What You Need To Know About Missouri Concealed Carry
Senate Bill 656 altered Missouri concealed carry laws in late 2016 to remove the permit requirement for anyone 19 or older who may lawfully own a firearm, but was initially vetoed by Governor Jay Nixon in June 2016 — the state's Senate and House overrode his veto, however, and the law became effective on January 1, 2017.
Prior to that change, CCW permits had been in place since 2004, which was a dramatic change to the previous 128-year ban on concealed weapons after the Constitution of 1875 was enacted, according to chapter 9 of the book Missouri Weapons and Self-Defense Law.
A license will allow an exception to an NICS check, according to 27 CFR 478.102(d), and will extend out-of-state reciprocity benefits to those with the Missouri permit.
How To Get A Missouri Concealed Carry Permit
State residents will apply with their respective county sheriff for the Missouri concealed carry permit, according to Missouri Revised Statutes Section 571.101.4.
Missouri is a shall-issue state, meaning one needs to only meet the requirements listed in state statutes and the issuing authority will approve the application.
According to Section 571.101.2, the applicant is required to be at least 19 years old, a state resident (or 18-year-old member of the Armed Forces stationed in Missouri, or their spouse), a U.S. citizen, not have pled guilty/nolo contendere/convicted of a crime resulting in imprisonment for over a year, not have pled guilty/nolo contendere/convicted of a misdemeanor crime of violence or two or more DUI charges within the last five years, to not be a fugitive from justice, to not have been dishonorably discharged from the military, to not have a pattern of behavior that might suggest they're a danger to the public, and to not have been found mentally incompetent at the time or within five years of the application.
Federal restrictions under 18 U.S.C. Section 922(g) also apply.
"In order to determine the applicant's suitability for a concealed carry permit, the applicant shall be fingerprinted," according to Section 571.101.5.
Once a National Instant Criminal Background Check is conducted and the sheriff deems the candidate meets the state's requirements, the permit is issued. After five years, the permit will need to be renewed. However, the state does offer lifetime and extended concealed carry permits.
These lifetime or extended (valid for either 10 years or 25 years) permits will cost more and the applicant will need to meet most of the previously listed requirements, but won't qualify under reciprocity agreements with other states.
Once one receives the permit, it just makes sense to carry it, but Sections 571.121 and 571.230 only outline a duty to carry permits issued prior to August 28, 2013. Under Section 571.114.1, those applicants who have been denied a permit may appeal within 30 days to a small claims court.
Whether or not one receives a permit, there are locations within Missouri that are off-limits for firearms.
Missouri Gun Laws Restrict Concealed Carry In Certain Locations
Missouri gun laws outline that not even a concealed carry endorsement will extend the right to carry or possess firearms in about 17 specific locations throughout the state.
- According to
- , these restricted locations are:
- Police, sheriff and highway patrol stations without the consent of those in charge
- Within 25 feet of a polling place on an election day, but possession of the firearm in a vehicle is kosher
- The facilities or premises of adult or juvenile detention/correctional institutions, prisons or jails
- Courthouses occupied by the circuit, appellate or supreme court — including any facilities, buildings and premises
- Locations of government or general assembly meetings (with certain exceptions for those within the meetings with permits), but the general public may leave firearms within a parked motor vehicle on the premises
- With the proper posted of signs, the general assembly, supreme court, county or municipality may decide to prohibit or limit permit holders within the facilities or buildings of their respective unit of government
- Any establishment licensed to dispense liquor for consumption on premises, unless the owner or manager gives consent
- Controlled areas within airports
- Federally prohibited areas
- At any higher education or elementary and secondary school facility without the consent of the organization's authority figures, with exceptions for those with permits who are employed in certain positions within the organization, but it isn't a criminal offense to have the firearms safely stored in a motor vehicle on location
- Any portion of a building used as a child care facility, unless the manager gives consent or if one is the operator of a child care facility in their home
- Any riverboat gambling operation accessible to the public, unless consent is given by management, but firearms are permitted when lawfully in motor vehicles
- The gated areas of amusement parks, but firearms may be kept in motor vehicles
- Churches or places of worship, unless the minister or facilities' authority expresses consent
- Private property where the owner has posted the correct signage "in a conspicuous place of a minimum size of eleven inches by fourteen inches with the writing thereon in letters of not less than one inch" and business owners may limit firearms on the premises of their business that they own for both employees (even if they have a permit) and visitors, but keeping the firearm in a motor vehicle is not a criminal offense, and if the vehicle is owned by the company then the employer may limit firearms there as well
- Sports arenas or stadiums with seating capacity of 5,000 or more, but lawfully keeping the weapon in a motor vehicle is acceptable in the eyes of the law
- Any publically accessible hospital
Carrying at these locations is not a criminal act, according to the previously listed statute, but the individual can and will be removed from the premises if your concealed carry weapon were spotted, and refusal to leave can lead to a citation.
Under Section 571.510.1, housing authorities receiving public funding from the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development for public rental housing assistance may not limit or prohibit a lessee or their immediate guest from possessing firearms.
With Missouri's system of lifetime, extended and standard concealed carry permits, as well as constitutional carry system, reciprocity is an important legal aspect of carrying within and outside this state.
Missouri Concealed Carry Reciprocity
Missouri concealed carry reciprocity is fairly straightforward for those visiting: they recognize every state's permit.
For those traveling outside the state, there are a few things to consider. More than 10 states do not recognize Missouri permits, around 30 states either formally or informally recognize Missouri permits, there are states that recognize the Missouri permit only if the permit holder is over the age of 21, states like Wisconsin only recognize Missouri permits issued or renewed after August 28, 2013 and Oklahoma recognizes constitutional carry states like Missouri.
Reciprocity is a mixed bag that changes from state to state and is consistently brought up by new and old legislative bodies alike.
Because this is not legal advice, nor a completely exhaustive list of every law within the state, be sure to consult the state's issuing authority and CCW maps throughout the industry before traveling outside of the state.
About The Author
Jake Smith (@notjakesmith) is a copywriter and photographer based in the pacific northwest. He graduated from the University of Idaho with degrees in public relations and apparel.