The LA State Constitution Article 1, Section 11

“The right of each citizen to keep and bear arms is fundamental and shall not be infringed. Any restriction on this right shall be subject to strict scrutiny.”

Open Carry Frequently Asked Questions

Can I lawfully open carry a firearm in Louisiana?
Yes, with a few exceptions.

Are there places I can't open carry?
Yes. Open Carrying in Schools, Government buildings, alcoholic beverage outlets and posted firearm-free zones is unlawful and you can be arrested. Owners of private property may also post signs forbidding the carry of firearms on their property. Do your research to avoid these and other restricted areas.

Can everyone open carry?
No, a person convicted of certain crimes and minors under 18 years old cannot open carry. Generally, if you can lawfully possess a firearm you can open carry. Louisiana Statue RS 14:95 contains valuable information, but is not all inclusive. Federal laws must also be considered when discussing the legality of firearm ownership.

I live out of state, can I open carry in Louisiana?

Is a permit required to open carry?
No. You are not required to have a permit to open carry in Louisiana.

Can I open carry in my vehicle?
Yes.  Including Motorcycles.

Can my handgun be loaded?

Do I give up my right to open carry if I get a concealed handgun permit?
No! This is incorrect information that has been spread around. Supposedly, some individuals working for Law Enforcement were informing concealed handgun instructors to inform those who applied for a permit that, if approved, they would no longer be allowed to open carry. There is no basis for this in law.

Can I switch between open carry and concealed carry?
As long as you have your concealed carry permit, you can chose to do either one. Be sure all laws/restrictions are followed according to which way chosen to carry. Having a CCW license does not take away your right to openly carry.

Can businesses prohibit me from open carrying?
Yes. A private property owner has the right to prohibit any individual from carrying on their property. State owned or Government owned will usually have a notification posted on the outside entry. As always, if asked to remove your weapon upon entry, please be courteous and abide by the owners wishes.

Can I open carry on private property?
Yes, but like privately owned businesses, if the owners request removal of the weapon, please respect their wishes.

Do local law enforcement officers know that open carry is legal?
Some do and some don't. Do not assume that someone who has been trained to enforce the law knows everything there is to know. You will run into some LEO's that are completely unaware that it is a legal thing to open carry.

Can I be arrested for open carry?
Not legally. Although your behavior while open carrying is subject to the law. Creating a disturbance or failure to comply with law enforcement can result from improper conduct regardless of whether you are carrying or not. Use good judgment and know your rights in all situations.

Can I consume alcohol while open carrying?
Alcohol and firearms do not mix. Consumption of alcohol while handling firearms is not recommended. Generally Conceal Handgun Permit laws can be used as a rule of thumb in this instance. Louisiana Statute RS 40:1379.3 has detailed information on the laws around CHP. You are considered under the influence as evidenced by a blood alcohol reading of .05 percent or greater by weight of alcohol in the blood.

Can I possess or transport a firearm within the boundaries of a state park, state historic site, state preservation area, wildlife management area, or wildlife refuge?
Yes. According to RS 56:1691

Can I Open Carry in a restaurant that serves alcohol?

No.  A Concealed Handgun Permit (CHP) is required to carry in any establishment that serves alcohol.  RS 14:95.5 provides an exemption to permit holders on the premises of an alcoholic beverage outlet which has been issued a Class A-Restaurant permit.

Louisiana Statutes related to firearms

RS 14:16- Mistake of fact

RS 14:18- Justification; general provisions

RS 14:19- Use of force or violence in defense

RS 14:21- Aggressor cannot claim self defense

RS 14:94 Illegal use of weapons or dangerous instrumentalities

RS 14:95 - Illegal carrying of weapons

RS 14:95.1 - Possession of firearm or carrying concealed weapon by a person convicted of certain felonies

RS 14:95.1.1 - Illegally supplying a felon with a firearm

RS 14:95.2 - Carrying a firearm, or dangerous weapon, by a student or non-student on school property, at school-sponsored functions or firearm-free zone

RS 14:95.5 - Possession of firearm on premises of alcoholic beverage outlet

RS 14:95.6 - Firearm-free zone; notice; signs; crime; penalties


RS 14:95.8 - Illegal possession of a handgun by a juvenile

RS 32:292.1 - Transportation and storage of firearms in privately owned motor vehicles

RS 56:1691 - Possession of firearms

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