Maryland is a may-issue state with concealed weapons permits issued at the state level by the state police.
A permit to purchase, a background check and firearms registration are required to buy a handgun from a private individual. Private firearms sellers must process transfers of handguns and assault weapons through a licensed dealer or designated law enforcement agency, who then conducts a background check. In addition, Maryland has established a handgun roster that, subject to limited exceptions, lists the only handguns that dealers or any private sellers are allowed to sell in the state.
Open carry is legal in Maryland only for Maryland Wear/Carry Handgun Permit (WCHP) holders. In order to obtain a WCHP, applicants must be at least 21 years old and must show a good and substantial reason to carry a handgun. WCHPs require a state-approved 16-hour firearms training course that includes live-fire training. An additional 8 hours of training is required at each WCHP renewal. Permits are issued to residents and non-residents. Some areas are off-limits, including rest areas and state parks.
Maryland is a Castle Doctrine state. In Maryland, deadly force is only legal when defending one's self from the immediate threat of serious injury or death. A person must have reasonable grounds to believe himself or herself in apparent imminent or immediate danger of death or serious bodily harm from his or her assailant or potential assailant; must have in fact believed himself or herself in this danger; must not have been the aggressor or provoked the conflict; and the force used must have not been unreasonable and excessive, that is, the force must not have been more force than the exigency demanded. There is no duty to retreat inside one's home.
If Maryland requires a permit to carry a concealed firearm, how are those permits issued?
Does Maryland allow constitutional carry?
Is open carry permitted in Maryland?
Can you carry a concealed firearm in a vehicle in Maryland?
Only with a Maryland WCHP. For all others, firearms must be unloaded with neither the firearm nor any ammunition readily accessible or directly accessible from the passenger compartment. In the case the vehicle does not have a compartment separate from the driver's compartment, the firearm or ammunition shall be contained in a locked compartment other than the glove compartment or console.
Can you carry a concealed firearm at roadside rest areas in Maryland?
No. The display of firearms is prohibited. [Md. Admin. Code § 11.04.07.12]
Can you carry a concealed firearm in state/national parks, state/national forests, and Wildlife Management Areas in Maryland?
Yes for WMAs. [Md. Admin. Code § 10-408(d)]
Can you carry a firearm in restaurants that serve alcohol in Maryland?
Yes, but not if posted, provided you are not under the influence.
Are you required to notify a police officer that you're carrying a concealed firearm in Maryland?
Are "No Weapons Allowed" signs enforced in Maryland?
Not mentioned in state statutes.
Does Maryland have preemption laws related to concealed carry (i.e. Does state law supersede local laws regarding the possession of handguns)?
Yes, except municipalities may regulate firearms and ammunition in, or within 100 yards of, a park, church, school, public building and other place of public assembly. [Md. Code Ann., Crim. Law § 4-209]
Does Maryland issue concealed carry permits to non-residents?
Which states' permits does Maryland honor?
Maryland does not honor any other states’ permits/licences.
Which states honor permits from Maryland?
Note: Firearms must be carried in accordance with the laws of the state you are visiting. Be sure to check the laws of the other state before traveling there with your firearms.
Which states honor permits from Maryland with restrictions?
Idaho (at least 21 years old)
Iowa (at least 21 years old)
Kentucky (at least 21 years old)
Michigan (resident permits only and at least 21 years old)
North Carolina (at least 21 years old)
Ohio (at least 21 years old)
Oklahoma (at least 21 years old)
Tennessee (at least 21 years old)
Texas (at least 21 years old)
Utah (at least 21 years old)
Virginia (at least 21 years old)
Wisconsin (at least 21 years old)
Anyone who can legally possess a firearm may carry it concealed in permitless carry states without a permit/license. Check each state’s page for more information and any restrictions that may apply.
Alaska (if at least 21 years old)
Arizona (if at least 21 years old)
Arkansas (if at least 21 years old)
Kansas(if at least 21 years old)
Maine (if at least 21 years old)
Mississippi (if at least 21 years old)
Missouri (if at least 19 years old)
New Hampshire (if at least 18 years old)
Vermont (if at least 18 years old)
West Virginia (if at least 21 years old)
An applicant must:
Initial permits expire on the last day of the holder’s birth month following 2 years after the date the permit is issued and may be renewed for successive periods of 3 years each.
Maryland will grant permits to non-residents. Non-residents use the same process as residents.
How to Apply for a Maryland Concealed Carry Permit
Complete a state-approved firearm training course; 16 hours are required.
Get fingerprints taken at an Electronic Fingerprint Processing Center authorized by the Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services.
Download the application form. They intend to have online applications in early 2019.
Complete and print the application. Send the completed application, along with the following items, to the address listed below:
Maryland State Police
1111 Reisterstown Road
Pikesville, MD 21208
ATTN: Handgun Permit Unit
You will be notified by mail within 90 days whether your application has been approved or denied.
To qualify for a handgun permit, applicants must successfully complete, prior to application and each renewal, a firearms training course approved by the Secretary of State Police that includes:
The training includes classroom instruction on state firearms law, home firearms safety and handgun mechanisms and operation. A firearms qualification component is also required that demonstrates the applicant’s proficiency and use of the firearm with a minimum score of 70% accuracy. There are training exemptions for law enforcement officers, members of the military and qualified handgun instructors.
Places off-limits even with a permit/license
Yes, for handguns.
Yes, for handguns.
Yes. All private transfers of handguns and assault weapons must be processed through a licensed dealer or designated law enforcement agency, which must conduct a background check on the buyer.
Yes. Seven days for handguns and assault weapons.
There are no limitations on the types of knives you can own in Maryland. You cannot conceal carry a throwing star, dirk, switchblade, gravity knife or bowie knife. You can not open carry a throwing star, dirk, switchblade, gravity knife or bowie knife with the intent to harm someone. All knives are banned from Maryland schools.
You must submit a notarized letter advising the circumstances surrounding the disappearance of the permit. Submit a $10 check or money order and one passport-sized photograph taken within the last 30 days. If you are a security guard, private detective, armored car guard or special police officer, also provide a company letter from your current employer verifying your employment.