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Colorado Concealed Carry Reciprocity Map & Gun Laws

Updated: 04/26/2019
Carry allowed with my Colorado permit?
Yes, With Restrictions
Yes, Permitless Carry
Yes, Selected State

Summary of Colorado Gun Laws

Colorado is a shall-issue state where concealed carry permits are issued to county residents by local sheriff’s offices.

No purchase permits or firearms registration are required for handguns. For private-party transfers of firearms, the seller must request that a licensed dealer perform a background check of the buyer and must get approval of the transfer from the Colorado Bureau of Investigation.

Open carry is legal in Colorado except in Denver county and other posted areas. The minimum age is 18 years old. Local governments may enact regulations prohibiting open carrying of firearms in a building or specific area within the local government’s jurisdiction, as long as signs are posted to that effect.

Concealed carry is legal in Colorado for residents with a Colorado permit to carry a concealed weapon (CCW) and non-residents of states with which Colorado has reciprocity agreements. CCW permits can be issued to any resident at least 21 years old and not prohibited by law from possessing a firearm. Concealed carry permits require a firearms training course that has been state-approved. Colorado doesn’t issue non-resident permits with the exception of members of the military permanently stationed in Colorado and their immediate family members that live in the state. In terms of reciprocity, Colorado will only honor resident CCW licenses from states with which it has a reciprocity agreement.

Colorado is a Castle Doctrine state. It grants its citizens the “right to expect absolute safety within their own homes.” A person is justified in using physical force on another person in order to defend himself or herself or a third person from what he or she reasonably believes to be the use or imminent use of unlawful physical force by that other person, and he or she may use a degree of force which he or she reasonably believes to be necessary for that purpose. Any person who uses a gun in self-defense in accordance with the law has immunity from criminal or civil law. There is no duty to retreat, and the law applies at a person's residence or in another dwelling. There is a duty to retreat outside a person's residence. You may not legally use deadly force in Colorado in order to protect any other type of property.

Permits Issued
State Population
Permit Percentage
States Honored
Reciprocating States
Minimum Age to CC

Colorado Gun Laws at a Glance

Open Carry/ Concealed Carry Basics

Constitutional Carry?

Does Colorado allow constitutional carry?


Open Carry Permitted?

Is open carry permitted in Colorado?

Yes, without a permit, except in Denver County and other posted areas. Any person who is at least 18 years old and legally entitled to carry a firearm is allowed to carry.

[Colo. Rev. Stat. § 29-11.7-104]
Gun Permit Licensure?

If Colorado requires a permit to carry a concealed firearm, how are those permits issued?

Shall Issue.

Minimum Age for Concealed Carry?

What is the minimum age in Colorado to get a concealed carry permit?


Weapons Other Than Handguns Allowed?

Can you conceal carry weapons other than handguns in Colorado with a concealed carry permit (or under permitless carry if applicable)?

Non-Resident Permitting?

Does Colorado issue concealed carry permits to non-residents?

Yes, but only for members of the military permanently stationed in Colorado and their immediate families.

Public Access to Concealed Carry Registry?

Does Colorado allow the public to access concealed carry registry information through public records law?


Carry Locations

Carry in Vehicle?

Can you carry a concealed firearm in a vehicle in Colorado?

Yes, without a permit.

[Colo. Rev. Stat. § 18-12-204(3)(a)]
Carry at Roadside Rest Areas?

Can you carry a concealed firearm at roadside rest areas in Colorado?


Carry in State/National Parks, State/National Forests and Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs)?

Can you carry a concealed firearm in state/national parks, state/national forests and Wildlife Management Areas in Colorado?

Carry in Restaurants That Serve Alcohol?

Can you carry a firearm in restaurants that serve alcohol in Colorado?

Yes, unless posted, and provided you are not under the influence.

[Colo. Rev. Stat. § 18-12-106(1)(d)]
Store in a Vehicle in an Employee Parking Lot?

Does Colorado have laws relating to storing firearms in private vehicles in an employee parking lot?

Not addressed in Colorado state law.

Additional Related State Laws

Must Notify Officer You're Carrying?

Are you required to notify a police officer that you're carrying a concealed firearm in Colorado?

Magazine Limits for Handguns?

Does Colorado have magazine capacity restrictions for handguns?

15 rounds

It is illegal to sell, transfer or possess a "high capacity" magazine (defined as >15 rounds for firearms other than shotguns) unless you owned the large-capacity magazine on July 1, 2013 and maintained continuous possession of the large-capacity magazine. Large-capacity magazines capable of operating only with .22 caliber rimfire ammunition and tubular magazines that are contained in lever-action firearms are exempt. The City of Boulder has Ordinance 5-8-2 which makes  any ammunition feeding device with the capacity to accept more than 10 rounds illegal.

[Colo. Rev. Stat. § 18-12-302]
Ammunition Restrictions?

Does Colorado have ammunition restrictions?

There are no state laws, however, the City of Aurora prohibits the sale or possession of Teflon-coated or treated ammunition.

"No Weapons Allowed" Signs Enforced?

Are "No Weapons Allowed" signs enforced in Colorado? If yes, violating the sign would be considered to be a crime. If no, violating the sign would not be considered a criminal offense.



Does Colorado have [preemption laws]( related to concealed carry (i.e. Does state law supersede local laws regarding the possession of handguns)?

Partial. Local governments may prohibit the open carrying of a firearm in a building or specific area within the local government’s jurisdiction. [Colo. Rev. Stat. § 29-11.7-104
A local government may not enact an ordinance, regulation or other law that prohibits the sale, purchase or possession of a firearm that a person may lawfully sell, purchase or possess under state or federal law. [Colo. Rev. Stat. § 29-11.7-103]
A local government may not restrict a person’s ability to travel with a weapon in a private automobile or other private means of conveyance. [Colo. Rev. Stat. § 18-12-105.6(2)(a)]

Red Flag Law?

Does Colorado have a red flag law?

No. However, an Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO) law was passed on April 12, 2019. The law will go into effect on January 1, 2020.  It will allow Law Enforcement or a family member to petition the Court to temporarily remove someone’s guns for up to a year.

[House Bill 19-1177]

The right of no person to keep and bear arms in defense of his home, person and property, or in aid of the civil power when thereto legally summoned, shall be called in question; but nothing herein contained shall be construed to justify the practice of carrying concealed weapons.  "
Article II, Section 13

Colorado Concealed Carry Reciprocity With Other States

Which states' permits does Colorado honor?

Alabama (at least 21 years old)
Arizona (resident permits only)
Arkansas (resident permits only)
Delaware (resident permits only and at least 21 years old)
Florida (resident permits only and handguns only)
Idaho (resident permits only)
Indiana (resident permits only and at least 21 years old)
Iowa (resident permits only)
Kansas (resident permits only)
Kentucky (resident permits only)
Louisiana (resident permits only)
Michigan (resident permits only)
Mississippi (resident permits only)
Missouri (at least 21 years old)
Montana (at least 21 years old)
New Hampshire (resident permits only and at least 21 years old)
New Mexico (resident permits only)
North Carolina (resident permits only)
North Dakota (resident permits only and at least 21 years old)
Ohio (resident permits only)
Oklahoma (resident permits only)
Pennsylvania (resident permits only)
South Dakota (resident permits only and least 21 years old)
Tennessee (resident permits only)
Texas (resident permits only)
Utah (resident permits only)
Virginia (resident permits only)
West Virginia (resident permits only)
Wisconsin (resident permits only)

The state of Colorado recognizes the validity of any permit issued to a resident of that state (C.R.S 18-12-213). Colorado does not recognize permits issued in the District of Columbia.

Other States' Reciprocity With Colorado

Which states honor permits from Colorado?

Note: Firearms must be carried in accordance with the laws of the state you are visiting. Be sure to check the laws of the other state before traveling there with your firearms.

States That Have Restricted Reciprocity with Colorado

Which states honor permits from Colorado with restrictions?

Florida (resident permits only)
Michigan (resident permits only)
Pennsylvania (resident permits only)

Permitless Carry States

Anyone who can legally possess a firearm may carry it concealed in permitless carry states without a permit/license. Check each state’s page for more information and any restrictions that may apply.

Alaska (if at least 21 years old)
Arizona (if at least 21 years old)
Arkansas (if at least 21 years old)
Kansas (if at least 21 years old)
Maine (if at least 21 years old)
Mississippi (if at least 21 years old)
Missouri (if at least 19 years old)
New Hampshire (if at least 18 years old)
Vermont (if at least 18 years old)
West Virginia (if at least 21 years old)

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Colorado Concealed Carry Permit Information


An applicant must:

  • Be at least 21 years of age;
  • Be a legal resident of Colorado;
  • Not have been convicted of perjury;
  • Not chronically and habitually use alcoholic beverages;
  • Not be an unlawful user of or addicted to a controlled substance;
  • Not be subject to a protection order;
  • Demonstrate competence with a handgun; and
  • Meet federal law requirements.

Initial Permit $52 (The sheriff can charge an additional fee up to $100.)

Permit Renewal may vary from $50 to $63.

Valid For:

5 years

Processing Time:

90 days


CHP Information Packet

City of Denver Permit Info and application page

Link to application
Non-Resident Concealed Carry Permits:

Yes, but only for members of the military permanently stationed in Colorado and members of the person's immediate family living in Colorado.

Name/Address Changes:

Within 30 days after a permittee changes the address specified on his or her permit or 3 business days after his or her permit is lost, stolen or destroyed, the permittee shall notify the issuing Sheriff of the change of address or permit loss, theft, or destruction using the address change/permit lost or destroyed form. Failure to notify the Sheriff is a Class 1 Petty Offense. 

Lost/Stolen Permits:

If a permit is stolen or lost it becomes invalid and the issuing sheriff must be notified within 3 business days. Download and complete the permit lost or destroyed form and have it notarized.

Colorado Concealed Carry Permit Application Process

How to Apply for a Colorado Concealed Carry Permit

Step 1:

Complete a firearms training course.

Step 2:

Download the application or pick up from your local sheriff’s office.

Step 3:

Take your completed, unsigned application to yor local sheriff's office. You will need the following documents:

  • Training certificate;
  • Drivers license or state ID;
  • Passport-style photo taken within the last thirty days; and
  • Proof of residency.

You will be fingerprinted.

Step 4:

You will be notified by mail if your application has been approved.

Firearms Training Requirements in Colorado

Applicants for a Colorado permit to carry a concealed handgun must demonstrate competence with a handgun by submitting evidence of completion of one of the following:

The applicant shall submit the original training certificate or a photocopy thereof that includes the original signature of the class instructor. The training cannot be through an online course, but must be attended in person at a physical location with a certified instructor.

No additional training is required for permit renewals.

Find A USCCA class near you

Colorado Concealed Carry Permit Renewal Process

How to Renew a Colorado Concealed Carry Permit

Step 1:

Within 120 days prior to expiration of a permit, the permittee may obtain a renewal form from the county sheriff’s office where you reside, own property or own a business. A permittee who fails to file a renewal form on or before the permit expiration date and up to 60 days after the expiration date, may renew the permit by paying a late fee of $15.00 in addition to the renewal fees. No permit shall be renewed 6 months or more after its expiration date and the permit shall be deemed permanently expired. A person whose permit has permanently expired may reapply by submitting a new application and the required fees. 

Complete a firearms training course, if required.

Step 2:

Download the application or pick up from your local sheriff’s office.   

Step 3:

Submit a completed renewal form, photo ID, proof of residency (i.e., lease agreement, mortgage statement, copy of tax statement), a notarized affidavit stating that the permittee remains qualified pursuant to the criteria specified and renewal fee. 

Step 4:

You will be notified by mail if your application has been approved.

Law Enforcement Officers (LEO)/Retired LEOs

Law enforcement officers (LEOs) and Retired LEOs (RLEOs) may choose to carry under the Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act (LEOSA), often referred to as HR 218. Under 18 U.S. Code §§ 926B & 926C, qualified LEOs and qualified retired LEOs, or those separated from service in good standing, can carry a concealed firearm in any jurisdiction in the United States, regardless of state or local laws, with some exceptions. For details check out our Federal Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act (LEOSA) page.

Colorado has State Standards for Departments to provide photo IDs to RLEOs. They require a complete background check and fees may be charged.

Col. Rev. Stat. § 24-33.5-112 Dept of Public Safety State law enforcement agencies to provide identification cards to retired peace officers upon request
Col. Rev. Stat. § 24-31-109 Attorney general to provide identification cards to retired peace officers upon request
Col. Rev. Stat. § 24-35-119 Dept of Revenue Law enforcement agencies of the department to provide identification cards to retired peace officers upon request
Col. Rev. Stat. § 31-30-106 Police to provide identification cards to retired peace officers upon request
Col. Rev. Stat. § 23-5-142 Postsecondary Education State Universities and Colleges Institution law enforcement agencies to provide identification cards to retired peace officers upon request
Col. Rev. Stat. § 17-1-115.2 Correctional law enforcement agencies to provide identification cards to retired peace officers upon request

Per the CO DPS State Patrol website, the Colorado State Patrol Academy Range can only provide firearms qualification service to retired Colorado State Patrol Sworn Officers. Anyone other than retired Colorado State Patrol Sworn officers should contact their Local County Sheriff's Department.


CO DPS Retired Commissioned Officers Firearms Training Program Application (CSP 31)
CO DPS Colorado State Patrol Retired Officers Medical Release (CSP 31B)
County Sheriff's of Colorado Separated LEOSA Carry Application
County Sheriff's of Colorado LEOSA Carry Application

Denver Police LEOSA Guidelines

Colorado Location Restrictions

Where Can I Carry a Concealed Firearm in Colorado?

  • Carry in restaurants that serve alcohol? Yes.
  • Carry in my vehicle without a permit/license? Yes.
  • Carry in roadside rest areas? Yes.
  • Carry in state/national parks, state/national forests and WMAs? Yes.
  • Carry on public transportation? Yes, with a permit.
  • Carry in places of worship? There is no state statute prohibiting concealed carry in places of worship. However, since places of worship are private property, they may post signs prohibiting firearms.
Where Can't I Carry a Concealed Firearm in Colorado?

Places off-limits even with a permit/license

  • Public K-12 school property, (CCW permitholders may have handguns inside of vehicles and if the permittee is not in the vehicle, the handgun must be in a compartment within the vehicle and the vehicle locked);
  • Public buildings with fixed security checkpoints such as courthouses;
  • Secure areas of airports;
  • On a snowmobile; and
  • Any place where the carrying of firearms is prohibited by federal law or state law or regulation.

FAQ: Colorado Concealed Carry Questions

Do firearms need to be registered in Colorado?


Is a permit required to purchase a gun in Colorado?


Are background checks required for private gun sales in Colorado?


Is there a waiting period after purchasing a firearm in Colorado?

No, although the background check turnaround times vary.

What are the knife laws in Colorado?

In Colorado, you can own almost any knife as long as it is not a ballistic knife. All legal knives can be carried in the open. It is illegal to carry concealed a knife that is larger than 3.5 inches unless it is a fishing or hunting knife. Any knife with a blade shorter than 3.5 inches can be carried openly or concealed. Local authorities may also have laws, such as in Boulder County where it is illegal to carry any concealed knife.

What are the laws regarding carrying a firearm while using alcohol or prescription medication in CO?

Not while under the influence, per Colo. Rev. Stat. § 18-12-106(1)(d).
As a responsibly armed American, regardless of the laws in your state, it is unwise to carry while under the influence of any substance that could impair your judgement, slow your reaction times or impact your decision-making abilities. Any decision you make while carrying a firearm could have life-altering consequences.

Related Information & Links for Colorado Gun Laws

Colorado Gun Laws Updates:

Date Details

Added permit renewal and name/address change info


Links checked


Added new ERPO Law and effective date to the At A Glance table


Added info on state implementation of Law Enforcement Officer Safety Act (LEOSA)


Added pages for Federal Gun Laws, Traveling with Firearms & Terminology


Added ammunition restrictions to At A Glance table


Added red flag law info to At A Glance table


Added church info to location restrictions section


Links checked


Added FAQ about alcohol or prescription medication


Mag limit added to At A Glance table


Added parking lot info to At A Glance table


Added initial CCW law and reciprocity information for Colorado

Did We Miss Something?

Here at the USCCA, it is our mission to provide responsible gun owners with the tools they need to be educated, trained and legally protected at all times. Our team is constantly working to provide you with the most up-to-date and comprehensive list of self-defense laws available for every state.

f you have any questions that you don’t see answered here — let us know! Just email and we will be sure to get your question resolved. Your feedback matters to us, and we appreciate you helping to make this page the best possible resource for responsible gun owners!

Permit numbers were obtained from the Crime Prevention Resource Center’s publication entitled, "Concealed Carry Permit Holders Across the United States: 2018.” Numbers include resident and non-resident permits for those states that issue both.

The information contained on this website is provided as a service to USCCA, Inc. Members and the concealed carry community, and does not constitute legal advice. Although we attempt to address all areas of concealed carry laws in all states, we make no claims, representations, warranties, promises or guarantees as to the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information disclosed. Legal advice must always be tailored to the individual facts and circumstances of each individual case. Laws are constantly changing, and as such, nothing contained on this website should be used as a substitute for the advice of a lawyer.

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