New Concealed Carry Laws: What You Need to Know

New York strengthened gun laws after the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to strike down its 100-year-old pistol permit process on Thursday, September 1. 

The new requirements include:  

  • Strengthened background checks and firearm safety  
  • Live-fire training for individuals seeking to obtain concealed carry permits 
  • Concealed carry permit holders are prohibited from bringing firearms into sensitive locations, including bars, libraries, schools, government buildings, and hospitals 
  • Renewal or recertification of permits is required every three years 

Additionally, new permitting and minimum age requirements related to ownership of semiautomatic rifles took effect in September 2022. Now, individuals must be at least 21 years old and have a permit before purchasing or taking possession of a semiautomatic rifle. This does not affect individuals who had semiautomatic rifles before September 4, 2022.     

“In response to the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down New York’s century-old concealed carry law, we took swift and thoughtful action to keep New Yorkers safe,” Governor Kathy Hochul said in a press release. “I refuse to surrender my right as governor to protect New Yorkers from gun violence or any other form of harm. In New York State, we will continue leading the way forward and implementing common sense gun safety legislation.”   

The state also created a gun safety website to provide New Yorkers with more information about the new requirements.   

New York concealed carry laws   

New York State makes it possible for individuals to carry concealed weapons as long as they have obtained a permit and obey all concealed carry laws. Even if you have a permit to carry a handgun in another state, that permit is not valid in New York. Concealed weapon charges usually involve handguns, but may also apply to other weapons like switchblades, blackjacks and brass knuckles. 

The charges for carrying a concealed weapon without a permit can bring charges ranging from a misdemeanor crime to felony crimes. These charges are officially called Criminal Possession of a Weapon. They are penalized in accordance with the type of weapon you are carrying and if additional charges are brought for using that weapon in the course of committing a crime.  

Background checks and training 

For the last century, individuals in New York have been required to go through a background check if they wanted to carry a concealed weapon. The former process included checking to see if they had any prior criminal convictions and providing character references.  

Now, the background checks required for concealed carry permits include: 

  • Four character references 
  • A list of former and current social media accounts for the last three years 
  • Disclosure of your spouse or domestic partner, as well as any other adults residing in your home, including any adult children  
  • An in-person interview with their licensing officer or designee 

Additionally, the training requirements applies to all concealed carry permit applicants, including individuals who live in New York City and Nassau, Suffolk, and Westchester counties. New Yorkers must now undergo a 16-hour classroom and two-hour, live-fire firearm safety training course to meet the new minimum standards.  

If you already have a concealed carry permit and recertify those permits with the New York State Police, then you are not required to complete this new training. However, permit renewal and recertification is now required every three years instead of five. 

New requirements in 2023 

New York State is working to implement other requirements in 2023 

  • Creating background checks for firearms (July 1) 
  • Forming permit and ammunition databases (August 1) 
  • Partnering with the Division of Criminal Justice Services to launch an appeals board to review permit denials and revocations 

For more information about carrying a concealed weapon in New York, call 716-633-4300 to discuss your case with Defense Lawyer Norman Mattar.