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What are Florida’s Laws Regarding Open Carry During Outdoor Shooting Activities?

Florida Gun Law
There has been a debate for many years here in Florida about whether or not state statute allows openly carrying a firearm while fishing, target shooting, hunting or camping. Today we’re going to look into just what the facts are behind this debate.


Florida Statute 790.25 (3)(h) permits the use and possession of a firearm while engaged in fishing, camping, target shooting, or hunting or going to and from lawful hunting, fishing, target shooting or camping expeditions.  There are still many instances where the use or the possession of a firearm is still prohibited under Florida state statute and ignorance of the law is not an affirmative defense if you are charged with a violation of state law.

Florida generally does not allow open carry with the small exception of when a person is hunting, fishing, target shooting or camping. Florida law also states that a person can legally open carry a firearm while in transit to and from the allowable activities (hunting, fishing, target shooting or camping).


Some have attempted to bend this rule (law) and stop at a store on the way to their destination to pick up some items and have found themselves in some legal trouble.  It behooves you to read the state statute if you decide to carry a firearm openly and I highly recommend you not open carry until you are at your designation for the protected activities.  

Florida case law does not specify the meaning of the ‘going to and from’ provision and you do not want to be a test case for some new assistant state attorney. Take the high road and just carry the firearm concealed (with a valid permit to carry concealed) or inside a case until you get to your final designation. Some new police officers may not even know of the loophole so I would recommend you keep a copy of the state statue inside your tackle box, boat or at the least your wallet just in case a police officer questions you.   

In closing I cannot stress enough it is your responsibility to read the state statute and be aware of the law so that you will not find yourself in handcuffs.  I always take the high road and stay way inside of the lines due to the fact I do not want to be a test case for a law enforcement agency or the state attorney’s office.  When I travel to the gun range or fish I never open carry.  Stay safe, stay out of handcuffs and always prepare your battlefield for success.  

Jay Lacson- Training Instructor for Polk County, Florida

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6 Responses to What are Florida’s Laws Regarding Open Carry During Outdoor Shooting Activities?

  1. Daniel June 22, 2019 at 3:02 pm #

    What a cowardly manner to use a lawful Florida statute!! It’s not a “loophole,” it’s the LAW!! There are only five states left in the US that do not have Open carry. More than 30 allow OC WITHOUT a CC permit. That means 45 states allow their citizens to execute their 2nd Amendment rights. Please change your stance on this so citizens will start doing that they lawfully can, and to hell with idiot law enforcement officers who violate the 2nd Amendment. Smells like a lawsuit that the cities or counties will be mandated to pay.

  2. Al Franken January 18, 2020 at 5:03 pm #

    OK mister lawyer. An attorney gives you advice, good advice and tells you or anyone to use common sense. Guess common sense is getting outdated. So go on be a hero and I’ll see you around the courthouse. Only I’ll be walking around while a cop escorts you.

    • Slappy jack March 22, 2020 at 10:23 am #

      Hey Al….Should’ve stayed with Saturday Night Live. You suck at politics.

  3. fred johnson February 18, 2020 at 5:21 pm #

    Thank you for the information. I am walking in to a remote fishing spot, lots of woods, ponds, never know I may have to cope with. So I prefer a larger gun than I normally carry concealed

  4. David March 11, 2020 at 12:24 pm #

    Law enforcement may and often does take advantage of the fact that they are not lawyers and can rarely be held accountable to know the law, even though they initiate formal reports about it being violated. That’s why as a former Navy LEO, when choosing to lawfully open carry in the State of Florida, I try to follow my own best practice of communicating with family/friends about it in advance, using methods that leave digital records. Should I be falsely accused of violating the law, I’ll have those records to aid in my defense. I’ve also joined Florida Carry, the only organization I feel is truly working to hold individual government officials to the basic standard that they shouldn’t knowingly and willingly violate our rights under FL law.

  5. RANDY JOHNSON July 9, 2020 at 3:12 pm #

    Florida case law does not specify the meaning of the ‘going to and from’ provision.

    I do not understand how educated people can not understand what “going to and from” means. C’mon… it is what it says it is.

    Learn to pronounce
    an act or instance of leaving a place; a departure.
    “his going left an enormous gap in each of their lives”

    hmm??? smh

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