Given the importance of firearm licensing requirements, you probably wonder what would happen if the police caught you with a gun but not with a license. The truth is that you might not end up charged with a crime or even under arrest.
Indiana law describes a variety of circumstances that allow its residents to have a firearm without a license.
Your personal property
According to Indiana Code 35-47-2-1, individuals can possess and use firearms in their own homes without the need for a license. Similar permission exists if you happen to be at a different property you own. According to CBS News, 44.8% of Indiana adults owned at least one firearm in their home in 2021.
Sports and hunting activities
Under the law, you can have a gun without a license while engaged in lawful hunting or target practice activities. This provision allows hunters and shooting enthusiasts to enjoy their hobbies without additional licensing requirements.
You should feel confident that law enforcement will not arrest you while attending an organized shooting competition, gun show or similar firearm-related event. However, this exception applies only to the duration of the event and its associated activities. Otherwise, you may risk charges if you do not have a license.
Transport of unloaded firearms
While state law permits you to drive or otherwise transport unloaded guns, you are to follow specific guidelines if you lack a license. The firearm must be in a secure case during transport, such as in a locked case or trunk. Additionally, ammunition should be separate from the firearm during transport.
This lineup of exceptions provides for possible legal defenses for a person charged with having a firearm without a license.