The term “open carry” has been loosely thrown around as new legislation has been debated and ultimately passed regarding openly carrying handguns. It is important to remember that “open carry” isn’t a free-for-all regarding handguns.
Fort Worth, Texas (PRWEB) September 21, 2015
With the passage of House Bill 910, which goes into effect on January 1, 2016, Texans in possession of a concealed carry license (CHL) will be able to openly carry a holstered handgun.
“Texans love their guns and many folks in Texas are excited about the new open carry laws that were passed this year. Some people imagine a wild west where handguns are worn on the hips of everyone in town. Others are terrified that gun-related incidents will increase. Well, the new open carry laws do not come without their rules,” said the Barnett Howard & Williams PLLC team.
Although the term “open carry” seems straightforward, there are many parts of the law that citizens need to be aware of.
Only CHL holders can take advantage of the new law. According to Barnett Howard & Williams PLLC, there are 14 main qualifiers that go along with the CHL requirement. For instance, CHL holders who wish to open carry must be at least 21 years old, must not have been charged with a felony or certain misdemeanors, must not be chemically dependent, must not be delinquent in child support payments, and must not be under a restraining order.
As far as the types of firearms that can be carried under the new laws, the Barnett Howard & Williams PLLC team said, “Shotguns can be openly carried now in addition to holstered handguns as long as a person is in possession of a license granted under Subchapter H, Chapter 411 of the Texas Government Code.”
Handguns must be carried in a shoulder or belt style holster, and they cannot be carried on the premises of schools, educational institutions, election sites during voting, government or court offices, racetracks, and airports. Handguns cannot be carried within 1,000 feet of an execution site on the day of an execution. Also, handguns cannot be carried onto any premise that displays signage indicating that firearms are not allowed.
According to Luke Williams, a criminal defense attorney with Barnett Howard & Williams PLLC, “The term 'open carry' has been loosely thrown around as new legislation has been debated and ultimately passed regarding openly carrying handguns. It is important to remember that 'open carry' isn’t a free-for-all regarding handguns. 'Open Carry' is still highly regulated and a person considering openly carrying a handgun should be familiar with all of these new laws and regulations, so that they do not end up needing our services.”
More information on Texas' new Open Carry law can be found at http://www.bhwlawfirm.com/blog/2015/09/open-carry-texas.shtml.
About Luke Williams:
Luke Williams is a partner in the criminal defense law firm Barnett Howard & Williams PLLC in Fort Worth, Texas. He has tried over 100 criminal cases to Texas juries across the state. He is recognized as a Top Attorney by Fort Worth Magazine and a Super Lawyer - Rising Star by Texas Monthly.
See the legislative history and full text of HB 910 from Texas Legislature Online (published June 2015): http://www.legis.state.tx.us/BillLookup/History.aspx?LegSess=84R&Bill=HB910