Gun Laws in New York

It is common knowledge that New York has strict gun laws, however, there are many nuances to these laws that people are unaware of. The best way to avoid committing a gun offense is by understanding how local firearm laws work.If you want to know more about gun laws in New York, speak with a knowledgeable firearm attorney that could answer your questions. Let an experienced lawyer protect your rights and advocate for you.

Important Facts Concerning Gun Laws

The main thing that people should know about gun laws in New York is that New York City has their own separate firearms permit rules. New York State grants five different licenses or permits to own, possess, or carry firearms, whereas New York City does not recognize them within the boundary of the five boroughs. In New York City, for a person to lawfully possess a firearm and they are not active duty military or law enforcement, they would need a special permit which can only be given by the Commissioner of the New York City Police Department.

It is important for a person to know that if they live upstate and they have all sorts of permits and licenses for hunting or handguns, they cannot drive into the five boroughs with those guns. Most people are not aware of that difference and are subject to arrest for unlawfully possessing guns.

How Prosecutors Treat Firearm Offenses

Most of the time, people who are caught with illegal guns in New York City are not lawful gun owners outside of the city, they are individuals with no license to possess firearms anywhere.  Prosecutors are extremely strict because they view every gun case as a potential homicide that is getting diverted. Every individual who is arrested has their background checked in an effort to make a determination of whether or not this is somebody who they really need to worry about and they act accordingly. The fact that a person is caught with a gun makes them somebody that the District Attorney's Office feels they really need to worry about and they will pursue harsh penalties against people caught with a gun.

Why Are Gun Laws in New York Stricter?

Geographically, the United States has a lot of variance on their gun laws. New York State, outside of the five boroughs, has a separate application process for long guns and firearms which are bought, is rather arduous. There are many different levels of the type of permit that a person can apply for.

If a person is only looking for a very limited permit, it is much easier to get than a general license to carry. Obviously, gun laws in New York are much more strict with very few instances where the Commissioner authorizes somebody to be able to carry a gun in New York City who is not law enforcement or active duty military. In contrast, there are certain states that a person does not even need a license to carry a gun there.

There are some states that allow someone to carry a gun without any license wherever as long as they are a state resident. In other jurisdictions, if an individual is an out-of-state resident, then they need a license to bring firearms in. And there are some states that make it incredibly difficult to get a carry permit wherever. New York falls somewhere in the middle as a state and is one of the most restrictive locations as a city.

Where to Find More Information

If an individual wants to know more about gun laws in New York, there are many websites that people can look up. A quick Google search will draw up a hundred thousand different websites that will tell them what the different rules in New York are. A person should do in-depth research, reading several websites, just to make sure that what they are reading is consistent. They can also go to the New York City Government website or call 311 which will give the person the most up-to-date information on gun laws in New York City. All-in-all, the Internet is always a wealth of information on how to find these things.

Consulting New York Gun Attorney

One reason to consult a gun attorney is that if someone is unsure about gun laws in New York,  they could accidentally break the law  and end up facing a minimum of two years in jail and two years of post-release supervision, if they cannot convince a District Attorney that they were doing everything within their power to follow the law.

The punishment for gun law violations is strict and attempting to follow the law is not a defense if someone actually breaks the law. Consulting with an attorney, going over what they plan to do, what licenses they have, what steps they have already taken, is probably in their best interests just to make sure that they are not doing anything inadvertently which could land them a felony record and jail time.