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Does a Public Business Have the Right to Tell You Not to Carry in Vehicle?

Discussion in 'Legal' started by Tin_Man, Dec 28, 2008.

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  1. Tin_Man

    Tin_Man Member

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    I'm pretty sure a public business may tell you that you are not allowed to bring a firearm into their building, but can a business prohibit you from keeping your gun in your vehicle?
     
  2. kingpin008

    kingpin008 Member

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    If they own the parking lot, of course they can.
     
  3. Tin_Man

    Tin_Man Member

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    But they don't own my vehicle. If I'm not mistaken, you're still allowed to keep your firearms in your vehicle at the post office and such right? Why would it be any different in this situation?
     
  4. misANTHrope

    misANTHrope Member

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    Oh boy, these threads are always fun.

    My opinion is that they're allowing you to park your vehicle on their property, and that in turn they should be able to make that use of their property conditional. But that's my pie-in-the-sky the-way-things-ought-to-be viewpoint, and does not in any way reflect the legal realities of our society.
     
  5. NavyLCDR

    NavyLCDR member

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    Not in Oklahoma. It depends upon state law, this is Oklahoma's law:

    §21-1289.7a. Transporting or storing firearms in locked motor vehicle on private premises – Prohibition proscribed – Liability enforcement.
    A. No person, property owner, tenant, employer, or business entity shall maintain, establish, or enforce any policy or rule that has the effect of prohibiting any person, except a convicted felon, from transporting and storing firearms in a locked motor vehicle, or from transporting and storing firearms locked in or locked to a motor vehicle on any property set aside for any motor vehicle.
    B. No person, property owner, tenant, employer, or business entity shall be liable in any civil action for occurrences which result from the storing of firearms in a locked motor vehicle on any property set aside for any motor vehicle, unless the person, property owner, tenant, employer, or owner of the business entity commits a criminal act involving the use of the firearms. The provisions of this subsection shall not apply to claims pursuant to the Workers’ Compensation Act.
    C. An individual may bring a civil action to enforce this section. If a plaintiff prevails in a civil action related to the personnel manual against a person, property owner, tenant, employer or business for a violation of this section, the court shall award actual damages, enjoin further violations of this section, and award court costs and attorney fees to the prevailing plaintiff.
    D. As used in this section, “motor vehicle” means any automobile, truck, minivan, sports utility vehicle, motorcycle, motor scooter, and any other vehicle required to be registered under the Oklahoma Vehicle License and Registration Act.

    You are not allowed to keep your firearm on Post Office property including in your vehicle in the Post Office parking lot. The only exception to that is if the Post Office owns the property that is on the street side of a curb, but there is no distiguishing property marker, then you can have your firearm in your vehicle there. Even in Oklahoma, it's still against Federal law to have your firearm in your vehicle on Post Office property, unless it is for official business, IE: law enforcement or actually to mail the firearm.
     
  6. lawson4

    lawson4 Member

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    I'll be back in a sec. I just put the popcorn on:D

    lawson4
     
  7. TexasRifleman

    TexasRifleman Moderator Emeritus

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    No popcorn needed, it simply varies depending on state law.

    Oklahoma, as shown, specifically mentions it.

    Many other states, Texas included, allow the property owner to make the call, though Texas is expected to go the way of Oklahoma during the next legislative session.
     
  8. Tin_Man

    Tin_Man Member

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    Huh, I must have missed that one entirely. Is it the same for all federal institutions?

    Also, any idea how I could go about finding out if AZ has any similar laws to that of Oklahoma in regards to the property issue?
     
  9. kingpin008

    kingpin008 Member

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    You are correct, they don't own your vehicle. However, if they own the property, they have the right (in most places) to tell you that you can't bring your vehicle onto their property if it contains a firearm.
     
  10. NavyLCDR

    NavyLCDR member

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    No, not the same. The Post Office has their own section in the Code of Federal Regulations.

    Post office regs are Title 39, Part 232. Here are the applicable sections:
    § 232.1 Conduct on postal property.
    (a) Applicability. This section applies to all real property under the charge and control of the Postal Service, to all tenant agencies, and to all persons entering in or on such property. This section shall be posted and kept posted at a conspicuous place on all such property. This section shall not apply to—

    (i) Any portions of real property, owned or leased by the Postal Service, that are leased or subleased by the Postal Service to private tenants for their exclusive use;

    (ii) With respect to sections 232.1(h)(1) and 232.1(o), sidewalks along the street frontage of postal property falling within the property lines of the Postal Service that are not physically distinguishable from adjacent municipal or other public sidewalks, and any paved areas adjacent to such sidewalks that are not physically distinguishable from such sidewalks.


    (l) Weapons and explosives . Notwithstanding the provisions of any other law, rule or regulation, no person while on postal property may carry firearms, other dangerous or deadly weapons, or explosives, either openly or concealed, or store the same on postal property, except for official purposes.

    (q) Enforcement. (1) Members of the U.S. Postal Service security force shall exercise the powers provided by 18 U.S.C. 3061(c)(2) and shall be responsible for enforcing the regulations in this section in a manner that will protect Postal Service property and persons thereon.

    (2) Local postmasters and installation heads may, pursuant to 40 U.S.C. 1315(d)(3) and with the approval of the chief postal inspector or his designee, enter into agreements with State and local enforcement agencies to insure that these rules and regulations are enforced in a manner that will protect Postal Service property.

    (3) Postal Inspectors, Office of Inspector General Criminal Investigators, and other persons designated by the Chief Postal Inspector may likewise enforce regulations in this section.
     
  11. jimmyraythomason

    jimmyraythomason Member

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    They cannot search your vehicle against your will so how will they know if it contains a firearm?
     
  12. Rodentman

    Rodentman Member

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    What about if the firearm is in "legal transport" IOW locked in a proper case, unloaded, with the ammo in a separate part of the vehicle?

    FWIW I won't carry in the PO, but if the PO is on my route of errands, there will likely be a firearm in the car.
     
  13. NavyLCDR

    NavyLCDR member

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    Doesn't matter. If you are referring to FOPA it doesn't apply. FOPA only supersedes state and local laws, not Federal laws. Notice in the post office regulation that "storage" of a firearm is illegal on PO property as well, not just carrying. If all other aspects of the firearm possession on Post Office property was legal, then only the following would apply and nothing else:
    (p) Penalties and other law. (1) Alleged violations of these rules and regulations are heard, and the penalties prescribed herein are imposed, either in a Federal district court or by a Federal magistrate in accordance with applicable court rules. Questions regarding such rules should be directed to the regional counsel for the region involved.

    (2) Whoever shall be found guilty of violating the rules and regulations in this section while on property under the charge and control of the Postal Service is subject to fine of not more than $50 or imprisonment of not more than 30 days, or both. Nothing contained in these rules and regulations shall be construed to abrogate any other Federal laws or regulations of any State and local laws and regulations applicable to any area in which the property is situated.
     
  14. TexasRifleman

    TexasRifleman Moderator Emeritus

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    And again, that's not necessarily the case depending on state law.

    The Oklahoma law is interesting and I suspect it will be challenged at some point by a property owner.
     
  15. kingpin008

    kingpin008 Member

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    Which is precisely why I made sure to put the words "in most places" in there. :)
     
  16. TexasRifleman

    TexasRifleman Moderator Emeritus

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    Oh I am not disagreeing with you, I think your original statement will turn out to be the case after some property owner in Oklahoma takes it to court.

    I don't think their law will survive a challenge.

    Not sure how it could really.
     
  17. Cuda

    Cuda Member

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    What if they lease the building/parking space?


    C
     
  18. Ron James

    Ron James Member

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    If you lease a building or property, then you control the building property. If a federal agency leases a building then it is considered Federal property. On most federal property, the very act of entering that property gives them the right to search your car with out your permission. They would not do so unless they have reason to believe you have prohibited items in your car. But yes, they can search your car without your permission. Except on a military base , I've never seen them do it on a random basis. but I have seen it done { and they had good reason }. Whats the big deal? When I carry a firearm it is concealed, when I leave a firearm in my car it is concealed. I have never worked my self up into a lather over it. Some of you guys sound like Tim McVey. Good grief.:banghead:
     
  19. Flyboy

    Flyboy Member

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    Oklahoma's law was suspended by injunction pending the outcome of the civil suit by Weyerhauser, et al. The plaintiffs won at the district court level; the judge cited the Occupational Safety and Health Act, of all things. The state has appealed the decision to the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals; I don't know if the appeal has been argued yet. Meanwhile, the law is in limbo, and not in effect.
     
  20. mongo4567

    mongo4567 Member

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    Ahhh...that is why the law hasn't been passed in Texas yet...it never left committee for the last couple of sessions at least.

    I personally like the Oklahoma law. I have a Texas CHL and can't have a firearm in my car at work because it is against my company's employment policy. That is a lot of exposure to potential danger on my daily commute.
     
  21. MostlyHarmless

    MostlyHarmless Member

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    In Minnesota, private establishments can't prohibit guns in parking lots, whether in cars or otherwise. See Minnesota Statutes, 624.714, subd. 17:

    Employers can't do it by employment policy either:


     
  22. ants

    ants Member

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    I wish a real legal expert would do a sticky post on the concept of Private Property.

    I'm sure it varies state by state, but we probably need clarification on these topics:
    • Just because the doors are open for business doesn't make it public property. It's still a private property and the owner/leaseholder can make the rules. How much does that vary state to state?
    • Private property starts at the property line, not the front door of the building. The parking lot is private property. How does that vary state by state?
    • Even though your car is your private property, so are your pants and shirt. Just because you (or your gun) are in a car doesn't mean the rules change. Or do they?
    • If you trespass by driving your car onto private property, you are still trespassing. Being in your privately owned vehicle doesn't mean you're on public property (or your own property). If you cross the property line, you're on private property where the property owner makes the rules.
    • Just how much does state law change these concepts from state to state.
    I'm not listing these things because I believe they are the law, I'm asking a certified and credentialled professional to enlighten us.

    With due respect to uneducated amateurs like me, I hope we don't just guess at the answers. I'd like to hear from legal professionals.
     
  23. notorious

    notorious Member

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    A few states have passed laws that prohibit businesses from preventing people having firearms in their vehicles. I think it stemmed from Right to Carry states and employees of gun-unfriendly businesses who had to leave their guns in their cars and then their employer told them to park off property and they filed suit and won.

    Not sure if it was FL or something but I heard about it within the last month.
     
  24. Eightball

    Eightball Member

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    So......anyone know about Kentucky? Or Michigan, another state where I spend some time?
     
  25. SK2344

    SK2344 Member

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    Just go in to mail your letter or mail your package and DON'T WORRY ABOUT THE GUN! I have been going into the Post office for 12 years with my gun in my pocket and nothing has happened to me. I really don't give a damn! If some crazy person comes in with a gun to kill every one, then I guess I'll be the lucky one to be able to defend myself. Just go about your business and stay safe. ////END////:banghead:
     
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