The “Open Carry” law went into effect in Oklahoma on November 1, 2012. “Open Carry” refers to the legal right of individuals with an Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation (“OSBI”) handgun license to carry a handgun (.45 caliber or smaller;under 16 inches in length) on their person in a belt or shoulder holster. The pistol can be loaded while worn on an individual’s person.

In order to qualify, individuals must be 21 years of age and a resident of Oklahoma. Additionally, an individual will need to have an OSBI background check, complete an eight-hour firearms safety and training course, demonstrate competence with the type of handgun you intend to carry, and pay an application fee. The application fee is $100 for a five year license and $200 for a ten year license.

Applications typically take around 100 days to be approved. If you have a history or mental illness, substance abuse, or violence you may have to wait three to ten years after the incidents or condition is present in your life.

Generally, individuals with a license can open carry in private businesses unless specifically stated otherwise. The state has comprised a list of places you may NOT open carry:

Private businesses, organizations or residences that prohibit open carry

Buildings, structures or office space owned or leased by governmental entities

Meetings of any city, county, town state or federal officials

Meetings of school board members or legislative members

Meetings of other elected or appointed officials

Any prison, jail or detention facility

Any place where pari-mutuel wagering is authorized

Sporting Arenas during a professional sporting event

Establishments whose primary purpose is to dispense alcoholic beverages

Colleges, Universities or Technology Centers

Public and Private Schools

Any other place specifically prohibited by law


Individuals authorized to open carry in Oklahoma must always keep their license on their person in the event it needs to be shown to law enforcement. For further information on the licensing dos and donts, visit the state website here.

Jeff Krigel is a Tulsa Criminal Defense Lawyer in Tulsa, Oklahoma. If you have questions regarding open carry, or any other legal matter, call for a free consultation.