John Roska: Concealed-carry law, part 2

John Roska: Concealed-carry law, part 2

John Roska, a lawyer with Land of Lincoln Legal Assistance Foundation, concludes his two-part series about the new law governing concealed weapons in Illinois. Here is a link to the first installment.

Q: How do I get a concealed-carry permit under the new law? What does it allow me to do that I can't do now?

A: Last week's column covered getting a concealed-carry license. This week's will cover what that license allows.

The new Firearm Concealed Carry Act creates a license that allows you to carry a concealed handgun. This concealed-carry license is new, and different from the old firearm owner's identification card needed to own a firearm.

Applications for concealed-carry licenses aren't available yet. But when they are, and the state police approve yours, you'll get a special license good for five years. You must then carry that license whenever you carry a concealed firearm.

Handguns are the only firearm you can carry with a license. That's basically anything "designed to be held and fired by the use of a single hand." It's not a taser, BB gun, machine gun, or a sawed-off rifle or shotgun.

Specifically, the new law permits a licensee to "carry a loaded or unloaded concealed firearm, fully concealed or partially concealed, on or about his or her person." It also permits a licensee to "keep or carry a loaded or unloaded concealed firearm on or about his or her person within a vehicle."

How many can you carry? Can you "keep" a handgun in your car, if you're not there for it to "on or about" your person?

Time will tell, as will the rules the state police are supposed to develop, maybe.

The act lists 23 specific areas where concealed carry is still illegal, even with a license. Without oversimplifying too much:

— You can't carry on or into any building, real property or parking area of any private or public school, college or university; or child care facility, hospital, jail, sporting event, zoo, museum, airport, amusement park, casino or racetrack.

In state parks, concealed carry is legal on real property and trails. In other public parks, it's only legal on hiking or biking trails. At public playgrounds, it's not legal at all.

You can't carry into or onto any state government building or parking lot. Concealed carry is prohibited in courthouses and local government buildings, but not in their parking lots. (Federal law separately prohibits firearms in any federal building or "facility.")

Concealed carry is also prohibited at any public gathering or special event that requires a permit, and at any area subject to a special event liquor license.

Finally, concealed carry is prohibited, even if with a license, at any establishment that serves alcohol, "if more than 50 permit of the establishment's gross receipts within the prior three months is from the sale of alcohol." This extends to the establishment's building, real property, and parking lot.

The law says there's supposed to be a 4-by-6-inch sign posted anywhere concealed carry is illegal, so you know. Private businesses can also prohibit concealed carry by posting the same sign.

Some may say these exceptions don't leave much where concealed carry is legal. You should be OK driving on a street, or walking on a sidewalk. Exactly where, though, could get tricky.

If you have a concealed-carry license, but still violate the law, it's a maximum six months in jail, and $500 fine.

John Roska is a lawyer with Land of Lincoln Legal Assistance Foundation. You can send your questions to The Law Q&A, 302 N. First St., Champaign, IL 61820. Questions may be edited for space.

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Lance Dixon wrote on August 04, 2013 at 9:08 am

Why isn't anyone speaking up for the people who will be victims of so-called law abiding citizens (code for white male) who decide to intimidate people while holding a lethal weapon? Rural women, for example, will be vulnerable.

This rise in gun worship is backwards thinking. Guns should be marginalized, not popularized. I'm dumbfounded that I'm now required by law to post a sign in my business to keep guns out. I would think that if a person brought a gun into my business that they would be breaking the law. That would be common sense, something our society desperately lacks right now. 

silvdbs wrote on August 04, 2013 at 1:08 pm

You're insinuating that law biding citizens (those that have went through a FOID background check, as well as a background check and hours of classroom instruction to get a carry permit) are going to cause more issues than  the thugs and gangsters that have been carrying illegally for years. People with a past history of mental, anger, domestic violence, etc aren't going to be the ones LEGALLY carrying.

And no.. it's not against the law automatically for someone to carry a firearm unless the private business says otherwise.  Remember no-smoking signs way back when smoking was common place in malls, dept stores, etc? If a business didn't want you to smoke they put up no smoking signs.. this will be the same as a no-gun sign.. but remember.. not thugs are going to know that your business is a gun free zone and may become an easy target.


shurstrike wrote on August 04, 2013 at 5:08 pm

Ease up there, Lanceman.  It hasn't been a problem in any of the 49 other states which have CC on the book.  YOU figure out why no one has asked it. 

Or do you just have that low of an opinion of your fellow Illinoisans?

(note to self:  Keep repeating to myself, "there are no stupid questions, there are no stupid questions, there are no stupid questions....")

awycislo wrote on August 04, 2013 at 5:08 pm

While this is all good info, it's missing a very important part: vehicle carry and storage.  Being able to carry and store your weapon in your vehicle, even in so-called restricted areas, is the best and arguably most important part of the law.  I wish this had been made more clear.  The article even asks the question "Can you keep a handgun in your car?"  The answer is almost exclusively yes, even in the many areas the article listed as being off-limits.

Lostinspace wrote on August 04, 2013 at 5:08 pm

The cuckoo's nest is thriving.

Bulldogmojo wrote on August 04, 2013 at 11:08 pm

and here we go... rubes chomping at the bit to begin their dress rehearsal to murder or as they like to call it "Neighborhood watch with the stand your ground benefits", Planning the exact itinerary to insert themselves into situations that will afford them the opportunity and legal pathway to technical exoneration so they can tease out of life an opportunity to kill and get away with it. If their precious CC law had any real merit the mere existence of the law itself would be the only deterent needed because no one would know who was actually armed.

I bump into these clowns once in awhile at a local sportsmans club all gussied up in their camo with a whole duffle bag of clips and enough firepower to lay waste to the nearest movie theater when they finally crack under the strain of their own paranoid delusions they have devoted a lifetime clinging to instead of opening a textbook and making a real contribution to society. Other people don't have a real existence to them as evidenced by how they define their own lives by their advancing the cause of violence. Don't kid yourselves these clowns have been carrying guns all along they are just looking to remove another legal obstacle in case they get caught with their weapons.

The only requirement for CC is a little training course $150 dollars and not having been convicted of a crime or being adjudicated as mentally deficient...YET.

Instead of this lawyer Q&A telling these people how to avoid conviction maybe the NG should have a Q&A with a psychiatrist so the rest of us who already live our lives in a free society and who aren't prisoners of paranoia can learn what signs to look for before the next James Holmes rises from their ranks.

Get ready to see Illinois cases added to this list

Local Yocal wrote on August 05, 2013 at 10:08 am
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The genie is already out of the bottle. Gun manufacturers have for decades been allowing guns to be freely distributed, unregulated, and proliferated. In fact, part and parcel of our foreign and domestic policy is to saturate localities with handguns and the like, in order to destabilize a region into chaos and civil war. It is far too late to pull back the clock and think we will live forever peacefully in a gun-free society. Like crack-cocaine, the gun manufacturers were allowed to arm the "thugs" in the first place.

So... gun slingers: tell us what will cause you to pull your gun on the rest of us and start shooting? If I am walking in your neighborhood in a hoodie and happen to be African-American, will I be shot?

highspeed wrote on August 06, 2013 at 8:08 am

Apparently you believe the same as some politicians in this state, that we the citizens of illinois are not worthy of carrying a concealed weapon. You  probably never ventured outside this state, cause if you have, you might have been in the presence of someone who was carrying a loaded weapon.   

Bulldogmojo wrote on August 06, 2013 at 2:08 pm

Highspeed, Apparently you have no regard for your fellow Illinoisans either with your willingness to place us in harms way by introducing a concealed gun into our lives and public proximity without asking us how we feel about being involuntarily placed into your absurd rescue fantasy theater of combat scenario frame of mind that you make decisions with.

Post a picture of yourself with your profile so if I see you I can avoid you and not get killed by a stray bullet in a restaurant you're dining in. You know, because someone with a hoodie was picking up a carryout order and you decided to spring into action.


highspeed wrote on August 06, 2013 at 2:08 pm

You should not fear me. You stand a better chance at getting hit by a car then by me shooting my firearm.