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I'm Taking My Handgun to the Range. Do I Need a Handgun License?

Generally, it is not required if transported properly. Indiana law generally provides, unless as otherwise provided through certain exceptions, a person shall not carry a handgun in a vehicle or on their person without being licensed. I.C. § 35-47-2-1. However, it is one of those exceptions that allow an individual (who does not have a domestic violence conviction) to transport a handgun to a shooting range or another appropriate location. But, the person must carry that handgun in a vehicle that is owned, leased, rented, or otherwise legally controlled by him or her. I.C. § 35-47-2-1. In addition, the handgun must be unloaded, not readily accessible, and in a case. Id.

The law is unclear on what "not readily accessible" means, and the facts and circumstances of each case are different. However, it would seem to be clear that storing an unloaded handgun in a case in the trunk of your car or rear storage area of your SUV would likely qualify. The stakes are high, as failure to abide or follow the law, subjects an individual to possible criminal liability, including a conviction for Possession of a Handgun without a License. This offense is a class A misdemeanor and is punishable by up to one (1) year in jail and fine of up to $5,000. A subsequent conviction can be enhanced to a class C felony, which is punishable by up to eight (8) years in prison.

If you have questions or concerns about this issue or other firearms or handgun-related legal issues, contact Keffer Barnhart LLP today at 1-800-NOT GUILTY or (317) 857-0160.