Private Sales in Texas

Posted on January 1, 2012

See our Private Sales policy summary for a comprehensive discussion of this issue.

Texas has no law requiring a background check on the purchaser of a firearm when the seller is not a licensed dealer. Texas law does, however, state that a person commits a Class A misdemeanor if he or she:

  • Sells, rents, leases, loans, or gives a handgun to any person knowing that the person to whom the handgun is to be delivered intends to use it unlawfully or in the commission of an unlawful act;
  • Intentionally or knowingly sells, rents, leases, or gives or offers to sell, rent, lease, or give a firearm to any child younger than age 18. It is an affirmative defense to this charge that the transfer was to a minor whose parent or legal custodian had given written permission for the sale or, if the transfer was other than a sale, the parent or legal custodian had given effective consent. This offense rises to the level of a “state jail felony” (the lowest class of felony under state law) if the firearm involved is a handgun;
  • Intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly sells a firearm or ammunition to any person who is intoxicated;
  • Knowingly sells a firearm or ammunition to any person who has been convicted of a felony before the fifth anniversary of the later of: 1) the person’s release from confinement following conviction of the felony; or 2) the person’s release from supervision under community supervision, parole, or mandatory supervision following conviction of the felony;
  • Sells, rents, leases, loans, or gives a handgun to any person knowing that an active protective order is directed to the person to whom the handgun is to be delivered; or
  • Knowingly purchases, rents, leases, or receives as a loan or gift a handgun while an active protective order is directed to the person.1
  1. Tex. Penal Code § 46.06(a). []