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Justin Sparks is an experienced gun and firearms lawyer based in Fort Worth, TX. Contact the defense attorneys at Sparks Law Firm today!

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Justin Sparks is a Firearms Program Attorney through the Texas Law Shield and an expert on firearms law in Texas. Justin has defended many citizens’ gun rights and right to carry. The legal landscape around the 2nd amendment is both controversial and confusing and you need an experienced firearms lawyer on your side to guide you through the legal process.

Is Texas A Right To Carry State?

Texas is an open carry state, but there are still a number of Federal and Texas laws regulating firearms. Obtaining a handgun license in Dallas/Fort Worth is fairly simple, but whether or not you have a License to Carry (LTC), you should be familiar with the laws and regulations on carrying and transporting a firearm.

Although the 2021 Legislature approved Constitutional carry of handguns, your right to carry is not unlimited. There are still restrictions on when and where you can carry a firearm. If you have a LTC, you have more responsibility when it comes to carrying a firearm and, if not done properly, you could be arrested for unlawfully carrying. Make sure you are knowledgeable about when you can and cannot legally carry your firearm in Texas to avoid legal repercussions.

Gun Crimes:

  • Unlawful Carrying of a Weapon - Unlawful carrying a weapon occurs when a person intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly carries a handgun on or about his person when they are one of the following:​​​

    • Under the age of 21

    • Age 21 or older and prohibited from possessing a firearm under state or federal law

    • Convicted in the last 5 years for assault-bodily injury, deadly conduct, terroristic threat, or disorderly conduct-displaying/discharging a firearm

    • Displaying the firearm in plain view in a public place unless the handgun was carried in a holster

    • Carrying while intoxicated

  • Unlawful Possession of a Firearm - Unlawful possession occurs if you carry a firearm within five years of…

    • ​Being released from community supervision, parole or felony confinement for a felony offense

    • Being released from community supervision/confinement for a conviction for assault-family violence

  • Unlawful Discharge of a Firearm - You can be charged of unlawful discharge if you fire a gun in a public place or on / across a public road.

  • Unauthorized Trafficking of Firearms

  • Aggravated Assault (with a deadly weapon) - You can be charged of aggravated assault if you exhibit a deadly weapon during an assault.

  • Murder - You can be charged with murder if, through criminal means, you cause the death of another person.

Can Licensed Carriers Be Charged With Gun Crimes?

Yes, even if you have a license you have to respect laws of when and how to carry.

Ignoring A Posted Warning Sign
If you carry a concealed weapon or carry a handgun in a shoulder or belt holster on property with a posted sign warning you not to do so, you are committing a Class C misdemeanor. For this offense, you’ll face up to a $200 fine. If you fail to depart upon request, you will be charged with a Class A misdemeanor with a jail sentence of up to one year in jail and a $4,000 fine. A property owner may exclude an open or concealed weapon carrier with a properly worded sign or oral notice.

Improper Display Of Handgun

It is illegal for a person licensed to carry a handgun to intentionally display the handgun in plain view of another person in a public place unless the handgun is in a shoulder or belt holster. However, if you are on a public or private college campus, you are not allowed to intentionally display the handgun in plain view of another person in a public place even if the handgun is in a shoulder or belt holster

Justin was my lawyer for a case I had with Tarrant County. He was very responsive, professional, and helped us sooo much! I ended up having everything dismissed. Definitely highly recommend!

- Payton R.

I cannot say enough good things about this law firm! They took care of me and immediately started working my case. They knew exactly what to do as soon as I told them my story.

- Alana B.


While licensed open carry is prohibited on all college campuses, concealed carry is permitted on public campuses ONLY if the president of the college has established and published rules that allow for it. On private college campuses, concealed carry is only legal if it has been authorized by the college.

Unlicensed open carry and unlicensed concealed carry are prohibited on all college campuses.

Consult a firearms lawyer–or someone else familiar with carry laws–before you make any assumptions or bring a gun to location you are unsure about.

Where Are You Not Allowed To Carry A Gun?

Whether or not you have a license to carry, it is illegal to possess or enter with a firearm, illegal knife, club or prohibited weapon at the following locations:

  • High school, collegiate, professional or interscholastic event (but a licensed person can carry unless signage is posted)

  • Correctional facility

  • Civil commitment facility

  • Hospital or nursing home (but a licensed person can carry there unless signage is posted)

  • Mental hospital

  • Amusement park (but a licensed person can carry there unless signage is posted)

  • Meeting room of a governmental entity during a scheduled open meeting unless the person has a license to carry

  • School or educational institution

  • Polling place: on the day of an election or while early voting was in progress.

  • Courts and offices utilized by a court

  • Racetrack

  • Airport: into the secured premises of an airport.

  • Place of execution: within 1000 feet of a place of execution

  • Alcohol licensed (51%) premises (but a licensed person can carry there unless signage is posted)

If you have been arrested for violating a carry law, seek legal help from an experienced firearms lawyer.  A conviction could have serious consequences such as fines, jail/prison sentences and an impact on your ability to have a license to carry in the future.


You need a firearms attorney that can defend you when the you are facing a violation of your right to carry and use a firearm. Justin Sparks is a LLP Program Attorney with the Texas Law Shield and has vast knowledge and expertise on Texas gun laws.

See a few Justin’s past firearms law interviews and cases. Call the Sparks Law Firm for help defending your rights.

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