“The right of each citizen to keep and bear arms is fundamental and shall not be infringed. Any restriction on this right shall be subject to strict scrutiny.”


Louisiana is a shall-issue state. There is no permit, background check or firearms registration required when buying a handgun from a private individual. The state does not prohibit open carry, however, there may be local restrictions. It is legal without a permit for anyone at least 18. Concealed carry is legal for residents and applicants must be at least 21. Louisiana honors permits issued by states that recognize Louisiana permits. Louisiana is a Castle Doctrine state with a “stand your ground” statute. There is no duty to retreat.

Reciprocal Carry

By statute, Louisiana will recognize another state’s license to carry if that state recognizes Louisiana’s license:

“A current and valid concealed handgun permit issued by another state to an individual having attained the age of twenty-one years shall be deemed to be valid for the out-of-state permit holder to carry a concealed weapon within this state if a current and valid concealed handgun permit issued by Louisiana is valid in those states.”

Anyone contemplating reciprocal carry should check with the official list maintained by the Louisiana State Police at the point in time the reciprocal carry is to occur.

Duty To Notify Police Officer

A permittee armed with a handgun must notify a LEO who approaches the permittee in an official manner or with an identified official purpose that he has a weapon on his person, submit to a pat down, and allow the officer to temporarily disarm him. Whenever a LEO is made aware that an individual is carrying a concealed handgun and the LEO has reasonable grounds to believe that the individual is under the influence of either alcohol or a controlled dangerous substance, the LEO may take temporary take possession of the handgun and request submission of the individual to a department certified chemical test for determination of the chemical status of the individual. Whenever an officer is made aware that an individual is behaving in a criminally negligent manner, or is negligent in the carrying of a concealed handgun, the LEO may seize the handgun, until adjudication by a judge.

Carrying Firearms In Vehicles

Louisiana permits anyone who is legally allowed to possess a firearm to transport or store such firearm in a locked, privately-owned motor vehicle in any parking lot, parking garage, or other designated parking area.

NFA Items

Louisiana permits ownership of all NFA items, provided they are legally obtained pursuant to federal law. Hunting with suppressors is legal.

Self-Defense Laws

Louisiana has both Castle Doctrine and SYG laws. There is no duty to retreat from any place You have a legal right to be. You may use force, including deadly force, in defense of yourself or others if You reasonably believe it is necessary to prevent imminent death, SBI, the commission of a forcible felony, or to stop the unlawful & forcible entry into Your dwelling, place of business, or occupied motor vehicle. Deadly force may also be used if reasonably necessary to stop an intruder from using unlawful force against an occupant of a dwelling, business, or occupied motor vehicle in the course of a robbery.

Carry In Restaurants That Serve Alcohol

Louisiana law generally prohibits a person from intentionally carrying a firearm, openly or concealed, while on the premises of an alcoholic beverage outlet, which includes any commercial establishment in which alcoholic beverages are sold in individual servings for consumption on the premises, whether or not such sales are a primary or incidental purpose of the business of the establishment. However, this prohibition does not apply to the owner, lessee, or employee of such an outlet, to law enforcement officers, or to a person possessing a firearm in accordance with a concealed handgun permit on the premises of an alcoholic beverage outlet which has been issued a Class A-Restaurant permit.

Do “No Gun Signs” Have The Force Of Law?

If a property or establishment has a “No Guns” sign or the person in lawful possession communicates to you that guns are not allowed, You are prohibited from carrying on the property or into the establishment. Failure to obey such signs or verbal warnings constitutes trespass. Furthermore, no individual to whom a concealed handgun permit is issued may carry such concealed handgun into the private residence of another without first receiving the consent of that person.

Open Carry

Open carry is legal in Louisiana without a permit. The state preempts all firearm laws in the state and local authorities cannot have laws/ordinances prohibiting open carry unless such law of a local government was in place before July 15, 1985.

DISCLAIMER: The Gun Laws by State Guide (GLBSG) was created to provide its readers with a general educational resource tool to explore the pertinent gun laws in Your jurisdiction.

However, the GLBSG was not researched and/or written by attorneys as a specific legal guide to rely upon. Instead, it is a starting point for your own research. In addition, all laws are always subject to reasonable, but different, legal interpretation as to meaning and application.

As such, the GLBSG is not intended to supplant, nor limit, Your need for independent verification of any and all material contained herein and consultation with competent counsel of choice regarding any specific issues.

This type of specific legal analysis is necessarily beyond the general educational objective of the GLBSG and for which a bar-admitted attorney in the particular state(s) is needed and required. The content of this GLBSG is a general restatement of the law.

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