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Illinois Gun Laws

November 12, 2009 2:02:58 PM PST
1. To purchase a gun in Illinois, you must first obtain a FOID card (Firearm Owner Identification Card through Illinois State Police. FOID requirements involve a criminal background check:

  • Must be 21. Age 18-21 requires consent of qualified parent or guardian
  • No felony convictions
  • No drug addictions
  • Has not been patient in mental hospital in preceding five years
  • Does not have mental illness
  • Must be a legal resident of U-S.
  • Must be 21 to purchase handgun. 18 (with responsible adult permission) to purchase a long gun.

1. Waiting Period

  • 72-hours for handgun
  • 24-hours for rifle or handgun

2. Cities with Handgun Bans

  • Chicago: Chicago bans possession, retail sales, and private sales and/or transfers of handguns and also bans the sale and/or transfer of certain types of handgun ammunition. It also requires that all other guns legally possessed be registered.
  • Morton Grove, Evanston, Wilmette, and Oak Park also ban handgun possession.
  • The following Illinois communities ban the sale or transfer of handguns: Deerfield, Elk Grove Village, Evanston, Forest Park, Highland Park, Morton Grove, Niles, Northbrook, Oak Park, River Grove, Westmont and Wilmette. Illinois is unique among states because of the number of communities with handgun bans.

3. Concealed Carry

  • In Illinois, it is unlawful to carry or possess any firearm that is concealed in a vehicle or on a person. There are some exceptions: Licensed hunters, trappers, but they must transport their firearms in a non-functioning state (that is broken down, unloaded, in a case, not immediately accessible.)

4. Child Access

  • It is unlawful for adults to leave their guns unlocked and accessible to children under the age of 14 (if that situation leads to injury or death with the firearm.)

5. Under Consideration

  • Law that would limit handgun purchases to One-a-month. This has been proposed annually by Mayor Daley, and has never moved very far. The legislature is considering it again this session, but gun control advocates concede it probably won't get very far.
  • The Illinois Senate has passed and the House is considering a bill that would ban the sale and manufacture of high capacity ammunition clips. The clips would be limited to 10 bullets, but those who currently possess high-capacity clips could keep them, and the governing of internet purchases is unclear.


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