Here at GunGuys, we’re passionate about guns and gun ownership! At the same time, we’re all about enjoying firearms safely and responsibly. In today’s article, we look at driving with a gun in Texas? Is it legal? Where is it legal? Read more below for more on driving and Texas Firearm Laws.
Can I Have a Gun in My Car in Texas?
Texas is known for its “Come and Take It” sign and having some of the most passionate gun owners in the union. With thousands of new gun owners joining the passion each and every year, many new gun owners wonder, “Can I have a gun in my car in Texas?”
The simple answer to this question is yes! You are allowed to have a firearm in your vehicle as long as you are a legally permitted firearm owner. As long as you own the car and you store the firearm safely, you’re good to go!
There is some confusion online around whether driving with a firearm requires a Concealed Handgun License. We’re here to put those myths to bed. You no longer need a CHL in the state of Texas as long as you store and drive your gun responsibly.
Rights to carry a gun in your vehicle are all guaranteed by the Texas Motorist Protection Act (HB 1815). The state approved act has been legally binding as law for the last 11 years after being implemented on September 1, 2007.
How to Lawfully Carry a Handgun While in a Vehicle in Texas
Driving with a handgun in your car is legal in Texas, but it’s still something that comes with a great deal of responsibility. The four qualifiers below are paramount to how to lawfully carry a gun while in a vehicle in Texas.
- The Handgun must be concealed and not be in “plain view.”
- You must not be committing any crimes (outside of Class C traffic misdemeanors like speeding tickets in Texas)
- Federal Law must not get in the way of your state’s rights to possess a firearm.
- You must not be a gang member (of the criminal variety!)
The definition of concealed is where you can find trouble in the law. The rest of the asks here are pretty straightforward. Here at GunGuys, we recommend being better safe than sorry and taking extra steps to conceal your firearms. There’s nothing worse than having a long, uncomfortable conversation with a cop on the side of the highway over something that can easily be avoided.
As a good rule of thumb, we recommend keeping your handgun or pistol in the trunk of your car while driving. Concealing a gun in a glove box or center console is convenient, but we don’t recommend risking any weird events with what seems to go on daily in today’s news with police brutality. It’s just not worth taking any chances with your life on a traffic stop.
Can I Carry a Long Gun While Driving in Texas?
Rifles are popular in Texas. You absolutely can carry a long gun while driving in Texas. If you have a truck or a nice long gun rack, feel free to display your rifle or shotgun. Long guns do not need to be concealed and may be loaded and within reach so that you don’t miss that big game.
As with handguns, having a rifle out in the open will always be a point of “conversation” with the 5-0. Don’t be surprised if you’re answering questions while you’re executing your right to openly carry a firearm while driving down the road. We simply want to bring awareness!
If you have any questions around specifics with the Motorist Protection Act HB 1815, we recommend contacting your local attorney and having a quick chat. Normally consultations are free. You could also take a defensive driving course.
A recent ticket made me think about this article. While speeding down I-35 I was recently pulled over! I was sweating the situation with my Glock in the back as my CHL had recently expired.
I ended up getting a speeding ticket for my Dale Earnhardt impersonation, but my firearms were concealed and by the book legal. There were no penalties to pay up for around the guns. I learned more about the law around driving with guns when I took a defensive driving course at Defensive Driving TX to dismiss my ticket and repent for my ways. It was only $25, and we thought this knowledge was worth sharing. It’s also cool to learn that you can get an insurance discount for a defensive driving course.
Shoutout to the guys who made dismissing my ticket easy and to all of the other defensive driving course providers out there who save Texans like me from paying excessive fines. It’s much obliged.
Stay frosty and stay safe out there everyone.