Duty to Inform

In some places you have a duty to inform LEO if you are armed, some places you do not. In Florida, you do not. Are there any reasons you should not let LEO know you are legally carrying even if you do not have to? How would informing be disadvantageous to me?


I personally have no problem telling a LEO I’m carrying. But a friend of mine gave me a good idea on how to approach the situation. He was pulled over for something very minor, I can’t remember why. He stopped the engine, rolled down the window, kept the seatbelt on, pulled his DL and CCW license, which he keeps together in his wallet, easy and quick way to pull them both out without searching in your wallet.

When the cop came to the window, he handed them both after exchanging normal greetings with the officer. The officer looked at both IDs and asked if he was carrying today. My friend said yes. The cop didn’t ask any other question about guns and after a minute or two, my friend was on his way.

Now I keep both IDs together and if I get pulled over, I’ll just hand them both to the officer.


When law allows the choice, personal decision.

I won’t say there is any reason you “should” not, but people may have reasons they choose not to inform.

There are examples out there of informing not going well for the carrier.

I’m sure there are examples of not informing, and then being found out, not going well either.

Just don’t say the word “gun”. If and when you inform, I like handing over driver/carry licenses at the same time, and if verbalizing saying something like “lawfully concealed firearm in a holster” or something


Because i don’t need to! If the law requires me to I will otherwise nope.


I think I would. Around here we are having a real problem staffing our police departments. Chances are, you will run into a 20 something rookie cop. With zero experience I’m afraid of what their reaction might be to seeing a firearm. I look at it like this, if I’m first to tell and he/she does something Stupid, and I survive, I might just have a case.


I exchange a greeting and inform him immediately. I do this as a courtesy to the officer. I always get thanked for it. I live in central Virginia and police-citizen relations are usually very good.

As an old Soldier, I view police officers as sort of first cousins. This shapes how I see them and interact with them. I know that others here have different ideas about the police.


Here in North Carolina, such declaration is required by law when contacted by law enforcement.

The way it was explained to us in our concealed carry class, the very first words out of your mouth should be:

“I have a concealed carry permit, and I have a concealed weapon.”


“Hi there. How are you? How’s it going? Did I do something wrong? Oh, by the way, I have a concealed carry permit, and I have a concealed weapon.”


I consider it to be a professional courtesy.


Here in MS you have the option of having an Endorsement on your DL since your CP and DL numbers are exactly the same so they will already know you have a permit when they run your DL. Now it will just say ECP in my case (Enhanced Carry Permit). Keeps you from having to have 2 cards.


For those of us who travel by car state-to-state, it’s important to both recognize reciprocity laws while also appreciating that the foremost “unknown” question on any LEO’s mind when they perform a traffic stop is whether or not the person that they just stopped is armed or not.

If you place yourself in the role of the State Trooper who just pulled you over, the MOST IMPORTANT and most immediately relevant information available to them is if you have a gun.

It’s probably best if you dispel and remove any perceived threat from that police officer’s mind as soon as possible.


IL doesn’t require it. And I’m not saying anything unless asked.
If Officer runs my plates he knows I’ve got CCL. It is his choice to ask me if I’m armed or not.


Sometimes telling them you have a gun doesn’t dispel any perceived threat.


The one time that I’ve had an encounter with an officer while carrying was in Wyoming.

My RV broke down and I was getting towed home to Colorado, aaaannnnd the tow truck broke down. (Blown turbo).

We were limping to a truck stop at maybe 10mph dropping an absolute smoke screen.

Wyoming has no duty to inform, so I said nothing about my weapon. (Neither did the tow driver about his)

Just a quick run on our IDs and we were back on the way.

Had the officer wanted us to exit for any reason I would’ve told him that I was armed and had my Colorado CHP.


It’s true that it may depends where you live. I live in an unincorporated area, more rural, more conservative (for the West coast), very little crime and we depend on the sheriff department, the same guys who deliver the CCW permits. There’s a pretty good relationship between that sheriff dept and the locals.


Maybe if you’re traveling through some prohibited concealed carry states, which if I had the option, then I would personally drive 500 miles out of my way to avoid.

That’s why it’s important to be familiar with concealed carry reciprocity laws with the states that one might travel.

It might not be required by law to declare your armed status, but it doesn’t necessarily imply that you’re not an immediate threat to law enforcement.

However, if you become angry, argumentative and verbally combative with law enforcement, while demanding that your Civil and 2nd Amendment Rights be respected, then don’t be surprised when you find yourself on the inside of a jail cell.


Plusses and minuses:

  1. When I lived in Virginia, there was no duty to inform. A visitor from North Carolina, where there was, told the Fairfax County cop who pulled him over for rolling through a stop sign that he was armed with permit. Cop was not aware of reciprocity; neither was his sergeant; neither was the booking desk sergeant. He ended up before a judge and was eventually released when they straightened out the reciprocity thing.
  2. While visiting in-laws in Tennessee, which also has no duty to inform, a rookie cop came to our minor accident. As an experiment, I told him I was armed. He had me take the revolver from my pocket, unload it, and store it the glove box until the report was done. His training officer did not stop the process. In hindsight (see below) the whole thing was a goat rope.
  3. In a general advisory on YouTube Massad Ayoob advises always informing, just never use the word gun.
  4. Here in Arkansas we have a duty to inform whenever a law enforcement asks us to identify ourselves, which can be as simple as name and phone number; it does not have to be a request for drivers’ license or ID card.
  5. Based on all of the above, I have practiced a soft script: Keep hands on the steering wheel, and say, “Officer, my drivers license and carry license are in my right front pocket. My holster is on my right front hip. How would you like me to proceed?”
  6. In the unlikely event the cop asks me to disarm, the line is, “Officer, I do not want to be seen handling a firearm in the presence of a police officer; that might be dangerous for us both. I will move however you like so that you can remove it and store it safely.”
  7. Going back to 1 & 2, I have my doubts about always following #3. I will have to play that by ear if it occurs in a non-duty-to-inform state.

I am former LE. To me it is always a good idea to inform. It never bothered me that someone was carrying, i mean I was around people my whole life that carried, but failing to do so does have it’s risks. You may get a rookie cop or someone that is not totally comfortable with guns that sees it after failing to inform and you wind up shot. I am not saying that is how it should be, I am just saying that is reality!

The first person I ran into after Ohio allowed CCW permits was a 65 year old woman. When I ran her tag it showed she had a CCW. I appraoched and asked her if she had her gun on her. She said not now. I never asked any further questions, completed the traffic stop and let her off with a warning.

I say better safe than sorry. Being shot and coming back with well he shouldn’t have done that, is NOT a good comeback.



I don’t think anybody here is talking about being angry, argumentative, or verbally combative.

I believe we are talking about, where allowed by law, potentially exercising the personal choice to not immediately tell an officer on a traffic stop that we are exercising a basic Right just-because.


This could potentially be a recommendation for telling, or not telling

Concealed carriers should watch this before making their decision. JMO

Full video is out there. The guy gave his permit to the officer immediately and was very aggressively and loudly threatened with being executed


Me personally, I carry strong side right handed behind the hip under cover garments behind my back against the seat under the seat belt in a state with no connection between license and driver license, if allowed by law, I avoid the risk by not informing.

If I had to get out of the car, that would be different

And I have been through the majority of a police academy after interning with a different PD prior