If you’re a Texas resident with a concealed handgun license (CHL), the process for renewing it is about to become significantly more convenient.
House Bill 48 passed both the Texas House of Representatives and Senate and was signed into law by Governor Perry. Under the former law, to renew their CHL a holder had to complete at least a four-hour long refresher course on proper gun usage and safety. That was in addition to the minimum ten hours of instruction Texans are required to complete to initially obtain a CHL.
Now, thanks to HB 48, the class completion requirement for renewal has been eliminated. Instead, individuals will only have to apply online or through the mail, updating their eligibility information while paying a processing fee. HB 48 also mandates that those renewing their CHL must read a webpage or flyer about the legal use of deadly force in Texas before applying to renew.
Current active duty military and veterans honorably discharged continue to enjoy exemption from the CHL safety course requirements under the law.
“Accidental Exposure” of a concealed handgun by CHL holders is not longer a violation of the law.
Sec. 46.035. UNLAWFUL CARRYING OF HANDGUN BY LICENSE HOLDER. (a) A license holder commits an offense if the license holder carries a handgun on or about the license holder’s person under the authority of Subchapter H, Chapter 411, Government Code, and intentionally fails to conceal the handgun…
(h) It is a defense to prosecution under Subsection (a) that the actor, at the time of the commission of the offense, displayed the handgun under circumstances in which the actor would have been justified in the use of deadly force under Chapter 9.
The Texas Legislature also passed a bill that allows students with handgun licenses to bring their guns on college campuses in Texas. However, the firearms must be concealed and locked in their cars. Current law made it illegal to bring in weapons in cars on Texas college and university campuses.
The new law enables students with concealed handgun licenses to bring their firearms to a college and university campus, provided the weapons are left or stored in their cars in the parking lots. Neither public nor private universities can create a law prohibiting it.
“Keeping and bearing arms is not only a fundamental right; it is a fundamental duty upon which all liberty and sovereignty is based.”