Concealed Carry License Holders Can Carry in IL In a Car

 Uh-oh spaghetti Os! (courtesy

The Illinois State Police are charged with the tricky business of enforcing the Prairie State’s new concealed carry laws. For those of us living in more firearms-friendly climes who aspire to carry in Chicago (just cause) the big question is . . . can we? Not yet. Not until the Police sort out Illinois’ concealed carry reciprocity agreements with other states. Assuming they do so (e.g., Massachusetts and Rhode Island don’t recognize any other state’s concealed carry license). Remembering that there’s no chance that pistol packers from Constitutional Carry states (no permit required) will get the green light to conceal carry in The Land of Lincoln. But wait! What’s this? The po-po’s box-fresh FAQ page points out an interesting exception. “Are out-of-state Concealed Carry permit holders granted reciprocity in Illinois?” Glad you asked . . .

No. Out-of-state residents who want to carry a concealed firearm on his/her person must obtain an Illinois Concealed Carry License to lawfully carry a concealed firearm in Illinois. In order for out-of-state residents to be eligible for an Illinois license, their state’s concealed carry license laws must be substantially similar to those of Illinois. The Illinois State Police will establish rules to identify the elements necessary to meet the substantially similar requirement.

However, out of state residents are granted a limited exception to lawfully carry a concealed firearm within a vehicle if they are eligible to carry a firearm in public under the laws of his or her state or territory of residence and are not prohibited from owning or possessing a firearm under federal law. This rule becomes effective immediately.

If the non-resident leaves leaves his/her vehicle unattended, he or she shall store the firearm within a locked vehicle or locked container within the vehicle in accordance with subsection (b) of Section 65 of the Firearm Concealed Carry Act.

So out-of-state tourists with a concealed carry license from their home state can drive around Illinois with a gun on their hip. The moment they step outside the vehicle? Big trouble in little China. Imagine this . . .

A Texas tourist is pulled over by the cops. He’s carrying and has a CHL license. He tells the cop he’s packing. The cop asks him to step out of the vehicle. What then? “Sorry officer, I can’t do that.” Or “To stay within your state’s concealed carry law I have to now store my firerarm in a locked container. Give me a second, will ya?”

Constitutional Carry is so much easier. If it wasn’t for that blood in the streets Wild West thing . . . Oh wait . . .


About Robert Farago

Robert Farago is the Publisher of The Truth About Guns (TTAG). He started the site to explore the ethics, morality, business, politics, culture, technology, practice, strategy, dangers and fun of guns.

54 Responses to Concealed Carry License Holders Can Carry in IL In a Car

  1. avatarMatt in IL says:

    As I understand it, this only applies to out-of-staters with a resident license for their home state…. which means that the citizens of Illinois (such as me) with non-resident permits such as Utah’s still cannot carry in our vehicles.

    So basically, all of you from outside my state with your own resident permit can carry in your vehicle, yet I, with my FOID and Utah non-resident permit, still cannot. Interesting how that works, huh?

    • avatarmark_anthony_78 says:

      That’s along the lines of another stupidity… residents of NJ can carry in PA, with a UT license, but can’t carry in our home state no matter what (unless you have compromising cell phone pics of a politician, or something along those lines that earns you the “right” to get one of NJ’s permits…)

      • avatarErik says:

        I hear “Carlos Danger” may be a big wig in New York who may be able to assist your quest for a NYC CCW license…

      • avatarOld Ben turning in grave says:

        The stupidity never ends:

        Now, a resident of NJ with a Utah permit may be able to carry in PA, but a resident of PA with a Utah permit cannot carry in PA unless they also have a PA permit.

      • avatarJason says:

        Both the resident of PA with the UT permit, and the resident of NJ with the UT permit can move to UT and carry all day long (and go skiing at good resorts).

    • avatarE. Zach Lee-Wright says:

      I am willing to bet whom ever fired her five months ago is very glad they did.

    • avatarChris says:

      Wait what?! If you have an Illinois FOID, you can carry in your middle console, along with the magazine aslong as the magazine is not in the weapon. People vs Diggins. Look it up..

    • avatarcarlton e. williams says:

      am confused why? anyone that has a cpl wouldnt be allowed to carry in any state moreover the training you have is similar to that of that state.Although we know any unloaded firearm would not serve any purpose in protecting you or your family only needed to visit there to see family and friends in that state along with

    • avatarJohn says:

      Matt you can and have been able to carry in your car for some time. Gun must be out of sight and not loaded. Gun can be in counsel between seats or glove box and mag next to it but not in it

  2. avatarWilliam Burke says:

    I’m having some difficulty with the concept of a “limited exception”. To me, an exception is an exception. Are there really different kinds of exceptions? Half-exceptions, quarter-exceptions, permanently temporary exceptions?


  3. avatarRalph says:

    Similar to Rhode Island’s peaceable journey law? A person with an out of state license may drive through RI strapped and loaded “without any intent on the part of the person to detain him or herself or remain within the state of Rhode Island.” RIGL Sec, 11-47-8.

  4. avatarDirk Diggler says:

    There is a “safety zone” around the vehicle to enable a ccw holder to exit the vehicle and put the weapon in the trunk if they so choose.

  5. avatarJerry R says:

    I am an IL resident with a Fl non resident CCL. I believe anyone with a FOID can keep an unloaded firearm in a case in your glove compartment or console with a loaded magazine in the same compartment. Section 24-1 of the Criminal Code of 1961 as outlined on the website has the details. Use your own good judgement.

    • avatarMatt in IL says:

      That is of course true. However we, as IL residents, cannot carry (read: loaded on our person) in our vehicles, yet our of state residents with resident permits for their home states can do so in IL now.

    • avatarchris says:

      Yeah. I know when we go deer hunting, firearms must be unloaded and transported in a case. The case can be something as simple as a gun sock but the firearm cannot be loaded.

  6. avatarGyufygy says:

    I think avoiding Illinois in general is still your best bet for now.

    • avatarOld Ben turning in grave says:

      This sounds about right to me

    • avatarchris says:

      It looked for a while like things were going to get really bad here, especially after the SAFE Act got passed. Democrats from Cook County and some of the suburbs were literally tripping over themselves in an effort to outdo New York. Considering that the Democrats control the Governor’s mansion, the state courts, and have supermajorities in both houses of the state legislature, it looked bad for gun owners.

      Everything was on the table…registration (even though we already have defacto registration), AWB, ammo bans, magazine restrictions, and even mandatory buybacks and confiscation.

      At the end of the day, the antigunners didn’t get ANY of those things and it was actually due to several downstate Democrats voting against those measures.

      Most of Illinois really doesn’t suck. Cook County is why we can’t have nice things…

  7. avatarHDflhx says:

    Does it matter what type of vehicle…am I still a law abiding citizen when on motorcycle I leave my home in Minnesota with my ccw permit and my handgun tucked away in a ITWB holster and cruise through the Land of Lincoln??

    • avatarJason says:

      I was about to ask the same question. And if I keep one foot on the peg, or hand on the handlebar, while I fill the tank, am I still able to carry?

  8. avatarSixpack70 says:

    It’s a trap!

    • avatarBlue says:

      The minute they ask you to step out of the car it is. LEO will shit themselves if you unholster a piece to put it in the console in order to step out. There are the occasional ones that do in places like FL or TX. I can’t even image the Dan Harless wannabes in Il.

  9. avatartdiinva says:

    I never stop in Illinois so I am good to go now from Virginia through Colorado as long as I take I-64. Looks like Martin O’Malley won’t be getting any tax money from me any longer.

  10. avatarJason says:

    What about in a car accident, fire, or other emergency? What happens if I’m driving strapped and I see a Ford SUV overturned on the highway? Do I need to lock my gun in the glovebox before I go help?
    A reasonable person would expect to have exceptions for exceptional circumstances, but the law and reasonable expectations seem more divergent every day.

    • avatarjohnv2 says:

      Just lock the gun in your vehicle (out of sight, of course). Use the glove box if you need to do so.

  11. avatarGov. William J. Le Petomane says:

    Considering how long it takes to get from Iowa to Indiana via the Mackinac bridge, I’ll take it.

    • avatarchris says:

      Just take Rt. 80. That will keep you out of Cook County!


      • avatarkeith says:

        Sorry. If you mean I-80, it passes through about 15 miles of Cook County just west of the Indiana border. :(

        • avatarchris says:

          Yeah…that’s what I said. If you need to cross through Illinois, at least in the northern part of the state, you would want to use 80 because it steers clear of Cook County.

          Pretty much, as long as you avoid the part of the state that is north of I-80 and east of I-39, Illinois is actually pretty gun-friendly.

          Too bad we can’t get Indiana and Wisconsin to divvy up that part…

      • avatarGov. William J. Le Petomane says:

        Well up until now letting the ISP find your loaded firearm in the car has been a good way to earn an all inclusive vacation in Joliet. With the new law I’d still avoid the greater Chicago metropolitan area altogether, but at least you don’t have a choice between your safety and a 700 mile detour.

        • avatarRon says:

          It is just too bad that the Windy City with its draconian gun ordinances has streets covered in the blood of innocent people. I remember a bumper sticker from years ago that needs to be revived, “When guns are outlawed only outlaws will have guns.”

  12. avatarST says:

    Its my understanding that while the ISP is spearheading the CCW policy, the LOCAL PDs are still enforcing their home rule laws.You may be kosher driving while armed according to the ISP,but not according to Podunkville IL. PD.

    • avatarchris says:

      Actually, Podunkville really isn’t going to be your problem. It is the city of Chicago and the suburbs that are really gnashing their teeth over this.

      I believe that to be eligible for “home rule”, a municipality has to have 25,000 residents. The vast majority of Illinois municipalities outside of Cook County and the suburbs don’t qualify for home rule.

  13. avatarB K says:

    If you take cook county out of Illinois we would have one of the most carry friendly states in the us. You kmow what they say about one bad apple…… or county!

  14. avatarRich says:

    Ill-lie-and Noise is best skipped by and transportive vehicle be it sea, air, or land. Same for Cuba, NYC, NJ, China, California, etc.

  15. avatarGtfoxy says:

    All of this “Legal” mumbojumbo only points out how Unconstitutional it is to have a state, for what ever reason, to not accept another states licensing.

    There is no special law, asside from given constitutional assertion, that states a Sate can or can not disallow another states certificate of eligability.

    Think about it.

    Marriage licenses.
    Drivers Licenses

    How does all of a sudden a constitutional right not be honored?

    It is preposterous.

    We don’t need Congress to make a reciprocity law. All that would be needed to end this lunacy would be for a judge-or jury- to rule thatbthey must. End of story.

  16. avatar16V says:

    Good luck on all that. You may beat the charge, but you won’t beat the ride…

    ISP will happily arrest MO residents with CCWs to this very second. Saying they won’t is merely PR smoke blown up your posterior. The Illionois State Patrol officers have already been informed to make it a point to scare MO residents away from actually doing what they said was OK.

    Sure if you don’t have a problem with being arrested, cuffed and detained for many hours (not to mention losing your firearm until your lawyer money makes them give it back) it may all be hunkey-dorey.

  17. Pingback: Limited reciprocity with IL if you have a license/permit... - Gun and Game - Gun Forum

  18. avatarRonald says:

    Thanks everyone . I have my ccw licences for MO. I have to be in southern IL soon . After doing some research I am glad to find this website . There all good questions and good answers really helpful . I was born in Rockford IL . Lived in Ogle and Winnebago county most of my life . The FOID card was a joke , and the so called cool down time . I bought several firearms while living in IL . I didn’t care for the waiting period . Now that I live in MO. I fill the paper work out , and the gun dealer makes a call to the FEDS and in 15 min. I am walking out the door with my firearm . Once again thank you .

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