Weapons Laws
A Firearms Owners Identification (FOID) card is mandatory for you to possess a firearm in the state of Illinois.

But even if you have valid permits and act in good faith, you can still face charges.

For example, tourists abiding by their state laws may unknowingly transport a loaded gun in their car. Other situations like an expired FOID card or taking a firearm out in public can get you arrested.

If you or someone you know is facing such a situation, visit sites like https://www.criminallawyer-chicago.com/chicago-weapons-charges/ immediately.

Illinois Has Strict Weapons Laws

Unlawful Use of Weapons (UUW) charges do not limit to firearms and guns. They extend to melee weapons and tasers, too.

The charges vary in severity, and so does the definition of weapons. For instance, carrying a straight razor is not UUW. However, if you intend to commit a crime, you will face charges.

The other type of charge is for carrying unlicensed or concealed firearms, which is an automatic felony.

When Carrying a Firearm

Residents of Illinois possessing a firearm must have a FOID card. Furthermore, if you plan to take it out in public, you should apply for a CCP (Concealed Carry Permit). In the lack of this permit, having a firearm on your person can result in UUW.

Besides, if you have a loaded gun and fail to produce your FOID, it will elevate the charges. You can attract a Class 4 felony charge, known as Aggravated UUW.

For this reason, it is crucial to get the proper documents before entering public spaces. Concealed weapons include stun guns, ammunition, and tasers.

How to Own a Gun Lawfully?

If you are an Illinois resident over 21 years of age, you can apply for FOID and buy a gun. You should wait for 72 hours after the purchase to possess it.

You can get your CCP license from the Illinois State Police after finishing 16 hours of training.

UUW is a Class 4 felony if you carry handguns and other weapons. Each firearm infraction will have a separate charge. For possessing rifles, shotguns, and other firearms unlawfully, you will face a Class A Misdemeanour.

Moreover, if you are under 18, it is illegal to own or carry a small firearm that you can conceal. Any individual under 21 years, with a previous misdemeanour conviction, cannot own guns and bullets.

People that cannot own or carry concealed weapons and firearms if they:
  • Have substance abuse issues
  • Suffer from an intellectual disability
  • Were admitted into a mental health facility, etc
  • In addition, Illinois prohibits owning rifle barrels shorter than 16 inches and machine guns.
  • Unlawful Use of Weapons - Circumstances
Per the Illinois Criminal Statute 720 5/24-1, the following are the scenarios of unlawful use charge:
  • Using, owing, or building explosive bullets
  • Using, owing, or making parts of machine guns
  • Owing or using a shotgun with less than 18-inch barrels
  • Possessing a loaded weapon in your car without a valid permit or license
  • Unloaded firearm and ammunition accessible in your vehicle

Gang-related acts, etc

These charges can constitute Class 2 to Class 4 felonies and up to seven years in jail time. You may also pay thousands of dollars in fine.

In such situations, getting experienced lawyers to navigate the charges is critical. You can visit a lawyer for a consultation.