospective licensees also currently must submit their fingerprints and pass a background check to obtain the permit.

Under the new law, Texans will longer need that licensing to carry a handgun. However, a background check is still required for the purchase of a firearm.

Handguns were the only type of firearm that required a state license to carry in most public places in Texas. Long guns like shotguns and rifles, including semi-automatic rifles, were and still can be openly carried in most public areas in Texas without a license.

There are certain public places firearms are not allowed, even under constitutional carry, unless you are a licensed peace officer. Those include:

•           Bars and other businesses that make 51% of their receipts from alcohol

•           Schools

•           Sporting events and horse or dog races

•           Polling places

•           Airports

•           Courtrooms

•           Government offices utilized by the court

•           Jails and prisons

•           Hospitals

•           Federal property and national park buildings (that includes the San Antonio Missions and The Alamo)

•           Private businesses or land in which the owner has signage posted outlawing weapons

•           In the room or rooms where a meeting of a governmental entity is held if the meeting is an open meeting subject to Chapter 551, Government Code and if the entity provided notice as required by that chapter.

Individuals arrested for crimes while carrying a firearm are still subject to subsequent unlawful carrying charges.