Joseph A. Lombardo
New Jersey has strict laws for safe gun ownership for residents and non-residents alike. That is why it’s important to learn whether or not you can conceal carry a gun without a permit in New Jersey and what may happen if you do.
You cannot conceal carry a gun, or open carry one, without a permit in New Jersey. In fact, all gun owners, including non-residents traveling in the state, need a permit issued by New Jersey to carry a gun at all. If you are found to be illegally carrying a concealed firearm in New Jersey, you can face up to ten years in prison. Individuals may also face additional charges, depending on the circumstances of their arrest. That, along with a recent ruling from the Supreme Court regarding gun ownership, is why it is important to hire an attorney immediately after being arrested for concealed carry in New Jersey.
We can help you after being arrested for carrying a gun without a permit in New Jersey. For a free case evaluation with the Atlantic City criminal defense attorneys at Lombardo Law Group, LLC, call today at (609) 418-4537.
Can You Carry a Concealed Gun without a Permit in New Jersey?
If you’re a gun owner in New Jersey, you can’t conceal your weapon when in public. Even if you have a permit issued by another state, that’s not enough. In order to carry a concealed weapon or open carry a handgun in New Jersey, you need a permit.
Currently, it is against the law to conceal carry a firearm in New Jersey without a permit. New Jersey gun owners must file an application with their local police department or the New Jersey State Police to get a conceal carry permit. You also cannot conceal or carry a weapon you do not own, as you will not have a permit to do so.
A New Jersey permit to carry a handgun, or an NJ PCH, and a special permit issued by law enforcement is required to conceal carry in the state. If you have a conceal carry permit or gun permit issued by another state, that doesn’t mean you can conceal carry in New Jersey. Residents and non-residents must have an NJ PCH to carry weapons legally.
That said, the fact that New Jersey does not honor other states’ gun permits is not the norm. Because of that, gun owners traveling to New Jersey may be unaware they need an additional permit to conceal carry. If you were arrested for illegal concealed carry because you were unaware that you needed an NJ PCH, reach out to a Camden County criminal defense attorney.
In addition to New Jersey’s permit requirements for concealed carrying, the state also imposes restrictions on how gun owners can store guns and travel with firearms. For example, guns must be locked in a car trunk during travel. If you are stopped by police and your gun is found to be visible or concealed outside of the trunk, you may face consequences.
New Jersey Charges for Carrying a Concealed Gun without a Permit
The consequences for concealed carrying without a permit in New Jersey can be severe. That is why it is important for New Jersey residents and non-residents alike to learn what charges they may face if arrested for illegally concealing a firearm.
Individuals arrested for possessing a handgun without a permit can face a second-degree charge in New Jersey. This is true, even if you legally obtained your firearm in another state. Remember, New Jersey does not care if you have a permit to conceal carry from another state. You must have a permit issued from New Jersey to conceal carry a gun legally.
A conviction for illegally carrying a concealed weapon can result in five to ten years in prison in New Jersey. If you are convicted of additional charges, like carrying a concealed weapon with the intent to use it in another crime, you can face more prison time.
There is no distinction between illegally carrying a concealed or unconcealed firearm in New Jersey. So, individuals arrested for carrying a gun without a permit will not face additional charges if the weapon is concealed or not. That said, you may face additional charges if you bring your licensed gun onto a property that forbids firearms, like a school.
What to Do After Being Arrested for Carrying a Concealed Gun without a Permit in New Jersey?
Getting arrested for illegally carrying a concealed weapon in New Jersey can be life-altering. Non-residents may be shocked to learn that, despite the fact they may have a permit issued in another state, they need an additional permit to conceal carry in New Jersey. Others may simply be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Contact an Atlantic County criminal defense attorney immediately if you’ve been arrested for carrying a concealed gun without a permit.
Gun crimes are taken seriously in New Jersey. After all, firearms are dangerous weapons. That is why the penalties for illegally carrying are so severe. Unfortunately for some individuals, being unaware of New Jersey’s permit requirements will not prevent an arrest.
If you have been arrested for illegally carrying a concealed weapon, it’s important to remain calm and silent. You may misspeak if you talk to police officers after your arrest, providing an excuse for a New Jersey prosecutor to tack on additional charges. Instead of arguing with police officers, call a lawyer.
An experienced Mays Landing criminal defense attorney can help you keep your freedom after getting a concealed carry charge. Hiring a lawyer is crucial, as the consequences for illegal carrying can be extreme. Remember, New Jersey’s laws regarding gun ownership apply to anyone in the state, including non-residents passing through. A conviction for illegally carrying a weapon can forever change your life. Don’t let that happen, and hire an attorney who can help you after an arrest.
Recent Supreme Court Rulings May Affect New Jersey Conceal Carry Laws
In June of 2022, the Supreme Court decided the case New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen. In response to the ruling, New Jersey Attorney General Matthew J. Platkin issued a directive amending the enforcement of New Jersey’s current conceal carry laws.
The recent ruling in the Bruen case found that New Yorkers do not need to cite a reason when applying for a gun license. So why does that affect New Jersey residents? SCOTUS decisions can provide a reason for New Jersey residents to challenge the legitimacy of illegal carrying without an NJ PCH, as an NJ PCH application requires applicants to cite a reason for purchasing a firearm.
In response to the ruling, Attorney General Matthew J. Platkin issued a directive, which essentially instructed all New Jersey law enforcement officials to continue enforcing the state’s concealed carry laws. The only change in enforcement concerns reviewing applications, which no longer need to include a written certification of justifiable need to own a firearm.
These recent changes may continue to evolve, so it is crucial to speak to an attorney to see how they may impact your case.
Call Our New Jersey Attorneys if You’ve Been Arrested for Concealed Carry
If you’ve recently been arrested for carrying a concealed gun without a permit in New Jersey, our attorneys can help. For a free case evaluation with the Linwood, NJ criminal defense attorneys at Lombardo Law Group, LLC, call today at (609) 418-4537.
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