Thursday, October 1, 2009

Map of Minimum Age to Carry Concealed, State by State

(See map in full size)

Has anyone ever wondered why we trust young adults 18 and older to get married, sign legal contracts, go to battle on behalf of our Country utilizing powerful weapons and tools such as helicopters, tanks, & rocket launchers, yet in all but 13 States we don't trust the very same young adults to defend themselves with a concealed handgun while conducting their business here at home? I have. I certainly would like my daughter to not be denied the right to fight off a rapist with a concealed weapon if she were to be attacked while walking home or to her car after her college class is dismissed or while she walks down any sidewalk.

Before I go on, can I just ask my friends in Missouri, TWENTY THREE? Really? Are you kidding me? OK, I just had to get that off my chest.

Don't even get me started on all of the so-called "Gun Free Zones" that our legislators have created in many of our States, but for anyone interested there is a map of States that attempt to create gun free zones at colleges (more at concealedcampus.org) as well as a map of States that attempt to create gun free zones in restaurants that happen to serve alcohol. I say "attempt to create" because there are no metal detectors or armed guards so the only folks disarmed in such target rich victim zones are the law abiding victims.

I mentioned my thoughts on the subject of the current minimum age to defend oneself with a concealed weapon here in Arizona to Senator Harper & he asked me how Arizona compares with the rest of our Country. I did a search on the Internet for such a map, and although I did find a map for minimum age to carry openly on opencarry.org, I didn't manage to find a map for minimum age to carry concealed. As a result I decided to make one myself by going through the details for all of the States on handgunlaw.us. Please take a look at your State to compare with my map & let me know if I've made any errors so that I can make any required corrections.

As far as future legislative changes I'd like to see made here in Arizona, I'd like to see the minimum age to defend oneself with a concealed weapon lowered to a minimum of 18, and I'd like to see defenseless victim school & restaurant zones go away altogether. I'd also like to see restaurant carry in Arizona expanded to include all law abiding citizens, not just those with a CCW permit. Arizona is currently the only State in the Union to require us to carry concealed while in such restaurants (although to be fair there are eight States that forbid open carry altogether, some of which do not forbid carry in restaurants). Last but not least, I'd LOVE to get Constitutional Carry here in Arizona.

To Summarize my map, one State, Missouri sets the minimum age at 23 years old to carry concealed, thirty-four States plus DC set the minimum age at 21, eleven States set the minimum age at 18, two States set the minimum age at 16, and two States forbid concealed carry altogether.

Minimum age to carry concealed:

  • 23: MO
  • 21: AL, AZ, AR, CO, CT, DC, FL, GA, HI, ID, KS, KY, LA, MA, MI, MN, MS, NC, NE, NJ, NM, NV, NY, OH, OK, OR, PA, RI, SC, TN, TX, UT, VA, WA, WV
  • 18: CA, DE, IA, IN, MD, ME, MT, ND, SD, VT, WY
  • 16: AK, NH
  • No concealed carry at all: IL, WI
Note: None of this information or map is to be construed as legal advice. You are responsible to verify the laws in your own State.

H/T to the Map Maker Utility, opencarry.org, & handgunlaw.us. Be sure to check out my link to travel tools useful when you need to plan your carry methods while traveling.

32 comments:

Anonymous said...

Great work Dustin. Thank you. And I'm enjoying the freedom to carry while dining. It's been a long time since the wife and I have been out to eat! Yes I'm in AZ.

Dustin said...

Glad to hear it! We're enjoying all the new places to eat out as well. :)

Jay21 said...

Great info as usual Dustin, how scary is it that CA has a "better" age restriction than us in Arizona.

Dustin said...

So very true Jay21, as long as you live in a County with a good Sheriff. If not you have to prove you're protecting enough money to make your life worth protecting, otherwise the Sheriff will deny your application even if you're 18 or older. :)

Lynn said...

CW ages have been based on legal age to drink and the traditional age of majority, which are 21.

18 year olds are often too immature to act wisely in a confrontational situation. Males T levels are really high at that age and wisdom has not been set in.

However I have been pleased at the number of states that do not have a minimum age to hunt. In order to get the next generations we need to get them interested at a young age and train them. Hunting is one avenue. Shooting competitions is another. Boys Scouts do the rifle and shotgun merit badges.

I would like the CCW age to be reduced to 18 also. I think that if our children are let free to live by themselves they should have the means to defend themselves while they are out an about.

Wally said...

ME college carry - not prohibited by statute. State run universities attempted to change the law to give them control, but no preemption allowed.... ME carry is permitted under law but not under State university policy. Risk of expulsion, but no criminal or civil charges are possible.

Dustin said...

Wally - sounds like ME is a GREAT place to send our children to college. They can get their CCW at 18, and defend themselves from rapists & thugs while in school. Much better to risk expulsion than risk being raped or killed. :)

MamaLiberty said...

Ah, then you all escort your children at all times - or have them bubble wrapped in the basement - until they are some magical specific age (which differs by state) and they are at that moment magically and suddenly free, wise and able to defend themselves.

Why do we allow other people to determine when and how our children are ready for self defense or any other responsibility? Especially based on an arbitrary age?

Anonymous said...

Alabama law allows county sheriffs to arbitrarily set restrictions, including age. The former sheriff of Mobile County (2d most populous county) set the minimum age at 23 for at least eight years--I know, I lived there at the time and had to wait until I was 23 (he's in the fed.gov pen now, lol)

Dustin said...

Excellent point MamaLiberty - the government really shouldn't be in the business of setting an arbitrary minimum age. If any minimum is set at all it should be as low as possible. Alaska seems to have the best model - minimum age of 16, but can be less with parental permission.

rightwingprof said...

While you have to be 21 in KY, the state honors Indiana permits for Hoosiers between 18 and 20 years old. There was a case about fifteen years ago and the KY courts found for the State of Indiana and the 19 year old who had been carrying.

Dave said...

Glad to hear another person thinks that 18 year olds should have the same rights as any other adult. In my home state the age is 21 for concealed carry. When I turned 18 a few years back, I began open carrying since you only need to be old enough to legally possess a handgun in this state. I'm a college student myself and I sure wish I could carry concealed. A female student was assaulted last year behind a student union building at night, so crime sure does happen anywhere.

Steve Rothstein said...

A technical correction for Texas: The general rule for a concealed handgun license is a 21 year old minimum age, but it is waived to 18 for veterans or members of the service (active or reserve). Also, since 2007, we have allowed concealed carry in a car without a license and this has no minimum age.

We are getting better on our gun rights here, slowly but surely.

Dustin said...

Rightwingprof: Excellent news :)
Dave: I agree 100%!
Steve: Thanks for the details. I'll leave Texas at 21 on the map since it is applicable in most situations, but it's good to know about the exceptions. Texas could also use a removal of the open carry ban, I was amazed when I first found out Texas bans open carry. :)

Anonymous said...

Cali is 21 not 18

Dustin said...

Anonymous: please cite your references. According to handgunlaw.us, in California the minimum age to obtain a concealed carry permit is 18. If you are aware of something different please let me know so I can notify handgunlaw.us.

Matt said...

Dustin, I'm happy to see that you've done research such as this however, I feel that your article is slightly wrong in the fact some of the states that you mentioned in there are "May Issue States, That is they only issue permits to those they feel have the need to conceal (ie Law Enforcement) the examples I have are CA, NJ, and NY. Have fun trying to get a CCW in any of those states unless you're active military or State/Federal Law Enforcement officer. Effectively those states may as well be put into the same group as Il and WI... again, unless you're a LEO.

Dustin said...

Actually in California you can get a CCW permit if you're lucky enough to live in a County with a good Sheriff. You can also get one in a County with a bad Sheriff if you can document that you are protecting your money or assets, due to the fact that the bad Sheriff will place a higher value on assets than they do life.

New York requires you to be 21 but you can get a permit in that State if you don't live in New York City, although New York City won't recognize it unless you get a NYC stamp of approval on it, for which you have to be rich or a celebrity.

In any case, this map is about minimum age rather than may issue or shall issue, there is already a map for that.

Kaeleb Homes said...

i live in arizona and i called the pima county sheriff's office and talked to a deputy and he told me that i could conceal carry at 18. when i asked him if he was sure, he told me he would call me back. he called back and said he checked the books and told me that 18 was the minimum age for conceal carry.

PavePusher said...

This needs an update, please.

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Anonymous said...

Just a little info, for anyone who comes across this post, who may like info for the current year: http://www.usacarry.com/concealed_carry_permit_information.html

When you click on the state in the map or named link under, it shows "age required," where applies, and "additional info," such as in Alaska.

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Daniel Ramsel said...

I am 18 and have my concealed carry permit in Alabama.

Daniel Ramsel said...

I am 18 and have my concealed carry permit in Alabama.

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