Washington's Firearms and Dangerous Weapons statute
Washington’s Firearms and Dangerous Weapons statute (RCW 9.41) was amended in 2004 to allow non-Washington residents to carry concealed weapons in Washington if they have obtained a concealed weapons permit from another state that meets certain conditions imposed by Washington’s reciprocity law, RCW 9.41.073. Those conditions are:
- The other state must have a reciprocal statute allowing Washington residents to carry concealed weapons in the other state if the resident has a Washington concealed pistol permit; and
- The other state does not issue concealed pistol licenses to persons under twenty-one years of age; and
- The state requires mandatory fingerprint-based background checks of criminal and mental health history for all persons who apply for a concealed pistol license.
If the above conditions are met, the concealed weapons permit of an out-of-state resident will be recognized in Washington as long as the permit holder does not become a resident of Washington State. Additionally, the permit holder from another state must carry the handgun in compliance with the laws of Washington State*. Washington concealed pistol permits will be recognized in those states which have a reciprocal agreement with Washington. Washington residents should check the laws of the state they are traveling to, in order to comply with the concealed weapons permit law of that state.
The law requires the Office of Attorney General to periodically publish a list of states that meet the requirements for reciprocity. The list may be found on our web site at: www.atg.wa.gov/ConcealedWeapons/Reciprocity.aspx.
We send out an annual survey to request updated information from each state. As we obtain updated responses we update the list of reciprocal states.
If you have questions about non-resident concealed pistol licenses or lawfully carrying a weapon without a concealed pistol license you may contact the Department of Licensing, Firearms Section at (360) 664-6616 or www.dol.wa.gov/business/firearms.
*Persons who are not U.S. citizens who are temporarily residing in Washington, such as students on temporary school visas and people on temporary work visas, are required to obtain a two-year alien firearm license before possessing any firearm in Washington. This law went into affect July 26, 2009 and is found in RCW 9.41.171.