Half of the states in the U.S. no longer require residents to hold a concealed carry permit to carry firearms in public after Alabama, Indiana, Georgia and Ohio passed laws in 2022 removing permit requirements.
On Monday, Alabama began enforcing its permitless carry law, becoming the 25th state to do so, while Indiana, Georgia and Ohio also passed laws this year allowing residents to concealed carry firearms without a permit. Over the last two years 10 states have moved to permitless carry, including Utah, Montana, Iowa, Tennessee, Arkansas and Texas.
“Unlike states who are doing everything in their power to make it harder for law-abiding citizens, Alabama is reaffirming our commitment to defending our Second Amendment rights,” Republican Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey said in a statement after signing the bill into law. “I have always stood up for the rights of law-abiding gun owners, and I am proud to do that again today.”
— Breaking Digest (@breaking_digest) January 1, 2023
In April 2022, Republican Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp signed Georgia’s concealed carry law into effect and repealed the law that required residents to obtain a license and undergo a fingerprint background check.
“SB 319 makes sure that law abiding Georgians – including our daughters and your family, too – can protect themselves without having to ask permission from state government,” Kemp said in a statement about the law.
“Passing this essential legislation has been a priority for the NRA for many years, and we’re thrilled to celebrate this huge success,” Jason Ouimet, executive director of NRA’s Institute for Legislative Action, said following Georgia’s decision to pass the law.
In March, Republican Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb signed Indiana’s concealed carry law into effect, removing the requirement for gun owners to have a handgun permit to legally carry, conceal or transport a handgun within the state, according to an Indiana state release. The law removes the permit requirement, but notes that there will still be certain criteria, such as felonies or domestic abuse charges, that will block some from carrying.
“HEA 1296, which I’ve signed today, entrusts Hoosiers who can lawfully carry a handgun to responsibly do so within our state,” Holcomb said. “It’s important to note that if a person is prohibited, under federal or state laws, from possessing a firearm before this law goes into effect, that person will still be prohibited.”
For many decades, Vermont was the only state that allowed permitless concealed carry for residents, with Wyoming in 2011 becoming the second state to reduce restrictions on concealed carry laws; in the last 12 years, 23 other states have followed suit.