Waiting for Your New Carry License? What to Know in Ohio

You’ve taken the training class and made your required appointment with the local sheriff’s department to apply for your CCW license. You’ve filled out all the forms and paid the fees but have not received your actual card yet. Can you carry a loaded firearm concealed at this point?

How about one of those “life happens” moments, where you have your CCW license damaged, lost, or stolen, and are simply in need of a replacement card. Can you carry while waiting?

These are the little nuances in the system that catch otherwise good, law-abiding citizens of Ohio: those who simply don’t know the answer but proceed to carry anyway or are misled by others who may not know the law. The answer is simply NO. You cannot carry your concealed and loaded firearm in any of these scenarios.


Let’s look at those people who have taken all the required training and applied for their license, but are carrying their firearm in a loaded and concealed fashion before they receive and take possession of their actual physical CCW license. Whatever you do, please do not make this mistake.

Ohio Rev. Code § 2923.126, “Duties of licensed individual” statute clearly states in the first paragraph, “Except as provided in divisions (B) and (C) of this section, a licensee who has been issued a concealed handgun license under section 2923.125 or 2923.1213 of the Revised Code may carry a concealed handgun anywhere in this state if the licensee also carries a valid license, when the licensee is in actual possession of a concealed handgun.” The law is unequivocal that you must have the CCW license on your person while carrying (along with another form of government issued identification, like a driver’s license for example).

IF the license was LOST OR STOLEN

What if your valid license has been lost or stolen? You will of course need to request a replacement license. This will require you to make an official report with the local sheriff’s office stating that it has been lost or stolen. While waiting for the card to be sent, understand that you cannot carry your loaded concealed firearm during the waiting period.

A caveat to this exists in those situations where the license is simply damaged but still in your possession. No report is required, and you may legally carry while waiting for its replacement since you still possess the original. When notified that the new license is available for your pickup, simply bring the damaged license and the replacement fee with you and exchange it.

Of course, Ohio is still an open carry state. Should you decide to still carry your gun, you will have to carry openly while you wait for the new license. That said, without a valid license in your possession, you are unable to transport your gun loaded in your vehicle and must carry it in your vehicle within the legal confines of Ohio law for those individuals without a valid CCW license.

If you have any questions about replacement license to carry cards or anything else discussed herein, please call U.S. LawShield and ask to speak to your Independent Program Attorney.

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