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Illinois Background Check and Gun Laws

Subject/Law
Long guns
Handguns
Relevant Statutes
Notes
State permit to purchase? Yes Yes 430 ILCS 65 FOID required.
Firearm registration? No No    
"Assault weapon" law? No No    
Owner license required? Yes Yes 430 ILCS 65 FOID required.
Carry permits issued? No No    
State preemption of local restrictions? No No    
NFA weapons restricted? Yes Yes 720 ILCS 5/24 Fully automatic firearms and short-barreled rifles and shotguns prohibited. AOW (Any Other Weapon) allowed with proper approval and tax stamp from BATF.
Peaceable journey laws? No No    
 
To possess or purchase firearms or ammunition, Illinois residents must have a Firearm Owner's Identification (FOID) card, which is issued by the state police. Generally an FOID will be granted unless the applicant has been convicted of a felony or an act of domestic violence, is the subject of an order of protection, has been convicted of assault or battery or been a patient in a mental institution within the last five years, or has been adjudicated as a mental defective. There are additional requirements for applicants under the age of 21.
 
There is no state preemption of firearm laws. Some municipalities, most notably Chicago, require that all firearms be registered with the local police department. Chicago does not allow the registration of handguns, which has the effect of outlawing their possession, unless they were grandfathered in by being registered before April 16, 1982. The Chicago suburb of Oak Park also has banned handguns, and Highland Park bars handgun possession unless the resident has obtained a permit from the police. The status of these various handgun bans has been uncertain since June 26, 2008, when the U.S. Supreme Court struck down Washington, D.C.'s handgun ban in the case of District of Columbia v. Heller. In the months following the Heller decision, handgun bans were repealed in the suburbs of Wilmette, Morton Grove, Evanston and Winnetka, but Chicago and Oak Park have fought in court to keep their current laws. The Supreme Court has agreed to review the Chicago and Oak Park handgun bans in the case of McDonald v. Chicago.
 
Cook County has banned assault weapons and magazines that can hold more than ten rounds of ammunition. Other municipalities have also enacted various firearm restrictions. Lack of preemption makes it difficult to travel throughout Illinois with a firearm while being sure that no laws are being broken.
 
Illinois is one of two remaining states that have no provision for the concealed carry of firearms by citizens. (In compliance with the federal Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act, retired police officers who qualify annually under state guidelines are allowed to carry concealed.) Open carry is also illegal, except when in unincorporated areas where carrying is not prohibited by county law, a fixed place of business with owner's permission, or in one's abode. When a firearm is being transported, it must be unloaded and enclosed in a case.
 
When purchasing a handgun in Illinois there is a 72 hour waiting period after the sale before the buyer can take possession; the waiting period for a long gun is 24 hours.
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