Whether you are a Maryland resident or a visitor, it is important to Understanding Maryland Gun Laws. This is to protect yourself, your family and your community.
Gun laws in Maryland are aimed at preventing the possession and transportation of firearms by people who are prohibited from doing so. They also regulate the types of guns that can be purchased.
Permit to Carry
Maryland residents who want to carry a handgun in public must apply for and be approved by the state to obtain a permit. The state also requires citizens to complete firearms training and pass a background check before receiving their concealed carry license.
Applicants must be at least 21 years old and show a good and substantial reason to possess a firearm. WCHPs must be renewed every three years.
To obtain a Maryland WCHP, applicants must attend a state-approved 16-hour firearms training course that includes live-fire instruction and submit proof of certification. There are exemptions for law enforcement officers, qualified handgun instructors registered with the Maryland State Police and active military personnel.
Moreover, people are not allowed to carry their guns inside public schools or in their vehicles. In addition, it is illegal to carry a gun in a restaurant unless there is a sign that says “No Guns.”
Requirements for Buying a Handgun
If you are a gun owner, it is important that you understand Maryland’s gun laws. They are highly regulated and can have serious consequences for those who violate them.
Purchasing a handgun requires several steps. First, you need to have your fingerprints taken at a Maryland Fingerprint Processing Center. Then, you need to submit these digital fingerprints to the Maryland State Police.
After submitting your application, you must wait a week before taking possession of the gun. During this time, the state police will do ballistic fingerprinting on your new handgun.
Once your application is approved, you can then take it home. The waiting period can vary depending on the number of firearms purchases statewide.
You can also transfer a regulated gun to a family member as long as they are at least 21 years old and possess a valid HQL card. However, this process can be more complicated.
Requirements for Transporting a Firearm
When you transport a firearm in Maryland, there are certain requirements that you must meet. These include that the weapon is unloaded, stored in a case, and that it is stored separate from ammunition.
In addition, it is illegal to carry a handgun or a loaded magazine in your vehicle. This is especially true if the firearm is in your vehicle’s driver’s compartment or within your immediate control.
This is why it is important to understand the law before you transport your gun. If you do not, you may end up charged with an offense that could be very serious. An experienced gun lawyer can help you know all of your rights and avoid any charges.
Penalties for Illegal Carry
In Maryland, it is illegal to carry a gun without a license. This includes handguns, long guns, and antique firearms.
The penalty for an unlawful carry offense varies depending on the type of weapon, the offense, and your criminal history. In some cases, penalties are as low as 30 days and in others they can be as high as three years.
It is also illegal to carry a weapon in a school zone or other area where students are present. This is a felony under the Maryland Public Safety Code.
If you are charged with a gun crime, it is important to seek an experienced Maryland attorney. Having the right lawyer will help you understand your rights and options as well as how to avoid a prison sentence.