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The Second Amendment guarantees the right to bear arms, but that right is not unlimited. In Illinois, state laws govern what sorts of weapons, including guns, can be carried, by whom, and where. Compared to many other states, Illinois has fairly restrictive gun laws.
Gun Permits and Licenses to Carry
In Illinois, you must have a license, known as a Firearm Owner’s Identification Card, in order to purchase a gun. Until 2012, state law prohibited carrying a gun (openly or concealed)outside of one’s home, but a federal appellate court decided that the law violated the Second Amendment and struck it down. (Moore v. Madigan, 702 F.3d 933 (7th Cir. 2012).) In 2013, Illinois enacted a new law permitting people to carry concealed weapons with a license. (430 Ill. Comp. Stat. § 66/1 et seq.)
Depending on the circumstances, possession of a prohibited weapon may be anything from a Class A misdemeanor (punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $2,500) to a Class X felony (punishable by six to 30 years’ imprisonment and a fine of up to $25,000). The crime is punished more severely if the weapon is possessed in a school (including a university), courthouse, public housing development, or park; or on a public bus or school bus.