What are Oklahoma’s Gun Laws?
Owning a gun is a privilege granted by virtue of the 2nd Amendment of the Constitution, but understanding Oklahoma-specific gun laws is a slightly more complicated matter. Being convicted of a firearm charge in Oklahoma can carry a number of permanent consequences, including the inability to legally own guns and the loss of job and housing opportunities.
With the never-ending controversy surrounding our country’s gun laws, it is now more important than ever to understand exactly what your legal rights to gun ownership are.
Angela Singleton’s expertise in Oklahoma’s firearm laws has allowed her to explore a number of legal and technical defenses related to firearm charges and weapon laws, and she has committed herself to helping residents understand Oklahoma’s gun laws to do her part in creating a safer state for all.
What are the Differences in Oklahoma’s Gun Laws Versus Federal Gun Laws?
Because the right to bear arms is a fundamental right for US citizens, many take this to mean that owning a gun is as simple as going out to buy one from a licensed firearms vendor.
This is far from the truth, however, and doing so can result in hefty fines, firearm seizure and harsh legal repercussions down the road. Oklahoma has some of most gun-friendly laws in the nation, but understanding the difference between federal guidelines and Oklahoma-specific guidelines is critical in making the decision to buy, possess or carry a gun on one’s person in the state.
Some of the major differences between federal and state guidelines in firearm law are as follows:
|Waiting Period||No waiting period prior to the purchase of a firearm.||No waiting period. A background check may be required, and so long as it does not take longer than three business days to complete, it is legal to immediately transfer firearms to a buyer or transferee.|
|MACHINE GUNS||Unlawful, unless in compliance with federal laws and regulations.||Legal.|
|Purchase Limit||No purchase limit.||No purchase limit.|
|Registration||No registration requirements||None.|
|Concealed Carry Permit||Concealed Carry License (“CCL”) required; a permit issued in one jurisdiction allows concealed carry anywhere in the state.||None.|
|Purchasing a Firearm||Same as federal guidelines. Requires the recipient to be 18 years or older, provide an ID and submit to a background check (only if purchasing from a shop)||Transactions between unlicensed private parties in the same state do not require documentation. However, purchasing firearms across state lines require transfer to a federal firearms licensee in the buyer’s state.|
I Own a Legally Purchased Gun, and Wish to Apply for a Concealed Carry License (CCL)
If you own a legally purchased gun, information on obtaining a CCL typically be found by contacting your county sheriff’s office (or city police department, if applicable). These departments are well-equipped to not only answer any questions you may have, but to also provide a copy of CCL policy and application as well.
The following is a generalized list of requirements to receive a CCL in the state of Oklahoma. It is not meant to be an exhaustive list, as certain felonies or disqualifications may result in a temporary (or permanent) ban on receiving CCL issue in the state:
- Be a US citizen and a resident of Oklahoma
- Be at least 21 years of age;
- Be free of criminal convictions that would disqualify the applicant from CCL issue;
- Be of good moral character;
- Show good cause to receive a CCL;
- Be free from any psychological conditions that may affect applicant suitability; and
- Complete any required training.
Who is Prohibited from Owning or Possessing Firearms in Oklahoma?
People who are prohibited from owning or possessing firearms in Oklahoma generally fall into one of two categories:
- Any person convicted of a state or federal felony or anyone that is currently on probation for a misdemeanor or felony including deferred sentences; and
- Any person who, in a court of law, is found to be a danger to themselves or others due to mental illness, suffer from mental incompetence to stand trial, who is not guilty by reason of insanity or is addicted to a narcotic drug.
Are Oklahoma’s Gun Laws Effective in Reducing Gun Violence?
Laws surrounding guns and firearms—both in Oklahoma and across the country—are a constant opportunity for legal reform. Oklahoma consistently ranks as one of the most gun-friendly states in the country, leaving it up to question if lax gun laws help with gun safety in the state that ranks number 8 in gun deaths.
Recently, a bill just passed in the House that would allow Oklahomans to carry a gun openly without a permit, and will be up for Senate vote next.
If passed, House Bill 3098 would only allow non-felon individuals who legally own a weapon and are over 21 to carry unconcealed weapons for defensive or peaceful purposes. While lawmakers think House Bill 3098 simply reinforces the Second Amendment, some feel strongly that gun permits should be in place as a safeguard.
In states such as California with much stricter gun laws, substantial strides have been taken to not only reduce firearm-related fatalities, but to also combat illegal firearms trafficking and allow firearm seizure from prohibited persons. Between 1992 and 2014, California saw at least a 58 percent decrease in firearm-related deaths, compared to the 27 percent national decrease during that same period.
Contact an Experienced Oklahoma Firearms Attorney
As long as the Second Amendment remains law, guns and firearms will always be at the center of legal reform across both state and federal jurisdictions. Oklahoma’s gun laws are not perfect, but they have provided an example of how effective gun laws can create a safer community for all residents—gun-owners or not.
If you require any legal advice or representation for cases regarding guns and firearms in the state of Oklahoma, Angela Singleton is happy to provide answers. Contact us today for a free consultation.