Over the past few days, we have heard the same question from our LawShield members, “Can I legally carry while wearing a mask?” Depending on the state, a person not otherwise prohibited from possessing a firearm under state and federal law may be allowed to carry a gun in a non-prohibited place while wearing a mask.

Keep in mind all other laws still apply. Take time to learn the law!


Alabama

Yes. The State of Alabama allows you to carry with a mask on.

Alaska

Yes. The State of Alaska allows you to carry with a mask on.

Arizona

Generally yes. While gun owners can carry a firearm while wearing a mask, Arizona may outlaw the wearing of a mask to conceal one’s identity, conceal one’s identity with intent to commit a crime, or other restrictions not directly related to firearms. See Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 13-701.

Arkansas

Yes. The State of Arkansas allows you to carry with a mask on.

California

Generally yes. It is not illegal for a person to carry a firearm while wearing a mask in California, particularly when the mask is required by local public health authorities, with one important proviso. See Cal. Penal Code § 25300.

California’s concealed carry statutes do not make the wearing of facemasks unlawful for a person carrying with a valid CCW.  California does prohibit the wearing a mask “for the purpose of . . . [e]vading or escaping discovery, recognition, or identification in the commission of any public offense” where the purpose of the mask is to facilitate the “[c]oncealment, flight, or escape, when charged with, arrested for, or convicted of, any public offense.”  Cal. Penal Code 185.  The “for the purpose of” language is key.  The statute is intent-based – that is to say, it criminalizes wearing a mask with the intent of concealing one’s identity in connection with the commission of  a crime:  think, wearing a mask while robbing a bank.  Absent such intent, wearing mask for other lawful purposes, such as to avoid spreading a virus, is legal.  Indeed, it may be required.  During the current pandemic, officials in other states (notably Illinois) have issued guidance, stating that their similarly constructed statutes do not prohibit mask wearing for public health purposes or impact a person’s ability to lawfully carry a firearm.  California officials have not directly addressed the issue, but the lack of a mask prohibition in the CCW statutes, coupled with the intent requirement for the crime involving wearing a mask, indicate that California would probably take a similar approach.

The short answer is that a person legally carrying a firearm may continue to do so while wearing a mask in California, unless the person is wearing the mask, at least in part, to conceal his or her identity while committing a criminal offense.  If your activities are lawful, and your intent is only to comply with local public health authorities’ mandates dealing with COVID-19, then you may wear a mask while carrying a weapon in California.

Colorado

Yes. The State of Colorado allows you to carry with a mask on.

Connecticut

Generally yes. While gun owners can carry a firearm while wearing a mask, Connecticut may outlaw the wearing of a mask to conceal one’s identity, conceal one’s identity with intent to commit a crime, or other restrictions not directly related to firearms. See C.G.S. § 53-37a.

Delaware

Generally yes. While gun owners can carry a firearm while wearing a mask, Delaware may outlaw the wearing of a mask to conceal one’s identity, conceal one’s identity with intent to commit a crime, or other restrictions not directly related to firearms. See Del. Code Ann. Tit 11, § 1301.

Florida

Generally yes. While gun owners can carry a firearm while wearing a mask, Florida may outlaw the wearing of a mask to conceal one’s identity, conceal one’s identity with intent to commit a crime, or other restrictions not directly related to firearms. See Fla. Stat. § 876.155.

Georgia

Generally yes. While gun owners can carry a firearm while wearing a mask, Georgia may outlaw the wearing of a mask to conceal one’s identity, conceal one’s identity with intent to commit a crime, or other restrictions not directly related to firearms. See Ga. Code Ann. § 16-11-38; See also Executive Order 04.11.20.02 Regarding the use of face masks/coverings to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Hawaii

Yes. The State of Hawaii allows you to carry with a mask on.

Idaho

Yes. The State of Idaho allows you to carry with a mask on.

Illinois

No. Illinois prohibits or will likely interpret the law to prohibit wearing a mask while carrying a firearm. See 720 ILCS 5/24-1.

Indiana

Yes. The State of Indiana allows you to carry with a mask on.

Iowa

Yes. The State of Iowa allows you to carry with a mask on.

Kansas

Yes. The State of Kansas allows you to carry with a mask on.

Kentucky

Yes. The State of Kentucky allows you to carry with a mask on.

Louisiana

Generally yes. While gun owners can carry a firearm while wearing a mask, Louisiana may outlaw the wearing of a mask to conceal one’s identity, conceal one’s identity with intent to commit a crime, or other restrictions not directly related to firearms. See La. Rev. Stat. § 14:313.

Maine

Yes. The State of Maine allows you to carry with a mask on.

Maryland

Yes. The State of Maryland allows you to carry with a mask on.

Massachusetts

Generally yes. While gun owners can carry a firearm while wearing a mask, Massachusetts may outlaw the wearing of a mask to conceal one’s identity, conceal one’s identity with intent to commit a crime, or other restrictions not directly related to firearms. See MGL c. 268 § 34.

Michigan

Generally yes. While gun owners can carry a firearm while wearing a mask, Michigan may outlaw the wearing of a mask to conceal one’s identity, conceal one’s identity with intent to commit a crime, or other restrictions not directly related to firearms. See MCL § 750.396.

Minnesota

Generally yes. While gun owners can carry a firearm while wearing a mask, Minnesota may outlaw the wearing of a mask to conceal one’s identity, conceal one’s identity with intent to commit a crime, or other restrictions not directly related to firearms. See Minn. Stat. 609.735.

Mississippi

Yes. The State of Mississippi allows you to carry with a mask on.

Missouri

Yes. The State of Missouri allows you to carry with a mask on.

Montana

Yes. The State of Montana allows you to carry with a mask on.

Nebraska

Yes. The State of Nebraska allows you to carry with a mask on.

Nevada

Yes. The State of Nevada allows you to carry with a mask on.

New Hampshire

Yes. The State of New Hampshire allows you to carry with a mask on.

New Jersey

Yes. The State of New Jersey allows you to carry with a mask on.

New Mexico

Generally yes. While gun owners can carry a firearm while wearing a mask, New Mexico may outlaw the wearing of a mask to conceal one’s identity, conceal one’s identity with intent to commit a crime, or other restrictions not directly related to firearms. See N.M. Stat. Ann. § 30-22-3.

New York

Yes. The State of New York allows you to carry with a mask on.

North Carolina

Generally yes. While gun owners can carry a firearm while wearing a mask, North Carolina may outlaw the wearing of a mask to conceal one’s identity, conceal one’s identity with intent to commit a crime, or other restrictions not directly related to firearms. See N.C. Gen. Stat. §§ 14-12.7, 14-12.8, 14-12.9, 14-12.10, 14-12.11.

North Dakota

Generally yes. While gun owners can carry a firearm while wearing a mask, North Dakota may outlaw the wearing of a mask to conceal one’s identity, conceal one’s identity with intent to commit a crime, or other restrictions not directly related to firearms. See N.D.C.C. § 12.1-31-15.

Ohio

Generally yes. While gun owners can carry a firearm while wearing a mask, Ohio may outlaw the wearing of a mask to conceal one’s identity, conceal one’s identity with intent to commit a crime, or other restrictions not directly related to firearms. See Ohio Rev. Code § 3761.12.

Oklahoma

Generally yes. While gun owners can carry a firearm while wearing a mask, Oklahoma may outlaw the wearing of a mask to conceal one’s identity, conceal one’s identity with intent to commit a crime, or other restrictions not directly related to firearms. See Okla. Stat. tit. 21 § 1301.

Oregon

Yes. The State of Oregon allows you to carry with a mask on.

Pennsylvania

Yes. The State of Pennsylvania allows you to carry with a mask on.

Rhode Island

Yes. The State of Rhode Island allows you to carry with a mask on.

South Carolina

Yes. The State of South Carolina allows you to carry with a mask on.

South Dakota

Yes. The State of South Dakota allows you to carry with a mask on.

Tennessee

Yes. The State of Tennessee allows you to carry with a mask on.

Texas

Yes. The State of Texas allows you to carry with a mask on.

Utah

Yes. The State of Utah allows you to carry with a mask on.

Vermont

Generally yes. While gun owners can carry a firearm while wearing a mask, Vermont may outlaw the wearing of a mask to conceal one’s identity, conceal one’s identity with intent to commit a crime, or other restrictions not directly related to firearms. See local ordinance.

Virginia

Generally yes. While gun owners can carry a firearm while wearing a mask, Virginia may outlaw the wearing of a mask to conceal one’s identity, conceal one’s identity with intent to commit a crime, or other restrictions not directly related to firearms. See Va. Code § 18.2-422.

Washington

Yes. The State of Washington allows you to carry with a mask on.

Washington, D.C.

No. Washington, D.C. prohibits or will likely interpret the law to prohibit wearing a mask while carrying a firearm. See D.C. Code § 22-3312.03.

West Virginia

Generally yes. While gun owners can carry a firearm while wearing a mask, West Virginia may outlaw the wearing of a mask to conceal one’s identity, conceal one’s identity with intent to commit a crime, or other restrictions not directly related to firearms. See W. Va. Code § 61-6-22.

Wisconsin

Yes. The State of Wisconsin allows you to carry with a mask on.

Wyoming

Yes. The State of Wyoming allows you to carry with a mask on.


For questions regarding carry laws while wearing a maskcontact U.S. LawShield and ask to speak to your Independent Program Attorney. Click here to download the guide outlining which states permit carrying while wearing a mask.

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The preceding should not be construed as legal advice nor the creation of an attorney-client relationship. This is not an endorsement or solicitation for any service. Your situation may be different, so please contact your attorney regarding your specific circumstances. Because the laws, judges, juries, and prosecutors vary from location to location, similar or even identical facts and circumstances to those described in this presentation may result in significantly different legal outcomes. This presentation is by no means a guarantee or promise of any particular legal outcome, positive, negative, or otherwise.