Carrying Concealed Weapons
Florida law makes it illegal for individuals to carry concealed weapons without a proper permit. Even with a valid license, it can be a criminal offense to carry concealed weapons in certain locations.
Weapons and firearm charges are aggressively prosecuted and can have significant consequences for individuals if they are convicted. In addition to substantial fines and possible jail time, you may also risk losing your right to own and operate a weapon.
West Palm Beach Carrying Concealed Weapons Lawyer
Have you been charged with carrying a concealed firearm or other weapon in Florida? You should immediately contact an experienced criminal defense attorney who will fight to protect your Second Amendment rights. Andrew D. Stine, P.A. provides aggressive criminal defense for clients all over Palm Beach County, including such towns and villages as Lantana, Belle Glade, Wellington, Jupiter, North Palm Beach, and Lake Park.
Andrew Stine has dedicated his practice to protecting the rights of his clients. He will review your case and determine the best course of action when you call 561.880.4300 to schedule a free, confidential consultation.
Overview of Carrying Concealed Weapons
- What concealed weapons am I allowed carry?
- How do I get a Florida Concealed Weapon License?
- Are there places in Palm Beach County I cannot carry a concealed weapon even if I have a license?
- What are the consequences of carrying a concealed weapon?
- What are some defenses against charges for carrying a concealed weapon?
Florida Statute § 790.01 makes it illegal for an unlicensed person to carry a concealed weapon or device on or about his or her person. A person is not violating the law if, for the purposes of lawful self-defense, they are carrying the following items in a concealed manner:
- A self-defense chemical spray, such as Mace or hot pepper spray
- A nonlethal stun gun, dart-firing stun gun, or other nonlethal electric weapon or device designed solely for defensive purposes
Individuals can apply for a Concealed Weapon License, which is administered by the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. In order to apply for a license, you need to be 21 years of age or older, able to demonstrate competency with a firearm, and currently residing in the United States as well a legal citizen or deemed a lawful permanent resident alien by the appropriate agencies. Individuals who are serving overseas in the U.S. Armed Forces can also apply so long as they submit a copy of their deployment documentation.
You may be ineligible to apply for a Concealed Weapon License if:
- You are a fugitive from justice
- You are physically unable to safely handle a firearm
- You failed to provide proof of proficiency with a firearm
- You have a felony conviction and your civil and firearm rights have not yet been restored
- You have a record of drug or alcohol abuse
- You have adjudication withheld or sentence suspended on a felony or misdemeanor crime of violence unless three years have elapsed since probation or other conditions set by the court have been fulfilled
- You have been committed to a mental institution or were adjudged incompetent or mentally defective
- You have two or more DUI convictions within the previous three years
- You renounced your U.S. citizenship
- You were convicted of a misdemeanor crime of violence in the last three years
- You were convicted of a violation of controlled substance laws or you have multiple arrests for such offenses
- You were dishonorably discharged from the armed forces
- You were issued a domestic violence injunction or an injunction against repeat violence that is currently in force
Even with a Concealed Weapon License, Florida Statute § 790.06(12)(a) prohibits concealed weapons being carried in the following places:
- Any career center
- Any courthouse
- Any detention facility, prison, or jail
- Any elementary or secondary school facility or administration building
- Any meeting of the governing body of a county, public school district, municipality, or special district
- Any meeting of the Legislature or a committee thereof
- Any place defined under Florida Statute § 823.05 as a place of nuisance
- Any place where the carrying of firearms is prohibited by federal law
- Any police, sheriff, or highway patrol station
- Any polling place
- Any school, college, or professional athletic event not related to firearms
Additionally, concealed weapons are only allowed to be carried by certain individuals in the following places:
- Any college or university facility unless the licensee is a registered student, employee, or faculty member of such college or university and the weapon is a stun gun or nonlethal electric weapon or device designed solely for defensive purposes and the weapon does not fire a dart or projectile
- Any courtroom, except that nothing in this section would preclude a judge from carrying a concealed weapon or determining who will carry a concealed weapon in his or her courtroom
- Any portion of an establishment licensed to dispense alcoholic beverages for consumption on the premises, which portion of the establishment is primarily devoted to such purpose
- The inside of the passenger terminal and sterile area of any airport, provided that no person shall be prohibited from carrying any legal firearm into the terminal, which firearm is encased for shipment for purposes of checking such firearm as baggage to be lawfully transported on any aircraft
Aggravating circumstances like high speeds or bodily injuries can result in additional penalties, but all fleeing or eluding offenses carry sever consequences. These punishments include:
- Carrying Concealed Weapon — First-degree misdemeanor, punishable up to one year in jail and/or up to $1,000 fine
- Carrying Concealed Firearms — Third-degree felony, punishable up to five years in prison and/or up to $5,000 fine
- Carrying concealed weapon while committing or attempting to commit a felony, first offense — Third-degree felony, punishable up to five years in prison and/or up to $5,000 fine
- Carrying concealed firearm while committing or attempting to commit a felony, first offense — Second-degree felony, punishable up to 15 years in prison and/or up to $10,000 fine
- Carrying concealed weapon or firearm while committing or attempting to commit a felony, second or subsequent offense — First-degree felony, punishable up to 30 years in prison and/or up to $10,000 fine and can also be subject to 10-20-LIFE enhanced penalties
- Convicted felon carrying any concealed firearm, weapon, or device — Second-degree felony, punishable minimum mandatory three years up to 15 years in prison and/or up to $10,000 fine (May be first-degree felony punishable by life imprisonment under Florida Statutes §874.04 penalty enhancements for gang-related offenses)
You should know that there may be several defenses available to your particular case that can result in the charges against you being reduced or completely dismissed. Some examples include, but are not limited to:
- Your concealed carry was legally allowed under a Florida statutory exception
- Your concealed weapon or firearm was securely encased or otherwise not readily accessible for immediate use
- You had a valid Concealed Weapon License
- You had no knowledge of the weapon or firearm
- You were carrying a concealed weapon or firearm around your home or place of business
- You were concealing the carry of a lawful self-defense product
- You were not in possession of the weapon or firearm
Find the Best Carrying Concealed Weapons Lawyer in West Palm Beach
If you are facing charges of carrying a concealed firearm or weapon in Florida, you will need skilled and proven legal defense. Andrew D. Stine, P.A. represents clients against weapon and firearm charges in West Palm Beach and such surrounding cities as Belle Glade, Delray Beach, Boca Raton, Riviera Beach, Greenacres, and Boynton Beach.
Criminal defense attorney Andrew Stine understands the stress that these charges place on the accused individuals and their families. He can provide a compassionate and thoughtful review of your case during a free consultation when you call 561.880.4300 today.