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Old July 30, 2014, 12:56 PM   #1
lpsharp88
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Ohio Parking Lot Storage

My current employer has a no guns allowed sign posted on the front door of the building, but the parking lot is unmarked. Does the sign on the door also apply to the parking lot? Company policy prohibits "unlawful possession" on company property including parking lots. I understand that ignoring a posted parking lot is a civil matter, and not a criminal matter, so that's why I ask if the posting at the building applies to just the building or to the entire property, parking lot included.
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Old July 30, 2014, 01:02 PM   #2
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You may want to politely ask your HR department
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Old July 30, 2014, 01:06 PM   #3
lpsharp88
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I planned on it, and I know company policy forbids them on property, just curious about the legal application of the sign and how far it extends. Just trying to figure out if in the unlikely event I bring a gun in my car, and get caught, if it's a legal or civil matter
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Old July 30, 2014, 02:29 PM   #4
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The state of Indiana says that a CCW holder can keep a firearm in their vehicle as long as it's not visible and put away even if an employer states they prohibit on their property.
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Old July 30, 2014, 02:30 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by NOMI WASP View Post
The state of Indiana says that a CCW holder can keep a firearm in their vehicle as long as it's not visible and put away even if an employer states they prohibit on their property.
This doesn't have any bearing on Ohio, though...
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Old July 30, 2014, 04:48 PM   #6
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The first thing I would do is read your employee handbook/written information you have been given. Then I suggest you email H.R. and save their written reply. You can also email the Attorney General's Office in your State as well as talking to a private attorney.

I would suggest you also check on what your company's policy is on searching employee's vehicles as well with the A.G. on what State law says. My company has a written no firearms policy allowed inside the building but allows storage of firearm's in vehicles parked on company property.

If you are terminated for cause such as breaking company rules you may not be eligible or may be delayed in being able to draw unemployment benefits.
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Old July 30, 2014, 05:03 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by oneounceload View Post
You may want to politely ask your HR department
I can assure you their knee jerk reaction answer will be NO.
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Old July 30, 2014, 08:20 PM   #8
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Don't ask, don't tell. I wouldn't worry about it.
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Old July 30, 2014, 08:22 PM   #9
lpsharp88
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That was kind of my answer too, but I'm still curious about the reach of the sign. I couldn't find anything that directly addressed it, just that ignoring a posted parking lot is a civil, not criminal matter.
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Old July 30, 2014, 09:34 PM   #10
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If your company has a no gun policy for employees that includes the property, then you can't have a gun on their property.
They can ask to search your vehicle, and you can refuse. But the most they can due is to fire you for violating company policy. Or fire you for not letting them search your vehicle.
Ohio is an "at will state". they don't need to find a gun in your car to fire you.
They can fire you for whatever reason they wish.
The posted no guns sign on the building applies to the general public, and would not include the parking lot....for the general public. And it is a civil manner. The property owner would have to take you to court, and prove damages for the ....general public.
But since you are an employee, you are bound by their rules.
Most people just keep their gun in the car, and your mouth shut. Don't tell your fellow workers.
If you contact HR, you may be opening a can of worms, since you asked, they will assume, and you could be under scrutiny.
You can ignore their policy, find a place to park off property, leave it at home, or take your chances leaving it in your car.
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Last edited by markallen; July 30, 2014 at 09:47 PM.
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Old July 30, 2014, 09:40 PM   #11
lpsharp88
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Ohio Parking Lot Storage

I have no intention of ever having a gun on me or in my car at work, but am also fairly confident that if I ever did, no one would have any idea, but once again, not gonna test it. Can anyone shed any light on the sign question though? It doesn't have to apply to my work specifically, just in general
Just to rehash, the building is posted, but not the parking lot. Does the posting apply to just the building, or to the building AND the parking lot?
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Last edited by lpsharp88; July 30, 2014 at 09:42 PM. Reason: clarity
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Old July 30, 2014, 09:42 PM   #12
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I would not speak to HR or anyone else about this. Why alert them? I would find out the laws in your state and then decide for yourself if you are willing to violate your company's policy.
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Old July 30, 2014, 09:45 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Atonal View Post
I would not speak to HR or anyone else about this. Why alert them? I would find out the laws in your state and then decide for yourself if you are willing to violate your company's policy.

There's no way I'm going to ask anyone at work, don't want to give them any reason to be suspicious of me or anything like that. All I could find regarding the laws was the consequences of ignoring a posted parking lot, or a posted building. I was unable to find anything about if a posting for a building also applies to the parking lot
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Old July 31, 2014, 06:37 AM   #14
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You need to read your employer's policy on this. If all your employer has done is post the building off limits, then you MAY be OK to store your firearm in your car. Read EXACTLY what that sign says, too.

Posting a sign somewhere is meant to deal with people entering property or buildings at the point of entrance. Therefore a sign at the entrance to a building does not necessarily cover the rest of the property, including parking areas.

If, however, your employer has a "no guns" policy for the entire business/property, then that has to be followed anywhere on the property.

2923.126(C)(1):

Nothing in this section shall negate or restrict a rule, policy, or practice of a private employer that is not a private college, university, or other institution of higher education concerning or prohibiting the presence of firearms on the private employer's premises or property, including motor vehicles owned by the private employer. Nothing in this section shall require a private employer of that nature to adopt a rule, policy, or practice concerning or prohibiting the presence of firearms on the private employer's premises or property, including motor vehicles owned by the private employer.


http://codes.ohio.gov/orc/2923.126
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Old July 31, 2014, 08:37 AM   #15
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Is the parking lot company property or is it used by other employers or the public?
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Old July 31, 2014, 08:41 AM   #16
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It's used only by employees of my company
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Old July 31, 2014, 10:45 AM   #17
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If Ohio law allows you to have a gun in your vehicle and you meet whatever conditions are stipulated, then the issue of guns on the employer's property is a civil matter and not a criminal matter.
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Old July 31, 2014, 11:25 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lpsharp88 View Post
There's no way I'm going to ask anyone at work, don't want to give them any reason to be suspicious of me or anything like that. All I could find regarding the laws was the consequences of ignoring a posted parking lot, or a posted building. I was unable to find anything about if a posting for a building also applies to the parking lot
Ask HR to see the most recent list of company rules and regulations in the company handbook. It should not arouse any suspicions, tell them you are just trying to be a good employee by making sure you are following all the latest rules.

My old place I used to work at had a company handbook and SOP policy. All the employees would be informed through SOP's (Standard Operating Procedures) updates. It would be a piece of paper given to every employee with the changes in rules and procedures. We would have to read the changes and then initial them and give them back to the supervisor. This way it protected the company in that no employee could say that they were not aware of the changes. But at the same time we all knew what the rules were and they were clearly spelled out.
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Old July 31, 2014, 12:22 PM   #19
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Ohio has been attempting to get a "Parking Lot Law" on the books, but so far no luck getting it through the statehouse
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Old July 31, 2014, 10:41 PM   #20
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Consult your city attorney, district attorney, chief of police, sheriff, AND the state attorney general. In quite a few states, your vehicle is considered private property, regardless of where parked. Employer would need a search warrant - which they will not get.

PS....and contact ALL FIVE that I mentioned. Don't rely on any ONE opinion on the law.
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