Carrying across state lines

I am getting ready to head out to Michigan for a bit, and have fun researching carry laws in Michigan. While MI honors my Indiana permit, there are some differences in places I can and can’t carry. For example, it is perfectly legal in Indiana for me to carry my gun in a bar, and it’s even legal for me to tip a beer back when I’m carrying. It is illegal to be drunk and packing in Indianastan, but other than that there are few limitations.

In Michigan on the other hand, I cannot carry in a bar, which is defined as an establishment that derives the majority of it’s income from serving alcohol in a glass. It actually says that in the state law. I also cannot drink, not even a solitary drop of booze while armed in Michigan.

The oher issue that comes up is route planning. While my ultimate destination is in Michigan, one of the routes to get there takes me through the Chicago area and in Illinois. To avoid committing a felony, I would have to stop in Indiana, take my gun off, unload it, store it securely away from any ammo, and then proceed through IL. The problem with that is the area around Chicago isn’t exactly “crime free”, so if there is one area of my drive where the statistical odds of needing a gun increase, it’s precisely where the law requires me to be unarmed. So, I choose a route which is a little slower, but doesn’t take me to IL. That way I can simply stay “gunned up” for the duration of my drive time.

It’s important when you’re travelling across state lines to do your homework on the carry laws of that state. While Michigan has some weird laws, it’s generally okay. The same cannot be said of Illinois or of other states within reasonable driving distance of Indiana. Make sure you do your due diligence before you travel, because telling the cops “I didn’t know” flies like a lead balloon.

10 thoughts on “Carrying across state lines”

  1. “Make sure you do your due diligence before you travel, because telling the cops “I didn’t know” flies like a lead balloon.”

    Odd how that seems to fly just fine when cops are shaking you down because you’re OC-ing, or politely inform that you’re packing during a stop.

    Good points!

  2. I travel quite a bit, and before every trip I consult http://www.handgunlaw.us to refresh my memory on the laws of my destination state – and to see if there have been any changes since I last visited.

  3. “It is illegal to be drunk and packing in Indianastan, but other than that there are few limitations.”

    Wellllll, sorta, kinda, it depends.

    Being in public or a place of public resort while intoxicated is illegal, but that nothing to do with you having a pistol or not.

    Further, I can be as blind drunk as I want in a non-public place and be carrying a dozen pistols and that is NOT illegal. In fact, it gives me an idea for the weekend (that’s a joke, Tam).

  4. Are you going to the UP or something?

    Why would you have to pass through ILL-inois?

    I’d take you for a drink if you were in town…

  5. >While my ultimate destination is in Michigan, one of the routes to get there takes me through the Chicago area and in Illinois.

    Indiana to Michigan and you gotta go through Daleygrad? Say what?

  6. I’m driving from northern VA to Indy. Maryland does not recognize my VA CHL, but WV, PA, OH and IN do. So I plotted a course to take me through as little of Maryland as possible. Maryland is only 2 miles wide where route 522 goes from VA to WV to MD to PA in just a matter of a few minutes. And I fully intended to stop, unload and lock the gun in the trunk, then drive thru MD, stop in PA and retrieve the gun and continue on my way, but the borders are poorly marked and I was in PA before I realized I had left WV. The other thing I did was print out the reciprocity letters for all of the states on my route and keep them in a folder on the passenger seat.

  7. Hey Shootin’ Buddy, what about IC 35-47-4-1?

    “A person who sells, barters, gives, or delivers any deadly weapon to any person at the time in a state of intoxication, knowing him to be in a state of intoxication, or to any person who is in the habit of becoming intoxicated, and knowing him to be a person who is in the habit of becoming intoxicated, commits a Class B misdemeanor.”

  8. Tell me about it. I drive up to the UP with the wife every year or so,having to go throught Chicago and Wisconsin, it makes for some interesting driving to say the least.

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