N.C. Constitutional carry bill aims to eliminate handgun permits

North Carolina’s concealed carry permitting system could be a thing of the past if some lawmakers have their way.
The NC Constitutional Carry Act would eliminate the need for a permit in North Carolina for those who want to carry a firearm concealed.
Published: Feb. 28, 2023 at 6:22 PM EST
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Some North Carolina lawmakers have their sights set on the state’s concealed handgun permit system, looking to do away with the nearly 30-year-old policy.

House Majority Whip Keith Kidwell along with representatives Jay Adams, Ben Moss, and Mark Pless introduced the NC Constitutional Carry Act last week which would eliminate the need for an individual to obtain a permit to carry a concealed firearm.

“Any person who is a citizen of the United States and is at least 18 years old may carry a concealed handgun in this State unless provided otherwise by law,” the bill reads, in part. If approved, there would still be restrictions on who can carry a handgun and federal laws would still need to be followed.

Although the bill could do away with the requirement to obtain a permit, those who still want one would be able to receive one. One reason to keep a concealed handgun permit is for reciprocity in other states that require permits to carry concealed.

North Carolina’s current concealed carry permit system have been in place since 1995 and require a sheriff from the applicant’s home county to issue the permit which is good for five years.

The current requirements to obtain a concealed handgun permit include:

  • Complete an application, under oath, on a form provided by the sheriff’s office ;
  • Pay a non-refundable fee of $80.00;
  • Allow the sheriff’s office to take two (2) full sets of fingerprints, which may cost up to $10.00;
  • Provide an original certificate of completion of an approved handgun safety course; and
  • Provide a release authorizing disclosure to the sheriff of any record concerning the applicant’s mental health or capacity.

This is not the first time that state lawmakers have tried to eliminate the system. in 2017 a Cabarrus County state representative filed a similar bill.

The NC Constitutional Carry Act is just one of the several firearms bills introduced into the General Assembly this session. Earlier this month the NC Senate passed Senate Bill 41 which repeals the need for a sheriff to issue a pistol purchase permit before someone can legally buy a handgun.

According to the North Carolina General Assembly’s website the bill passed first reading and on Monday was referred to the Committee on Judiciary 2.