State laws governing firearms detail when you need a license to carry a weapon, where you can carry your firearms and what the penalties are for breaking the laws.
While you may legally store your firearm in your home, motor vehicle or place of business without holding a license, you must apply for a license with your county probate court if you intend to carry it outside of your own property. If you carry your gun for hunting or sporting, your current hunting license permits you carry your firearm outside of your own property.
You may be guilty of a misdemeanor if you:
- Don't have a current firearms or hunting license when you carry a gun outside your own property.
- Intentionally and without legal justification point or aim a gun or pistol at another, regardless of whether the gun or pistol is loaded.
- Fire a gun or pistol within 50 yards of a public highway or street without legal justification for doing so.
- Carry a firearm into a government building, courthouse, jail or prison, state mental health facility, bar, nuclear power facility, place of worship or polling place.
- Discharge a firearm on private property without the approval of the property owner.
- Discharge a firearm while you are intoxicated.
When hunting, you may be guilty of a misdemeanor if you use a weapon in a way that disregards and endangers the safety of another person. While these charges are pending, you'll forfeit your current license, and so you must then apply for a temporary hunting license.
You may be guilty of a felony if you:
- Give a firearm to a minor for illegal purposes. This offense entails a fine of up to $5,000 or a three- to five-year prison sentence.
- Solicit or persuade a dealer to give a firearm to anyone other than the actual buyer.
- Deliberately alter or counterfeit a weapons carry license or carry an altered or counterfeit weapons carry license. This offense carries with it a one- to five-year prison sentence.
Minors may carry firearms when they are attending hunter education and firearms safety courses, practicing target shooting at a range, or participating in competitions or performances that use firearms. With the consent of their parents, minors may also apply for hunting licenses and may carry firearms while on their parents' property.
If you own your car and you hold a current weapons carry license, your employer cannot search the vehicle without reason. If your car belongs to your employer's fleet, however, you do not have full control over searches and must speak directly with your employer.
Source: Official Code of Georgia. This information was prepared as a public service of the State of Georgia to provide general information, not to advise on any specific legal problem. It is not, and cannot be construed to be, legal advice.