Alabama Concealed Carry Permit Gun Laws

University of Guns
5 min readJun 1, 2024

Legal information provided is for reference and not legal advice. Consult an attorney for specific legal concerns.

Alabama Gun Laws Key Facts

  • STATE POPULATION: 50
  • STATES HONORED: 19
  • MINIMUM AGE TO CC: 32
  • RECIPROCATING STATES: 15
  • ATTORNEYS IN USCCA NETWORK: 71
  • USCCA CERTIFIED INSTRUCTORS: 1.27M
  • PERMITS ISSUED: 32.5%
  • PERMIT PERCENTAGE: 1 — Lifetime

👉 Click here to get your concealed carry weapons permit online fast & easy

Summary of Alabama Gun Laws

Alabama generally operates as a shall-issue state with concealed weapons permits distributed at the county level by local sheriffs. However, a sheriff can deny a permit if the applicant is legally barred from owning a firearm under state or federal law or if there is a reasonable suspicion of potential misuse of the weapon.

Private handgun sales do not require a permit, background check, or registration. Open carry is permitted without a permit for those aged 19 or older who can legally possess a firearm, with certain locations like schools and courthouses being off-limits.

Constitutional Carry

As of January 1, 2023, per HB 272, law-abiding residents and citizens aged 19 or older can carry a concealed pistol without a permit. The law does not specify a minimum age for carry. Under Alabama Code Section 13A-11–72, minors cannot possess firearms unless under adult supervision in specific scenarios.

Concealed Carry

Residents with an Alabama Pistol Permit and non-residents with a recognized permit can carry concealed firearms. No firearms safety course is required for permit issuance. Sheriffs may issue permits to active-duty military personnel stationed in Alabama and their spouses. Military veterans can obtain or renew permits free of charge. Alabama honors all out-of-state concealed carry permits.

Self-Defense

Alabama follows the Castle Doctrine and Stand Your Ground principles, allowing individuals to use force, including deadly force, without a duty to retreat if they are legally present and not engaged in unlawful activity.

Civil and Criminal Immunity

Force used in self-defense, as justified under Alabama law, grants immunity from criminal prosecution and civil lawsuits unless deemed unlawful.

Use of Force in Defense

Individuals can use physical force to defend themselves or others against unlawful force and can use deadly force in circumstances such as preventing unlawful deadly force, burglary, forcible entry, or imminent crimes like rape or robbery.

Defense of Premises and Property

Lawful occupants can use force to prevent or terminate criminal trespass and may use deadly force to prevent arson on the premises. Non-deadly force is permissible to protect property other than premises.

Definitions

  • Dwelling: A building used for lodging at night.
  • Building: Any structure used for business, public use, lodging, or storage.
  • Premises: Any building and real property.
  • Residence: A temporary or permanent dwelling.
  • Vehicle: A motorized conveyance for transporting people or property.

Carry Locations

  • In Vehicle: No permit required as of January 1, 2023.
  • Roadside Rest Areas: Yes, with a recognized permit.
  • Bars/Restaurants Serving Alcohol: Yes, unless posted.
  • Hotel Property: With permit or owner’s consent.
  • Employee Parking Lots: Firearms must be out of sight and locked when unattended.
  • Tribal Lands: No carry on Poarch Creek Indian Reservation.
  • State/National Parks, Forests, WMAs: Handguns only with a recognized permit.

Key State Laws

  • Duty to Inform Officer: Yes, upon officer’s inquiry.
  • Driver’s License Link: No automatic linkage to permit.
  • Preemption: State law overrides local gun regulations.
  • Red Flag Law: None.
  • Public Access to Registry: No public access; law enforcement only.
  • Non-Resident Permits: No, except for active-duty military and spouses.
  • “No Weapons Allowed” Signs: Not enforced by state law.
  • Brandishing: No state definition, visible carry not considered disorderly conduct.
  • Alcohol/Controlled Substance Use: Not specifically addressed; advised against carrying while impaired.

Handgun Purchase & Possession

  • Private Property Possession: No permit needed.
  • Purchase Permits: Not required.
  • Background Checks for Private Sales: Not required.
  • Permit Exemption for Background Checks: No.
  • Waiting Period: None.
  • Handgun Registration: None.
  • Minimum Age to Possess/Transport: 19 years old.

State Constitutional Provision

“Every citizen has a fundamental right to bear arms in defense of himself or herself and the state. Any restriction on this right shall be subject to strict scrutiny…” (ARTICLE 1, § 26)

Alabama Concealed Carry Reciprocity With Other States

Alabama honors permits from all other states. Be sure to check the specific laws of the state you are visiting.

Other States’ Reciprocity With Alabama

States with unrestricted or limited recognition of Alabama permits include Indiana, Montana, New Hampshire, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Vermont. Certain states have age or permit restrictions.

Permitless Carry States

Permitless carry is recognized in multiple states, including Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, and more. Each state has its own conditions.

Alabama Concealed Carry License Information

  • Non-Resident Permits: Not generally issued.
  • Residency Changes: Apply for a permit upon establishing residency in Alabama.
  • Fees: Vary by county; generally $20/year.
  • Military Veterans/Retirees: Eligible for free permits.

Requirements

  • At least 19 years old
  • Reside in the county or be active-duty military/spouse
  • Suitable for licensure
  • Not a registered sex offender
  • No mental health or legal prohibitions

Validity

1 to 5 years, applicant’s choice.

Processing Time

30 days.

Application

Obtain from local county sheriff, some counties offer online applications.

Name/Address Changes

Contact local sheriff.

Lost/Stolen Permits

Contact local sheriff.

Alabama Concealed Carry Permit Application Process

  1. Obtain and complete the application from your county sheriff.
  2. Submit with fee.
  3. Notification of approval within 30 days.

Firearms Training Requirements in Alabama

No training required, but highly recommended by USCCA. Find certified instructors and classes through USCCA.

Alabama Concealed Carry Permit Renewal Process

Renew before expiration, mail or bring old license to sheriff’s office, some counties offer online renewal.

Law Enforcement Officers (LEO)/Retired LEOs

LEOs and retired LEOs may carry under LEOSA. Alabama does not issue LEOSA qualification cards; oversight by Alabama POST.

Alabama Location Restrictions

  • Allowed: Bars, vehicles, rest areas, state/national parks, places of worship (unless posted).
  • Prohibited: Detention facilities, police stations, mental health facilities, county commission/city council meetings, courthouses, schools, and any place where firearms are prohibited by law.

FAQ: Alabama Concealed Carry Questions

  • Wear a COVID Mask & Carry: Permissible during the pandemic.
  • Carry While Hunting: Allowed with a permit for personal protection.
  • Knife Laws: Most knives are legal, except Bowie knives in vehicles.
  • Hunter Harassment Law: Prohibits interference with legal hunting.

Updates

  • 2022–03–11: Constitutional carry update.
  • 2021–05–17: Driver’s license linkage information.

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