WASHINGTON GUN LAWS

Get The Latest Facts For 2018


All you need to know about Washington gun laws.
We look at all the in's and out's of carrying a handgun in Washington.
Keep reading...

washington state seal

Washington gun laws operate on a "Shall Issue" policy. Open carry is legal without a permit but not common, you will need a permit if you want to carry a handgun in a vehicle (car, bus, train). Concealed carry permits are issued to residents and non-residents by the local sheriff or Police Department. There is no requirement to attend a firearms training course in Washington but you must be at least 21 years old and meet other conditions to obtain a license.

Washington CPL Quick Facts

Carry In Vehicle SEE DETAILS
Must Notify Officer NO
Carry In State Parks Allowed YES
No Weapons Signs Enforced NO
Open Carry Permitted SEE DETAILS
Carry In Restaurant YES
Constitutional Carry NO
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Washington CCW Dashboard

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Washington CPL Reciprocity

WASHINGTON 2018

  • Permit Honored
  • Permit not honored
  • Residential permits only
  • Issuing state

How Reciprocity Works in Washington

Under Washington law the state can only honor another states concealed carry license if;

  • the other state honors a Washington concealed carry license.
  • The state does not issue CPL licences to persons under the age of 21.
  • The state has fingerprint based checks for background and mental health history on applicants.

Currently only 9 states meet these requirements for their licenses to be honored by Washington.

Washington Reciprocity State's

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STATES
Resident License
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Wisconsin

Non-Resident License
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Wisconsin

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Idaho, Kansas, Louisiana, Michigan, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Utah
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California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, West Virginia, Wyoming
Idaho - Only the Idaho Enhanced Permit is honored by Washington.
North Dakota - Only the Class 1 North Dakota Permit is honored by Washington.
RCW 9.41.073 - Reciprocity

Washington Handgun License

Washington Gun Policy

Shall Issue

Permit Issued To

Residents, Non-residents
CPL License Overview

The area you reside in will determine who you apply to for a handgun license.

  • If you reside in an unincorporated area of a county applications are made at the sheriffs office.
  • If you reside in an incorporated city area of a county the you can apply at either the sheriff office or the police department.
  • If you reside in another state then you can apply for a license at any local law enforcement agency in Washington.
Non-Resident Licenses

Non-resident CCW licenses are issued in Washington state. The process is the same as for a resident of Washington but cannot be done via mail and requires that you appear in person. This means you will need to make a trip to Washington to obtain the license. The application process will take about 60 days.

MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS

  • Must be at least 21 years of age.
  • Have no pending charges.
  • Have no outstanding arrest warrants.
  • Have no felony convictions.
  • Are not subject to a court order or injunction concerning the possession of firearms.
  • Are not free on bond or personal recognizance while awaiting trial, appeal, or sentencing for a felony offense.
  • Have not been asked to forfeit a firearm within the last 12 months.
  • Do not have a revoked concealed pistol license.
  • You have no mental health conditions.
  • Federal Law Requirements
cost of
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Washington CPL Handgun Forms

Download Your Forms

Processing time increases to 60 days if you do not have a Washington drivers license.

Washington: Places Off-Limits for CPL

washington state flag
Washington state flag

Places Off-Limits in Washington

  • Public schools
  • Correctional facility
  • Law enforcement facility
  • State courthouses
  • Mental health facilities
  • Outdoor music festival
  • Secured areas in airports
  • Places listed below that have Rules that state no firearms allowed on Premises;
    • Colleges/Universities,
    • Licensed Child Care Facilities,
    • Racing Association Grounds,
    • An Emergency Respite Center,
    • Licensed Pregnant and Parenting Teen Residential Programs And Their Facilities,
    • Licensed Homes and Facilities That Provide Care To Children,
    • Overnight Youth Shelter & Residence Operated By the Juvenile Rehabilitation Administration
  • All facilities operated by the Office of Administrative Hearings
  • Any place where the carrying of firearms is prohibited by Federal Law.

Places Allowed in Washington

  • State parks
  • State and national forests
  • Road side rest areas
  • Vehicle
  • All areas of the state, except those listed as Off-Limits

Washington CPL Video Clips

Seattle gun tax
Open carry in Washington

Other Washington Gun Laws

Private Sales
Any private sale of firearms in Washington is required to be completed through a licensed firearms dealer. The dealer must complete a background check on the purchaser and keep a record of the sale. There are some exceptions to the law as follows;

  • Gifts between family members or spouses.
  • Sales of antique guns.
  • Transfers of a firearm to a gunsmith for repairs.
  • Guns acquired by the executors of an estate when the owner dies.

Dealer Sales
A licensed dealer can only sell a handgun if the purchaser has a concealed carry license or undergoes a background check. The dealer is required to not transfer the handgun to the new owner for 10 days or when the results of the background  are obtained, whichever one occurs first. Should the purchaser not have a valid Washington state ID card or drivers license, or has not resided in the state for at least 90 days then the waiting period can be extended to 60 days.

Washington Concealed Carry Laws

colorado state capitol building
Washington state capitol building

Washington Gun Laws To Know

NO – Without a permit

Without a License – If you do not have a permit then it is illegal to carry a loaded firearm in any vehicle. You can still carry a firearm if it is unloaded and in a closed opaque case or secure wrapper.

With a License –  you can carry a loaded firearm in a vehicle as long as you have your permit with you at all times.

The Law
RCW 9.41.050
RCW 9.41.060

NO – Must Inform Officer

Washington gun laws require you to have your CCW license on you at all times you are carrying a firearm and display the permit to an officer if requested to do so. You do not have to inform law enforcement you are carrying a firearm.

The Law
RCW 9.41.050 – Carrying firearms

YES

It is legal to carry in the following areas;

  • State Parks:       YESWAC 352.32.120
  • State/National Forests:     YESWAC 332.52.145
  • State Wildlife Management Areas:     YESWAC 220.500.140
  • Road Side Rest Areas:     YES
NO

“No Weapons” signs are not mentioned in Washington gun laws. There are no legal penalties for entering a private property or business that has posted these signs. They have no force of law unless they are posted in areas that are mentioned by the law as being off limits.

GunsToCarry recommends that you do not enter a property displaying a “No Weapons” sign whether the law is for or against signage. If asked to leave a property and you refuse to do so then you are breaking the law and put yourself at risk of being charged.

YES – with or Without a permit

Open carry without a permit is legal. However, you will need a CCW license to carry a loaded firearm in any vehicle. Any vehicle means cars, buses, and trains. The minimum age for open carry is 21.

The Law
29-11.7-704

YES
In Restaurants That Serve Alcohol

You are restricted to areas of the restaurant where persons under the age of 21 are allowed.

“Yes” or “No” states if you can carry in a restaurant that serves alcohol. Some restaurants may be posted with “NO GUN” signs. Check with the staff if this means just the bar area. If we have indicated a “Yes” then it should be legal to have a meal without drinking alcohol.

The Law
RCW 9.41.300

NO
Washington does not have constitutional carry.
“The right of the individual citizen to bear arms in defense of himself, or the state, shall not be impaired, but nothing in this section shall be construed as authorizing individuals or corporations to organize, maintain or employ an armed body of men."
(Art. I, § 24)
no weapons sign in washington

Washington Off-Limit Statutes

Other Washington CCW Statutes

For information on other states handgun laws please go back to the state laws page and select the state you are interested in.

Washington CPL FAQ's

frequently asked questions on washington gun laws

Washington CPL Contact

King County Courthouse

Hours


Monday – Friday 8:30am – 4:30pm

Saturday Closed

Sunday Closed


Contact


Address 516 Third ave, Rm W-150

CitySeattle, WA 98104

Phone (206) 263-2626

 

Updates & Data Sources

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john bolingerNbd42Wow!ConcernedCommone sense Recent comment authors
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G Rash
Guest
G Rash

Washington State, there are no CCW or CWW permits, only CCP permits, also Washington State is a “Right to carry state” it is in our State constitution “Art. 1 Section 24 RIGHT TO BEAR ARMS. The right of the individual citizen to bear arms in defense of himself, or the state, shall not be impaired, but nothing in this section shall be construed as authorizing individuals or corporations to organize, maintain or employ an armed body of men.”

G Rash
Guest
G Rash

about carrying on a snowmobile, you site RCW 77.32.237 Enhancing the fish, shellfish, and wildlife-related recreational opportunities for a person with a disability—Disability designation—Rule-making authority. The commission shall enhance the fish, shellfish, and wildlife-related recreational opportunities for a person with a disability. The commission shall authorize the director to grant a disability designation to a person with a disability who meets eligibility criteria established by the commission by rule. The commission shall adopt rules defining who is a person with a disability for purposes of eligibility for disability designation. A person granted a disability designation is eligible for reasonable accommodations,… Read more »

Leonard Burke
Guest
Leonard Burke

Can I use a limiter for my magazine if it is over ten rounds? The limiter will restrict more than ten rounds in the magazine. It is a permanent modification to the magazine.

Chris
Guest
Chris

I am going to Washington state soon for vacation. just wondering do Washington recognize Arizona ccw permits?

Gun
Guest
Gun

Washington state posts a list of reciprocities on its website

Mauro
Guest
Mauro

Threaded barrel pistols are legal in Washington?

ken
Guest
ken

if a person buys a pistol uses his concieled permit to save waiting time is it automaticly regesturd

Stephan
Guest
Stephan

Im really curious about the actual law around using your firearm. Obviously the best thing to do at all times no matter what is try to avoid the situation and use non lethal force but sometimes that may not be the case. Ive heard of homeowners here in Washington state getting charged for shooting at somebody during an active burglary. Ive also heard of people shooting in a road rage self defense and not getting charges. So my real question is does anybody know the actual legalities of using a firearm in a life or death situation? What happens? What… Read more »

Jon Hunt
Guest
Jon Hunt

If it was my family , I would rather face 12 jurs then risk my family….I 100% would do life if it ment my family was alive and safe. Hell I would lay waste to the world to protect them…..dose the state law mean anything to me when my family is at risk….no

Ray Hendricks
Guest
Ray Hendricks

Under Washington State Law is a Convicted Non-Viloent Felon allowed to live in a house with family who own firearms?

Billy Cochran
Guest
Billy Cochran

Actually, a person who is a convicted felon can go to court to get their state rights for gun ownership, reinstated. Obviously, there are mitigating circumstances when a convicted felon is attempting to own a weapon. It is suggested that you have the record expunged or in the very least, made into a misdemeanor, if possible. And have an attorney. It’s a whole process, but doable. Insofar as residing where you have access to a firearm; Unless you’re outside running around naked and shooting off the weapon I doubt anyone will do anything. If the gun owner you’re residing with… Read more »

Brent C
Guest
Brent C

No

Chad
Guest
Chad

If I have Utah CCW and am coming to Washington to work or vacation, do I need to apply for a separate non-resident CCW?

Scott Kunnanz
Guest
Scott Kunnanz

A friend passed away recently. His wife (who is the executor of the estate now), would like to liquidate his firearms. I see there is some sort of exception to the rules of sales granted to executors in such cases, but couldn’t see what the actual exception is. Can you tell me what is required to sell them in this instance. Note, about half the firearms are most likely registered to my deceased friend, while the rest were acquired cash on the barrel head over the course of 30 years. Thanks.

Billy Cochran
Guest
Billy Cochran

Join Gunbroker.com and then only send them off to an FFL. Best bet.

Suzanne Marie
Guest
Suzanne Marie

I am trying to find the answer to owning unregistered guns….in wa state. Is this a big deal? Some guns are 40 years old. Some newer….most for hunting, some collected.

Taj
Guest
Taj

Not sure what you mean by an “Unregistered Gun”. Was this a collection of firearms handed down from a parent or immediate relative? If so, you should be fine.

Wa state laws on firearms are located at http://app.leg.wa.gov/RCW/default.aspx?cite=9.41

Brent C
Guest
Brent C

Washington does not have a firearm registry. Therefore there are no registered guns in the state. Washington does have a background check requirement on almost every firearm transfer. If it is your gun that you brought from out of state there is no transfer hence nothing required

Sam
Guest
Sam

I heard from a friend of mine that the laws have changed so that anyone born after January of 2001 will no longer be allowed to purchase anything other than hunting weapons (rifles, shotguns). I will be turning 18 in April and am curios to know if this is true.

Scorr
Guest
Scorr

It is not true.

Taj
Guest
Taj

Look up I-1639. It’s a new law that just passed. Restricts anyone under the age of 21 from purchasing what has been defined as a Semi-automatic assault rifle.

The definition of this is basically any semi auto rifle. That means not only are standard AR-15s subject to this new restriction, but a little semi auto .22 pea shooter is now classified as a semi-automatic assault rifle.

So it’s not necessarily someone born after Jan 2001, it’s someone under 21 who cannot buy

Nbd42
Guest
Nbd42

I-1639 is not law. It is a proposition. The earliest any of this would go into effect is July. In your case though, buy all the guns you can before it becomes a law.

Cartie
Guest
Cartie

I am wondering with the new law if someone with a concealed permit will get there gun rights taken away if they r on any kind of anxiety or depression medication? I live in Washington state. Asking for a friend.

Abbynormal
Guest
Abbynormal

No one on any type of anxiety or depression medication should be allowed to possess any type of firearm, anywhere in the US.

Cartie
Guest
Cartie

They gave him a concealed permit. Knowing he takes them. I dont see why they cant have guns. It doesnt mean they r going to do anything stupid. This person is a great person and he hunts and works and everything.

Abbynormal
Guest
Abbynormal

If a person is on medication for mental problems, doesn’t that tell you something? They should not have a firearm!

Deet
Guest
Deet

Some people take anti depression medicine for weight loss so you can’t go by that

Abbynormal
Guest
Abbynormal

I’m talking about individuals with “mental problems”. If they don’t have their head straight, they should not have a firearm. Have you learned nothing from the recent mass shootings!

Nicole []
Guest
Nicole []

You are an idiot

556
Guest
556

look at the stats. Search up how many shooters have been prescribed SSRIs and how shitty it is for you to take them, go ahead and do it right now

jdude
Guest
jdude

A lot of people also take it for insomnia and trouble sleeping.

jdude
Guest
jdude

So what you are saying is that no transgender people undergoing therapy should be allowed to own a firearm?

D. Henderson
Guest
D. Henderson

Those are especially the ones possessed with mentally disturbed minds. They should not be trusted with a full pencil.

Commone sense
Guest
Commone sense

That’s what he/she seems to be suggesting! Don’t give it much thought, because they are flat out wrong!

Common sense
Guest
Common sense

Are you out of your mind? You can be on antidepressant medication because your depressed, not because you have mental problems! You can be on medication because you get nervous for flying, that’s called anxiety and doesn’t in any way mean your mentally incapacitated! People with anxiety have every right to protect themselves and family!
If someone is unable to act as their owne adult dependent, due to mental issues, certainly. But that is not the case with common anxiety or depression!

Truthside
Guest
Truthside

HI Abbynormal; The remarks you make in your posts indicate the problem with the new imitative. There are all different types of individuals who take medications for mental issues. Saying all mentally ill persons should not have the right to life or self defense is not Constitutional in any way. Via the Constitution we are all guaranteed the unalienable right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. The prober way to determine if someone should not be given their constitutional right to life and self defense is due process in the courts. Before a jury of their piers, each… Read more »

Abbynormal
Guest
Abbynormal

Truthside, To insist that all mentally ill people should have the right to possess firearms is insane. And to also say that “each individual’s case should be determined in a court of law” is even more insane. (Can you imagine what that would do to our already over burdened courts?) This is why we have”Laws”. To set forth “standards” for everyone to follow. Just as there are requirements you must meet to obtain a driver’s license, there ARE requirement you must meet in order to possess a firearm, (one of which SHOULD BE – absences from mental illness.). I am… Read more »

Patriot0823
Guest
Patriot0823

Abbynormal, yes, we do have laws and those laws are based on the US Constitution, or are you not aware of that simple fact? What you propose is 100% UNLAWFUL and UNCONSTITUTIONAL. My God, read your own words to see how stupid you are sounding. Taking away a US citizen’s Constitutional rights without DUE PROCESS is ILLEGAL. If you don’t like the US Constitution, you have choices; vote for other retards like you to DESTROY it or MOVE OUT OF AMERICA.

Wow!
Guest
Wow!

The problem with your argument is that it’s in direct conflict with the supreme law of the land.

Concerned
Guest
Concerned

What I don’t understand AT ALL is how a majority of people actually vote to take away their own liberty on these issues! What’s worse, is they actually seem to think that the STATE is better equipt to protect them than they can protect themselves! It’s sad, pathetic, and indicative of people who are afraid to live independently!

Jake
Guest
Jake

I am a Washington state resident, with valid concealed carry for my state, and was told from a pawn shop that if I were to purchase a .45 caliber handgun that i would need to attend a course or class before letting me get the gun. Does this sound accurate? I have bought a 9mm from the same place with no issues but what there saying is because it’s a .45?

Dan
Guest
Dan

I-1639 just passed in this state which mandates training. It’s not supposed to go into effect until January 2019 though, I believe.

Adam
Guest
Adam

They are wrong. Sadly, I-1639 will change that, but not until 2019. Challenge them to do their research, or just take your business elsewhere.

Banditfrog
Guest
Banditfrog

Where do I find the laws pertaining to police stopping me if I am open carrying a rifle in areas that it is legal to do so. IE: can they stop/detain me if the only reason is because they see my rifle, do I have to give it to them when they ask for it, do I have to show ID, (I watch southsideslakr210 on youtube, he is in Texas) so I want to brush up on Washington’s carry laws and RCW.

Clarsonelle
Guest
Clarsonelle

I am planning on building a rifle. What are the legal steps that I have to follow? Is there any paperwork that needs to be done?

Chuck
Guest
Chuck

The serialized part must be purchased through an FFL just like any other rifle, on an AR15 this part is the lower receiver. Everything else is considered just parts and can be purchased anywhere including online.

Taj
Guest
Taj

A gun safe is also required.

Dan
Guest
Dan

Is a shotgun considered a firearm? I am a former Marine and made a phone call to a crisis line. Now I can not own a firearm. God bless Amerika.

Ashley
Guest
Ashley

I am so sorry! You getting the help you need should not restrict you from hunting or protecting yourself. Thank you for your service, and I’m so sorry.

neilbert
Guest
neilbert

I was a resident of Washington state between 2003 and 2005 and obtained a concealed carry license . Sadly, I had to leave Washington in 2005 and return to a state with no reciprocity. I was not sure what to do with my pistol and since the laws in my state are draconian I destroyed the pistol (cut it up into little pieces). I would now like to return to Washington. Did I break any laws of Washington?

Billy Cochran
Guest
Billy Cochran

No, but you broke the law of stupidity.

john bolinger
Guest
john bolinger

There are a number of reasons why destroying a firearm might be a good option

Texsea
Guest
Texsea

I live in Texas and was gifted a handgun from a friend. I have no licenses and just keep it as home protection. I am about to move to Seattle and am curious if I have to register this gun at all. I only intend to keep it for home protection. I have no plans to carry it outside my home, except perhaps to a shooting range (and even then it will be in a sealed case). Any help would be appreciated.

Keven
Guest
Keven

No. There is no registration here except for a partial registration on handguns purchased while in state. Washington State has no magazine restrictions either. I cannot provide legitimate legal advice, but it’s not like California or Maryland where you have to register the gun with the state within 90 days of establishing residency. You should be fine. No further action should be needed on your part.

Brent
Guest
Brent

No registration required

Mimo
Guest
Mimo

If I am Washington State resident and have been for years and I have a Utah concealed carry license do I still need to get Washington CPL?