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Basic Carry Laws: Missouri

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Carrying a firearm for self-defense comes with a lot of responsibility. Knowing the laws where you carry is just one important task you must undertake as an armed American. To help with that, we will be providing you with a summary of basic carry laws for several states. Learn about the most important things to know when carrying in Missouri below.

Getting a Permit

Open carry and concealed carry are legal in Missouri for anyone 19 years or older who can legally possess a firearm — with or without a Concealed Carry Permit (CCP). However, local authorities can restrict concealed carry in any building owned, leased or controlled by the county or municipality (and may require a CCP for open carry). The minimum age to obtain a Missouri CCP is 19 years old (18 for members of the military or those honorably discharged). Applicants must also pass a firearms training course. Non-resident permits are only available to persons who are on active military duty or veterans who are at least 18 years old and stationed in Missouri. In terms of reciprocity, since permitless carry is legal in Missouri, anyone 19 years or older who can legally possess a firearm may carry a concealed firearm on his or her person without a license or permit.

There is no permit required to purchase a handgun in Missouri. Private firearms transfers are not subject to a background check requirement, although federal and state purchaser prohibitions, including age restrictions, still apply. There is no registering firearms or waiting period when buying a handgun. The minimum age to purchase or possess handgun ammunition is 18 years old.

Stun guns and Tasers are legal to purchase and possess without a permit. There is no statute prohibiting the purchase or use of pepper spray in Missouri. There are no magazine-capacity restrictions. The possession and sale of “exploding bullets” (bullets or projectiles that explode or detonate on impact due to an independent explosive charge after being shot from a firearm) is prohibited.

Where Can One Carry?

Concealed carry is allowed in a vehicle, without a permit and on restricted premises, so long as the firearm is not removed from the vehicle or brandished while the vehicle is on restricted premises. (Restricted premises are locations where concealed carry is not allowed in the state of Missouri.) There is no duty to inform a law enforcement officer that you’re carrying a concealed firearm unless the officer asks.

Some areas where concealed carry is allowed include:

  • A restaurant or bar (This applies to the restaurant area if it’s not posted and you are not intoxicated. The manager’s consent is required for carry in the bar area.)
  • State/national parks
  • State/national forests
  • Wildlife management areas
  • Roadside rest areas

 Locations where carry is prohibited, even for permit holders, include:

  • Higher-education institutions or elementary- or secondary-school facilities (without the consent of the governing body of the school)
  • Any portion of a building used as a child-care facility
  • Law enforcement agency facilities
  • Within 25 feet of any polling place on any election day
  • Adult or juvenile detention or correctional institutions, prisons or jails
  • Any courthouse solely occupied by the circuit, appellate or supreme court, or any courtrooms, administrative offices, libraries or other rooms of any such court
  • Any meeting of the governing body of a unit of local government or any meeting of the General Assembly or a committee of the General Assembly
  • Areas of an airport to which access is controlled by the inspection of persons and property
  • Buildings or portions of a building owned, leased or controlled by some counties or municipalities
  • Riverboat gambling operations accessible by the public
  • Gated areas of an amusement park
  • Churches or other places of religious worship without the consent of the minister or person or persons representing the religious organization that exercises control over the place of religious worship (except in a vehicle in the parking lot)
  • Any private property whose owner has posted the premises as being off-limits to concealed firearms
  • Sports arenas or stadiums with a seating capacity of 5,000 or more
  • Hospitals accessible by the public
  • Public passenger buses
  • Metro trains
  • Any place where the carrying of firearms is prohibited by federal law

Visit the USCCA Missouri gun laws page now…

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