West Virginia Record

Saturday, November 16, 2019

AG's office provides guidance on constitutional carry implementation

By Chris Dickerson | May 13, 2016


CHARLESTON — West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey has provided the following guidance regarding this month’s implementation of constitutional carry, recent legislation that will allow most state residents to carry concealed handguns without a permit.

Morrisey concluded the law takes effect May 24. He reached that conclusion based upon a review of case law, which indicates legislation takes effect 90 days after initial passage unless the Legislature provides otherwise, even when the governor attempts to veto the law. Any previously discussed date was intended to serve as a conservative estimate to ensure gun owners would not be improperly prosecuted.

“This bill not only expands freedom, but will keep our citizens protected,” Morrisey said. “Those taking advantage of this important freedom should do so responsibly.”

Constitutional carry enables qualified West Virginians, ages 21 and older, to carry concealed handguns without a license within the Mountain State. Younger residents, beginning at age 18, can obtain a provisional license.

Anyone carrying concealed handguns beyond West Virginia’s border must have a permit and can only do so in the 33 states that recognize West Virginia concealed handgun licenses.

West Virginia has full handgun reciprocity agreements or mutual recognition with 33 states: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia and Wyoming.

West Virginia enjoys no such agreement or recognition with Maryland. That means no West Virginia resident can carry a concealed handgun into Maryland regardless of their permit status in West Virginia.

Those wishing to obtain a concealed handgun licenses can do so by contacting their local sheriff’s office.

For information regarding West Virginia concealed handgun licenses, please visit the Attorney General’s Gun Reciprocity page at www.wvago.gov.

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