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The Indiana Concealed Carry Permit: What It Really Means

The Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms has a long and sometimes tumultuous history. In Indiana, individuals can more fully exercise that right by obtaining an Indiana concealed carry permit. Indiana gun laws balance regulation for public safety with the right to bear arms by setting some basic requirements for carrying a firearm in public.

Consulting an Indiana gun permit lawyer may not be first on your list of things to do when applying for a carry permit, but seemingly small factors can significantly impact your handgun rights. At Keffer Hirschauer LLP, we help clients evaluate their eligibility for a carry permit, deal with factors that could hinder permit rights, and navigate the process as seamlessly as possible.

How an Indiana Concealed Carry Permit Affects Your Gun Rights

Indiana gun laws affect the rights of residents and non-residents alike. Licensure regulates gun use, and Indiana concealed carry laws allow individuals to apply for permission to carry a handgun on their person. In Indiana, a carry license allows residents both open carry, in which a person’s firearm is visible, and concealed carry or carrying a concealed weapon (CCW), in which the firearm is not visible.

Applicants seeking a carry permit for a handgun must satisfy specific statutory requirements. Certain factors can preclude you from obtaining a permit. Here, an experienced Indiana gun permit lawyer explains Indiana CCW laws, how they could impact your gun rights, and the requirements for an Indiana concealed carry permit.

Overview of Indiana Gun Laws

Indiana concealed carry laws allow individuals with the proper permits to carry a visible or concealed handgun in public. Open carry and concealed carry are both permitted in Indiana for residents who hold an Indiana License to Carry a Handgun (LCH) and for non-residents with any valid state license to carry. Indiana honors permits from all states and jurisdictions.

The Indiana LCH allows open carry, concealed carry, and locked-case carry. However, some areas are always off-limits for weapons carry, including school property, school buses, and riverboat casinos. Additionally, private businesses may prohibit handguns on their premises. So, for example, carrying concealed (with a valid permit) in bars or restaurants is not illegal in Indiana unless posted.

There are no licensing requirements for purchasing a handgun in Indiana, although you must be a resident of the state and 21 years old to make the purchase. However, legally carrying a handgun, visibly or concealed, requires a Indiana handgun license.

Individuals with a valid Indiana concealed carry permit can carry in a vehicle. However, Indiana Code § 35-47-2-1 allows anyone in possession of a handgun to transport it for target practice without an Indiana handgun license if the gun is unloaded, inaccessible, and in a locked location. Significantly, an Indiana concealed carry permit does not allow the carry of weapons other than handguns.

Applying for an Indiana Concealed Carry Permit

The Indiana State Police (ISP) accepts and processes only online applications for an Indiana license to carry a handgun. Indiana is a shall-issue state, meaning the ISP must issue permits to applicants who meet the statutory requirements. Additionally, firearms do not need to be registered.

Types of Indiana Handgun Licenses

There are two types of Indiana concealed carry permits: a five-year license and a lifetime license. Most Indiana handgun license applications are processed within 60 days from the date the ISP receives the application.

Prior to July 1, 2020, application fees for a handgun license were as follows:

  • Five-year license: $10 local fee and a $30 state fee (part the local fee and all of the state fee are refunded if an application is denied)
  • Lifetime license: $50 local fee and a $75 state fee (part of the local fee and all of the state fee are refunded if an application is denied)

Indiana House Enrolled Act 1284, passed in 2019, took effect July 1, 2020, eliminating many of the fees associated with applying for a handgun license. Now, there are no local or state fees to apply for a five-year personal protection license, although the lifetime license fees remain unchanged.

In addition, all applicants must also pay a $12.95 fee for IDEMIA electronic fingerprinting services and a processing fee based on the license and whether the application is for a renewal or a duplicate license.

Eligibility Requirements

To obtain an Indiana Handgun License, applicants must meet all of the following requirements:

  • Age 18 or older
  • United States citizen or otherwise deemed legally allowed to carry in the United States without being a resident
  • Indiana resident or have a regular place of business or employment in the state
  • Provide fingerprints
  • Fill out the online application that includes personal information such as height, weight, race, hair, and eye color

Applicants also need to provide the reason for carrying (personal protection or target shooting), and there is no requirement for firearms training.In most cases, anyone deployed with the military will have to wait to return to Indiana to get fingerprinted and visit the local law enforcement agency for approval. Some local law enforcement agencies might be able to accommodate those on leave.

Ineligibility for an Indiana Concealed Carry Permit

Individuals with certain backgrounds are not eligible for an Indiana concealed carry permit. An individual with a record of any of the following would not be issued a handgun license in Indiana:

  • A conviction for resisting law enforcement within five years before applying for a license or permit
  • A conviction for a crime for which the individual could have been sentenced to more than one year
  • A conviction for a crime of domestic violence (unless a court has restored the individual’s right to possess a firearm, such as through an expungement proceeding
  • A court order prohibiting the individual from possessing a handgun
  • A record of being an alcohol or drug abuser
  • Documented evidence from which one could reasonably believe that the individual has a propensity for violent or emotionally unstable conduct
  • The application contains material and false statement of fact
  • A conviction for any crime involving an inability to handle a handgun safely
  • A previous handgun license that was suspended (unless it has since been reinstated)
  • An adjudication as a delinquent child for an act that would be a felony if committed by an adult, if the individual is younger than 23 years of age
  • An involuntary commitment, other than a temporary commitment for observation or evaluation, to a mental institution by a court, board, commission, or other lawful authority
  • An arrest for a Class A or Class B felony committed before July 1, 2014
  • An arrest for a Level 1, Level 2, Level 3, or Level 4 felony committed after June 30, 2014
  • An arrest for any other felony that was committed while armed with a deadly weapon or that involved the use of violence

An Indiana carry permit may be issued if the disqualifying criterion pertains to an arrest but the individual was acquitted of the offense charged or the charges were dismissed.

Renewing an Indiana Carry License

Licensed individuals can renew an Indiana handgun license online as early as 365 days before the expiration date on the license. An expired license is no longer valid, but the individual can still renew the permit. When the ISP receives a renewal application within 30 days of the expiration date, the license will automatically be extended until the application has been approved or denied.

Prior to 2020, applicants had the option of a four-year license or a lifetime license. The renewal fee for a four-year license was a $10 local fee and a $30 state fee, with $5 of the local fee and the entire state fee would be refunded if no license were issued. The renewal fee for a lifetime license was a $40 local fee and a $60 state fee with a current valid license, with $30 of the local fee and the entire state fee refunded if no license were issued.

Effective July 1, 2020, there is no fee to renew a five-year personal protection license. The renewal of a lifetime license incurs the following fees:

  • If the current license has expired, a $50 local fee ($30 refundable if the renewal application is denied) and a $75 state fee
  • If the current license is still valid, a $40 local fee ($30 refundable if the renewal application is denied) and a $60 state fee

Again, all applicants must pay the fingerprinting fee and a state processing fee.

Questions? Contact Keffer Hirschauer LLP!

If you have legal questions about applying for a handgun license, speak with an Indiana gun permit lawyer immediately. The background check portion of the application will consider important factors, such as your criminal record and reasons for obtaining a license. Keffer Hirschauer LLP helps clients navigate Indiana gun laws and the Indiana concealed carry permit application process swiftly, catching and dealing with obstacles early in the process. For a free consultation, call us at (317) 751-7186 or complete our online contact form.

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