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Indiana Gun Control Laws

With gun laws that vary by state and overlapping federal laws, trying to get a handle on gun regulations can be a bit tricky. So here is a brief summary of gun control laws in Indiana.

Indiana Gun Laws

State gun control laws regulate the purchase and use of firearms and can vary from state to state. Certain weapons, such as sawed-off shotguns, armor-piercing bullets, and silencers are prohibited under Indiana's gun control laws. The state, however, imposes no waiting period for prospective gun buyers, although they must meet certain criteria in order to be eligible for gun ownership.

The main provisions of Indiana's gun control laws are listed in the table below.

Relevant Statutes (Laws)

  • 35-47-2-1: Indiana Code Title 35: Firearm Ownership Laws
  • 35-47-1-7: Indiana Code Title 35: Meaning of a Proper Person
  • 35-47-2-3: Indiana Code Title 35: License to Carry a Firearm
  • 35-47-4-6: Indiana Code Title 35: Penalties for Illegal Possession

Illegal Arms

The following arms are illegal to own in Indiana:
  • Machine gun
  • Sawed-off shotgun
  • Armor-piercing handgun ammunition

Waiting Period

There is no waiting period to own a firearm in Indiana.

Who May Not Own

You can't possess a firearm if you:

  • Have been convicted of a serious violent felony
  • Have been adjudicated delinquent as a child for an offense that would qualify as a serious violent felony if committed by an adult (until you reach age 26-28 depending on the crime)
  • Have a domestic battery conviction or are under a protective order
  • Have been determined to be a danger to yourself or others by a court
  • Are unlawfully present in the U.S.
  • Abuse drugs
  • Abuse alcohol
  • Are mentally incompetent
  • Are under 18 (except if parent or guardian)
  • Have been convicted of any crime involving an inability to safely handle a handgun.

License Required?

Indiana does not require gun purchasers or owners to get a license.

Concealed Carry License Required?

Yes, you need a license to carry concealed in public. Some exceptions to this include;
  • If you are attending a firearms-related event
  • If you are legally hunting
  • If you are protected by a protection order (for up to 60 days)

Open Carried Allowed?

No. Open carry is not allowed in Indiana unless you have a license.

Eligibility for a Concealed Carry License

Indiana will issue you a license if you satisfy the following requirements:
  • You are over 18 years of age
  • You have a valid reason to carry a handgun
  • You are of good character and reputation
  • You are a U.S. citizen
  • You haven't been convicted of a felony
  • You are a proper person to be licensed. The proper person definition includes people who:
    • Don't have a conviction for resisting law enforcement
    • Don't have a conviction for a crime of domestic violence or other convictions that carry more than one-year sentences
    • Don't have a conviction for inability to handle handguns
    • Are not mentally ill
    • Do not make a false statement on their application

Machine Gun Laws

Machine guns are prohibited in Indiana unless you are authorized under federal laws.

Penalties for Illegal Firearm Possession

  • Possessing an unloaded or loaded machine gun is a level 5 or 4 felony, respectively.
  • Carrying a firearm without a permit is a Class A Misdemeanor.
  • Possessing a firearm after being convicted of a domestic battery is a Class A misdemeanor.
  • Possessing a firearm after being convicted of a violent felony is a Level 4 felony.

Penalties for Illegal Possession on or Near School Grounds

It is a Class 6 felony to possess a firearm on or near school grounds.

Note: State laws are always subject to change through the passage of new legislation, rulings in the higher courts (including federal decisions), ballot initiatives, and other means. While we strive to provide the most current information available, please consult an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

Federal Gun Laws and Indiana Gun Ownership

While Indiana and other states have their own gun laws, federal law also regulates gun ownership by determining the kinds of firearms citizens may legally own. And where federal and state laws intersect, federal law always trumps state law.

While the Second Amendment guarantees the ability to own certain firearms, the government can put some restrictions on the right to bear arms. The Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act and the National Firearms Act both apply to Indiana gun owners, so Hoosiers should be familiar with both statutes. You can also find more general information on this topic in FindLaw's gun law section.

Learn More About Indiana Gun Control Laws From an Attorney

State and federal firearms regulations can be confusing, especially when they overlap. If you have a criminal or civil case involving guns, or if you'd like to learn more about your rights and responsibilities as a gun owner in Indiana, it's a good idea to speak with an experienced criminal defense attorney near you today.

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