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Thread: Requesting Permission to OC on Private Property

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    Regular Member cbpeck's Avatar
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    I visited a Bank of America in Kennewick this morning unarmed and requested to speak withthe branch manager so that I could discuss open carrying in their institution. The person who greeted mewanted todiscuss the matter (she, apparently, is not the branch manager or a supervisor, but directs people to whomever can meet their needs... so what is it that you do here? Remember the movie, Office Space?lol). I told her that I was legally allowed to carry a firearm in Washington for personal defense & wanted to do so in their bank, since I come in monthly to withdraw $1500-2000at a time(my wife & I pay formost things withcash). She insisted that it was illegal to carry in banks. I assured her that it was not illegal & requested that she speak with someone higher up to get an official response from the corporate office. She asked that I come back for an answer later, and I complied. I later called the central BofA office and was put in touch with a representative of the legal department who informed me that BofA seeks to be in accordance with state law, and has no corporate policy, just that people behave in accordance with the law of the state in which they reside. She couldn't give me a document confirming this, since no such document exists, apparently, but she assured me that this was the case. She also highly suggested that I discuss the matter with the branch manager ahead of time to ensure that they were not unnecessarily alarmed and that I had their consent.

    So back to my branch I went. This lady, who apparently "directs people's needs," hadn't followed up yet, so she went straight to the branch manager, behind closed doors, and soon came back telling me once again that it was illegal to carry in "federal buildings & banks." I told her I disagree, and she recommended that I try one of their other area locations.

    So here's why I write... I first attempted to speak with the bank manager ahead of time because I didn't want a teller hitting the silent alarm upon my first OC visit and having to deal with a police response that would almost certainly involve the SWAT team. I honestly didn't expect the bank employee to insist that it was illegal in spite of me assuring her that it wasn't. From here, I could simply move on to another branch, or I could continue pressing the point with the branch manager, whom I've yet to meet. I would happily give her a copy of the WA OC Brochure if she'd meet with me. BofA is a pretty crappy bank anyway, IMO, but I'm not yet ready to abandon them all together.

    I'd appreciate any feedback or suggestions you can offer. Thanks.

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    You've cleared it with corporate, so I don't see the problem. If SWAT comes, so what? You're well within you're right and I'm sure the police will set them straight. Or find a different bank. BOA is absolutely disgusting in my honest opinion. The fact that she wants you to "try a different branch" simply sounds as though she doesn't want to deal with you, so please leave my bank and go make it another branch's problem.

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    If anything, I would think that the person who sit the silent alarm when no emergency is taking place will be the one who gets a talking to.

    I would say that if you don't mind talking to the police a bit, (or you may just finish your business and be out before they arrive), then OC there. Like G27 said, you cleared it with corporate. And the local branch doesn't seem to have told you not to apart from incorrectly stating that it would be illegal, so doubt you could be considered trespassing. (IANAL!)



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    Regular Member cbpeck's Avatar
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    For future reference, any thoughts on the appropriateness of asking permission ahead of time? I may have just been better off clearing it with corporate and then OCing to the branch without ever discussing it locally.

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    cbpeck wrote:
    For future reference, any thoughts on the appropriateness of asking permission ahead of time? I may have just been better off clearing it with corporate and then OCing to the branch without ever discussing it locally.
    As long as I had the reps name and phone number of the Corp BofA legal dept. or even an email from her to verify they follow state law and there was no corporate policy I would OC without hesitation. I would take that info with me so when the issue came up you would have proof of your research.







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    cbpeck wrote:
    For future reference, any thoughts on the appropriateness of asking permission ahead of time? I may have just been better off clearing it with corporate and then OCing to the branch without ever discussing it locally.
    If they don't have a sign stating no firearms, carry freely until confronted. Deal with it than.

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    cbpeck wrote:
    For future reference, any thoughts on the appropriateness of asking permission ahead of time? I may have just been better off clearing it with corporate and then OCing to the branch without ever discussing it locally.
    Just my $.03 worth (adjusted for inflation):

    I don't ask permission for something that is perfectly legal, I just do it. If someone has a problem with my legal actions then I work that out with them. Merely by asking permission you are suggesting to some people that you need it when you don't.

    I do admire the professional way that you handled yourself on this though. I would make sure that I have either a legally recorded conversation with corporate or a confirming letter or email that backs up what they told you.

    -adamsesq

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    I've OCed multiple times in BOA branches without problems.

    I don't know why you need to ask "permission". Let sleeping dogs lie. When you ask for "permission" the answer will be NO, as you just demonstrated.

    Don't screw things up for the rest of us by prompting BOA to create a no-carry policy. This comes up over and over again with people that keep poking sleeping dogs.

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    I have not had a BOA account in decades and I have just recently closed all of my accounts with them. When a rep asked me why, I told them that BOA lost my business a long time ago, and the only reason I had credit card with them was because of Alaska Airlines. Obviously I can still use my Alaska account when booking tickets, and that has nothing to do with the credit card itself, they are just partners. I even told Alaska that I canceled my BOA account, and one of the reps there said "I would be lying if I told you this was the first time I have heard of someone doing that."

    That's just my opinion and you can do what you will; it is your money. But if you live in Washington, you should have a BECU account. Easy to setup and their services/rates/personnel are much better than any large bank I have ever dealt with. I OC in the small office they have in Federal Way Crossing strip mall, an no words from anyone even though several employees noticed.

    However, if you must stick with a "for profit" bank, go with Columbia. I OC in their branches all the time, even after they posted signs in Federal Way branches "no hoddies, hats or sunglasses allowed" due to a string of robberies. The branch people know me and do not mind that I carry. Not to mention, their commercials are true, they really do answer the phone when you call. haha

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    Regular Member Mainsail's Avatar
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    After 20 years in the Air Force, I can tell you straight-up, you don’t ask permission to do anythingunless there is a regulation saying you are not allowed to do it, then you ask for a waiver.

    People are lazy, if they don’t know the answer without a shred of doubt, they will say no. No is easy, no gets them back to their normal routine, and most of all, no is safe. Do you ask permission to piss with the seat up? Don’t ask permission to do anything you can lawfully do, just do it. If they don’t like it, they will tell you. There are people whose lives are so dull that they love to tell you stuff.

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    I've carried into several BOA locations, no problems except for Issaquah's branch. They freaked for a second but I just went ahead with my business and nothing came of it. A week later I saw the manager of that particular branch at the range, he recognized me and sort of apologized for questioning my open carry.

    Never ask before hand to carry on premises, you'll usaully get negative responses because apparently only bad guys and cops have guns.Just do itand deal with whatever flak you get afterwards.

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    Regular Member cbpeck's Avatar
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    Thanks for the constructive responses. At this point, I will not seek permission from other branches or other institutions. Insteady, I'll simply go about my business and respond to conflicts as they arise. In regard to the branch I've already engaged, however, I think I may continue to pursue the managerwith the hopeof being able to carry there. It really is the most convenient branch, and I think that the manager is probably reasonable, just ignorant on the subject of OC.

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    cbpeck wrote:
    In regard to the branch I've already engaged, however, I think I may continue to pursue the managerwith the hopeof being able to carry there. It really is the most convenient branch, and I think that the manager is probably reasonable, just ignorant on the subject of OC.
    I think _I_ would just go carry there anyway. If it became an issue I would say "I was waiting on hearing from the manager like I asked and never did so I talked with corporate who told me it was just fine."

    -adamsesq

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    In addition to petty fees and lousy service, BofA tellers in Seattle racially stereotyped a black shipmate of mine some years back. I won't deal with them again.

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    Here's my .02 cents worth.

    I would go back to the bank. Ask to speak with the manager. If that receptionist asks what for, tell them it's a private matter. Insist that you speak with the manager. If the receptionist balks at your request, demand loudly enough for the manager to hear that if you don't get to see the manager you'll pull your account and send corporate a nasty letter. My guess is that you'll have your visit by this point though. Then explain to the manager that it is a legal activity and that you will be exercising your rights, don't ask for permission. Be courteous and professional, but tell them you will be OCing in their branch and that you have already talked with corporate and know that it's company policy to abide by state law. If he balks and tells you you can't, then tell him you want to close out your account. Go open a BECU account and tell BofA to bite the big one. Send corporate a letter explaining why you closed your account and who they have to thank for it. BECU is way better anyway and BofA gives money, credit cards and home loans to illegal aliens, they don't need Americans money.

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    Regular Member cbpeck's Avatar
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    sirpuma wrote:
    Here's my .02 cents worth.

    I would go back to the bank. Ask to speak with the manager. If that receptionist asks what for, tell them it's a private matter. Insist that you speak with the manager. If the receptionist balks at your request, demand loudly enough for the manager to hear that if you don't get to see the manager you'll pull your account and send corporate a nasty letter. My guess is that you'll have your visit by this point though. Then explain to the manager that it is a legal activity and that you will be exercising your rights, don't ask for permission. Be courteous and professional, but tell them you will be OCing in their branch and that you have already talked with corporate and know that it's company policy to abide by state law. If he balks and tells you you can't, then tell him you want to close out your account. Go open a BECU account and tell BofA to bite the big one. Send corporate a letter explaining why you closed your account and who they have to thank for it. BECU is way better anyway and BofA gives money, credit cards and home loans to illegal aliens, they don't need Americans money.
    I like your suggestion. I think it's what I'm going to do. At the risk of hijacking the thread - oh wait, I started this thread - what are people's opinions of Sterling Savings, GESA or Banner Bank? We don't have a BECU location in Tri-Cities, but we do have the three I've listed.

    Thanks.

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    I'm not sure about them, but I would look into local Credit Unions, they typically have better interest rates and less fees. I earn interest on all my accounts except my business checking.

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    Personally, I would not go into the bank and get loud and obnoxious demanding to see the manager. It will make you look like a loud, obnoxious clown. Combine that with demanding to OC and you will look aggressive and possibly dangerous. If you cannot behave in a professional manner please do not OC and make the rest of us look bad. I don't know why you asked in the first place. Many people carry in banks for the same reason you do. It has never been an issue at WAMU or my Alaska FCU. I have seen a SnoCo sheriff tell a CPL applicant that it was illegal to carry in a bank so I expect that misinformation is fairly common in the general public.

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    cbpeck, please drop this thing of pestering BOA. If you think OC is going to be a problem, conceal your pistol.

    There's only one thing your going to end up accomplishing if you keep pesting them, and that is that the issue will keep getting bumped higher up the management chain until you find some manager who will issue a policy of "NO CARRY IN BOA".

    You are going to cause a problem where none currently exists.
    1. There is no law that prevents OC in a bank
    2. BOA has no policy against carrying.

    There's only one thing that you can change, and that is to get BOA to implement a policy. Once you succeed in getting BOA to implement a policy, you are going to screw the rest of us, because the policy will be company-wide and will be "NO CARRY ALLOWED", all because of you.

    I don't know why you can't understand this.

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    cbpeck,

    I carry in Sterling Savings any time I desire, and have only had one minofr encounter. When I was told I could not carry there I said just a moment I need to make a phone call and let you speak to someone.

    I called Corp.Hdqtrs and asked for H.B.G., gave them my name and then told Harold what was going on. Haanded the phone to the mgr, smiled and thanled him for his appology.

    I guess the fact that we were class mates and played ball together from grade school thru high school might have been helpful.

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    Regular Member cbpeck's Avatar
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    44 Brent,

    I'm of the impressionthat you're pretty upsetover my approach to OC and the way I've conducted myself recently. I think there's probably some good insight in your posts, but its difficult tograsp among the insulting language.Fortunately, other forum members have been gracious and courteous in their discourse, and as a result I have learned a great deal.

    I'm new to OC. I'm trying to behave honorably and respectfully within a community where, as far as I can tell, only 2-3civilians have ever open carried. I sincerely hope, for my sake and yours, that I haven't done anything to undermine the OC movement. I will continue to read this forum and take into consideration all of the input that people have graciously provided so that may participation in the movement only serves to advance it further.

    cbpeck

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    I'm new to OC. I'm trying to behave honorably and respectfully within a community where, as far as I can tell, only 2-3civilians have ever open carried.
    Your assumption that only 2-3 citizens have OCed in WA or in banks is incorrect. Washington has a lot more citizens who have OCed, and if you search the forums, you can see that OC in banks is a very old topic, that it has been fairly common, and that very few problems have occurred. There have been no documented instances of which I am aware, in whichpolice were called to arrest people.

    If you do a search on the keyword "permission" you will probably find a lot of postings on various states in which people pre-emptively asked for property owners for "permission", and that there is a common response of DON'T do it.

    This should probably be a sticky FAQ for every state of "Should I ask for permission before OCing". The reason why you saw me get fairly strident about asking you to stop, is because the topic keeps coming up over and over again.

    No one doubts that you are acting honorably and respectfully. My objection is that asking for "permission" only causes problems. There are times when management should be contacted, and that's when an employee calls the police or tells someone to leave, or tells people that OC is illegal. Then, it becomes necessary.

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    44Brent wrote:
    I'm new to OC. I'm trying to behave honorably and respectfully within a community where, as far as I can tell, only 2-3civilians have ever open carried.
    Your assumption that only 2-3 citizens have OCed in WA or in banks is incorrect. Washington has a lot more citizens who have OCed.

    It seems likely that the OP was referring to his specific locale, which is Pasco, WA.


    The reason why you saw me get fairly strident about asking you to stop, is because the topic keeps coming up over and over again.
    Just because, you've seen it come up multiple times, doesn't mean that the OP has. Yes, a search probably would have helped him to find a lot of this information, but no one's perfect.

    And I disagree that every time a request goes up to corporate there becomes a policy banning firearms. Look at Walmart, seems like every few weeks there's someone that has to call Walmart because of problems with local managers. The response always comes back that Walmart follows state law.

    Now, I'm not saying that I would ever ask permission to carry, I believe that it's a right that should not and cannot be infringed upon. I'll go anywhere carrying for the first time, and if they don't like it, they can ask me to leave. However, not everyone is comfortable doing that and we shouldn't be cross with them.
    DISCLAIMER: This post may contain libertarian ideas and language that are consistent with the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, including a belief in liberty, rule of law, and natural rights. It may also contain opinions critical of government and the tyrannies being committed by such. If you are an authoritarian, statist, or other freedom hater, side effects of reading this post may include high blood pressure, loose stool, severe genital itching, and diarrhea of the mouth.

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    Regular Member cbpeck's Avatar
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    44Brent & Kenshin,

    Thank you for your posts. I'll make a point in the future of searching old threads before brining up new posts. That is something that's been helpful on other forums I've participated in over the years, and is something I should've accessed already.The old threadsundoubtebly contain much useful information.

    Caleb

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    However, not everyone is comfortable doing that and we shouldn't be cross with them.
    OK, I'll agree that I was a little "cross".

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