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Florida’s open carry law: Does it affect concealed carry license holders?

On Behalf of | Feb 21, 2024 | Criminal Defense

Florida’s approach to the open carry of weapons is strict, with the state generally prohibiting the practice. But at the same time, the state issues concealed weapon licenses to eligible residents.

So, what happens if a person with a concealed carry permit decides to openly carry their firearm in public?

Concealed carry permits don’t extend to open carry

Per state law, a concealed carry license only allows the holder to carry a concealed weapon or firearm, but not to open carry said weapon. Thus, permit holders must keep their weapons concealed in public or risk violating the law.

Rules on the intentional display of a firearm

Although concealed carry permit holders may be prohibited from open carry, they’re allowed to briefly display their firearm to another person as part of self-defense. By law, this isn’t a violation, but it becomes an open carry offense if the firearm owner flashed their weapon in an angry or threatening manner outside of self-defense.

The penalties for open carry violations

Violating Florida’s open carry law can lead to serious consequences. Individuals found openly carrying weapons may face a second-degree misdemeanor charge, which can result in a fine up to $500, up to 60 days in jail, or both.

Florida’s stance on open carry is clear: it’s illegal. Whether you are a resident or a visitor, understanding this law is essential. For those with concealed carry permits, remember that the permit does not extend to open carry. If you find yourself facing charges, know that a legal professional may be able to guide you through the court process and protect your rights.