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Alabama law generally prohibits knowingly, with intent to do bodily harm, carrying or possessing a firearm on the premises of a public school.1 The term “public school” applies only to a school composed of grades K-12, but includes a school bus used for grades K-12.2 Concealed handgun license holders are exempt from this prohibition, however, a 2014 Attorney General opinion stated that “A board of education that has not previously adopted an express policy prohibiting all persons, other than authorized law enforcement personnel, from bringing or possessing any deadly weapon or dangerous instrument on school property is required to do so.3

In 2022, Alabama placed restrictions on colleges and universities that regulate firearms on their campuses.4 The new law allows the governing body of each two-year or four-year institution of higher education to adopt policies governing the possession of firearms or other weapons on grounds owned or controlled by the institution subject to the following conditions:

  • The policy must allow for individuals not otherwise prohibited from possession of a firearm by state or federal law to possess a firearm in the individual’s privately owned motor vehicle while parked or operated on the grounds of the institution; provided, that the individual satisfies all of the following conditions:
    • If the firearm is a handgun, the individual is not generally prohibited from possession of a handgun by state or federal law.
    • If the firearm is any firearm legal for use for hunting in Alabama other than a pistol:
      • The individual possesses a valid Alabama hunting license.
      • The firearm is unloaded at all times on the grounds.
      • It is during a season in which hunting is permitted by Alabama law or regulation.
      • The individual has never been convicted of any crime of violence as defined by state law, nor of any crimes set forth in Chapter 6 of Title 13A, Code of Alabama 1975, nor is subject to a domestic violence order, as defined by state law.
      • The individual has no documented prior incidents on the grounds of the institution involving the threat of physical injury or which resulted in physical injury to another.
    • The motor vehicle is operated or parked in a location where it is otherwise permitted to be.
    • The firearm is either of the following:
      • In a motor vehicle attended by the individual, kept from ordinary observation within the individual’s motor vehicle.
      • In a motor vehicle unattended by the individual, kept from ordinary observation and locked within a compartment, container, or in the interior of the individual’s privately owned motor vehicle or in a compartment or container securely affixed to the motor vehicle.


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  1. Ala. Code § 13A-11-72. The term “deadly weapon” includes any firearm. Ala. Code § 13A-11-72.[]
  2. Id.[]
  3. Alabama Office of the Attorney General, “Opinion 2014-044,” February 28, 2014,[]
  4. 2022 AL HB 272, effective Jan. 1, 2023.[]