I can legally carry a concealed firearm in Ohio, but can I wear a COVID 19 protective mask while carrying concealed?
Based on our most recent research, the USCCA has identified just two states with statutes against carrying a concealed firearm while wearing a mask: California and Illinois (although sheriffs and county prosecutors in Illinois have made statements indicating that wearing a mask to protect others from COVID-19 while carrying a gun isn’t illegal as long as the wearer isn’t wearing the mask while committing a crime). Due to the large number of inquiries, some states have publicly addressed their laws regarding wearing masks. Some state laws actually refer to individuals concealing their identity with the intention to commit illegal acts or to specifically hide their identity, and do not address wearing a mask while legally carrying a concealed firearm. That includes Geauga County Sheriff Scott Hildenbrand who has indicated that it is NOT ILLEGAL for a valid CCW holder to carry your weapon while wearing a mask.The following statute was identified in Ohio, although it makes no mention of concealed carry.
Health Safety Morals § 3761.12. No person shall unite with two or more others to commit a misdemeanor while wearing white caps, masks, or other disguise.
If you have further questions, we recommend that you reach out to your local law enforcement office, or district attorney.
Ohio is a shall-issue state with concealed weapons permits issued at the county level by the county sheriff in the applicant’s county of residence.
There is no permit, background check or firearms registration required when buying a handgun from a private individual.
Open carry is legal in Ohio without a permit except in vehicles or in businesses that sell alcohol. Since open carry is not addressed in state statutes, the Federal minimum age for possession of a handgun of 18 years old applies.
Concealed carry is legal for residents with an Ohio Concealed Handgun License (CHL) and non-residents with a valid state license/permit. Residents 21 years of age and older can obtain a CHL. They must have completed eight hours of firearms training and meet other criteria to qualify. Current and former servicemen and women are able to obtain an Ohio CHL without paying the fee or going through a concealed carry class. In addition, active duty military with a valid military identification card and documentation of successful firearms training that meets or exceeds that required in Ohio do not need to obtain an Ohio license. Non-residents can obtain a CHL if they work in Ohio. In terms of reciprocity, Ohio will honor permits issued by any state or jurisdiction. Executive Order 2020-01D was declared in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Section 11(E) addresses Ohio Concealed Handgun Licenses. License holders whose CHL expired on or after March 9, 2020, will be considered to have a valid license, to the sooner of either ninety days or December 1, 2020, with the ninety-day extension period commencing on that date of scheduled expiration. In addition, the law regarding permit renewals has been changed due to the coronavirus pandemic, Ohioans can now renew a concealed carry permit at any sheriff’s office in the state.
A person has no duty to retreat before using force in self-defense, defense of another or defense of the residence. There is also no duty to retreat in a person’s vehicle or immediate family member’s vehicle.
“Residence” means a dwelling in which a person resides, temporarily, permanently or visiting as a guest.
“Vehicle” is defined as a conveyance designed to transport people or property, whether motorized or not.
Immunity from Civil Liability As of March 28, 2019, HB 228 is in effect, and Ohio’s ‘Castle Laws’ presume that the homeowner/vehicle owner has acted in defense of another or self-defense when applying deadly force to someone who has intruded into their home or vehicle. Therefore, if the homeowner is charged, the prosecution would have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused person did not use the force in self-defense, defense of another or defense of that person’s residence, as the case may be.
Can you carry a concealed handgun in a vehicle in Ohio?
Yes, with a valid concealed carry permit. Without a permit, a handgun is required to be unloaded and carried in a compartment that can be reached only by leaving the vehicle or in plain sight and secured in a rack or holder made for the purpose.
Can you carry a concealed firearm at roadside rest areas in Ohio?
Yes. Ohio allows concealed carry at roadside rest areas with a valid concealed carry permit.
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 Ohio?
Yes, with a valid concealed carry permit, although the buildings are off-limits. However, it is illegal to discharge a concealed firearm in state parks. See the National Parks webpage for links to each Park in Ohio.
Carry in Bars/Restaurants That Serve Alcohol?
Can you carry a firearm in bars and restaurants that serve alcohol in Ohio?
Yes, with a valid concealed carry permit, unless posted and provided no alcohol is consumed.
Can you carry or possess a firearm on hotel property in Ohio?
Any owner of private property may post a sign in a conspicuous location on that land or on those premises prohibiting persons from carrying firearms or concealed firearms on or onto that land or those premises. The individual hotel should be contacted to inquire about it's concealed carry policy. See theHandguns at Hotels page for additional information.
Does Ohio have laws relating to storing firearms in private vehicles in an employee parking lot?
A business entity, property owner, or public or private employer may not establish, maintain, or enforce a policy or rule that prohibits a person who has been issued a valid concealed handgun license from transporting or storing a firearm or ammunition when both of the following conditions are met:
(1) Each firearm and all of the ammunition remains inside the person's privately owned motor vehicle while the person is physically present inside the motor vehicle, or each firearm and all of the ammunition is locked within the trunk, glove box, or other enclosed compartment or container within or on the person's privately owned motor vehicle;
(2) The vehicle is in a location where it is otherwise permitted to be.
Does Ohio have magazine capacity restrictions for handguns?
No. There is no maximum handgun magazine capacity restriction in Ohio.
Does Ohio have ammunition restrictions?
No. Ohio has no restrictions on handgun ammo.
"No Weapons Allowed" Signs Enforced?
Are "No Weapons Allowed" signs enforced in Ohio? If yes, violating the sign would be considered to be a crime. If no, violating the sign would not be considered a criminal offense.
Yes. The owner or person in control of private land or premises, and a private person leasing land or premises owned by the state, the United States, or a political subdivision of the state, may post a sign in a conspicuous location on that land or on those premises prohibiting persons from carrying firearms on or onto that land or those premises. A person who knowingly violates a posted prohibition of that nature is guilty of criminal trespass and is guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree. If a person knowingly violates a posted prohibition in a parking lot or other parking facility, the person is subject only to a civil cause of action for trespass based on the violation.
If a person knowingly violates a posted prohibition at a child day care center or a family day care home, (unless the person is a licensee who resides in the family day care home), the person is guilty of aggravated trespass.
For locations designated as off-limits even with a valid permit/license, per Sec. 2923.1212, posted signs must contain a statement in substantially the following form: "Unless otherwise authorized by law, pursuant to the Ohio Revised Code, no person shall knowingly possess, have under the person's control, convey, or attempt to convey a deadly weapon or dangerous ordnance onto these premises."
Does Ohio have preemption laws related to concealed carry (i.e. Does state law supersede local laws regarding the possession of handguns)?
Yes. The authority to regulate firearms is reserved to the state, except municipalities may restrict the discharge of firearms. HB 228 went into effect on December 28, 2019 allowing anyone adversely affected by a local ordinance in conflict with state firearms laws to bring a civil suit against the locality.
No. However, no person shall knowingly cause another to believe that the offender will cause serious physical harm to the person or property of the other person, the other person's unborn, or a member of the other person's immediate family. In addition to any other basis, the other person's belief may be based on words or conduct of the offender that are directed at or identify a corporation, association or other organization that employs the other person or to which the other person belongs.
No person, while under the influence of sudden passion or in a sudden fit of rage, either of which is brought about by serious provocation by the victim that is reasonably sufficient to incite the person into using deadly force, shall knowingly cause or attempt to cause physical harm to another or to another’s unborn by means of a deadly weapon.
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.
Is a permit required to purchase a handgun in Ohio?
No. A permit is not required when purchasing a handgun in Ohio.
Background Checks for Private Gun Sales?
Are background checks required for private gun sales in Ohio?
No. Private firearms transfers are not subject to a background check requirement, although federal and state purchaser prohibitions, including age restrictions, still apply. It is recommended that you retain any sales receipts to prove ownership of the gun.
Ohio Permit Exempts from Background Check?
Does my current Ohio concealed carry permit exempt me from needing a background check when I purchase a firearm?
Yes. Concealed weapons permits issued on or after March 23, 2015, qualify.
Is there a waiting period after purchasing a handgun in Ohio?
No. Ohio has no waiting period for handgun purchases.
Do handguns need to be registered in Ohio?
No. Ohio does not require handguns to be registered.
Minimum Age to Possess and Transport?
What is the minimum age to possess and transport a handgun in Ohio?
As there is no state law regarding the minimum age for possession of a handgun, the Federal minimum of 18 years of age applies. The minimum age to purchase a handgun is generally 21 years old, although there are exceptions for law enforcement officers and active or reserve member of the armed services of the United States or the Ohio national guard that are at least 18 years old.
Yes, with a valid concealed handgun license. (1) Archery (e) It shall be unlawful for any person hunting deer with a longbow or crossbow to possess any firearm. This paragraph does not prohibit a person from carrying a concealed firearm under the authority of a valid Ohio concealed carry license issued pursuant to sections 2923.125 and 2923.1213 of the Revised Code or a valid conceal carry license from a state with a reciprocity agreement with Ohio to carry concealed handguns, or who comply with federal legislation HR218, "The Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act of 2004.
Yes. No person shall purposely prevent or attempt to prevent any person from hunting, trapping, or fishing for a wild animal as authorized by this chapter by any of the following means:
Placing oneself in a location in which he knows or should know that his presence may affect the behavior of the wild animal being hunted, trapped, or fished for or otherwise affect the feasibility of the taking of the wild animal by the hunter, trapper, or fisherman;
Creating a visual, aural, olfactory, or physical stimulus intended to affect the behavior of the wild animal being hunted, trapped, or fished for;
Affecting the condition or location of personal property intended for use in the hunting, trapping, or fishing activity.
This section applies only to acts committed on lands or waters upon which hunting, trapping, or fishing activity may lawfully occur. This section does not apply to acts of a peace officer, the owner of the lands or waters, or a tenant or other person acting under authority of the owner on the lands or waters.
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State Constitutional Provision
The people have the right to bear arms for their defense and security; but standing armies, in time of peace, are dangerous to liberty, and shall not be kept up; and the military shall be in strict subordination to the civil power."
Ohio will honor valid permits issued by any state or jurisdiction, regardless of the age of the permittee. Ohio residents must have an Ohio Concealed Handgun License (CHL) in order to carry in the state.
Per the Attorney General's concealed carry weapon manual effective November 5, 2018, Ohio has agreements with other states to recognize one another’s concealed handgun licenses. An Ohio resident may carry a concealed handgun under the license of another state within Ohio as long as there is a valid reciprocity agreement with that state. An Ohio resident carrying the license of another state without a reciprocity agreement must obtain an Ohio license within 6 months of becoming an Ohio resident.
Be an Ohio resident for at least 45 days and a resident of the county in which you are applying, or the adjacent county, for at least 30 days;
Be employed in Ohio If you live in another state;
Be legally living in the United States;
Have completed an approved firearms training class (training is waived for active duty military and retired and honorably discharged veterans with proof of military firearms experience);
Not have had a suspended concealed carry license from another state;
Not be a fugitive from justice;
Not be under indictment for, and has not been charged with, convicted of or pled guilty to, a felony;
Not have been convicted of, pleaded guilty to or adjudicated a delinquent child for domestic violence;
Not be under indictment, be charged with or convicted of any felony, trafficking in drugs, any other drug-related crime, a misdemeanor offense of violence, negligent assault or assaulting a peace officer;
Not, within 3 years prior to your application, have been convicted, pleaded guilty to, or been adjudicated as delinquent in connection with a misdemeanor offense of violence;
Not have been charged with falsification of a concealed handgun license;
Not be subject to a civil protection order or a temporary protection order of an Ohio court or a similar protection order issued by another state;
Not have been convicted, pleaded guilty to or been adjudicated as delinquent in connection with two or more assaults or negligent assaults within 5 years of application;
Not have been convicted, pleaded guilty to or adjudicated as delinquent in connection with resisting arrest within 10 years of application; and
Note: Active duty military with a valid military identification card and documentation of successful firearms training that meets or exceeds that required in Ohio do not need to obtain an Ohio license. They may also transport a loaded firearm in a vessel under the same circumstances as a concealed carry permit holder.
Initial permit for >5 year Ohio residents: $67 Renewals $50
Initial permit for <5 year Ohio residents: $91 Renewals $74
Fees are waived for current and honorably discharged veterans.
Granted only for non-residents who are employed in Ohio. The process is the same as for residents.
Ohio law requires you to notify the county sheriff’s office at which you obtained your concealed carry license within 45 days after a change of address. This process, required by law, modifies the record held by our agency in the event you need to be contacted regarding suspension, revocation, or administrative purpose. If you wish to obtain a CCW license with your new address and/or name change you may do so by scheduling an appointment. Some counties have a change of address form, but that varies. A $15 fee is required.
Your county sheriff must be notified within 45 days that your license has been lost or stolen. He or she will also require a police report that states you have reported your license stolen or missing. The replacement fee is $15.
Moving to Ohio and interested in applying for a resident license? How soon can you apply? Ohio issues licenses to residents and non-residents who are employed in Ohio only. You can apply for your license to the sheriff of your county once you have been an Ohio resident for at least 45 days, a resident of the adjacent county for at least 30 days or if you live in another state, once employed in the state.
Moving from Ohio and have an Ohio resident license? Does that license transfer to your new state? Is there a grace period during which your Ohio license remains valid? If a person with an Ohio concealed handgun license establishes residency in another state, the license expires upon the establishment of residence in the other state. For out-of-state license holders, licenses cannot be renewed once you are no longer employed in the state.
The total time required for training is 8 hours with a minimum of 2 hours of in-person training that consists of range time and live-fire training.
The law requires certified training in the following matters:
The ability to name, explain, and demonstrate the rules for safe handling of a handgun and proper storage practices for handguns and ammunition;
The ability to demonstrate and explain how to handle ammunition in a safe manner;
The ability to demonstrate the knowledge, skills, and attitude necessary to shoot a handgun in a safe manner;
Additionally, you must have two hours of in-person training, including range time and live-fire experience. The applicant also must complete an examination that tests his competency. The competency certification must have occurred within the 3 years immediately preceding the application. The test must include a written section on the ability to name and explain the rules for the safe handling of a handgun and proper storage practices for handguns and ammunition. The exam must include an in-person physical demonstration of competency on handgun usage and rules for safe handling and storage of a handgun. It also must require a physical demonstration of the attitude necessary to shoot a handgun in a safe manner.The training and written exam may be completed online or as a combination of in-person and online training. The online portion of the training must include a component that regularly engages the person.
There are training exemptions for active or reserve members of the armed forces, those that have retired from, or were honorably discharged, or retired highway patrol troopers, retired peace officers or federal law enforcement officers and who, through the position, acquired experience with handguns or other firearms that was equivalent to the minimum educational requirements.
Renewal applications can be submitted no sooner than 90 days prior to the expiration of your current CCW license or anytime after the expiration of your current CCW license. Non-residents must still be employed in Ohio to renew a license. If no longer employed in Ohio then your CCW license is valid until the expiry date. If your license has expired, you are prohibited from carrying a concealed weapon until you receive your renewal license from the Sheriff.
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.
The state of Ohio does not issue LEOSA identification cards. Ohio is home‐rule state and local police departments and sheriffs’ offices decide individually upon the issuance of LEOSA identification cards. Retired LEOs can qualify and re-qualify with their concealed firearms in the law enforcement agency they retired from but they will have no identification to prove it out of state. Out-of-state LEOs can request to qualify under Ohio standards for LEOSA to an Ohio Peace Officer Training Commission-approved instructor. The Lucas County website provides the procedure for retired LEOs.
Carry in bars/restaurants that serve alcohol? Yes.
Carry in my vehicle without a permit/license? No.
Carry in roadside rest areas? Yes.
Carry in state/national parks, state/national forests, and WMAs? Yes, although the buildings are off-limits.
Carry in day care centers and home day cares? Yes, unless the facilities post a sign prohibiting guns.
Where Can't I Carry a Concealed Firearm in Ohio?
Places off-limits even with a permit/license
A school safety zone which includes a school, school building, school premises, school activity (except for a concealed handgun license holder in a motor vehicle while immediately in the process of picking up or dropping off a child) and school bus;
A child day-care center and Type A or B family day-care home;
Any premises owned or leased by any public or private college, university or other institution of higher education (based on a settlement agreement, Ohio State University now allows the storage of firearms in locked vehicles on campus);
A police station, sheriff’s office or state highway patrol station or premises controlled by the Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation;
A courthouse or another building or structure in which a courtroom is located;
Ohio law allows for the ownership and open carry of any type of knife other than ballistic knives, which are forbidden. It is illegal to concealed carry any deadly weapon and any knife that may be considered a "deadly weapon." The courts have called everything from a pocket knife to a steak knife a “deadly weapon.” The test however, is whether the instrument is deadly AND is made or modified to be a weapon or is being carried as one. Knives are restricted in "School Safety Zones" which include, schools, school buildings, school premises, school activities and school buses; and courthouses or other structures in which a courtroom is located. Ohio municipalities may have additional restrictions. For example, both Akron and Cleveland prohibit the possession in public places of any knife with a blade 2 ½ inches or longer.
Here at the USCCA, it is our mission to provide responsible gun owners with the tools they need to be educated and trained. 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.
If you have any questions that you don’t see answered here — let us know! Just email email@example.com 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.” 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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