Alabama Gun Law Updates

Alabama Gun Law Update

The Alabama Legislature made several changes to Alabama’s gun laws. Here are a few new things that you need to know about firearm laws in Alabama as of January 1st.


Alabamians that are otherwise eligible to possess and carry a firearm are no longer required to purchase a pistol permit in order to carry a pistol on their person (concealed or openly), or in a vehicle. This is what some referred to as “Constitutional Carry.”

You may still purchase a pistol permit if you would like. Some choose to do so due to reciprocity laws in other states, or other personal reasons. If you would still like a permit, we sell them in increments of 1 year, 5 years, or lifetime.


Alabama permits are recognized by the states of Mississippi, Georgia, Vermont, New Hampshire, Idaho, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Arkansas, North Carolina, and Indiana. If traveling to another state, you would have to obtain a permit recognized by that specific state. South Carolina is the only southern state not to recognize a permit from our state. Citizens must have an Alabama pistol permit if required by that specific state. Make sure to understand the firearms laws in any state to which you travel.

Prohibited Persons

The law about who is eligible to possess and carry a firearm has not changed. To be eligible, a person must:

Be at least 18 years of age

Has not been convicted of a violent crime, to include misdemeanor domestic violence

Has not been adjudicated as mentally deficient

Does not have an active protection order against them

Prohibited Places

The law now states that the mere possession or carrying of a firearm in a public place is not in and of itself a crime. However, if a person is to “brandish” or threaten another with a firearm, it may still be a crime. Brandishing means “waving, flourishing, displaying, or holding of an item in a manner that is threatening or would appear threatening to a reasonable person, with or without explicit verbal threat, or in a wanton or reckless manner.”

Some federal laws still prohibit the carrying of firearms in places like military bases and federal buildings. Alabama law still prohibits the carrying of firearms in law enforcement buildings, courthouses and courthouse annexes, jails and prisons, psychiatric facilities, drug treatment facilities and half-way houses. In addition, the owner of private property may prohibit others from carrying a firearm on their property. You may be charged with trespassing if you refuse to leave at the request of the owner.

Law Enforcement Interactions

The law now provides that a law enforcement officer may relieve a person of their weapon if the officer has reasonable suspicion that the person has committed or is planning to commit a crime. The officer may also relieve a person of their weapon if the person presents a threat to themselves, the officer, or the public. The law now requires that you disclose to a law enforcement officer that you are carrying a firearm on your person or in your vehicle if asked. The law does prohibit the person from touching the weapon during the interaction unless directed to by the officer.


Lastly, the law also changed the definition of a shotgun to comply with technological advancements in shotgun design.


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