Texas Handgun License and Laws

Handguns on a counter in a shop.
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With the exception of Alaska, Vermont, and Arizona, every U.S. state requires a permit in order to carry a concealed handgun. Listed below is everything you need to know about licensing your handgun in the good ol' state of Texas.

Who is Eligible to Carry a Concealed Handgun?

Adults age 21 and over who have successfully completed the permit application and have no prior history of drug abuse, alcohol abuse, psychiatric disorders, criminal behavior or misdemeanor activity in the past five years.

Other possible disqualifications include unpaid child support, prior DUI's and delinquent taxes.

Is Training Required?

Yes. You must complete a DPS-authorized gun safety training course taught by a certified instructor. The course is usually 10 to 15 hours and involves shooting practice. Some instructors require you to supply your own handgun.

How Do I Apply for a Concealed Handgun License?

Complete the online application or visit your local DPS office. You must provide the following pieces of information:

  • Social security number
  • Valid driver license or identification card
  • Current demographic, address, contact, and employment information,
  • Residential and employment information for the last five years (new users only)
  • Information regarding any psychiatric, drug, alcohol, or criminal history
  • Valid email address
  • Valid credit card (Visa, MasterCard, Discover, or American Express)
  • $140 fee

How Soon Will I Receive My Permit?

In about 60 days, you will receive either a rejection letter or your permit to carry.

In What Places is My Gun Prohibited?

Airports, courtrooms, schools, voting polls, anywhere alcohol is sold or consumed, racetracks and hospitals. Privately owned businesses and places of worship reserve the right to post signage prohibiting concealed weapons. Many federal properties prohibit concealed weapons as well.

Can I Carry a Semi-Automatic?

Yes. However, you must have completed the training course using this type of gun.

What Happens if My Handgun is Visible?

A handgun is no longer considered concealed if you can see either parts of the actual weapon or its outline underneath clothing. If the weapon is at all visible, the holder is committing a criminal offense and will be removed of his/her license.