Skip to main content

Appeals Court Strikes Down Illinois Concealed Carry Ban

Concealed-carryBreaking news from the state dubbed "FOIDistan": A federal appeals court ruling struck down Illinois' long-standing concealed carry ban, meaning the state would have to allow ordinary citizens to carry, according to the Chicago Tribune.

In a 2-1 decision handed down Tuesday, the U.S. Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the state's concealed carry ban is unconstitutional.

The ruling, however, does not mean Illinois residents are immediately allowed to carry; judges have given lawmakers in Springfield 180 days to draft their own version of the law.

The judges stated:


"We are disinclined to engage in another round of historical analysis to determine whether eighteenth-century America understood the Second Amendment to include a right to bear guns outside the home. The Supreme Court has decided that the amendment confers a right to bear arms for self-defense, which is as important outside the home as inside.


"The theoretical and empirical evidence (which overall is inconclusive) is consistent with concluding that a right to carry firearms in public may promote self-defense. Illinois had to provide us with more than merely a rational basis for believing that its uniquely sweeping ban is justified by an increase in public safety. It has failed to meet this burden.

"The Supreme Court's interpretation of the Second Amendment compelled the appeals court to rule the ban unconstitutional, the judges said. But the court gave 180 days to "allow the Illinois legislature to craft a new gun law that will impose reasonable limitations, consistent with the public safety and the Second Amendment as interpreted in this opinion, on the carrying of guns in public."

After Wisconsin enacted a concealed carry law on June 24, 2011, Illinois became the only state to ban concealed carry. That could change over the next 180 days, but only time will tell. In the meantime, state legislators are mulling whether to appeal the decision, or to begin drafting concealed carry legislation — with certain restrictions in place, of course.

"If we need to change the law, let us at least craft a law that is very severely constrained and narrowly tailored so that we don't invite guns out of control on each of our city's streets," said Illinois House Majority Leader Barbara Flynn Currie, D-Chicago. "I don't want people out of control wandering the streets with guns that are out of control."


Natalie Bauer, a spokesperson with Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan's office, added Madigan will consider the ruling before deciding whether to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.

"The court gave 180 days before its decision will be returned to the lower court to be implemented," Bauer said. "That time period allows our office to review what legal steps can be taken and enables the legislature to consider whether it wants to take action."

The move comes months after the county board in downstate Pike County ruled that county residents could carry concealed, an effort that was spearheaded by Guns & Ammo contributing editor and Pike County resident Dick Metcalf. The ordinance marked the first time since 1862 that county law directly contradicted state law, influencing other counties south of I-80 to take similar action.


In August, McLean County State's Attorney Ron Dozier publicly refused to prosecute anyone convicted of merely carrying a firearm, depending on the defendant's criminal history and related charges.

The battle isn't over yet; should the case go to the Supreme Court, Illinois residents will be forced to endure another inevitably long, drawn-out legal process, but in the meantime, they can relish the fact that the state is making headway in joining the 21st century.

Current Magazine Cover

Enjoy articles like this?

Subscribe to the magazine.

Get access to everything Guns & Ammo has to offer.
Subscribe to the Magazine

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Guns & Ammo TV: Irons vs. Optics

Guns & Ammo TV: Irons vs. Optics

How much of an edge do optics give shooters? In this segment of Pros vs. Joes, Guns & Ammo TV puts Coordinating Producer Jeff Murray against Professional Shooter Chris Cerino.

First Look: Springfield Armory Model 2020 Waypoint Bolt-Action Rifle

First Look: Springfield Armory Model 2020 Waypoint Bolt-Action Rifle

At the heart of the rifle is the Model 2020 action which wish designed and built with very tight tolerances thanks to Springfield's technology-driven manufacturing capabilities The stainless steel action features an integral recoil lug, and pairs with a fluted bolt employing dual cocking cams and an enhanced extractor for high pressure loads. The blueprinted and precisely machined action allows Springfield to offer the Model 2020 with .75" MOA accuracy guarantee. Despite being a production rifle, the Model 2020 should rival more expensive custom builds.

Guns & Ammo TV: Wheelgun vs. Pistol

Guns & Ammo TV: Wheelgun vs. Pistol

In this segment of “Pros vs. Joes,” we put competitive shooter and author James Tarr against Guns & Ammo TV cameraman Nathan Wilt. With handguns, they see who can knock down plates the fastest on two Revolution Targets Heavy Duty Plate Racks. Here's the catch: Tarr has to use a Colt King Cobra in .357 Mag. while Wilt shoots a Smith & Wesson M&P9 M2.0 in 9mm.

Surefire XSC Micro-Compact Pistol Light: First Look

Surefire XSC Micro-Compact Pistol Light: First Look

Small, lightweight and purpose-built for sub-compact carry guns, Surefire's XSC pistol light takes on EDC illumination segment.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

The first in this new family of Springfield Armory rifles is the Model 2020 Waypoint, the result of years of engineering, testing and evaluation, combined with premium grade components found on rifles costing thousands of dollars more.First Look: Springfield Armory Model 2020 Waypoint Bolt-Action Rifle Rifles

First Look: Springfield Armory Model 2020 Waypoint Bolt-Action Rifle

Guns & Ammo Staff - September 29, 2020

The first in this new family of Springfield Armory rifles is the Model 2020 Waypoint, the...

The Savage MSR 15 Competition is an out-of-the-box racehorse ready to help you win 3-Gun matches. Here's why.Savage MSR 15 Competition Review Reviews

Savage MSR 15 Competition Review

James Tarr - May 21, 2019

The Savage MSR 15 Competition is an out-of-the-box racehorse ready to help you win 3-Gun...

Some guns are easier to work with than others, but the Ruger American Rifle doesn't require an engineering degree to tinker with; here's a look at some upgrade options to take your Ruger American to the next level, and make it something a bit different.Top Ruger American Rifle Upgrades Accessories

Top Ruger American Rifle Upgrades

Philip Massaro - March 15, 2018

Some guns are easier to work with than others, but the Ruger American Rifle doesn't require an...

The Swarovski Z5(i) P BT L 3.5-­18x44mm has a unique and versatile multiple-­zero system and an erector assembly unlike any other on the market. The Z5(i) is an excellent choice for an all-­around hunting scope.Swarovski Z5(i) P BT L 3.5-­18x44mm Scope Review Optics

Swarovski Z5(i) P BT L 3.5-­18x44mm Scope Review

Tom Beckstrand - September 09, 2020

The Swarovski Z5(i) P BT L 3.5-­18x44mm has a unique and versatile multiple-­zero system and...

See More Trending Articles

More Industry

Perspective from the National Shooting Sports Foundation.NSSF Survey: Broad Demographic Appeal for Firearms Purchases

NSSF Survey: Broad Demographic Appeal for Firearms Purchases

Jim Curcuruto, NSSF Director of Research and Market Development - July 22, 2020

Perspective from the National Shooting Sports Foundation.

Smith & Wesson announced the launch of its new multi-media marketing campaign: Smith & Wesson Gunsmarts.Smith & Wesson Gunsmarts Campaign Industry

Smith & Wesson Gunsmarts Campaign

Guns & Ammo Staff - August 18, 2020

Smith & Wesson announced the launch of its new multi-media marketing campaign: Smith & Wesson...

New York Attorney General sues the National Rifle Association.More Trouble for NRA Industry

More Trouble for NRA

Guns & Ammo Staff - August 06, 2020

New York Attorney General sues the National Rifle Association.

The USA High School Clay Target League announced the clay target disciplines of ‘Sporting Clays' and ‘5-Stand' have been added to their high school clay target shooting programs, in which over 30,000 student athletes participate. USA High School Clay Target League Sporting Clays and 5-Stand Programs Industry

USA High School Clay Target League Sporting Clays and 5-Stand Programs

Guns & Ammo Staff - August 01, 2020

The USA High School Clay Target League announced the clay target disciplines of ‘Sporting...

See More Industry

Magazine Cover

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE Arrow

Buy Digital Single Issues

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Guns & Ammo App

Other Magazines

See All Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Guns and Ammo subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now