The law for concealed carry is different in California when compared to other states. California Penal Code 25400 PC, or the state’s “carrying a concealed weapon” law, has made it a crime to carry a concealed weapon, whether the gun is inside your vehicle or on your person. This legislation has been approved by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. The court determined in Peruta vs County of San Diego that the right of California’s citizens to bear concealed guns are not protected by the Second Amendment. And since the U.S. Supreme Court has refused any challenge to the ruling, the concealed carry ban in California remains in effect.
However, there are exceptions to this very strict rule, and meeting the requirements would give you the chance to secure a concealed carry permit in California. However, it’s also vital that you understand all the penalties and consequences for carrying a concealed weapon in the state.
What Are the Penalties for Carrying a Concealed Weapon?
Carrying a handgun openly and carrying a concealed weapon without a permit is illegal in the state of California and carries with it some heavy penalties. The former would cost you about $1,000 in fines and/or a year’s imprisonment.
Meanwhile, carrying concealed firearms is often a misdemeanor charge, with a maximum penalty of six months in jail and/or a fine of $1,000. However, your circumstances might allow you to be placed on probation instead, which means either no jail time or you’ll only serve a short time. The judge will consider the following before deciding your penalty:
- Any acts of violence you have committed in the past
- Your criminal history
- Evidence that you have planned to use the gun
- Your failure to cooperate with law enforcement
The following circumstances might cause your concealed weapon case to be deemed a felony:
- Previous convictions of a firearm offense or felony in the state
- Knowingly carrying a stolen firearm
- Being involved in a gang
- Illegally possessing the firearm
- Being banned from carrying a firearm due to a restraining order or previous conviction
- Previous misdemeanor conviction against people or property
- Previous drugs or narcotics conviction
If you’re convicted of a felony charge in carrying a concealed weapon, you could face one to three years in imprisonment and/or be fined up to $10,000. As you can see, it’s important that you have an experienced criminal defense lawyer in LA to advocate on your behalf to minimize your legal penalties.
Who Can Apply for a Concealed Carry Permit in California?
If you plan on applying for a concealed weapons permit (CCW) in California, you must have the following qualifications:
- Good moral character
- Just cause to justify the permit (ex. you or your loved ones are in danger and the threat can be reduced if you have a concealed firearm)
- Have attended a firearms training class
- Aresident or run a business in the city or county you are securing a CCW license from.
How Do You Apply for a CCW?
Application procedures for concealed carry permits differ per area since it’s the local authorities (ex. police chiefs and county sheriffs) who have the authority to issue these licenses.
The first step typically entails that you pass a standardized application sheet and pay the required fees. You’ll then be scheduled for an interview and fingerprinted. The issuing agency can also demand another interview and a psychological assessment.
Why Were You Disqualified Even After Meeting All Legal Requirements?
Even if you have met the state’s legal requirements for getting a CCW, your application can still be denied because of your records or past behavior. For instance, you will be disqualified for a CCW if you have been convicted of specific misdemeanors, a domestic violence offense, or a felony. You will also be denied a concealed carry permit if you have been diagnosed with mental illness or are addicted to narcotics.
Bear in mind that even if you were granted a license, there are other legislation that you are bound to obey. Some California gun laws ban certain kinds of firearms and explosives or will not allow you to carry guns outside the home.
What if You Carried the Weapon From a Different State?
If you have a concealed weapon permit from another state, you still do not have the right to carry a concealed weapon in California. Gun laws for the state of California apply to everyone, even if you are not a resident.
Moreover, carrying a concealed weapon without a state-sanctioned permit puts you at risk for being fined up to $10,000, arrest, or felony prosecution for violating Transportation Security Administration (TSA) rules.
Do You Lose The Right to Own Firearms After a Concealed Weapon Conviction?
That would depend on the charges. A misdemeanor conviction for carrying a concealed firearm without a permit is not enough to revoke your right to own a firearm. However, if the misdemeanor caused you to be placed as a ward of the juvenile court then you’ll be banned from owning or having a firearm until you are 30-years-old.
Meanwhile, a felony conviction for a concealed weapon charge will revoke your right to bear or own guns in California. However, you can petition to have your right to possess firearms restored or secure a pardon from the governor of the state.
Being accused or charged with carrying a concealed weapon in California can have severe repercussions on your life. You will need a reliable and experienced lawyer to ensure your rights are protected and you are defended well against these allegations. Contact the Simmrin Law Group today to find out how we can help your case by calling 310-997-4688 or filling out the contact form on the right.