Changes to Federal Gun Laws for 2023-2024

Changes to Federal Gun Laws for 2023-2024

For law-abiding gun owners and people who want to purchase their first firearm, the various federal, state, and city firearms laws can be difficult to navigate.

Lawmakers often try to make their mark to “make a difference” by creating increasingly restrictive gun laws, which can leave sportsmen and sportswomen, hunters, recreational shooters, firearms collectors, competition shooters, and hobbyists scrambling to keep up.

To try to shed some light on some of the new federal and state firearms laws, we’ve provided the following list of new proposed and enacted firearms laws for 2023-2024. Let’s dive in.

Please note: Neither the author nor Liberty Safe assumes any liability regarding the accuracy of the information below. We have made a reasonable effort to provide accurate information regarding various proposed and implemented gun laws at the time of publication. However, this article is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be an exhaustive or comprehensive list, nor should it be considered legal advice. Consult your local laws and/or a licensed attorney in your state.

Changes to Federal gun laws for 2023-2024

Is there still a ban on pistol stabilizing braces in 2023?

Important update: On August 1, 2023, a federal panel of the 5th US Circuit Court of Appeals found that the US BATFE (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, commonly ATF) finalized the new pistol brace rule in January 2023 without giving the public enough chance to comment on it, which makes the new ban invalid under the federal Administrative Procedure Act.

The Appeals Court doesn’t have the authority to immediately block enforcement of the rule but instead sent the case back to the US District Judge in Texas, who will decide whether to issue an order blocking enforcement of the ban as the case moves ahead and whether that order will apply nationwide or only to the specific plaintiffs in this case.

However, the fact that the appeals court ruled that the new ban is likely illegal is good news for owners of braced firearms, and will hopefully help encourage the ATF to follow the rule of law moving forward.

Some background on the pistol brace ban: On January 13, 2023, the Attorney General signed ATF final rule 2021R-08F, amending the ATF’s regulations to clarify when a rifle is designed, made, and intended to be fired from the shoulder. The final rule was published in the Federal Register on January 31, 2023, and went into effect on June 1, 2023 (however it has been challenged in multiple lawsuits and has been ruled invalid, as we saw above).

ATF final rule 2021R-08F

The rule outlines the factors the ATF considers when evaluating firearms equipped with a stabilizing brace (or other rearward attachment) to determine whether these weapons would be considered a rifle or short-barreled rifle under the Gun Control Act of 1968, or a rifle or firearm subject to regulation under the National Firearms Act. The rule’s amended definition of rifle clarifies that the term designed, redesigned, made or remade, and intended to be fired from the shoulder includes a weapon that is equipped with an accessory, component, or other rearward attachment (i.e., a stabilizing brace) that provides a surface area that allows the weapon to be fired from the shoulder, provided other factors indicate the weapon is designed and intended to be fired from the shoulder.

This rule does not impact stabilizing braces that are objectively designed and intended as a stabilizing brace for use by individuals with disabilities. Such stabilizing braces are designed to conform to the arm and are not intended to be used as a buttstock. This rule was made effective on January 31, 2023, the date it was published in the Federal Register. If the firearm with the stabilizing brace is (as a result of the new rule) deemed a short-barreled rifle, affected persons initially had 120 days from the date of publication to register the firearm as a short-barreled rifle (NFA item) tax-free, which was May 31, 2023.

If the rule is eventually reinstated or found legal, people who don’t wish to register their firearms have other compliance options provided under the final rule including:

  • Remove the short barrel and attach a 16-inch or longer rifled barrel to the firearm.
  • Permanently remove and dispose of, or alter, the stabilizing brace such that it cannot be reattached.
  • Turn the firearm in to your local ATF office.
  • Destroy the firearm.

HOWEVER: On May 23, 2023, the United States Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit issued a preliminary injunction prohibiting the federal government from enforcing the new ban on pistol stabilizing braces against the plaintiffs in Mock v. Garland. Federal district courts in Texas have issued similar injunctions.

These injunctions only apply to members of the plaintiff organizations that live in applicable jurisdictions.

On June 13, 2023, the US House of Representatives passed a resolution overturning the ban on pistol stabilizing braces, but the measure failed in the Senate.

So the latest news on the pistol brace ban is that a federal appeals court has ruled that the BATFE’s new rule is likely illegal, and it will be up to the District Judge to determine what next steps are appropriate as far as blocking enforcement of the ban locally or on a national level.

The Bipartisan Safer Communities Act of 2022 (Federal Gun Bill)

On June 25, 2022, President Biden signed into law the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, which was passed by the 117th US Congress. This is the first major federal “gun control bill” passed since the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban.

The bill has more to do with mental health, school safety, and funding for related programs than it does with banning or restricting specific types of firearms, which is likely why it received enough Republican support to pass the House and Senate.

Title I of the act provides for Medicare to support states in creating mental health services programs, particularly in schools. It provides assistance to state governments by expanding the Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic demonstration program, and it requires the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to instruct states on how to provide telehealth services under Medicare and the Children's Health Insurance Program. The bill also requires CMS to provide resources and guidance to state governments and schools in order to provide mental health services in school settings.

Title II of the act is the section specifically dealing with new gun safety laws.

  • Section 12001 expands background checks for gun purchasers under the age of 21. It prohibits the purchase of a firearm if the purchaser has committed a disqualifying crime while under the age of 18 and requires a NICS background check to include the records of state governments and local law enforcement. It also states that during this process, mental health records under the age of 16 are not considered for disqualifying potential purchasers, that no waiting periods are applied, and that an annual audit take place to ensure that only applicable criminal records are considered. These provisions expire on September 30, 2032, except for the restrictions on juvenile criminal records and the protection of mental health records under the age of 16.
  • Section 12002 clarifies definitions of gun sellers and requires routine gun sellers to register with a Federal Firearms License. The bill states that someone who sells firearms “predominantly to earn a profit” must register as an FFL. “The term to predominantly earn a profit means that the intention underlying the sale or disposition of firearms is predominantly one of obtaining a pecuniary gain, as opposed to other intents, such as improving or liquidating a personal firearms collection.
  • Section 12003 permits states to use grant funds from the Byrne JAG program to implement crisis intervention programs. These may include red flag laws, but the bill requires strict protections for due process, including the right to fair hearings and legal counsel and a high burden of proof. States are permitted to choose what type of crisis intervention program to implement using this funding, if any, and are required to provide an annual report on any programs funded through this program.
  • Section 12004 makes it a federal crime to traffic illegal firearms into the United States. It also makes it a crime to make a straw purchase by purchasing a firearm on behalf of someone who is not permitted to purchase a firearm. (We feel this is a bit strange, as of course, these actions were already illegal. However, the punishments have been increased.) Violators of these statutes are subject to up to 15 years in prison, and the penalty increases to 25 years if the firearm is used in a terrorist attack or drug trafficking. It also expands criminal statutes to criminalize smuggling firearms outside of the United States, grants all Federal Firearms License holders access to the NICS background check system, funds an ATF education program on straw purchases, funds coordination programs between federal and local law enforcement, and forbids Operation Fast and Furious type programs.
  • Section 12005 closes the so-called “boyfriend loophole.” It changes restrictions on firearm purchases by those convicted of domestic assault. Previously, the law only regulated firearms purchases following the domestic assault of a spouse or cohabitant, or if the perpetrator had a child with the victim. The new bill expands this restriction to disqualify anyone found guilty of a domestic violence charge in a romantic relationship, regardless of marital status. The restrictions apply for five years, after which the right to own a firearm is restored if no additional violent crimes take place. The provision only applies to domestic violence charges after the law takes effect with no retroactive penalties.

There are a lot more details, regulations on how schools and state governments can use funds, and of course hundreds of millions of dollars in appropriations to pay for all of these government programs, but these are the primary points relating to firearms laws and regulations.

NYSRPA v Bruen Supreme Court ruling removing the “proper cause” requirement

Prior to this groundbreaking ruling, New York (as well as many other states) required citizens who wished to carry firearms for self-defense to demonstrate “proper cause” or a specific need for a CCW permit, and the validity or merit of that need was evaluated by the state. Effectively this meant that these states would rarely issue CCW permits to ordinary citizens.

On June 23, 2022, in a 6-3 vote, SCOTUS issued the following final ruling in NYSRPA v Bruen:

“New York’s proper-cause requirement violates the Fourteenth Amendment in that it prevents law-abiding citizens with ordinary self-defense needs from exercising their right to keep and bear arms. We, therefore, reverse the judgment of the Court of Appeals and remand the case for further proceedings consistent with this opinion. It is so ordered.

In addition to striking down the “proper cause” requirement for carrying a firearm, the ruling appears to provide the standard under which all current and future second amendment cases are to be evaluated.

“In sum, the Courts of Appeals’ second step is inconsistent with Heller’s historical approach and its rejection of means-end scrutiny. We reiterate that the standard for applying the Second Amendment is as follows: When the Second Amendment’s plain text covers an individual’s conduct, the Constitution presumptively protects that conduct. The government must then justify its regulation by demonstrating that it is consistent with the Nation’s historical tradition of firearm regulation. Only then may a court conclude that the individual’s conduct falls outside the Second Amendment’s ‘unqualified command.’ Konigsberg, 366 U. S., at 50, n. 10.

With this ruling, SCOTUS sent down all pending rulings relating to second amendment issues to the lower courts (including Duncan v Bonta, ANJRPC v Grewal, Bianchi v Frosh, and Young v Hawaii) and instructed them to reevaluate the lower courts’ decisions based on the new NYSRPA v Bruen ruling. This may result in significant changes to many states’ laws regarding firearm carry and restrictions.

​It is likely that this ruling will impact the pending 9th Circuit En Banc ruling in the case Duncan v. Becerra dealing with California’s magazine capacity limits. There is already a new challenge to the California handgun roster case Renna v Bonta and AB 2847 (Microstamping).

However, New York has already enacted new laws to effectively nullify the new SCOTUS ruling by restricting concealed carry on private property (without public notification by the property owner), in Times Square, on public transportation, bars, churches, parks, and many other locations. Additionally, the state now will require a long list of prerequisites for anyone wishing to apply for a CCW permit, including; 16 hours of training with 2 hours of live fire; a list of your last 3 years of current/previous social media accounts (so that government officials can verify their “character and conduct”; 4 references; interviews; and they will be subject to periodic background checks and will have to turn over contact information for adults living in their household.

It remains to be seen whether New York and similar states’ requirements to pay large fees and get expensive training in order to exercise a constitutional right (one that has been specifically ruled on by SCOTUS) will be challenged, but we feel these restrictive new state laws will be the subject of multiple lawsuits, and the SCOTUS has been quite clear about the recent ruling being the basis on which all current and future firearms laws should be evaluated.

Alabama enacts permitless and open carry laws 2023

Alabama House of Representatives

Beginning January 1, 2023, with some restrictions, a person may carry a pistol (openly or concealed) in a public place without a permit in Alabama. The law says people must declare that they are carrying a concealed gun or a gun in a vehicle if asked by police. It says police can temporarily take custody of a weapon to check if it is stolen or if the carrier is on the prohibited list. Police must return the weapon if there is no arrest.

However, a person may not carry (openly or concealed) a pistol on private property if the person does not possess a valid concealed weapon permit or the property owner does not consent to firearms on the property. Even if a person has a valid concealed carry permit, a property owner may still prohibit firearms on the property.

Additionally, effective January 1, 2023, a public or private employer may not restrict or prohibit the transportation or storage of a lawfully possessed firearm legal for use for hunting in Alabama (other than a pistol) or ammunition for that firearm in an employee’s privately owned motor vehicle while parked or operated in a public or private parking area, if the employee satisfies certain requirements.

California’s proposed new gun control laws 2023

California state senate

At the time of this update, the California state legislature is in its final week of meeting for the session. Several proposed California gun laws are being debated and will likely pass.

CA Senate Bill 241 passed out of the state Assembly and is headed to the Senate. The bill requires California firearm retailers and their employees to undergo annual training courses implemented by the California Department of Justice, including how to recognize straw purchasers and fraudulent activity, how to recognize and identify indicators that an individual intends to use a firearm for self-harm, how to prevent theft or burglary of firearms and ammunition, and how to teach consumers rules of firearm safety, including, but not limited to, the safe handling and storage of firearms.

Assembly Bill 1406 passed the Assembly and Senate and is heading to Governor Newsom’s desk for signature. AB 1406 expands the existing 10-day waiting period on the sale or transfer of a firearm to include a possible 30-day state waiting period. Lawsuits are underway challenging this new rule.

Assembly Bill 1089 passed the Assembly and Senate and is heading to Governor Newsom’s desk for signature. AB 1089 prohibits anyone, including a gunsmith or hobbyist, from manufacturing a home-built firearm and requires those individuals to register as a state-licensed firearm manufacturer. (Building firearms at home has been common since before the founding of our nation.)

Assembly Bill 28 has passed both chambers and is at Governor Newsom’s desk for signature. AB 28 imposes an 11 percent excise tax on firearm retailers and manufacturers for all sales of guns or ammunition. Technically, this proposed tax doesn’t apply to people purchasing firearms or ammunition. The state would make the businesses that sell guns and ammunition pay the tax. However, it logically follows that companies will have to raise their prices to cover the cost of the tax… thus passing on the tax to consumers.

We will update this article as the situation develops.

Florida enacts permitless carry (HB 543)

Florida House Chamber

On April 3, 2023, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed HB 543, strengthening Floridians’ Second Amendment rights by allowing Floridians to carry concealed weapons without a government-issued permit. The new bill went into effect on July 1, 2023, making Florida the 26th state to enact Constitutional Carry legislation or permitless carry.

Today, qualified individuals (non-felons) in Florida can carry concealed firearms without a specific permit. Firearms are still prohibited in businesses that have established no-gun policies, as well as police stations, government buildings, courthouses, schools, colleges, and universities.

Georgia passes Constitutional Permitless Carry 2023

Georgia House of Representatives

On January 1, 2023, a new Georgia law was enacted, allowing lawful carrying of firearms without a permit. Senate Bill 319 was passed in 2022 and took effect in the new year. Felons are still prohibited from carrying firearms in Georgia.

Protect Illinois Communities Act (Assault Weapons Ban) 2023

On January 11, 2023, Illinois governor JB Pritzker signed HB 5471, including Senate Floor Amendments 3, 4, & 5, known as the Protect Illinois Communities Act. The bill bans the sale and distribution of so-called assault weapons, high-capacity magazines, and full-auto switches (which were already illegal) in Illinois, creating what will commonly be known as the Illinois Assault Weapon ban. The bill went into effect immediately. As of today, the compliance deadline (for owner registration of current legally owned firearms) is January 1, 2024.

The new law includes universal background checks and will do away with private, person-to-person sales of legal firearms between legal residents who previously were permitted to use person-to-person checks. All future sales will have to be conducted via a firearms dealer.

The bill includes a ban on new sales of .50 BMG ammunition and .50 caliber centerfire rifles. So-called assault weapons are also banned, and current owners have until January 1, 2024, to register their firearms with the state. Any unregistered weapons after that date are illegal.

Please refer to the wording of the bill for full details and exemptions, but a general summary follows. (Remember, neither Liberty Safe nor the author assumes any liability for using or misusing this information. Please consult a lawyer.) Per the new bill, an Assault Weapon is defined as:

  1. A semi-automatic rifle that has the capacity to accept a detachable magazine, or that may be readily modified to accept a detachable magazine, if the rifle has one or more of the following features:
    1. Pistol grip, forward grip, adjustable stock, thumbhole stock, folding stock, barrel shroud, flash suppressor, telescoping stock, detachable stock, grenade launcher, or any stock that reduces the length of the rifle
  2. A semi-automatic rifle that has a fixed magazine with the capacity to accept more than 10 rounds, except for .22 rimfire rifles with tubular magazines
  3. A semi-automatic pistol that has the capacity to accept a detachable magazine, if the firearm has one or more of the following features:
    1. Threaded barrel, second pistol grip, barrel shroud, flash suppressor, secondary magazine location, buffer tube, arm brace
  4. A semi-automatic pistol with a fixed magazine with the capacity to accept more than 15 rounds
  5. Any shotgun with a revolving cylinder
  6. A semi-automatic shotgun with one or more of the following:
    1. Thumbhole stock, pistol grip, grenade launcher, forward grip, a fixed magazine with the capacity to accept more than 5 rounds, or a detachable magazine
  7. Any semi-auto firearm with the capacity to accept a belt feeding device

In addition to the list of banned features, the bill also specifically bans many firearms by name. Effectively, this makes all semi-automatic rifles, including the extremely popular Ruger 10/22, legally assault weapons in Illinois, as well as nearly all semi-automatic handguns and many shotguns. Owners have until January 1, 2024, to register their legal firearms or be subject to criminal penalties.

There have been multiple legal challenges to Illinois’ new firearms ban. However, On May 17, 2023, the US Supreme Court declined to block Illinois’ assault weapons ban. Additionally, on August 11, 2023, the Illinois Supreme Court ruled the ban constitutional in the case Caulkins v. Pritzker. Barring some unlikely action by the US Supreme Court, the Illinois ban will continue as voted and signed into law, and the registration deadline for existing owners remains January 1, 2024.

Washington state assault weapons ban 2023 (HB 1240)

washington house of representatives

On April 25, 2023, Washington Governor Jay Inslee signed into law a statewide ban on so-called assault weapons, under HB 1240. The effective date of the new law is 4/25/2023. The bill passed the House by a vote of 56-42. Under the new law, multiple firearms are specifically banned by name and model, as well as the following:

  1. Any semi-automatic rifle with an overall length of less than 30 inches
  2. Any semi-automatic centerfire rifle with the capability to accept a detachable magazine if it has one or more of the following features:
    1. Pistol grip, folding stock, forward grip, flash suppressor, muzzle brake, threaded barrel, grenade launcher, barrel shroud
  3. Any semi-automatic centerfire rifle with a fixed magazine capable of accepting greater than 10 rounds
  4. Any semi-automatic pistol with the capability to accept a detachable magazine if it has one or more of the following features:
    1. Threaded barrel, second hand grip, barrel shroud, second magazine location
  5. Any semi-automatic shotgun that has one or more of the following features:
    1. Folding or telescoping stock, pistol grip, thumbhole stock, forward grip, a fixed magazine in excess of 7 rounds, a revolving cylinder

Legal owners, as of the date of the new law, will be allowed to keep their property. However, the new law bans new sales and distribution of these firearms and their manufacture and importation to the state. Exceptions will be made for police agencies and branches of the military.

Arkansas redefines a loaded firearm (HB 1547, Act 549) and enacts permitless carry (Act 777)

Arkansas senate

Effective August 1, 2023 Act 549 of the 2023 Regular Session, Arkansas HB 1547 takes effect, amending the legal definition of a loaded firearm in Arkansas Code.

The new wording defines a Loaded Firearm as a firearm that is assembled and contains an unexpended cartridge, shell, or projectile in the firing position, including without limitation:

  1. For a pistol or revolver, when an unexpended cartridge, shell, or projectile is in a position in which the unexpended cartridge, shell, or projectile could be fired by one (1) manual operation of any mechanism and
  2. For a muzzle-loading firearm, when the muzzle-loading firearm is charged with a propellant and a projectile and is capped or primed

So, under this revised language, a semi-auto firearm with a full magazine but no round in the chamber is not loaded, and a revolver with an empty chamber one position away from the hammer is not loaded.

Additionally, Arkansas Act 777, going into effect August 1, 2023, clarifies that unrestricted persons (i.e., non-felons) don’t need a permit to carry a concealed firearm in Arkansas.

North Carolina Senate Bill 41 removes handgun purchase permit requirement

Senate - North Carolina General Assembly

In March 2023, the North Carolina State House overrode Governor Cooper’s veto in a vote of 71-46, removing the separate permit process for purchasing a handgun. Previously in North Carolina, potential purchasers of handguns needed to complete a form and apply to their local Sheriff's office for permission for each handgun purchase. However, rifles and shotguns did not require a permit. With the enactment of the new law, which went into effect on March 29, 2023, North Carolina joins many other states who allow the legal purchase of handguns via a FFL dealer conducting a NICS background check, or in a legal private sale between individual non-prohibited persons within the state without a background check.

Additionally, effective July 1, 2023, non-sworn law-enforcement employees in North Carolina can begin carrying concealed weapons in government buildings, provided they have a CCW permit and the permission of the head of the relevant department, such as the Chief of Police or the Sheriff.

Beginning in December 2023, legal, law-abiding citizens of North Carolina will be allowed to carry firearms in churches that share property with a school building, provided it is outside of normal school hours, and the school is not being used for any non-religious extracurricular activity for minors.

North Carolina still prohibits concealed firearm carry in any state or federal building (unless you meet the specific conditions above), on school grounds during school hours, in areas of assembly such as a parade, a funeral, or demonstration, or into businesses that have posted signs banning concealed weapons.

Michigan’s new universal background check, safe firearm storage, and red flag laws 2024

Michigan senate

On April 13, 2023, Michigan Governor Whitmer signed Senate Bills 79, 80, 81, and 82 and House Bills 4138 and 4142, under which all Michigan gun sales now require the buyer to undergo a background check for all firearm sales (including private). This is a change from the previous law, under which only handgun buyers were subject to a background check in order to obtain the required state purchase license. Long gun sales (rifles and shotguns) were previously permitted between private legal individuals without involving a firearms dealer.

When purchasing from a federally licensed dealer, background checks were also required for firearms other than handguns. Now, all sales, private or from a dealer, require the buyer to undergo a background check.

As of the enactment of the new law, prospective gun purchasers in Michigan must appear at any local law enforcement agency (or possibly a Federal Firearms Licensed dealer–FFL–it’s unclear at this point), and, after successfully passing the background check conducted through the Michigan State Police, obtain a purchase license after signing a sworn statement that they meet Michigan qualifications. The purchase permit is good for 30 days.

The new law applies the same to firearms obtained as gifts or inheritance as to firearms purchased. In order to receive a firearm as a gift or inheritance, the potential owner of the firearm will need to pass a background check no more than 30 days after taking possession of the gun.

Those who hold state-issued concealed pistol licenses are generally exempted from the requirement to obtain a license before purchasing a gun, as are federally licensed firearms dealers, gun dealers purchasing from wholesalers, and police officers licensed under the Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards Act.

Senate bill 79 requires residents to keep any firearm being stored or left unattended on a premises unloaded and locked with a locking device or stored in a locked box or container if it is reasonably known that a minor is or is likely to be present on the premises. Senate Bills 80, 81, and 82 revise the state code regarding storage of firearms, and lowers the costs of firearm safety devices to ensure owners can safely store their guns. The law is worded so that criminal penalties can only occur if a minor gains access to a gun that should have been locked. So theoretically a gun owner could not be charged under the law if a police officer enters a residence and finds an unsecured and unattended gun. Instead, a violation only occurs if a minor obtains the unsecured gun and specific events occur.

Under another Michigan law signed by the governor, and likely taking effect in March 2024, Michigan judges can issue an extreme risk protection order to remove guns from someone deemed to pose a risk of serious harm to themselves or others. This is commonly known as a Red Flag Law. Under the law, police, family members, mental health professionals, roommates, and former dating partners may petition a judge to remove firearms from those they believe pose an imminent threat to themselves or others. The judge has 24 hours to decide whether to issue a protection order after a request is filed. If granted, the judge would then have 14 days to set a hearing, during which the flagged individual would have to prove they do not pose a significant risk. A standard extreme risk protection order lasts one year.

Oregon Measure 114

Oregon Measure 114, the Changes to Firearm Ownership and Purchase Requirements Initiative, was placed on the ballot in Oregon as an initiated state statute on November 8, 2022. The ballot measure was approved by a vote of 50.9% yes to 49.1% no. The measure goes into effect at 12:00 a.m. on Dec. 8, 2022.

The new measure requires Oregonians to obtain a permit to buy a gun (up to $65 to apply, and up to $50 to renew every 5 years) after completing a firearms safety course (at the applicant's expense) and bans the sale or transfer of magazines that hold more than 10 rounds of ammunition. There is an exception for current owners or inheritors of these magazines. Violation is a Class A misdemeanor.

It also requires state police to obtain fingerprints and perform full background checks on buyers with permits before any gun sale or transfer. Under current federal law, firearms dealers can sell guns without a completed background check if the check takes longer than three business days. Issuing authorities have up to 30 days to issue permits to qualified applicants. The Department of State Police is able to deny a permit to an applicant believed to be a danger to oneself or others or if an applicant is prohibited from possessing a firearm.

Washington state ban on high-capacity magazines: On March 5, 2022, the Washington state legislature passed a law restricting the manufacture, purchase, transfer, distribution, and sale of “high capacity” magazines within the state. Senate Bill 5078 prohibits the sale, attempted sale, manufacture, and distribution of “high-capacity” magazines (their definition is any magazine capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition). Washington’s law does not prohibit the possession of high-capacity magazines, instead of focusing on their manufacture/supply and sale. However, depending on the definition of “distribution,” the bill apparently explicitly outlaws giving, lending, or selling “high capacity” magazines between private individuals in Washington “with or without consideration.” The new law goes into effect on July 1, 2022.

There are three exceptions to the Washington ban noted in the bill language: standard-capacity magazines that have been permanently altered to prevent the loading of more than 10 rounds; .22 caliber tube feeding devices; and tubular magazines that are contained within a lever-action firearm.

San Jose, California: San Jose's city council recently passed an ordinance requiring most of the city's gun owners to carry liability insurance for accidental shootings.

The San Jose city website states: “The City of San José will require gun-owning residents to obtain an official document evincing payment of an annual fee, and attestation of insurance coverage for accidental firearm-related death, injury, or property damage.

The document must be kept wherever guns are stored or transported (car, home, etc.). A written waiver will be permitted for all low-income individuals who qualify for exemption under Cal. Govt. Code §68632.

A non-profit foundation will collect and distribute all fee revenue to evidence-based, local gun violence-reduction programs, such as domestic violence and suicide prevention, mental health, addiction treatment, and gun-safety training. Programs will prioritize but not exclusively serve clients living in gun-owning households.”

This is the first ordinance of its kind in the US, and since many progressives adhere to the adage, “As goes California, so goes the nation,” it may spur other non-gun-friendly cities and states to enact similar laws.

Since restrictions, laws, and local ordinances can change frequently, it’s important to check all local laws whenever you move to a different city or plan to visit.

Protect your guns with a liberty safe

Despite the strong feelings on both sides of the gun-rights issue, one recommendation that nearly everyone can agree on is the need to keep firearms secure from unauthorized access. Whether you’re looking for a small gun safe, a large gun safe, a vault door, or a handgun safe, a USA-made gun safe from Liberty is an excellent choice.


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