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 Delaware, the First State, below.

Permitting in Delaware

Open carry is legal in Delaware for anyone who is older than 18 years of age who can legally possess a firearm. Concealed carry is legal for residents with a Delaware Concealed Deadly Weapon License (CDWL) and non-residents with a concealed carry permit from a state that Delaware honors. CDWLs are primarily issued to residents. An approved firearms training course that includes live-fire shooting exercises is required to obtain a CDWL. The minimum age is 18.

Delaware is unique, as license applicants must obtain five references from residents of their counties and then must publish their applications in a local newspaper 10 days before filing their applications. An application is reviewed by the attorney general’s office and a court. In terms of reciprocity, Delaware recognizes permits issued by other states that honor Delaware licenses to carry concealed deadly weapons and afford a reasonably similar degree of protection as is provided by licensure in Delaware.

Other Self-Defense Tools

Stun guns and Tasers are legal to purchase and possess without a permit in most of the state, although they are banned in several counties. These can be carried concealed with a CDWL or a permit from a state that Delaware honors. Pepper spray can be carried without a permit.

Purchasing a Firearm

There is no permit required to purchase firearms, nor is firearms registration required in the state of Delaware. Private-party transfers of firearms to persons other than family members must be conducted through a licensed dealer, who is required by federal law to conduct background checks and keep records of the sales. However, a transfer to a person who possesses a valid Delaware Concealed Deadly Weapon License (CDWL) is exempt from this requirement. There is no state-imposed waiting period for purchases.

There are no state laws restricting the use of any type of ammunition. However, the city of Wilmington prohibits armor-piercing ammunition. In addition, there are no magazine-capacity restrictions for handguns. There is no duty to inform a police officer that you’re carrying a concealed firearm in Delaware.

Where Can One Carry in Delaware?

Anyone with a Delaware CDWL or a permit from a state that Delaware honors can concealed carry in a vehicle. Without a permit, a firearm must be transported in plain sight — such as on the dash or seat — but not in the glove box or any place it cannot be seen.

Locations where a concealed handgun may be carried include:

  • Restaurants that serve alcohol, provided you are not under the influence (unless posted)
  • State/national parks, state/national forests and WMAs (except for areas that are posted)
  • Roadside rest areas

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

  • Any building, structure, athletic field, sports stadium, motor vehicle or real property owned, operated, leased or rented by any public or private elementary, secondary or vocational-technical school, or any college or university, as well as within 1,000 feet thereof
  • Any public or private recreation center, athletic field or sports stadium
  • Prisons and other detention facilities
  • Any place where the carrying of firearms is prohibited by federal law or state law or regulation

Visit the USCCA Delaware gun laws page now…