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Thread: Help Request for Information

  1. #1
    Regular Member switchfoot's Avatar
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    Help Request for Information

    I have a few questions that maybe some of you can help me with concerning carry laws in Tennessee. Probably pretty basic stuff but I am having some problems getting accurate information.

    I'm sure some of this will be answered if I take the required course and apply for a carry permit, but I haven't gotten that far yet.

    1. Can I legally carry a legally registered handgun without a permit anywhere in TN? On my property? Particularly on property that I own but do not have a home on (it is a lot in the country that I camp on from time to time).

    2. Can I carry in my car without a permit? Concealed? Open?

    3. If I am not actually carrying while in my car, how must I store a handgun and the ammunition if I am transporting it within the state? Hidden, like in the glove box or carrying case? Under the seat? Loaded? Magazine inserted or not? Round chambered or not? Locked up in some way or not? For instance, on my way to a range to actually use the weapon. Also, while traveling for any reason, like to the store.

    4. My understanding is that Tennessee issues a "carry permit" that does not differentiate open vs concealed. If that is true, are there areas or circumstances where either concealed or open carry are mandated? I am interested in the law, not opinion about which one is "advisable."

    5. My understanding is that TN law says that a business owner can prohibit carry in an establishment he owns. I am told that he must post a sign somewhere so that I know. Is this true, and does the sign need to be posted in a special way or location so that I know, or is the burden on me to make sure I am allowed to carry in that establishment?

    6. Finally, in regard to parks, can a local government (county or city) prohibit carry that otherwise would be legal. For instance, at a sports complex like baseball fields, etc? I'm not talking about schools.

    I know that is a lot of questions, and again I understand that many of them would/could be answered in the required class I need to take if I decide to get a carry permit. But, to be honest I have friends who have permits, and I have asked them these same questions and I have gotten a lot of different answers...makes me wonder how much you actually learn there. I even have an acquaintance who is a state trooper, and he seems more confused than anyone else I know (!)

    The answers to these questions will help me decide if carrying is something I feel I need to do at all, or worth the hassle. I realize anything any of you say isn't "legal advice" but any help you can give me is appreciated.

  2. #2
    Regular Member HvyMtl's Avatar
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    Hoo, lots of good questions. I will get back to you later, hopefully tonight. I want to do a little research, so as I do not want to accidentally advise you incorrectly. Please note: The best advise I can give you is read the state code, available here: http://michie.com/tennessee/lpext.dl....htm&cp=tncode

    and ask a firearm friendly licensed attorney.

    Also, remember this: This is a public forum. Take all advice given with a grain of salt, and do not rely on the advice legally. It is opinion and not legal advice.

    As for those you asked who carry, and are forgetful of the information. Well, when was the last time you took a course, was tested on it, passed, and then, say 3 years, or even 3 months later remember much of it? AS for the officer, it seems he is not required to know all of the law. He is a police officer, not a licensed attorney.
    Last edited by HvyMtl; 10-21-2010 at 02:21 PM.
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  3. #3
    Regular Member HvyMtl's Avatar
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    OK here it goes. Sorry for the length.

    I'm sure some of this will be answered if I take the required course and apply for a carry permit, but I haven't gotten that far yet. ANSWER: Yes, the permit course will answer most of the questions. Note: The law does change periodically, so please do keep up with any law changes. The answers provided are to give opinion, not legal advice. Contact a licensed attorney to ensure you are getting the proper legal advice.

    1. Can I legally carry a legally registered handgun without a permit anywhere in TN? On my property? Particularly on property that I own but do not have a home on (it is a lot in the country that I camp on from time to time).
    ANSWER: First of all, there are no registry requirements in the State of Tennessee. Permit carry allows for the right to carry off your property. You may carry on the land you own. It is easier to show, due to your State ID, your home is your property. I would suggest carrying some article showing it is your property. Hunting may be a separate issue.

    2. Can I carry in my car without a permit? Concealed? Open?
    ANSWER: NO. Carry in car is not allowed without permit. Carrying with intent to go armed is a misdemeanor. IF you want to carry in your car, get a permit.

    3. If I am not actually carrying while in my car, how must I store a handgun and the ammunition if I am transporting it within the state? Hidden, like in the glove box or carrying case? Under the seat? Loaded? Magazine inserted or not? Round chambered or not? Locked up in some way or not? For instance, on my way to a range to actually use the weapon. Also, while traveling for any reason, like to the store.
    ANSWER: Proper storage is critical when transporting firearms. Safety is crucial. DO NOT transport firearms armed, unless you are carrying handgun(s) for safety, and are carrying your permit. UNLOADED is the law and the safe way. Lock your firearm in a case, with the ammunition separate. Lock the firearm in the trunk, or away from the passenger section of the vehicle. (See the nra link below, and the TCA.)

    4. My understanding is that Tennessee issues a "carry permit" that does not differentiate open vs concealed. If that is true, are there areas or circumstances where either concealed or open carry are mandated? I am interested in the law, not opinion about which one is "advisable."
    ANSWER: The Permit is for both open and carry. There are no designated times, or locations, where the permit holder is required to be concealed or open carry. (See the FAQ permit holder link below)

    5. My understanding is that TN law says that a business owner can prohibit carry in an establishment he owns. I am told that he must post a sign somewhere so that I know. Is this true, and does the sign need to be posted in a special way or location so that I know, or is the burden on me to make sure I am allowed to carry in that establishment?
    ANSWER: Yes, business owners can prohibit firearm carry into their businesses. The law has recently changed. To prevent carry in the business the owners must post at public entrances according to law. (see the FAQ permit holder link below) Basically, look for the “ghostbuster / gunbuster” symbol.

    6. Finally, in regard to parks, can a local government (county or city) prohibit carry that otherwise would be legal. For instance, at a sports complex like baseball fields, etc? I'm not talking about schools.
    ANSWER: Yes, the local community or county can prohibit carry in parks, including sport complexes. They must post properly as required by law. (see FAQ permit holder link below)

    IN ADDITION TO THE ANSWERS: Make sure you are not a convicted felon, or charged with domestic violence, or certain misdemeanors, as these impact your right to own and carry firearms… And, again, I am giving my opinion. If your differs from mine, or if you gather information different from what I have drawn my opinion from, go with your better judgment. (yes, a disclaimer…LOL) And I am in no way a superior source, and welcome my fellow Tennesseans to correct any errors. This way we both learn!

    Sources:
    TRANSPORTING: http://www.nraila.org/gunlaws/federal/read.aspx?id=59

    TCA: http://michie.com/tennessee/lpext.dl....htm&cp=tncode
    TCA 39-17-Part 13. Focus on these sections:
    39-17-1307 – Unlawful carry or possession of a weapon
    39-17-1308 – Defenses to unlawful carry or possession of a weapon
    39-17-1309 – Carrying weapons of school property
    39-17-1310- Affirmative defense to carrying weapons on school property
    39-17-1311 – Carrying weapons on public parks, playgrounds, civic centers, and other public recreational buildings and grounds
    39-17-1319 and 1320 – (rules for juveniles, important if you want to teach your children to safely carry and use firearms…)
    39-17- 1321 – Possession of handgun while under influence
    39-17-1322 – Defense (allows for defense of others or you in the event you use a firearm to stop a crime)
    39-17-1351 –Handgun carry permits
    39-17-1352 – Suspension or revocation of license (permit)
    39-17-1359 – Prohibited at certain meetings

    Tennessee Handgun carry permits: http://www.state.tn.us/safety/handgunmain.htm
    FAQ section of the permits – has links to the laws pertaining to carry, the AG’s opinion the carry permit allows open carry, and to where a permit holder can carry. Very useful.
    http://www.state.tn.us/safety/handgun/handgunfaqs.htm

    Also, review the opencarry.org info, as it is quite helpful. http://opencarry.org/maps.html

    Hope this helped! Again, Tennesseans, if I missed anything, or something needs adjusting, post!
    Last edited by HvyMtl; 10-21-2010 at 03:21 PM.
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  4. #4
    Regular Member switchfoot's Avatar
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    HvyMtl:
    Thanks for the information. Especially the references. I know I'm not getting legal advice on here. Just having an accurate starting point is helpful.

    I have talked to more than one permit holder who has tole me that OC is legal without a permit, that the permit is for concealed carry. Enough people I have talked to disagreed with that statement that I decided to check it out.

    I'll keep reading this forum. What a great resource, both for the the technically legal as well as the "in reality" stuff. While I decide whether to open or concealed carry it is good to know what is legal as well as what makes sense.

    Thanks again.

  5. #5
    Regular Member HvyMtl's Avatar
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    another good place to check info: Tngunowners.com Also, http://www.tfaonline.org/ in their forums.

    Yeah, you are being careful. Shows you care and are using your noodle.

    Best of luck, do get the permit, and enjoy.
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