Hamilton Herald Masthead


Front Page - Friday, July 7, 2017

Want a Tennessee handgun permit? Here are the rules

Tennessee’s handgun carry-permit law recognizes citizens’ “right to keep and bear arms for their common defense,” along with the power of the legislature to regulate “the wearing of arms with a view to prevent crime.”

It’s a misdemeanor in Tennessee to carry a firearm with the intent to go armed, but holding a handgun carry permit is a defense. (The misdemeanor also applies to carrying a club with the intent to go armed.)

People can legally possess a gun without a permit if the gun is at their residence, place of business or premises, or if the person is using the weapon for lawful hunting, trapping, sport shooting or the like.

Both Tennessee and federal law ban guns in a host of specific places.

Persons seeking handgun carry permits must:

-- Be at least 21 years old (18 if on active military duty or honorably discharged/retired)

-- Be a Tennessee resident or U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident. Proof of citizenship/lawful permanent residency status required.

-- Not be prohibited from having a firearm

-- Furnish information including addresses for the past five years, fingerprints and photo ID

-- State they haven’t had certain convictions, including DUIs within a specified time frame, domestic violence offenses and stalking

-- Successfully complete a state-approved handgun safety course (with exceptions for military and law enforcement personnel) and pay a $100 processing fee for the permit

-- Meet requirements on mental health and addictions

Additional information on permit requirements are found at www.tn.gov/safety/article/hgqualifications

The permit is good for eight years and can be renewed for an additional $50 without repeating the training course.

It’s possible to apply for and obtain a lifetime permit that generally costs another $200 along with the initial $100 fee. The state periodically checks for criminal history of permit holders.

Lower fees may apply in certain cases, for military and retired law enforcement, for example. Tennessee has reciprocity with some states issuing handgun carry permits.

More information on carry permits in Tennessee is available at www.tn.gov/safety/article/handgunmain.