Texas Open Carry Law Information
Open Carry Law takes effect January 1, 2016. Citizens with a license to carry will be able to legally carry a handgun openly or concealed.
With the enactment of the Open Carry Law, it may become common to see individuals exercising their right to carry a handgun openly. Citizens should not necessarily be alarmed at the site of an armed individual.
For a handgun to be openly carried, the following conditions must
1. The individual must possess a valid license to carry.
2. The handgun must be in a belt or shoulder holster.
Individuals carrying a handgun must present their license to carry to a peace officer in the event they are stopped or detained. Persons carrying openly should be prepared for the possibility of an officer to stop and verify they have a valid license to carry. Police officers also have the authority to temporarily disarm a person who is carrying a handgun.
Carrying of a gun while intoxicated is unlawful.
Specifics of Open Carry as per Texas DPS Website
New laws for Handgun Licensing Program
(Formerly known as Concealed Handgun Licensing)
Summary of new laws passed in the 84th Regular Legislative Session that impact Handgun Licensing.
House Bill 910 Effective: January 1, 2016
Caption: Relating to the authority of a person who is licensed to carry a handgun to openly carry a holstered handgun; creating criminal offense.
Authorizes individuals to obtain a license to openly carry a handgun in the same places that allow the licensed carrying of a concealed handgun with some exceptions. (See “Exceptions” below for more information.)
Unconcealed handguns, loaded or unloaded, must be carried in a shoulder or belt holster.
Individuals who hold a valid CHL may continue to carry with valid existing license.
A separate license will not be required to open carry. No additional fee will be required.
Individuals currently licensed will not be required to attend additional training.
Training curriculum for new applicants will be updated to reflect the new training requirements related to the use of restraint holsters and methods to ensure the secure carrying of openly carried handguns. The new curriculum will be required for all classes beginning January 1, 2016.
The eligibility criteria to obtain a license to carry do not change.
The department has updated the website and training materials to reference License to Carry (LTC) instead of Concealed Handgun License (CHL).
Changes to the laminated license have been implemented. For examples of licenses currently in circulation, see: LTC sample.
Open carry is not permitted by a license holder regardless of whether the handgun is holstered:
on the premises of an institution of higher education or private or independent institution of higher education
on any public or private driveway, street, sidewalk or walkway, parking lot, parking garage or other parking area of an institution of higher education or private or independent institution of higher education by an individual who is acting as a personal protection officer under Chapter 1702, Occupations Code and is not wearing a uniform
Senate Bill 11 Effective: August 1, 2016
Caption: Relating to the carrying of handguns on the campuses of and certain other locations associated with institutions of higher education; providing a criminal penalty.
Authorizes a license holder to carry a concealed handgun on or about the license holder’s person while the license holder is on the campus of an institution of higher education or private or independent institution of higher education in this state. Open carrying of handguns is still prohibited at these locations.
Authorizes an institution of higher education or private or independent institution of higher education in this state to establish rules, regulation, or other provisions concerning the storage of handguns in dormitories or other residential facilities that are owned or leased and operated by the institution and located on the campus of the institution.
Requires the president or other chief executive officer of an institution of higher education in this state to establish reasonable rules, regulations, or other provisions regarding the carrying of concealed handguns by license holders on the campus or on specific premises located on the campus.
Authorizes posting of a sign under Penal Code Section 30.06 with respect to any portion of a premises on which license holders may not carry.
The effective date of this law for a public junior college is August 1, 2017