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Indiana Gun Laws


“The people shall have a right to bear arms, for the defense of themselves and the State.”

Gun Laws Overview

Permit to Purchase No No
Registration of Firearms No No
Licensing of Owners No No
Permit to Carry No Yes

The list and map below are included as a tool to assist you in validating your information.  We have made every effort to report the information correctly, however reciprocity and recognition agreements are subject to frequent change.  The information is not intended as legal advice or a restatement of law and does not include:  restrictions that may be placed on non-resident permits, individuals under the age of 21, qualifying permit classes, and/or any other factor which may limit reciprocity and/or recognition.  For any particular situation, a licensed local attorney must be consulted for an accurate interpretation.  YOU MUST ABIDE WITH ALL LAWS: STATE, FEDERAL AND LOCAL.

Castle Doctrine Enacted
No-Net Loss No Legislation
Right to Carry Confidentiality Provisions Enacted
Right to Carry in Restaurants Legal
Right To Carry Laws Shall Issue
Right To Carry Reciprocity and Recognition Outright Recognition
Right to Keep & Bear Arms State Constitutional Provisions With Provisions
Concealed Carry Reciprocity
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Laws on Purchase, Possession and Carrying of Firearms


It is generally unlawful to sell or otherwise transfer possession of a handgun to a person under 18 except if the gun comes from the juvenile’s parent or guardian.

It is unlawful for any person to sell or give a firearm to any person whom he has a reasonable cause to believe has been convicted of a felony, or is a drug abuser or under the influence of a drug, or is an alcohol abuser or in a state of intoxication, or is mentally incompetent.


If a buyer or transferee is denied the right to purchase a handgun because of erroneous criminal history information, the buyer or transferee may exercise the right of access to and review and correction of criminal history information.

Exempt from the instant check are law enforcement officers; holders of an Indiana concealed carry license; and transactions between licensed firearms importers, collectors, firearms manufacturers or dealers.  In some instances, a federal instant check is required.

IC 35-47-2-17; IC 35-47-2.5-14


No state permit is required for the possession of a rifle, shotgun, or handgun.


It is unlawful for an adult to provide a firearm to a child or for a child to possess a firearm EXCEPT while the child is:

  • attending a hunter safety or firearms safety course and an adult is supervising the child during the course;
  • target shooting at an established range or in an area where the discharge of a firearm is not prohibited or supervised by a qualified firearms instructor or adult while at the range;
  • engaging in an organized firearm competition or practicing for a performance by an organized group that uses firearms as a part of a performance;
  • lawfully hunting or trapping with a license;
  • traveling with an unloaded firearm to or from an activity described in this section;
  • on real property that is under the control of the child’s parent, an adult family member, or legal guardian and has permission from the child’s parent or legal guardian to possess a firearm;
  • at the child’s residence and has the permission of the child’s parent, an adult family member or legal guardian to possess a firearm.               

IC 35-47-4-5 Unlawful possession of firearm by serious violent felon

IC 35-47-10-5 Dangerous possession of a firearm

IC 35-47-4-6 Unlawful possession of firearm by domestic batterer


No person shall carry a handgun in any vehicle or on or about his person without a license being in his possession.


A person may carry a handgun WITHOUT being licensed  to carry a handgun if:

(1) the person carries the handgun on or about the person's body in or on property that is owned, leased, rented, or otherwise legally controlled by the person;

(2) the person carries the handgun on or about the person's body while lawfully present in or on property that is owned, leased, rented, or otherwise legally controlled by another person, if the person:

(A) has the consent of the owner, renter, lessor, or person who legally controls the property to have the handgun on the premises;

(B) is attending a firearms related event on the property, including a gun show, firearms expo, gun owner's club or convention, hunting club, shooting club, or training course; or

(C) is on the property to receive firearms related services, including the repair, maintenance, or modification of a firearm;

(3) the person carries the handgun in a vehicle that is owned, leased, rented, or otherwise legally controlled by the person, if the handgun is:

(A) unloaded;

(B) not readily accessible; and

(C) secured in a case;

(4) the person carries the handgun while lawfully present in a vehicle that is owned, leased, rented, or otherwise legally controlled by another person, if the handgun is:

(A) unloaded;

(B) not readily accessible; and

(C) secured in a case; or

(5) the person carries the handgun:

(A) at a shooting range (as defined in IC 14-22-31.5-3);

(B) while attending a firearms instructional course; or

(C) while engaged in a legal hunting activity.

(c) Unless the person's right to possess a firearm has been restored under IC 35-47-4-7, a person who has been convicted of domestic battery under IC 35-42-2-1.3 may not possess or carry a handgun.

(d) This section may be not construed:

(1) to prohibit a person who owns, leases, rents, or otherwise legally controls private property from regulating or prohibiting the possession of firearms on the private property;

(2) to allow a person to adopt or enforce an ordinance, resolution, policy, or rule that:

(A) prohibits; or

(B) has the effect of prohibiting;

an employee of the person from possessing a firearm or ammunition that is locked in the trunk of the employee's vehicle, kept in the glove compartment of the employee's locked vehicle, or stored out of plain sight in the employee's locked vehicle, unless the person's adoption or enforcement of the ordinance, resolution, policy, or rule is allowed under IC 34-28-7-2(b); or

(3) to allow a person to adopt or enforce a law, statute, ordinance, resolution, policy, or rule that allows a person to possess or transport a firearm or ammunition if the person is prohibited from possessing or transporting the firearm or ammunition by state or federal law.

APPLICATION FOR LICENSE: An application for a license to carry a handgun must be made to the chief law enforcement officer of the municipality where the applicant resides, or to the sheriff of the county where the applicant resides or has a regular place of business or employment.  The application contains identifying information on the applicant such as: name, address, length of residence in the community, occupation, age, race, nationality, any criminal record, height and weight, and reason for desiring a license. The officer to whom the application is made shall conduct an investigation into the applicant’s official records and verify his character, reputation, and information contained in the application. The information together with his recommendation and one set of fingerprints are forwarded to the Indiana State Police Superintendent. The superintendent may make whatever further investigation he deems necessary. If it appears to the superintendent that the applicant has a proper reason for carrying a handgun and is of good character and reputation and a “proper person” to be so licensed, he shall issue either a qualified or an unlimited license to carry any handgun lawfully possessed by the applicant. 

Licenses to carry handguns shall be either qualified or unlimited and are valid for 4 years or for the lifetime of the individual receiving the license. Proper reasons for a qualified license are hunting and target practice. Unlimited licenses shall be issued for the purpose of protection of life and property. The superintendent may adopt rules imposing limitations on the use and carrying of handguns by a license holder who carries a handgun as a condition of his employment.

The term “proper person” includes a person:

  • who is 18 and has not been convicted of a crime which carries a sentence in excess of 1 year;
  • who is not a drug or alcohol abuser, does not have a reputation or propensity for violence or instability;
  • who has not made a false statement of material fact on his application;
  • does not have a conviction for resisting law enforcement or of violating Indiana’s weapon  laws within 5 years of the application; and
  • does not have an adjudication as a delinquent child for an act that would be a felony if committed by an adult if the applicant is less that 23. 

Every initial application will be granted or rejected within sixty days by the Indiana State Police Superintendent. Renewal of an existing license may be filed 365 days before the expiration of the existing license.  An application for renewal filed within thirty days of expiration automatically extends the existing license until the application for renewal has been decided. If an application for a license to carry has been denied, a request for a hearing before the superintendent may be made. Should the denial be upheld at the hearing, an appeal may be taken to the circuit court.

For license fee schedule, please visit: http://www.in.gov/isp/files/HANDGUN_LICENSING_FEES_updated_4_1_13.pdf

The superintendent shall have the authority to suspend at any time any license issued upon having reasonable grounds to believe that the person’s license should be suspended or revoked.

Licenses to carry handguns, issued by other states or foreign countries, will be recognized according to the terms thereof but only while the holders are not residents of Indiana.

With the exceptions of limitations on carrying during game seasons, state law is silent on the issue of carrying rifles and shotguns.

Prohibits a person, including an individual, corporation, and a government entity, from adopting or enforcing a rule that prohibits an employee of the person from legally possessing a firearm or ammunition that is locked in the trunk of an employee’s vehicle while the person’s vehicle is on the person’s property, unless the firearm or ammunition requires a federal license to possess.


No unit of government may regulate in any manner the ownership, possession, carrying, transportation, registration, transfer, and storage of firearms, ammunition, and firearm accessories.


Ind. Code 35-47-11.1-2: Regulation by political subdivisions prohibited

Except as provided in section 4 of this chapter, a political subdivision may not regulate:
(1) firearms, ammunition, and firearm accessories;
(2) the ownership, possession, carrying, transportation, registration,
transfer, and storage of firearms, ammunition, and firearm accessories; and
(3) commerce in and taxation of firearms, firearm ammunition, and firearm accessories.
Range Protection
A person who owns, operates, or uses a shooting range is not liable in any civil or criminal matter relating to noise or noise pollution that results from the operation or use of the shooting range if the construction and operation of the shooting range were legal at the time of its initial construction or initial operation, and the shooting range continues to operate in a manner that would have been legal at the time of the inception or initial operation.

Ind. Code Ann. § 14-22-31.5-6

Article 22. Fish and Wildlife

Antiques and Replicas

The chapter of Indiana’s code concerning regulation of handguns does not apply to any firearm not designed to use fixed cartridges or fixed ammunition, or any firearm made in or before 1899. Inoperable handguns cannot be carried as they meet the definition of a handgun.

Machine Guns and Sawed-Off Shotguns

The following persons may possess machine guns: members of the armed forces, approved government agencies and law enforcement while on duty; machine guns kept as relics for display that are harmless and unusable; persons possessing or having applied to possess machine guns under applicable U.S. statutes as long as said machine guns are transferred in compliance with Indiana law; and persons engaged in a business that involves machine guns while or when acting within the scope of and in furtherance of such business.


It is unlawful to manufacture, import, sell, give, lend, or possess a sawed-off shotgun. This does not apply to law enforcement officers acting in their official duties or persons, who manufacture, import, or sell sawed-off shotguns to law enforcement agencies. 


Local government may not regulate the ownership, possession, sale, transfer, or transportation of firearms or ammunition.

  • Information submitted by a person to obtain or renew a license to carry a handgun is to be confidential, may not be published, and is not open to public inspection unless the federal, state, or local government entity is in the course of investigation concerning a person who applied to obtain or renew their license to carry a handgun.
  • No person shall change, alter, remove, or obliterate the name of the maker, model, manufacturer’s serial number, or other mark of identification on any handgun, or possess such handgun, except as provided by applicable United States statute.
  • It is a felony to recklessly, knowingly, or intentionally perform an act creating a substantial risk of bodily injury or to Inflict bodily injury while armed with a deadly weapon. It is a felony to haze another person while armed with a deadly weapon. It is a felony to riot while armed with a deadly weapon.
  • It is unlawful to possess, transfer or manufacture handgun ammunition “that has a metal core and an outer coating of plastic.” This does not apply to nylon-coated ammunition, plastic shot capsules, or ammunition designed to be used in rifles or shotguns. Law enforcement officers acting in the course of their official duties or persons who manufacture, import, or sell such ammunition to law enforcement agencies are excepted.
  • It is unlawful to shoot upon or across a road.
  • Unless designated as a hunting, firearm sport, or archery area, it is unlawful to discharge a firearm inside a park that falls within the jurisdiction of a county board.
  • Subject to certain narrow exceptions, no person may bring an action against a firearms or ammunition manufacturer, trade association or seller for recovery of damages, injunctive relief or abatement of nuisance relating to the lawful design, manufacture, marketing or sale of a firearm or ammunition, or for recovery of damages resulting from the criminal or unlawful misuse of a firearm or ammunition by a third party.

SOURCES: IC 10-14-3-12; 14- 22- 6-9; 14-22-6-10; 14-16-1- 23; 20-8.1-5.1- 10; 34-12-3-3; 35 42-2-1; 35-45-1.2; 35-47-1; 35- 47-2; 35- 47-3; 35- 47-4; 35- 47-5; 35- 47-6; 35- 47-7; 35- 47-8; 35- 47-9; 35- 47-10; 35- 47-11; 36-10-3-39







Indiana NEWS

Gun Laws  

Friday, February 1, 2002

The Truth, Elkhart, Ind., 11/08/01

A 61-year-old Elkhart, Ind., man thwarted two would-be robbers who had broken into his home one night. The ...

Gun Laws  

Wednesday, August 1, 2001

The Journal Gazette, Fort Wayne, IN, 5/19/01

A bar patron thwarted an armed robbery of the Gin Mill in Fort Wayne, Ind., when he shot ...

Friday, July 27, 2001

Indiana - Elkhart County Passes Ban on Carrying Concealed Firearms

Elkhart County passed its ban on carrying concealed firearms in public buildings. The ban, which was passed without ...

Friday, July 13, 2001

Elkhart County Commission Tables Proposal

The Elkhart County Commission has again tabled its proposal to ban the carrying of concealed firearms in county ...

Gun Laws  

Tuesday, May 1, 2001

The Times, Crown Point, IN, 2/21/01

Kirit Patel steeled himself when a man entered his Indiana candy store, pulled out a gun and told ...

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Thursday, February 1, 2001

The Indianapolis Star, Indianapolis, Ind., 5/20/00

After falling victim to a robber's gun in 1998, 70-year-old George Smith took steps to ensure his future ...

Gun Laws  

Tuesday, August 1, 2000

Gary Post-Tribune, Gary, Ind., 3/30/00

As Dante Williams of Gary, Ind., walked toward home one night, he looked ahead to his basement apartment ...

Gun Laws  

Thursday, June 1, 2000

The Elkhart Truth, Elkhart, Ind., 3/22/00

A night clerk was on duty at an Elkhart, Ind., hotel when two men wearing blue bandanas over ...

Gun Laws  

Saturday, April 1, 2000

Marion Chronicle Tribune, Marion, Ind., 12/18/99

Marion, Ind., resident Brian Smith told authorities that when he returned home one Friday night he saw five ...

Gun Laws  

Thursday, July 1, 1999

South Bend Tribune, South Bend, IN (3/3/99)

When a gun-wielding man entered a Phillips 66 store in South Bend, Indiana, intent on robbing the establishment, ...


Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.