Carrying a Firearm in Your Car

Carrying a firearm in your car

Carrying a Firearm in Your Car

Updated: April 11, 2022

Under Florida law, if you are lawfully allowed to possess a firearm, you can carry it in your automobile. The manner in which you may carry it depends on whether you are a Concealed Weapon or Firearm License (“CWFL”) holder or not.  Additionally, the activity you are traveling to or from matters to the method in which you can carry in your car.

Carrying a Firearm in your car with a CWFL

Those with a valid CWFL can carry their firearm anywhere in the vehicle as long as it is concealed.  This includes on their person or nearby.  The firearm does not need to be encased or secured, but it must be concealed.

Carrying a Firearm in your car without a CWFL

Don’t have a CWFL?  Carrying a firearm in your car is still possible.  A person who does not have a CWFL can still carry a firearm in their car, however, it must be carried in the proper manner. Florida law allows for carrying a firearm in your car as long as it is securely encased and out of sight. Alternatively, instead of being securely encased, the firearm may be stored where it is not readily accessible for immediate use, such as in the trunk. 

Lots of Misinformation Floating Around

It is important to note that there is a lot of misinformation floating around about how a firearm must be carried in a vehicle. I have heard current and retired law enforcement officers tell people about a supposed “3-step rule,” requiring ammunition to be separated from a firearm. To be clear, there is not now nor has there ever been a 3-step rule in the state of Florida.  To learn more about this, please watch our video on the 3-step rule.

Open Carrying a Firearm in Your Car

Florida law does allow you to open carry in several specific situations. The complete list of these situations is found in Florida Statute 790.25.  Most people will only fall under two of these listed situations.  The first is while fishing, camping or lawfully hunting, or traveling to or from a fishing, camping, or lawful hunting expedition. Therefore, if traveling in a car to go hunting, fishing, or camping, Florida law would allow a firearm in the vehicle, and it could legally be openly carried.  

Additionally, you may openly carry a firearm on your way to firing weapons for testing or target practice under safe conditions and in a safe place not prohibited by law, including, but not limited to, an indoor range, or going to or from such place.

Please note, if openly carrying your firearm, you may receive unwanted attention from law enforcement, even though you have not broken the law.

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