Carrying a Concealed Weapon

Carrying a concealed weapon is a serious offense under Florida law. Florida Statute § 790.01 states carrying a concealed weapon without a license may result in misdemeanor or felony charges. In addition, you may lose the eligibility to obtain a concealed license permit.

A firearm or weapon does not need to be completely hidden for it to be considered concealed under Florida law. It can be tricky defending a concealed weapon or firearm offense. No matter the circumstances, this is not something to face alone.

If you or someone you know has been charged with carrying a concealed weapon, it is vital that you contact an experienced criminal defense attorney.

Port St. Lucie Attorneys for Carrying a Concealed Weapon in Florida

Any person, who has been charged with violating a firearm offense, should seek an experienced criminal defense attorney. Do not proceed any further without legal representation. Gain trusted legal counsel with the attorneys at Meltzer & Bell.

Meltzer & Bell is a group of distinguished attorneys who focus on criminal defense. We have over 20 years of collective experience handling both firearm or weapon offenses in Florida courts. Our attorneys are passionate about what we do. We will exhaust every possible resource, file motions, suppress evidence, and do whatever is possible to assist your case. Find an attorney who works hard and cares with Meltzer & Bell.

The attorneys at Meltzer & Bell practices law throughout the greater Martin County and St. Lucie County areas including Rio, Jupiter Island, and Stuart.

Call us today at (772) 291-2534 to schedule a free consultation about your legal options today.

Overview for Carrying a Concealed Weapon in Florida

  • Requirements to CCW
  • Penalties
  • Possible Defenses
  • Additional Resources

Florida Requirements for a Concealed Carry Permit

The Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services issues concealed carry licenses to interested applicants in the State of Florida. To obtain a concealed carry permit for a firearm, the applicant must fulfill the following conditions.

  • The applicant is a resident, citizen, or permanent resident of the United States as determined by the United States Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services;
  • Is 21 years of age or older;
  • Does not suffer from a physical infirmity which prevents safe handling;
  • Has a legal means to carry a concealed firearm for lawful self-defense;
  • Demonstrates competence with a firearm by an authorized agency, organization, association, military service, law enforcement course, or other certified firearm safety course.

Not everyone is eligible for a concealed carry permit. Federal and State laws indicate that certain groups of individuals are ineligible for any type of concealed carry permit. The following are not legally allowed to pursue a CCW license:

  • Those who are the subject of a court order that restrains the person from harassing, threatening, or stalking an intimate or domestic partner, former partner, or child of such partner;
  • Those who have been convicted of any misdemeanor crime of domestic violence, including domestic battery or domestic assault.
  • Those who are a fugitive from justice in any jurisdiction;
  • Those who are addicted to any controlled substance or is an unlawful user of any controlled substance;
  • Those who have been dishonorably discharged from the Armed Forces;
  • Those who have been convicted of a felony;
  • Those who are unlawfully residing in the United States;
  • Those who have been admitted to a mental institution or has been adjudicated as having a mental defect;
  • Those who have renounced their United States citizenship;
  • Those younger than the age of 21 years old; or
  • Those under an active domestic violence injunction or charge.

Florida Statute § 790.01(4) states that there are a few “weapons” that a person is legally allowed to conceal carry. The instruments that can be concealed carried without a permit include:

  • Nonlethal stun gun;
  • Dart-firing stun gun;
  • A self-defense chemical spray;
  • Other nonlethal electric weapon or device that is deigned for self-defense

Penalties for Carrying a Concealed Weapon in St. Lucie County

Florida law determines the penalties for carrying a concealed weapon by what was possessed. If an unlicensed person carries a concealed weapon, he or she will face a first-degree misdemeanor.

The penalties for a first-degree misdemeanor include:

  • Up to 12 months in jail; and
  • Possible fine of up to $1,000.

The legal consequences are enhanced for carrying a concealed firearm. If a person is unlicensed and carries a concealed firearm, he or she will face a third-degree felony.

The penalties for a third-degree felony include:

  • Up to five years in prison; and
  • Possible fine of up to $5,000.

In addition to statutory penalties, a felony conviction will result in the alleged offender being prohibited from carrying any firearm or weapon. He or she is required to wait eight years before eligibility to apply for Restoration of Firearm Authority with the Florida Office of Executive Clemency.


Possible Defenses for Carrying a Concealed Weapon in Florida


Carrying a concealed weapon without a license can result in heavy penalties. However, there is no reason to give up hope. A skilled attorney can work with you to create a sturdy defense for your case. The following are some possible defenses that can be implemented in a concealed carry case.

  • Alleged offender was carrying a concealed pistol unloaded and in a secure wrapper from the place of purchase to his or her home or place of business or to a place of repair
  • Alleged offender was an unlicensed person 18 years of age or older who possessed a securely encased or not readily accessible for immediate use concealed firearm or other weapon for self-defense or other lawful purpose within the interior of a private conveyance
  • Alleged weapon or firearm was not under the exclusive control of the alleged offender
  • Alleged firearm or weapon was within ordinary sight
  • Alleged offender had a Florida Concealed Weapon License
  • Alleged offender was an officer or employee of Florida or United States duly authorized to carry a concealed weapon
  • Alleged offender was an out-of-state visitor who was licensed to carry concealed firearms or weapons in a state recognized by Florida
  • Alleged Firearm or weapon was not readily accessible under Florida law.

Additional Resources

Florida Concealed Carry Laws – Visit the official website for Florida legislation and regulations. Find more information about concealed carry offenses, what the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services requires for a license, and the penalties that can result from carrying a concealed weapon without a permit.

Florida Gun Laws – Visit the official website for the National Rife Association’s Institute for Legislative Action. Find the citizen’s guide for Florida’s gun laws, their gun laws overview, and the different definitions for legal terms.


Lawyer for Concealed Carry of a Weapon in St. Lucie County

It can be tricky to navigate a firearm offense in Florida’s criminal courts. Prosecutors will not rest until they receive a conviction. Do not be alone through this process. Call the attorneys at Meltzer & Bell today.

Meltzer & Bell is effective and efficient at creating defenses for their clients. Our attorneys approach each case with new eyes and open ears. We will always be sure to listen to your concerns, and exhaust our resources to uncover all legal routes. Do not settle when it comes to your rights. Contact a skilled attorney today with Meltzer & Bell.

The attorneys at Meltzer & Bell represent clients throughout the Treasure Coast area including Port St. Lucie, Fort Pierce, Palm City, and Stuart.

Call us today at (772) 291-2534, or simply submit an online contact form for a free consultation.


This article was last updated on September 5, 2018

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