Can a Michigan Concealed Pistol License Holder Carry More Than One Gun

Can a Michigan Concealed Pistol License Holder Carry More Than One Gun

Michigan Coalition For Responsible Gun Owners
Michigan Coalition For Responsible Gun Owners

Michigan – -( Q: I am a Michigan CPL (Concealed Pistol License) holder. I have been told that I can only carry one pistol and may not carry a back-up gun. Is this true?

A: It is probably not true. MCL 28.425c states that a CPL holder may: “Carry a pistol concealed on or about his or her person anywhere in this state.” I have heard that some instructors of the legal portion of the CPL class are teaching that the words “a pistol” mean that only one pistol may be carried at a time. I disagree. There is a general rule (the rule of lenity) for interpreting law which holds that behavior that is not prohibited is allowed.

Since the law does not prohibit carrying more than one concealed pistol, it is reasonable to interpret the statute as applying to each pistol that a CPL holder chooses to carry.

While not the final word on the matter, the official position of the Michigan State Police agrees with me. In reply to a recent inquiry on this very topic, the MSP replied as follows: “Nothing in Michigan law limits the number of pistols that may be carried by a CPL holder – a CPL holder may carry as many pistols as he or she wishes.”

I believe that this is a correct interpretation of current law.

However, it is possible that some local law enforcement and prosecutors could try to make an issue of this. But, as of this writing, I have not heard of any such cases, and the able staff of clerks and law students who assist me with research have been unable to locate any record of such cases.

Steve Dulan ( is a member of the Board of Directors of the MCRGO and the MCRGO Foundation, and a member of the Board of Trustees of the MCRGO Foundation. He is an attorney in private practice in East Lansing and Adjunct Professor of firearms law at The Thomas M. Cooley Law School. as well as an NRA Life Member.

The Michigan Coalition for Responsible Gun Owners is a non-profit, non-partisan organization. Formed from just eight people in 1996, we now have thousands of members and numerous affiliated clubs across the state. We’re growing larger and more effective every day.

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