Livingston, TN asked in Criminal Law and Constitutional Law for Tennessee

Q: Can I keep a firearm in my car?

I am a resident of Tennessee, 19 years of age, no concealed carry permit. I have a few questions regarding the current gun laws of Tennessee. Any help answering some or all of these will be much appreciated.

1. Can I keep a handgun in my vehicle.

2. Can I keep a long gun, rifle, in my vehicle.

3. If so, must they be in the open or hidden in a compartment such as the glovebox, console or trunk, and can they be kept loaded or do they have to be unloaded with the magazines in a separate location.

I have researched online regarding my questions and the way everything is stated it’s a bit fuzzy. It seems like I can legally keep firearms in my car as long as it’s not on property prohibiting them.

I have also contacted my local sheriff and he was unable to answer this and also stated some things that I knew were clearly false, like me not being able to purchase rifle ammo until I am 21.

1 Lawyer Answer

Anthony M. Avery

  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Knoxville, TN
  • Licensed in Tennessee

A: You can possess firearms and ammunition in your motor vehicle provided you are not under any firearm disabilities, that is you can legally have a firearm. You need to be twenty one to possess handguns. Without a carry permit you and the passenger cannot have ready access to the weapon and ammunition. There are no concealment or open carry laws in Tennessee. Keep the weapon locked in the trunk if possible, and never have any ammunition in the weapon or next to it until you are ready to shoot it.

At least keep the unloaded firearm in the rear of the vehicle away from the driver or passengers. There are some city codes around where they prohibit weapons, but use common sense and do not take weapons where they are prohibited or at least keep them locked up and out of sight.

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