Open Carry in North Carolina seems to be a confusing topic for many people that I encounter in the world of #FirearmsSafetyTraining.
I’m never surprised at the many students that drive to class with their firearm that don’t know the laws of Open Carry. North Carolina Open Carry law provides ONLY two options when transporting a handgun.
In the State of North Carolina, your handgun must be:
Fully Visible, meaning in plain sight if approached by an officer. Recommended locations include the passenger seat or dashboard. As soon as the officer approaches the vehicle, immediately notify the officer that there is a handgun in the vehicle and where it is located. This protects both yourself and the law enforcement officer and keeps you both safe from an accidental firing of a handgun to fear for life.
The second option requires locking the firearm in the dashboard, trunk, or gun case that is securely affixed to the vehicle. Pistol cases are sold with a cable that can be affixed to the seat post or other permanent fixture in a vehicle. There are a variety of pistol cases available and they vary in size and in style. If you are looking to purchase a pistol case, they are available locally in places like Walmart, Academy Sports, Gander World, Field & Stream and other retailers. You can only purchase pistol cases online saving quite a bit of money.
It is EXTREMELY important to research firearm laws in every state that you will cross when traveling. Many assume that firearm laws are the same in every state but would be shocked to find that they differ greatly from one state to another regarding both open and concealed carry.
Obtaining a concealed carry handgun permit in North Carolina is a fairly stringent process. You must first take an 8-hour handgun certification course approved by the North Carolina Justice Academy. In addition, an on-range shooting qualification firing 10 rounds at 3, 5, 7 yards for a total of 30 rounds.
A certificate showing that you have completed an 8-hour course is required at the time that you apply for your concealed carry handgun permit. You must submit your application in the county in which you reside.
Due to long wait times in larger counties, I recommended that you set your appointment at your local Sheriff’s department as soon as your class is scheduled.
Many local sheriff’s departments allow you to walk in to apply for your state issued concealed carry handgun permit while other Sheriff’s departments require that you set up an appointment online. In Forsyth county, it takes three months to obtain an appointment to submit your application. In Guilford county, it takes two and a half months to obtain an appointment to submit your application.
Guilford County allows you to download the application and bring it to the Sheriff’s department while Forsyth County requires that you complete the application on site.
On average, it takes up to 90 days after submitting your application to receive your state-issued permit. Wait times can be longer depending on how many are in the queue. This can result in a total time of attaining your state-issued concealed carry handgun permit of six months at a minimum depending on the wait time in your County?
Click here to view the requirements of Piedmont Triad counties.
We want to know, what County do you reside in, does your county require an appointment, and how long was the process?
We look forward to your responses!
A North Carolina Concealed Carry Handgun permit allows you to legally carry a handgun on your body or in a personal tote such as backpack, briefcase, or handbag. NORTH CAROLINA FIREARMS LAWS defines Concealed Carry “about the person” which means it must be concealed on the person or within arm’s reach of the person.
Proof of an eight-hour state-approved Firearm Safety training or Concealed Carry class is required by the State of North Carolina prior to applying for a state issued permit. Two of those hours must be dedicate to the Laws of Self Defense. In addition to the eight hours of mandatory classroom training that is required, you must complete a 20 question written exam on the Legal Issues of Self-Defense and Firearm Safety and Rules and shooting range qualification.
The course as taught by GIRLZ on F.I.R.E., L.L.C. includes instruction on North Carolina Common Law, North Carolina Statutory Law, Rules of Safety, Gun Handling, Handgun Nomenclature, and Marksmanship Fundamentals. NC Common Law teaches both justified and unjustified self-defense while knowledge of NC Statutory Law states the rights and rules you must abide by as a citizen. The course also includes Rules of Safety, Gun Handling, Storage of Handguns, Alcohol and Firearms and Ammunition Safety. There is added discussion on Handguns, specifically Revolvers versus Semiautomatic Pistols. Marksmanship Fundamentals includes topics on Grip, Follow-Through, Stance, Breath Control, Sight Alignment/Sight Picture, Shooting Rhythm, Trigger Control, and Shooting Positions. In addition, we cover Carrying Concealed Safety Issues and Presentation Techniques. Last, we cover Cleaning and Maintenance through demonstration of Proper Cleaning Procedures, Lubrication, Function Check, and a detailed discussion on Ammunition selection.
Obtaining your North Carolina Concealed Carry Handgun certification is a choice that requires mental preparedness. Keeping Safety at the front of your mind at all times is critical. By taking time to further your training and practicing firing drills both at home (dry-fire) and at the range is when you truly become a better and more skilled shooter. In addition, Sports and Competition shooting is fun when we practice safety first, so get out there and find a community of like-minded shooters to learn more about the sport.
Laws regarding Firearms are unique to each State and County. Information in this FAQ is related to the Laws in the State of North Carolina.
Q. How do I obtain an Pistol Purchase Permit?.
Contact the Sheriff’s department in your county to apply for a Pistol Purchase Permit.
Q. What would make a person in North Carolina ineligible to obtain a Pistol Purchase Permit?
Q. What are the requirements to obtain a Concealed Carry Weapons permit in North Carolina?