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Tennessee generally prohibits the possession of a firearm in public spaces “with the intent to go armed,”1 but with the significant exception that people may carry loaded handguns in most public spaces, either openly or concealed, as long as they are at least 21 years old, legally eligible to possess the handgun, and lawfully present in the place where they are carrying the gun.2

Tennessee law also generally allows people to carry unloaded firearms on or about their person in most public spaces if the ammunition for such weapon is not in the immediate vicinity of the person or the weapon.3


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  1. Tenn. Code § 39-17-1307(a)(1).[]
  2. Tenn. Code Ann. § 39-17-1307(a), (g) (as amended by 2021 TN SB 765, effective July 1, 2021).[]
  3. Tenn. Code Ann. § 39-17-1308(a)(1).[]