Transporting your firearm legally in Illinois is sometimes a confusing topic, but it doesn’t have to be. There is much information that makes it easy to comply with the law to transport your firearm legally in Illinois. However the law does treat Illinois residents and non residents differently, so it is also important to know those differences. It is also important to know the legal differences between “Carry” and “Transportation” in Illinois. This article is not to be considered legal advice.
Transporting your Firearm Legally for Illinois Residents
Illinois residents must always have their Firearm Owner Identification (FOID) card or their Illinois Concealed Carry License (CCL) on their person at all times when in possession of firearms and ammunition.
With your FOID, for transport, the firearm must either be..
- Broken down in a non functioning state, OR
- Not immediately Accessible, OR
- Unloaded and enclosed in a case.
The following pamphlet was printed before Illinois allowed carrying of concealed firearms, however does clearly explain how one may transport you firearm legally in Illinois: Transporting-Your-Firearm-Legally-Illinois-State-Police Brochure
For an Illinois resident to carry a firearm, they must have a valid Illinois Concealed Carry License on their person and the firearm must be a hand gun as defined by the Illinois law.
Transporting your Firearm Legally for Illinois Non-Residents
The process for an Illinois non-resident to transport their firearm legally in Illinois is similar to that of a resident, however there are also some differences. The first difference is that the non-resident does not need a FOID card. Infact most non residents aren’t even aware of what a FOID card is. Essentially it is a card that says you have passed a background check, similar to the National Instant Check System (NICS) that anyone who has bought a gun has underwent. The difference is Illinois residents need this card on their person at all times they are in possession of firearms or ammunition, non residents do not.
For purposes of transportation, the non-resident must adhere to the above described criteria of broken down in a non functioning state, OR not immediately Accessible, OR unloaded and enclosed in a case.