I am not a lawyer but I know it varies state-to-state. Some states have "Castle Law" which entitles you to defend your ground with deadly force, and some states have an obligation to retreat. A Castle Doctrine (also known as a Castle Law or a Defense of Habitation Law) is an American legal concept arising from English Common Law that designates one's place of residence (or, in some states, any place legally occupied, such as one's car or place of work) as a place in which one enjoys protection from illegal trespassing and violent attack. It then goes on to give a person the legal right to use deadly force to defend that place (his/her "castle"), and/or any other innocent persons legally inside it, from violent attack or an intrusion which may lead to violent attack. In a legal context, therefore, use of deadly force which actually results in death may be defended as justifiable homicide under the Castle Doctrine. Stand Your Ground: relieves the home's occupants of any duty to retreat or announce their intent to use deadly force before they can be legally justified in doing so to defend themselves. Castle Doctrine (no duty to retreat in the home) states: * Alaska * California (California Penal Code Â§ 198.5 sets forth that unlawful, forcible entry into one's residence by someone not a member of the household creates the presumption that the resident held a reasonable fear of imminent peril of death or great bodily injury should he or she use deadly force against the intruder. This would make the homicide justifiable under CPC Â§ 197. CALCRIM 506 gives the instruction, "A defendant is not required to retreat. He or she is entitled to stand his or her ground and defend himself or herself and, if reasonably necessary, to pursue an assailant until the danger ... has passed. This is so even if safety could have been achieved by retreating." However, it also states that "[People v. Ceballos] specifically held that burglaries which 'do not reasonably create a fear of great bodily harm' are not sufficient 'cause for exaction of human life.'”) * Colorado * Connecticut * Hawaii (Retreat required outside the home if it can be done in "complete safety.") * Kansas (Â§ 21-3212. Use of force in defense of dwelling; no duty to retreat. (a) A person is justified in the use of force against another when and to the extent that it appears to such person and such person reasonably believes that such force is necessary to prevent or terminate such other's unlawful entry into or attack upon such person's dwelling or occupied vehicle.) * Maine (Deadly force justified to terminate criminal trespass AND another crime within home, or to stop unlawful and imminent use of deadly force, or to effect a citizen's arrest against deadly force; duty to retreat not specifically removed) * Maryland See Maryland self-defense (Case-law, not statute, incorporates the commonlaw castle-doctrine into Maryland self-defense law. Invitees or guests may have duty to retreat based on mixed case law.) * Massachusetts * Michigan (more recent law—Act 309 of 2006—does not relieve duty to retreat "unless [deadly force is] necessary to prevent imminent death;" this represents no change from common law, which does not require retreat unless it can be safely done) * Minnesota No duty to retreat before using deadly force to prevent a felony in one's place of abode; no duty to retreat before using deadly force in self defense in one's place of abode ) * Mississippi (to use reference, select "Code of 1972" and search "retreat") * Missouri (Extends Castle Doctrine to one's vehicle) * Ohio (Extends to vehicles of self and immediate family; effective September 9, 2008. Section 2901.09) * Oregon. (ORS 161.209-229. Use of force justifiable in a range of scenarios without a duty to retreat specified. Oregon Supreme Court affirmed in State of Oregon v. Sandoval that the law "sets out a specific set of circumstances that justify a person's use of deadly force (that the person reasonably believes that another person is using or about to use deadly force against him or her) and does not interpose any additional requirement (including a requirement that there be no means of escape).") * New Jersey ("Statutes" link in sidebar, see New Jersey Statutes 2C:3-4, retreat required outside home if actor knows he can avoid necessity of deadly force in complete safety, etc.) * North Carolina * Rhode Island * Utah * West Virginia (Senate bill 145 signed March 12, 2008. WV code Â§55-7-22) * Wyoming Stand your ground ( no duty to retreat anywhere) states: # Alabama # Arizona # Florida # Georgia # Indiana # Kentucky # Louisiana # Oklahoma Â§21-1289.25 # South Carolina (Persons not "required to needlessly retreat.") # Texas # Tennessee 2007 Tenn. Pub. Acts Ch. 210 (Amends Tenn. Code. Ann. Â§ 39-11-611) # Utah # Washington Courtesy of Wikipedia.