FIND GUN LAWS BY STATE

Table of Contents

About the author
ABOUT THE AUTHOR Bryan L. Ciyou is a trial and appellate attorney at the Indianapolis law firm of Ciyou & Dixon, P.C. He earned his BA with distinction and graduated through the honors program, along with his JD,... Read More

The GLBS Guide and Its Use!

I. Introduction

With the Internet, there are numerous official state sources, chat rooms, blogs, and materials available on any given state’s gun laws and reciprocal carry. These sources are useful depending on the level of question that may arise. However, they are not integrated, and many are based on “updates” that are made from “paper” laws that take days, weeks or months to become available in that format.

In addition, the available resources do not cross the rather bright lines between interstate transportation of a firearm, such as by checking-in baggage on a commercial flight (a federal right), to retrieval of the firearm at the airport and lawful carrying in another state (determined by state law). This is a complex scheme, whether You prefer a single-shot shotgun or bolt-action rifle.

At the next level, carrying a handgun in reciprocal carry (as opposed to lawful transport) brings on an entirely new set of legal complexity because handguns are more highly regulated. And with reciprocal carry, it is occurring in a state in which the non-resident is likely to be unfamiliar or less familiar with its primary criminal law (mostly statutes) that may have a simple provision different from the state that issued the license. If this criminal provision is not followed, it may well result in criminal arrest.

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Disclose First Police Contact.  For instance, in Alaska, a person lawfully carrying a concealed handgun under their state’s reciprocity agreement with Alaska, would commit a crime if, at the time he or she comes upon a police officer, the person fails to immediately inform the police officer that he or she is carrying a concealed handgun. This is not the law in many other jurisdictions.

Thus, determining reciprocity and criminal laws is the central focus of the GLBS Guide.

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II. Connecting the Dots

This GLBS Guide is the first of its kind that ties together and boldly crosses into the invisible lines between transportation versus carry and interaction between state and federal law. Some of these are issues and concerns that law enforcement officers face when they carry off-duty in other states or do so after they retire under H.R. 218 (a federal law). And there is a proliferation of licenses and gun law-making, in some cases complicating the analysis.

To date, such a book has been unable to be written because it faced structural problems that were impossible to overcome. With tens of thousands of gun laws, the book would be too complex a resource to write and print or too simplistic to even be useful. Today however, with handheld, mobile devices being commonplace, this is possible.

Precisely now, this is accomplished by compiling the legal information that most people likely require to stay lawful in most reciprocal situations, be they a civilian carrying under a reciprocity agreement, or an off-duty law enforcement officer. Hyperlinks to official and other sources sweep in the rest of issues that may arise so that You can access, in real time, second or third checks of complex queries or account for unexpected deviations in travel plans.

The GLBS Guide is that tool. The GLBS Guide is apolitical, merely connecting law, although not a tool designed to challenge it directly. That is a different need, and it is well-served by powerful lobbies, such as the NRA [http://gunla.ws/nra] and GOA [http://gunla.ws/goa].

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III. Reciprocity and Criminal Law Focus

As noted, the focus of the GLBS Guide is with the federal and state criminal laws and determining reciprocity agreements themselves. Running afoul of criminal laws with reciprocal carry is the greatest risk, save for an unjustified use of deadly force, as it may mean arrest, conviction and imprisonment. However, it is critical to stay mindful that this is not all-controlling law.

Many, if not most, jurisdictions have a vast array of other laws that might impact lawful carry, from cases decided under licensing and penal statutes, for which FindLaw.com [http://gunla.ws/findlaw] provides a powerful resource database to search. Local ordinances are difficult to locate. However, a few powerful online resources [http://gunla.ws/am] along with ATFE [http://gunla.ws/atfe] provide good sources. These are identified for Your future research in various places in the book. However, they are not analyzed herein.

Where useful, hyperlinks are provided to aid with the various other such queries You may face or need to consider in any given state and situation, such as the noted local ordinances and hunting laws. In addition, with reciprocity and criminal law, checking and cross-checking and verifying Your conclusions through multiple sources is always prudent.

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IV. Other Authoritative Resources

To this end, there is no substitute for a knowledgeable person in the proposed state for reciprocal carry, such as the official author of a book on that state’s gun laws and/or advice of counsel in that state.

A good staple in Your research is to access (and support) The National Rifle Association’s materials, which are comprehensive and available online. Again, the hallmark of good legal research is cross-checking what You discover with multiple sources to ensure its accuracy and timeliness.

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V. Worksheets

In the beginning, determining reciprocity and controlling state and federal law is confounding for most Readers. However, to help You navigate the process, and as a supplement to the GLBS Guide, there are worksheets to aid in Your research for proposed reciprocal carry. This also helps You organize and internalize the material. These are provided at the end of the GLBS Guide.

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VI. Icons

To act as an instructional aide, several icons are utilized throughout the GLBS Guide to make key points, set out examples, or identify problematic areas. They are indented and identified as follows:

Author’s Note.  This icon provides commentary on areas of common concern or confusion among Readers. Moreover, this flag is used, at appropriate junctures, to qualify the text. In a few places, this symbol sets forth subjective points or positions held by the Author. Nevertheless, this should not be confused with the law-and-order focus of the GLBS Guide: It is not written to test the law.

Caution.  The caution icon highlights the number of factual and legal circumstances where unintended violation of penal law might occur. Many criminal defendants who run afoul of firearms law were otherwise law-abiding citizens who did not properly understand the penal law. In other words, many cases and arrests for firearms violations are not the product of hardened criminals.

Case Law.  The case law icon sets out actual cases on point, typically those decided at the federal level. These are used to illustrate points in the text or how certain cases have changed or developed the law. Again, even with the statutory penal focus of the GLBS Guide, there are significant state and federal cases applying and/or interpreting state or federal statutes.

Example.  The example icon highlights a relevant incident or specific instance of the law and/or its application to illustrate a point in the GLBS Guide to aid the reader’s understanding.

Hypothetical.  The hypotheticals flagged by this icon in the GLBS Guide are a common learning tool employed in law school education to illustrate a legal point, ambiguity in the law, or possible application of the law to a specific set of facts.

Legal Concept.  The legal concepts are critical bits of the material that the Reader must understand to make prudent decisions in analyzing firearms matters. Specifically, this icon presents information to help differentiate similar legal issues or matters that might be equated as one and the same, and thereby, obscure the material of the text and analysis to be made therefrom. Grasping and applying these concepts often demarcates the line between lawful and unlawful behavior, criminal, civil and/or regulatory.

New Law.  This icon is employed to highlight changes, refinements, interpretations or important or unique applications of a given firearms law. These not only allow a Reader to more fully understand and follow a particular law, but also provide insight into the complex lawmaking process.

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What makes the GLBS Guide unique is its shortened hyperlinks. These allow easy access to the best state and federal primary law and other quality reference materials. These allow You to delve into technical material, if necessary, to answer specific and/or unique questions.

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VIII. Conclusion

We hope the GLBS Guide aids You in determining and exercising concealed, reciprocal carry. This is a learning curve for everyone, and we at Peritus Holdings, Inc., the publisher, welcome Your insights on how to make the GLBS Guide a more accurate, authoritative, timely and complete resource tool. It is only with finding the law and then following the law that gun owners understand what they want to seek to change and, by doing so, keep free of criminal and/or civil issues.

This is what makes America and its legal system the envy of the world; and it ensures a free society.

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FIND GUN LAWS BY STATE

Table of Contents

About the author
ABOUT THE AUTHOR Bryan L. Ciyou is a trial and appellate attorney at the Indianapolis law firm of Ciyou & Dixon, P.C. He earned his BA with distinction and graduated through the honors program, along with his JD,... Read More