Posted on 8/26/19

There are no permits or licenses required to purchase guns in the state of Texas. However, there are age restrictions. You will need to be age 21 or over in order to purchase a handgun and at least 18 in order to purchase a rifle or other long arm. Once you purchase a firearm or move into the state with a firearm, you do not need to register it with the state.

Federally licensed firearms dealers are required to conduct a background check for any gun purchase. However, this requirement is waived if the purchaser presents a state permit at the time of purchase, since this permit includes a background check. Private sellers are not required to conduct background checks.


Handgun licenses are issued by theTexas Department of Public Safety. The process of applying for a license to carry a handgun includes submitting fingerprints, which are used as part of a criminal background check. In order to beapproved for a license to carry a handgun, the applicant must, among other things:

  • Have lived in Texas for a minimum of six months

  • Be at least 21 years old, or 18 if active-duty military

  • Have no felony convictions

  • Not be charged with a class A or B misdemeanor, disorderly conduct, or a felony

  • Not be chemically dependent

  • Owe no back taxes or child support

  • Be capable of using sound judgment

This legislation is intended to prevent criminals and individuals with debilitating mental illnesses from carrying handguns. Additionally, anyone wishing to obtain a license to carry a handgun must complete an approved course covering laws, safety, and liability.

Handguns may only be openly carried in a belt or shoulder holster if licensed, and concealed carry permits are restricted. Certain public places and private properties do not allow concealed carry. These locations typically include post offices, court houses, schools, jails, and bars. Additionally, if you are asked to leave or cease carrying in any location by the owner or manager of the location, you must do so peaceably.

Rifles and Other Long Arms

You do not need to be licensed or have a permit to own or carry a long arm in Texas. There are no concealed carry or similar licenses available for rifles or long arms. Even without such licensing, you may openly carry a long arm in some circumstances in Texas. However, this right is limited by disorderly conduct laws, which prohibit displaying your firearm in public in a manner that would alarm others. In other words, your open carry must not cause panic or disruption, so carrying in public places, such as restaurants or stores, is not allowed, since it would logically cause alarm.

Contact an Attorney

If you have questions about your gun rights in Texas, contact the attorneysAbel Law Firm. The openness of Texas gun laws can result in misunderstandings about when and where you are permitted to carry your firearms. In these cases, you need an experienced attorney to help you build your defense.

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