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This document contains general information about legal matters. The information is not necessarily legal advice, and cannot substitute for the legal advise of a licensed professional. Stay informed and read up on Texas laws.
WARNING: CAMPUS CARRY AT 4-YEAR UNIVERSITIES IS NOT"LEGAL" UNTIL 1 AUGUST 2016!! 2-YEAR COLLEGES HAVE UNTIL 1 AUGUST 2017
"A woman who demands further gun control legislation is like a chicken who roots for Colonel Sanders."
- Larry Elder
Can I lawfully carry a firearm on my college campus?
Yes, as long as you have a handgun license. The 84th Legislature legalized the concealed carry of firearms on institutions of higher learning (colleges and universities) beginning on August 1, 2016, for 4-year universities and August 1, 2017, for 2-year community colleges.
Can my campus ban concealed firearms if they don't want to allow them?
Texas law expressly forbids public universities from creating any rules that prohibit license holders from carrying a concealed handgun on campus. However, the president or other chief executive officer of the campus can establish "reasonable rules, regulations, or other provisions" dealing with the carrying of concealed handguns as long as those provisions do not generally prohibit or have the effect of prohibiting license holders from carrying a concealed handgun on the campus. An example of this would include not allowing concealed carry in a certain type of lab or athletic room. The school will be required to display a 30.06 sign on those locations.
Private universities, on the other hand, may adopt rules that include a ban on concealed handguns in buildings or the entire campus, to include campus transportation.
Institutions of higher learning are required to widely distribute any such rules that are established to ensure that the student body and license holders are educated and informed on the policy.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What if my campus is banning concealed handguns or making unreasonable policies about when and where I can carry?
A standing committee of the house of representatives and the senate, respectively, will be created to monitor the implementation and continuation of the campus carry program to ensure the law is being followed. If you feel that your campus is violating the law, please contact the standing committee or Open Carry Texas for help in resolving the issue. We will provide a list of the names of the committee here once created.
Can my concealed firearm be loaded?
Yes. The law makes no distinction between a loaded and an unloaded firearm. For safety purposes, we recommend every firearm be treated as if it were loaded.
I live in a college dorm. Can I keep a firearm in my dorm?
The law allows each campus to establish "rules, regulations, or other provisions" related to the storage of handguns in dormitories. You will need to refer to your particular college or university rules for more information. These are required to be in place no later than September 1, 2016.
Can I open carry on my campus if I have a license?
No, while campus carry is legal as of August 1, 2016, it must remain concealed and you must have a handgun license. To get a license you must be at least 21 years of age and meet all eligibility requirements.
Read the text of the law here.
Open Carry Texas (OCT) is a non-profit, 501(c)4 organization dedicated to the safe and legal carry of firearms openly in the state of Texas in accordance with the United States and Texas constitutions and other applicable laws. Donations are not tax deductible.