It is no secret that laws aren't really written so the common man can easily understand them any longer. So we're breaking it down in an easy to understand and read format for you. Anytime you are carrying a firearm, you want to make sure you are in full compliance with the law to ensure your safety and continued right to carry concealed firearms.
Transporting Handguns With A CCW In Ohio
In Ohio, with a valid CCW, you can carry the handgun on you, and you can also have a loaded handgun anywhere in the vehicle.
Interacting With The Police/Law Enforcement
Anytime you have an interaction with the police it is imperative you follow these guidelines to protect yourself and the agent of the law.
Do not touch your firearm unless instructed to do so.
Immediately notify the officer that you have a concealed carry license, and are carrying a concealed weapon.
Do not exit your vehicle unless told to do so.
Obey all lawful orders.
Keep your hands in plain sight.
Places You Can Not Legally Carry (Also Known As Criminal Protection Zones (CPZ's))
There are places that are strictly off limits for concealed carry in Ohio and include the following types of places.
Any building or property where there is a "no guns" sign. (See end of page for example of a valid sign)
Any law enforcement station or detention facility.
Any place that federal law prohibits firearms (Post Offices, Airports for example).
Courthouse or building housing a courtroom.
Govt. building (dedicated restroom, shelter, car park okay).
For places of worship check with your leaders.
Institution for the care of mentally ill persons
School zone (drop off/pick up okay if you stay in car), college or university (handgun locked in car okay)
Child day-care center
Wherever federal law prohibits the carrying of handguns
Any building or property posted as a “no gun zone”. (Your workplace is no longer included. You may carry to your place of work, and leave the gun and ammo locked in your vehicle.)
Consumption of Alcoholic Beverages
It goes without saying, consuming alcohol while carrying a firearm is never a good idea and is strictly prohibited. You are allowed to carry in establishments that sell alcohol if you are not consuming it.
Observe Common Sense Gun Safety At All Times
Anytime you are carrying or around firearms, common sense should be used.
Never unholster your weapon if you do not intend to use it.
Always keep your firearm pointed in a safe direction
Be aware of your surroundings, and what is behind any potential threats.
Follow all posted signs and laws regarding firearms.
Example of Valid Ohio No Firearms Allowed Sign
Any establishment wishing to restrict entry to persons carry a firearm has that right to do so. They must have a sign like the one post where it is easily visible and would be spotted by the common person.
This list is not all inclusive nor is it meant to be. It's a quick reference guide for what you can and can not do while carrying a firearm according to Ohio laws as of 12/1/2016. If you are unsure of your laws, I suggest seeking legal advice from qualified counsel.
Ohio Gun Owners provides you with some great information regarding concealed carry in Ohio but there are a lot of questions for different situations. Unfortunately we can't cover every single topic or question you might have about concealed weapons in Ohio so we have a dedicated discussion forum for you in our community! We have over 2100 members currently talking about all kinds of things, and some very knowledgeable members with regards to Ohio CCW. The Concealed Carry & Self Defense forum is an invaluable resource for those looking to enhance their training, tactics or get tips and advice about concealed carry and/or self defense.
Registration for the community is complete free and includes other great benefits such as:
The ability to post guns for sale, buy, and trade in our OHGO Gun Marketplace.
Enhanced resources and options available in the community forums.
Get updates about gun shows and special training!
If you're a business you can post your advertisements completely free!
CCW Instructors can add your course to our CCW Instructor Database.
Entered for a chance to win free NRA memberships every month!
OHGO is the most comprehensive site available for Ohio Gun Owners. We aren't owned by some multimillion dollar corporation, nor will we ever charge for any services! We are a completely free resource for Ohio residents to take advantage of, ran by an Ohio resident! You can register your free account anytime you'd like, but the sooner the better!
The Ohio Attorney Generals office has produced a booklet which summarizes the law for concealed carry in Ohio. The book which is a free download directly from the Ohio Attorney Generals website (also attached to this post for convenience). This guidebook is the most up to date recent version available and covers the changes made in Ohio House Bill 234 that became effective on March 23rd, 2015.
The guidebook covers everything from Training and Educational Requirements (Find a CCW instructor), The Application Process, Duties that Accompany Holding a Concealed Handgun License, Reciprocity Agreements and much more.
The guidebook comes in PDF format so you can even load it on mobile devices and take it wherever you go for quick reference.
Download the Ohio Concealed Carry Guidebook Here
One of the requirements in getting your Ohio concealed carry license is to take a approved course. This course teachings everything from gun safety, to how to use your firearm and includes time at the range. In order to obtain your permit, you must attend a course taught by a approved instructor, using approved material from the State Attorney General. Most the time you will find these instructors to be NRA Certified in a basic pistol safety course.
But how do you know which one to go to, or which one is the best? And there is no easy answer to that question unfortunately. There are plenty of certified CCW instructors in the state of Ohio so finding one close won't be an issue. Just make sure you ask if they are certified to teach the course before attending (and paying) for the course. Teaching a course that you aren't certified for is punishable by fine and/or jail time so it is rare you find anyone trying to commit fraud but it does happen.
Looking For A Approved Instructor?
OHGO has a ever growing database of CCW instructors for the state of Ohio. Just check out our Ohio CCW Instructors database to find one near you.
In 2017 the concealed carry applications are expected to continue breaking records. With more Ohioans ever exercising their right to armed defense of themselves, family and friends. Applying for a license to carry a concealed weapon is simple and is even easier by following our guide. The Ohio Laws concerning concealed carry can be found in the ORCs. ORC 2923.12 concerns itself with concealed carry, ORC 2923.126 tells about the duties of the licensee, and ORC 2923.125 goes over the application & licensing process. This ORC also lists the reasons why you maybe prohibited from owning a firearm and getting a CCW permit.
ORC 2923.125 states the following about who can apply and how. Before beginning I suggest becoming familiar with Ohio's Concealed Carry Laws and License Application produced by the Ohio Attorney General.
1. You must meet the basic requirements before applying for a Ohio Concealed Carry License.
Must be 21 years of age at time of application.
Must be an Ohio resident for at least 45 days. Some exceptions exist.
2. You must complete an NRA certified course by a qualified instructor to get your Certificate of Competency.
Make sure your course is taught by NRA certified instructors and using approved material.
You can skip this step if you are active or reserve U.S. Military, have been honorably discharged within 6 years, or are retired law enforcement with experience equivalent to the training.
Your instructor should provide you with an application and a copy of the guide from above.
3. Schedule an appointment with the sheriff's office, or one in an adjacent county. Make sure you have completed the Ohio Concealed Handgun License Application.
You'll have to call to get an appointment, or some county's now let schedule the appointment online
Make sure you have your completed application and a passport sized photograph taken in the last 30 days printed and ready. (Hint: There are apps available for mobile phones that can help with this for free.)
Do NOT take a firearm in to the sheriffs office with you.
4. Take your documents, completed application and your certificate of competency to the appointment.
Give your completed documents to the sheriff.
Present a valid photo I.D.
The sheriffs office will be conducting a criminal background check and mental competency check. You will not walk out with your CCW permit. (You can not concealed carry until you get your permit)
The sheriffs office will finger print you for the background check.
Pay a non-refundable fee of $67.00.
Sit back and wait for the sheriffs office to conduct their background and mental health checks. Once you receive the permit, you are allowed to carry a concealed handgun in the state of Ohio and all states they share reciprocity with.
Since the State of Ohio began to issue concealed carry weapon permits (CCW Permits) we have been blessed with having reciprocity agreements with other starts to allow us to carry concealed. Currently Ohio has one of these best and most extensive reciprocity agreements in the country. States with an asterisk (*) next to them honor Ohio Resident Permits only (meaning you must also have a valid Ohio ID). States with a double asterisk only honor permits issued after 3/22/15, and the legendary triple asterisk denote states with permitless carry laws. Meaning if you can legally possess a firearm, you may carry it concealed in those states.
This list is up to date as of 10/17/2016 however before doing any traveling it is wise to consult the Ohio Attorney Generals website to make sure agreements are still in place. Also you will need to be aware of local laws for where you are traveling for example some places have strict magazine size rules.
Further Reading For Ohio CCW Reciprocity
Ohio Attorney General CCW Information