FOPA clarification


June 18, 2009, 07:30 PM
I am preparing for a trip from TX to KY, where I will spend about a week, then on to OH for another week visiting family. I'm taking 3 pistols and one long gun with me, along with several hundred rounds of ammunition. I have a TX CHL, so one of the pistols will usually be on me, but the others and ammunition will be in the back of my SUV in locked cases. According to my reading of the text of the FOPA (shown below), it appears that either of the ammunition or the handguns must be locked in cases, but not both. Is that correct? I plan to lock all of it, but just want to be certain of my understanding of the law.

§ 926A. Interstate transportation of firearms

Notwithstanding any other provision of any law or any rule or regulation of a State or any political subdivision thereof, any person who is not otherwise prohibited by this chapter from transporting, shipping, or receiving a firearm shall be entitled to transport a firearm for any lawful purpose from any place where he may lawfully possess and carry such firearm to any other place where he may lawfully possess and carry such firearm if, during such transportation the firearm is unloaded, and neither the firearm nor any ammunition being transported is readily accessible or is directly accessible from the passenger compartment of such transporting vehicle: Provided, That in the case of a vehicle without a compartment separate from the driver’s compartment the firearm or ammunition shall be contained in a locked container other than the glove compartment or console.

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June 18, 2009, 08:00 PM
No, the plain reading of that is that both MUST be in a locked container in an SUV without a trunk. The "or" is there in the last sentence is in case you are moving one or the other and not both. Both must be locked, ammunition and firearms (handgun OR long gun).

See the recent thread by Kentucky Kid about his arrest in MA and his pending THREE felony charges for having a pistol in an unlocked case in the back of his Ford Explorer. :mad: Now, some of the states you are going through may not require this level of retention; this is merely the over-riding federal statute. Also, since you are not just passing through KY and OH but staying there for other purposes (family), the federal statute doesn't apply - you need to carry in conformance to their laws. (FYI, I seriously doubt OH or KY have laws stricter than this, but you should check).

Check out the maps for the states you are going through at regarding your carry gun; how that is carried and it's legality in the car. It varies WIDELY from state to state. Have a good trip.

June 18, 2009, 10:23 PM

Thanks for your interpretation. It is as I expected. However, I will say that the writers of this legislation need a course in the English language, if they want to be clearly understood, which is the usual goal of communication. There are much clearer ways to express their intent than the one chosen.

I'm aware of the laws in TX, AR, TN, KY and OH. Unfortunately, due to a credit card fraud SNAFU that resulted in a automatic credit card reissue by my credit card issuer after my Utah application was mailed, causing rework of my application with the Utah BCI, I will be without my Utah permit during the trip, so Ohio is off limits to me for concealed carry.

The only reason I'm taking the firearms other than my CC weapon is that my father in law is a shooting enthusiast, as well, and we are planning some shooting on the family farm during the trip in Ohio.

Thanks, again.

June 19, 2009, 09:28 AM
Useful Ohio information:

1. If you do not have an Ohio CHL or other credential recognized by the State of Ohio, all firearms must be unloaded and MAGAZINES AND SPEEDLOADERS UNLOADED, regardless of where they are, when in a vehicle.

2. With a recognized CCW credential, you may carry in a vehicle, in a holster on your body, the glove box, closed center console or a closed container in plain view. If on your body, the gun must be in a holster. A pocket holster is acceptable. In a pocket without a holster is not.

3. You must notify if stopped by a law enforcement officer for an OFFICIAL PURPOSE. You do NOT need to notify if NOT carrying.

4. Just remembered: No loaded long guns in vehicles AT ALL.

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