Texas Gun Laws & How to Get a License for Concealed Carry

Texas Gun Laws & How to Get a License for Concealed Carry

Texas Gun Laws & How to Get a License for Concealed Carry

Posted on Oct 3rd, 2023

When it comes to gun ownership and concealed carry, understanding the laws in your state is crucial. 

In the Lone Star State, Texas gun laws are both comprehensive and specific, ensuring the safety and responsibility of firearm owners. 

Whether you're considering obtaining a License to Carry (LTC) for personal protection or merely want to stay informed about the regulations, this guide will walk you through the essential aspects of Texas gun laws and how to obtain a concealed carry license.

Read on!

Understanding Texas Gun Laws

Before diving into the process of obtaining a concealed carry license in Texas, it's essential to have a solid grasp of the state's gun laws. Here's what you need to know:

Constitutional Carry

Texas passed a constitutional carry law that allows eligible residents to carry a handgun openly or concealed without the need for a state-issued license as of September 1, 2021.

License to Carry (LTC)

Although a license is no longer required for carrying a handgun in Texas, obtaining an LTC can still be beneficial. It provides reciprocity when traveling to other states with concealed carry agreements, enhances firearm safety training, and simplifies the gun purchasing process.

Age Restrictions

You must be at least 21 years old to carry a handgun openly or concealed without an LTC.

Prohibited Locations

Certain places, such as schools, government buildings, and private property with proper signage, are off-limits for carrying firearms.

Benefits of Obtaining an LTC

While it's no longer necessary to have a License to Carry (LTC) for concealed carry in Texas due to the state's constitutional carry law, there are several compelling reasons to consider obtaining an LTC. It's important to note that having an LTC can provide additional advantages beyond just carrying a concealed handgun. Let's explore these benefits in detail:

Reciprocity with Other States

One of the primary advantages of holding an LTC is the concept of reciprocity. This means that Texas has agreements with other states that allow individuals with a valid LTC to carry concealed handguns in those states, even if they are not Texas residents. This reciprocity can be extremely beneficial if you frequently travel or plan to visit states with such agreements.

For instance, if you have a Texas LTC, you can legally carry concealed in states like Alabama, Florida, and Georgia, thanks to reciprocity agreements.

Firearm Safety and Knowledge

Completing the LTC application process involves mandatory training. This training covers a wide range of topics, including firearm safety, relevant gun laws, and range proficiency. Participating in this training not only satisfies the LTC application requirement but also equips you with vital knowledge and skills related to responsible firearm ownership.

Obtaining an LTC can simplify the process of purchasing firearms from licensed dealers. When you have an LTC, you are exempt from the federal background check typically required during firearm purchases. This can save you time and streamline your ability to acquire firearms legally.

Legal Protection and Knowledge

Having an LTC means you are well-versed in Texas gun laws and regulations. This knowledge not only ensures that you are carrying and using your firearm legally but also provides you with the ability to make informed decisions in potentially risky situations. Understanding your rights and responsibilities as a gun owner is essential for responsible firearm use.

Now that we've explored the benefits of obtaining an LTC, let's delve into how you can get your license for concealed carry in Texas.

How to Get a License for Concealed Carry in Texas

Obtaining a License to Carry (LTC) in Texas is a straightforward but essential process for those who wish to exercise their right to carry concealed handguns legally. While it's no longer a requirement for concealed carry due to constitutional carry legislation, obtaining an LTC still offers significant benefits, as discussed earlier. In this section, we'll break down the steps to obtain your Texas LTC:

1. Eligibility Assessment

Before you begin the LTC application process, it's crucial to ensure you meet the eligibility criteria. Here's a quick review of the basic requirements:

  • Residency: You must be a legal resident of Texas.
  • Age: Applicants must be at least 21 years old.
  • Criminal History: Certain criminal convictions, pending charges, and probation can disqualify you.
  • Mental Health: A court ruling of mental incompetence or being committed to a mental institution can affect eligibility.
  • Chemical Dependency: A history of chemical dependency or addiction can impact eligibility.

If you meet these criteria, you're eligible to proceed with the LTC application.

2. LTC Training Course

Completing a Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS)-approved LTC training course is a mandatory requirement. This course covers various aspects of firearm safety, relevant gun laws, and range proficiency. The American Protection Academy offers comprehensive LTC training programs to equip you with the knowledge and skills required to safely carry a concealed handgun.

3. Online Application Submission

Once you've successfully completed the LTC training course, it's time to submit your LTC application online through the Texas DPS website. This application includes personal information, details about your training course, and payment of the required application fee.

4. Fingerprinting Appointment

After submitting your application, schedule a fingerprinting appointment with the Texas DPS or an approved third-party vendor. Fingerprinting is a crucial step for the background check process.

5. Background Check

The Texas DPS conducts a comprehensive background check, which includes a review of your criminal history, mental health records, and chemical dependency history. This step ensures that LTC applicants meet the necessary criteria and do not pose a threat to public safety.

6. Waiting Period

The processing time for LTC applications can vary, but you can generally expect it to take a few weeks. During this period, your background check is conducted, and your application is reviewed for approval.

7. Receiving Your LTC

If your application is approved, you will receive your License to Carry (LTC) in the mail. This license is valid for five years and serves as official documentation of your eligibility to carry a concealed handgun in Texas.

Related: The Importance of Basic Security Training L1: Enhancing Safety and Preparedness 


Obtaining an LTC in Texas is an opportunity to enhance your firearm safety knowledge and skills. It provides peace of mind, legal protection, and reciprocity benefits when traveling to other states with concealed carry agreements. Whether you choose to carry concealed or not, responsible firearm ownership and knowledge of relevant gun laws are essential for your safety and the safety of those around you.

If you're interested in obtaining an LTC or seeking comprehensive firearms and safety training, the American Protection Academy can provide you with top-tier instruction in Houston, Texas. Our experienced team is dedicated to promoting responsible firearm ownership and ensuring your safety and confidence as a firearm owner.

To explore our training programs or get started on your LTC journey, please reach out to us at (713) 900-9965 or email us at [email protected]. We're here to support your commitment to safety and responsible firearm ownership.

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