Few statements in the United States Constitution arouse the passions of lawyers and laypeople alike as does the 2nd Amendment: "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed." A good many U.S. citizens take these words to heart; others find the language ambiguous, thus the great controversy over gun control.
States can exercise more or less regulation when it comes to ownership. Most, like Mississippi, issue permits as a way of making sure firearms are used in a responsible manner.
Mississippi Allows More Gun Liberties
The Magnolia State has a reputation for permissiveness when it comes to firearms. Nevertheless, there are legal parameters beyond which penalties await the violators. For example, convicted felons are forbidden to possess firearms. Minors, under age 18, are restricted from carrying handguns unless functioning under certain conditions such as attending a hunter safety course, using it at a firing range, with adult supervision, etc.
An applicant must be 21 or older to apply for a handgun license. Moreover, it is a crime to give a firearm to an intoxicated person.
At the same time, there is no age criterion in order to possess a rifle or shotgun. Mississippi accepts any and all legal out-of-state permits. Plus, the state has a generous policy regarding the carrying of concealed handguns. Furthermore, there is no specific handgun training required to obtain a standard permit here. Basic requirements include:
- Minimum age of 21 unless in the military, in which case the age is 18.
- Residency in Mississippi of at least one year.
- At least three years free of any violent misdemeanor and felony convictions.
- No disabilities that would impede the safe manipulation of a gun.
- No recent record of drug or alcohol abuse.
It must be emphasized that the Mississippi permit is not required to carry in the state. It does, however, give carriers legal protection when traveling to states with reciprocity agreements.
Read More: Does Owning a Gun Affect Insurance Rates?
The Enhanced Mississippi Permit
While standards to qualify for a basic firearms permit are modest compared to other states, Mississippi also offers an enhanced firearms permit, available to active-duty military and veterans with an honorable discharge.
Enhanced carry permit holders can carry a weapon in places off-limits to basic permit holders or those without a permit at courthouses, most government buildings, churches, bars/taverns, as well as colleges and schools. An eight-hour safety class must be completed before the enhanced permit can be issued.
Renewing the Firearms Permit
Renewals of the Mississippi Department of Public Safety Firearm Permit Application are sent to current holders a full three months ahead of the permit's expiration. If no renewal is made six months following expiration, the permit holder must apply for a new permitting credential.
While the original permit requires a $112 remittance, the renewal only costs $72, payable by cash, credit/debit card or cashier's check to the Department of Public Safety. A late charge of $15 is assessed if payment is up to six months past expiration. No additional fees are collected by the MS Department of Public Safety for an enhanced firearms permit.
Moreover, Mississippi gun permit renewal online is not yet an option. Therefore, payment is made through the mail or in person at a local Dept. of Public Safety facility.
Over State Lines
As noted above, permits are helpful to Mississippi residents who wish to carry their handguns into other states with reciprocity agreements. These are states that recognize and honor the validity of Mississippi permits.
- USCCA: Mississippi Concealed Carry Reciprocity Map & Gun Laws
- ATF: State Laws and Published Ordinances – Mississippi Current through the 2018 Regular and 1st Extraordinary Sessions of the Legislature
- Driver Service Bureau: Page 1 of 18 Revised February 20, 2018 The MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY FIREARM PERMIT APPLICATION INDIVIDUAL FIREARM PERMIT FIRST TIME AND RENEWAL INSTRUCTIONS
Adam Luehrs is a writer during the day and a voracious reader at night. He focuses mostly on finance writing and has a passion for real estate, credit card deals, and investing.