Firearm ownership laws in Arizona

As many of the state’s residents already know, Arizona’s laws are very lenient when it comes to gun ownership. In fact, compared with other states, Arizona ranks as one of the easiest states for residents wishing to legally obtain a firearm.

According to the state’s laws, a person who is not prohibited from possessing a firearm and who is at least 21 years of age may openly carry a firearm. In addition, a qualified person can conceal a weapon without being required to purchase a license.

Arizona residents who want to conceal their weapons must obtain a concealed-weapons permit. The permit is only given to those who meet certain criteria. Firstly, the applicant must prove he or she is a legal resident of the United States and be at least 21 years of age or more. Secondly, the person must have no prior reports of mental illness and no past felony convictions pertaining to violence or possessing and using a dangerous instrument or deadly weapon. Lastly, the state requires the applicant to take a gun safety course, which can either be done via the Internet or any other mode. The training does not have to include any hands-on instruction.

Being accused of a felony crime in Arizona, such as a weapons charge, is serious and could result in severe penalties. For instance, a person convicted of a misconduct with a weapon or who possesses a firearm illegally may be punished with fines up to $150,000 and a lengthy jail sentence. In addition, if murder charges are involved and a person is convicted of first-degree murder, he or she could be punished by death or life imprisonment if convicted. Those facing such charges might consider retaining a criminal defense lawyer who may seek to get the penalties mitigated by challenging any evidence associated with the charges or negotiating pleas.

Source: FindLaw, “Arizona Gun Control Laws”, Sept. 4, 2015