The gun laws in Tennessee are considered lenient and friendly towards gun owners. The Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution guarantees the right of U.S. citizens to own firearms, but states are free to establish certain limits to how guns are purchased and carried. The gun laws do not require purchase approval or registration of firearms.
While Tennessee gun laws are relatively mild, the state requires background checks for gun purchases from licensed dealers and has some other limited restrictions. Non-residents can only obtain a CCW permit if they work in the state on a regular basis, they can make an application after being employed for six months and then only within six months after the initial six month work period. An 8-hour training course in firearm safety is required for new applications, but military personnel is exempted.
Open carry in Tennessee
Residents are legally not entitled to open carry in the state of Tennessee, and you can only open carry a handgun if you have a permit to carry a concealed firearm. Open carry is not standard in cities and mainly used as a carry method in rural areas.
Carrying in vehicles
Tennessee doesn’t have gun laws that restrict carrying weapons in a car. Anyone can carry a loaded handgun in their cars with a permit in the state of Tennessee. A concealed handgun, however, doesn't need to be hidden and not displayed in an unlocked glovebox or console. Residents need a permit to carry their concealed weapons in their vehicle. However, local governments can set their laws on public places which include vehicles. So you would need to check the local regulations.
Notifying a police officer
The gun laws in Tennessee state that you are not required to inform or inform a law enforcement officer of the firearm you are carrying when you are approached while on official business. You need to carry your permit in case you have a concealed handgun in your possession when an officer requests you to produce it.
Constitutional carry in Tennessee
The Tennessee gun laws don’t permit constitutional carry.
Carry in restaurants
In Tennessee, residents are allowed to carry firearms into a restaurant whose primary business is to serve alcohol. Restaurants, in general, will enable you to bring firearms into restaurants as long as it's not at the bar area and also if the restaurant does not have a “no weapons” sign.
Enforcing the “no guns” sign in Tennessee
These signs are legally imposed under the gun laws in Tennessee, and if anyone disregards this sign when they enter private property or business, they are subjected to legal penalties. It is advisable to avoid entering properties or establishments that display this sign and are considered off limit by the law. If a person refuses to leave the premises while carrying in such venues, that person is breaking the law and is at risk of being charged.
Possessing Machine Guns in Tennessee
It is against the law for any resident to intentionally or knowingly manufacture, transport, maintain, sell or repair a machine gun.
Unlawful removal of the serial number on the weapon
It is against the law to intentionally change, alter, remove or obliterate the serial number or identification number on any handgun. The possession of a gun with its marks altered, removed or destroyed creates a legal presumption that the possessor committed the offense.
It is prohibited to carry into court proceedings
It is against the law to carry a firearm into a judicial process in Tennessee.
Carry while intoxicated is prohibited
It is against the law for a person to possess a handgun while under the influence of alcohol or any controlled substance regardless of whether he or she has a lawful permit to carry the handgun.