People in Texas tend to be aware, at least on some level, of the open carry and concealed handgun laws.

I'm not a kind of gun expert, but I do keep firearms in my home near Tyler, Texas. And so, I try to keep myself somewhat knowledgeable regarding Texas gun laws.

Even the most avid and conscientious gun owners may find there are laws, policies, and considerations when it comes to gun ownership in Texas they didn't know.

Let's look at 10 interesting facts regarding Texas Gun Laws that you may not have previously known.

Texas Gun Laws Regarding Foster Homes

Yes, foster parents can own guns. However, according to Texas Law, the gun must never be accessible to children in the home and guns must be stored in a separate place from ammunition.

Regarding Mental Health Concerns

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If a court has declared a Texas citizen to be 'mentally incompetent,' or if an individual has been involuntarily committed to a mental institution, that citizen is temporarily prohibited from having a firearm or purchasing a gun, in the state of Texas. However, a court can mandate a longer restriction depending on the circumstances.

So, What is License Reciprocity?

If a person is moving to the Lone Star State, or even just traveling from somewhere else, they should check on licensing agreements in a given situation. That being said, concealed handgun licenses from several other U.S. states are recognized in Texas.

What About Antique Guns or Even Replicas?


Here's the thing: Texas penal law does not classify antique guns or replicas as 'firearms.' Thus, even those who aren't allowed by law to own more modern firearms are allowed to own or have them.

Felon in Possession of a Firearm Under Texas Law

Many people are aware that convicted felons are not allowed to possess or own a firearm. How is this different in Texas?

In the Lone Star State, five years after a convicted felon has fulfilled the sentence for which they were convicted--including probation or parole restrictions, they can possess a firearm--but only at their residence.

Let's Discuss the Preemption Law

This means local governments are prohibited from enacting or enforcing gun laws with more restrictions than the Texas state law. This ensures a more uniform gun law across Texas.

Guns on School Grounds


It is illegal to carry a firearm when on school property, for the most part. However, there are exceptions in that a school district is allowed to authorize specific people to possess and carry a gun at our Texas schools.

Are You Familiar with the Castle Doctrine?

You may be familiar with this doctrine. I was, though I wasn't aware it was called this. As one might gather from context, the Castle Doctrine means citizens of Texas possess the right to protect themselves when inside their house, in their vehicle, or at their workplace--including use of deadly force.

Transport of Firearms

There's a good chance you were already aware that you may travel with firearms in vehicles. Something that may surprise you? It's not required by law to keep the firearm concealed IF it is not easy to access and isn't what might be considered in 'plain view.'

What About Those Signs You May Have Seen That Say: 'NO GUNS'

You may have noticed signs posted at some Texas businesses prohibiting open carry or concealed guns at their business. Here's the thing, according to Texas law, there are rather strict laws regarding how these signs must be mounted. If these aren't followed to the letter, the signs are likely not considered enforceable under Texas law.

In Texas, businesses can post signs prohibiting concealed and open carry on their premises. These signs have some strict mounting requirements they have to adhere to or they are not legally enforceable.

If you're interested in digging deeper into all topics related to gun laws in Texas, check out the Texas State Law Library.

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