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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
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Experience:  Attorney with over 20 years law enforcement, prosecution, civil rights and defense experience
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Do I have a right in Ohio to open carry a hand gun? Does the

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Do I have a right in Ohio to open carry a hand gun? Does the gun have to be registered? What is the actual code or law that governs open carry? What else do I need to know about open carry in Ohio?
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking.

ORC 9.68 Right to bear arms - challenge to law.


(A) The individual right to keep and bear arms, being a fundamental individual right that predates the United States Constitution and Ohio Constitution, and being a constitutionally protected right in every part of Ohio, the general assembly finds the need to provide uniform laws throughout the state regulating the ownership, possession, purchase, other acquisition, transport, storage, carrying, sale, or other transfer of firearms, their components, and their ammunition. Except as specifically provided by the United States Constitution, Ohio Constitution, state law, or federal law, a person, without further license, permission, restriction, delay, or process, may own, possess, purchase, sell, transfer, transport, store, or keep any firearm, part of a firearm, its components, and its ammunition.

(B) In addition to any other relief provided, the court shall award costs and reasonable attorney fees to any person, group, or entity that prevails in a challenge to an ordinance, rule, or regulation as being in conflict with this section.

(C) As used in this section:

(1) The possession, transporting, or carrying of firearms, their components, or their ammunition include, but are not limited to, the possession, transporting, or carrying, openly or concealed on a person's person or concealed ready at hand, of firearms, their components, or their ammunition.

(2) "Firearm" has the same meaning as in section 2923.11 of the Revised Code.

(D) This section does not apply to either of the following:

(1) A zoning ordinance that regulates or prohibits the commercial sale of firearms, firearm components, or ammunition for firearms in areas zoned for residential or agricultural uses;

(2) A zoning ordinance that specifies the hours of operation or the geographic areas where the commercial sale of firearms, firearm components, or ammunition for firearms may occur, provided that the zoning ordinance is consistent with zoning ordinances for other retail establishments in the same geographic area and does not result in a de facto prohibition of the commercial sale of firearms, firearm components, or ammunition for firearms in areas zoned for commercial, retail, or industrial uses.

This means that you do not need a permit to open carry a weapon, although the OH courts still state you need a concealed weapon permit to carry the weapon in the passenger compartment of a vehicle (not the trunk). The weapon does not have to be registered.

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