If you live in Texas and are interested in obtaining a License to Carry (LTC) so that you can legally carry a handgun, it's important to understand the eligibility requirements and application process. In this article, we'll review the steps you need to take to get ready for the Texas License to Carry test, including the eligibility criteria and the application process and fees.
Before you can apply for an LTC in Texas, you need to meet certain eligibility requirements. These include:
You must be at least 18 years old to apply for an LTC in Texas.
To be eligible for an LTC in Texas, you must be a legal resident of the state. You'll need to provide proof of your residency when you apply.
You cannot have certain criminal convictions on your record if you want to obtain an LTC in Texas. Specifically, you cannot have been convicted of a felony or a Class A or Class B misdemeanor in the five years prior to your application. You also cannot have been convicted of a disorderly conduct offense in the past year.
You cannot have been diagnosed with a psychiatric disorder that would make you a danger to yourself or others, or you cannot be currently undergoing treatment for a psychiatric disorder.
Drug and Alcohol Use
You cannot have a history of drug or alcohol abuse, and you cannot be currently addicted to drugs or alcohol.
Application Process and Associated Fees
Once you've determined that you meet the eligibility requirements, you can begin the application process for your Texas LTC. Here are the steps you'll need to take:
Complete a Firearms Safety Course
Before you can apply for an LTC, you'll need to complete a state-approved firearms safety course. This course will cover the basics of gun safety, including how to handle a firearm, how to store it safely, and when deadly force is justified. There are many courses available, both in-person and online, and the cost can range from around $50 to $200.
Submit Your Application
Once you've completed your firearms safety course, you can submit your application for an LTC. You can do this online or by mail, and the application fee is $40. You'll need to provide your personal information, including your name, address, and Social Security number, as well as proof of your residency in Texas.
As part of the application process, you'll need to get fingerprinted. This can be done at a local law enforcement agency or by a private vendor, and the cost is usually around $10 to $20.
Wait for Your Background Check
After you've submitted your application and been fingerprinted, you'll need to wait for your background check to be completed. This can take several weeks, and you'll be notified by mail if your application is approved.
Pay the License Fee
If your application is approved, you'll need to pay the license fee. This is $140 for a new license, or $70 if you're renewing an existing license.
Attend Your LTC Class
Once you've paid your license fee, you'll need to attend an LTC class. This class will cover the legal requirements for carrying a handgun in Texas, including when and where it's legal to carry, and how to interact with law enforcement. The cost of the class can vary, but it's typically around $75 to $100.
Pass the LTC Test
Finally, you'll need to pass the LTC test. This is a written exam that covers the material you learned in your LTC class. You'll need to score at least 70% to pass, and you'll have three attempts to do so. If you fail the test three times, you'll need to retake the LTC class before you can try again.
Getting ready for the Texas License to Carry test can be a daunting process, but it's important to understand the eligibility criteria and application process so that you can ensure that you're prepared. By completing a firearms safety course, submitting your application, getting fingerprinted, waiting for your background check, paying the license fee, attending your LTC class, and passing the LTC test, you can obtain your license to carry and legally carry a handgun in Texas.