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HomeAt Home & BeyondConstitutional Carry in Florida begins July 1

Constitutional Carry in Florida begins July 1

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Beginning July 1, Floridians may carry concealed firearms without first obtaining a permit to do it. Co-introduced by Rep. Jeff Holcomb (R-Spring Hill) and signed into law April 3 by Gov. Ron DeSantis, HB 543, or so-called Constitutional Carry legislation, allows a person age 21 years of age or older who is not otherwise prohibited from possessing a firearm, to carry a concealed weapon without first obtaining a government-issued permit. Under the measure, those who do carry a concealed firearm must always carry a valid form of identification.

Florida residents must still pass a mandatory background check before obtaining a firearm. Convicted felons and those designated as “delinquent” are prohibited from obtaining or possessing a firearm. Carrying firearms in any police, sheriff, or highway patrol station; any detention facility, prison, or jail; a polling place; a school campus; a college/university campus; a bar/drinking establishment; a courthouse; or any government meeting remains prohibited.

In addition, Florida continues to disallow open carry or the visible carry of firearms in public except during hunting, fishing, or target shooting activities.

Hernando County Sheriff Al Nienhuis said the new law may result in a reduction of gun-connected crime. “Although it would be nice if potential criminal shooters would be deterred by the permitting process, the truth is that criminals are only deterred by two things – the first is a good person with a gun (and) the second is very stiff penalties for using a gun during the commission of a crime,” Nienhuis said. “Fortunately, because of strong leadership in Tallahassee, Florida has both.”

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As the new law becomes effective, Florida becomes one of 26 states, including Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, and Wyoming that allow Constitutional Carry.

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