Traveling through New Jersey

Discussion in 'Legal' started by orpington, Dec 24, 2021.

  1. orpington

    orpington Member

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    Can a longarm be in your possession as a non New Jersey resident while traveling through this state?

    If so, and the requirement is that it be locked in the trunk, what if the vehicle lacks a trunk? (E.g., Jeep Wrangler)

    If not, is this allowed if the longarm is pre 1899? What if the firearm is a pre 1899 revolver?
     
  2. MEHavey

    MEHavey Member

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  3. jonnyc

    jonnyc Member

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    New or old, when traveling via NJ, I would have any firearm unloaded, ammo and firearm locked away in very separated locations, and I wouldn't stop...except maybe for gas...that's it.
     
  4. LaneP

    LaneP Member

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    This. I would treat transitory passage through northeast states as if you were in a patrol trying to avoid ambush and IED's in Taliban territory.
     
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  5. orpington

    orpington Member

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    Okay, best to maybe leave the firearm behind.

    How did it come to this in Nee Jersey? I mean, Nee Jersey has had Republican governors in the not too distant past.

    My understanding is that state laws can override Federal law and this is why this is the case in New Jersey?
     
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  6. Frank Ettin

    Frank Ettin Moderator Staff Member

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    Just a brief digression to point out that this is not entirely accurate. It's an oversimplification of the relationship between state law and federal law. The whole area of federal preemption and choice of law (where the laws of multiple jurisdictions could be applicable) is a huge, complex, and pretty much non-intutive subject.

    If the particular issue addressed by the state law is also addressed by the federal law, there's the question of whether the particular federal law was intended to "occupy the field", i. e., be the final word on the subject. In that case the federal law preempts the state law and applies instead of the state law.

    On the other hand, if a court decides that the federal law did not reflect an intent to occupy the field, in order to decide if federal law or state law applies a court will need to decide if the state law is consistent a federal policy concern or would, on the other hand, frustrate the federal policy furthered by the law.

    Sometimes federal law will be explicit about how a conflict between federal law and state law is to be resolved. An example which comes immediately to mind involves the confidentiality of medical information regulation under HIPAA. Those regulations expressly provide that they don't supersede state laws to the extent providing great protection of an individual's confidentiality interests.

    On the other hand a federal law could be found to preempt state law if either expressly or by inference the federal law was intended to promote national uniformity with regard to a particular issue.

    For an example of these principles applied to state marijuana laws, see Willis v. Winters, 253 P.3d 1058 (Or., 2011) in which the Oregon Supreme Court ruled that a Sheriff was required under Oregon law to issue a concealed handgun license to Cynthia Willis even though she was a medical marijuana user. But the Oregon Supreme Court specifically noted (at pp. 1065 - 1066, emphasis added):

    The Founding Fathers provided in the Constitution (Article VI, Clause 2, emphasis added):

    This post is not intended to start a discussion of the subject of conflicting state and federal laws. I've posted this solely for clarification.
     
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  7. CapnMac

    CapnMac Member

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    FOPA '86 allows transport at the Federal level (unloaded, locked away "out of immediate access of driver" if no "trunk").

    The Federal Law is meant to have a supreme standing. Which does not prevent a given State from being "over zealous" per se. Only that some legally "injured" party needs to press the case to suitably Federal levels to address the imbalance. NJ has managed to make itself into enough of an annoyance to merit an excess of caution by the informed.
     
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  8. RickD427

    RickD427 Member

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    Capt,

    The FOPA is not much more than a "Paper Tiger." Please refer to the consolidated cases of Torraco, Winstanley v Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and Weasner v Passalaqua. In those case the Second Circuit held that there was no right to sue for a violation of the FOPA. If my memory is correct, and I'll invite Frank to correct me if not, at least one of those plaintiffs appealed to the Supreme Court and was denied a review.

    The text of the Second Circuit's decision infers that Torraco and Weasner successfully used the FOPA to defeat their criminal charges (Winstanley was delayed in travel but not arrested). But all three were left unable to recover damages.
     
  9. CapnMac

    CapnMac Member

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    Oh, I concur, but, it's the one Germane thing in OP to cite as Code.

    And FOPA is largely a bag of rocks for firearm owners (dropping the requirement to log ammo out on Bound Books was nice). But, at the time, it was a "win" at a time when everything seemed stacked against firearms owners.

    Some of the JD I know will argue that the FOPA cases in NY & NJ were only framed so as to extricate the defendants (the primary raison d'etre for counsel) rather than to contest the nature of Enforce First, Litigate later nature of both of those places.

    Since those times, we have seen many changes in the RKBA legal landscape. And, we can but hope for more. That the draconian jurisdictions will stand out all the more for their very uniqueness, and their scarcity.

    And, of course, all of that is subjective and nothing more than opinion--the opposite to the objectivity and precision Legal wants of us.
     
  10. orpington

    orpington Member

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    And what happens if you have the misfortune of breaking down?
     
  11. 1942bull

    1942bull Member

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    Pay strict attention to the info website provided in post #2.

    If you will have any ammunition in the car don’t let it hollow point. Possession of HP in NJ is a crime that is prosecuted. I live. In southeast PA. I drive the New Hampshire and back ever summer. I take my EDC and FMJ. I have to drive through NJ, NY, CT, and MA. None of those states honors my concealed carry permits (PA & AZ). I breakdown my pistol and lock it in a small gun safe. No ammo with the pistol. I leave ammo boxed and magazines empty, locked in a separate box. I drive an suv so no truck. But I can get the ammo into the spare. Tire compartment. Visit www.handgunlaw.U.S. And look up NJ. Of the 4 states I listed above NJ is the one I drive through withou even a pit stop. It is the last place I want to deal with a LEO while having a gun in my possession.
     
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  12. Rule3

    Rule3 Member

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    A bit off topic but if you are driving your vehicle through NJ beware that they have restrictions on WINDOW TINT, so you may get pulled over just for that and they more trouble starts.
    My vehicles would not be "legal" in Jersey

    https://tintingregulations.com/new-jersey-window-tint-laws/
     
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  13. Gun4Fun90

    Gun4Fun90 Member

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    My understanding is many prosecutors and police departments in New Jersey treat FOPA as an affirmative defense rather than a bar from prosecution. So you may not end up in jail just stuck with a pile of legal bills you can’t afford to pay and time off work you can’t afford to take.

    So I will give you the advice a wise person once told me. Don’t get pulled over and keep going to your destination.

    that means no speeding, obey all traffic laws, literally give them no reason to pull you over and keep driving until you have cleared the state.

    because all this theoretical debate only really starts to matter once you are stopped by the police.
     
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  14. orpington

    orpington Member

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    Given the repercussions, it is likely best to leave any firearms behind.

    So, as with anything, it sounds like the intent may be to generate revenue from pro 2A individuals who are not tax paying residents of New Jersey.

    I always thought that state law/state’s rights could override Federal law, but an earlier post in this thread indicated that this is not so. And so, my question: This NOT being the case, why is not there a Federal law that applies to all states for the transportation of firearms across state lines, to prevent the criminalization of otherwise law abiding citizens??? IMHO, a national concealed carry law is long overdue, but that may be asking for too much.

    Come to think of it, what prevents the creation of esoteric laws at all, such as something ridiculous like one cannot have a live round in their possession between sundown and sunup when outside of one’s residence? Completely made up on my part, but just so as to give an example.
     
  15. Gun4Fun90

    Gun4Fun90 Member

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    I mean in theory this is what FOPA (firearms owners protection act) dose... but the reality is states like new jersey don't seem to care and are willing to waist tax payer money to put you through the wringer anyways.
     
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  16. orpington

    orpington Member

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    I apologize, I didn’t know what the acronym FOPA was until your post. I didn’t even know something like it existed because of states like New Jersey being notoriously and legendarily as it is.

    So, what’s the point of even having a FOPA if it’s meaningless?
     
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  17. wis bang

    wis bang Member

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    Having lived and still [3 days a week] working in NJ I used to travel from work to the cabin [Poconos] before I moved back across the Delaware.
    Roughly 85 miles.
    Now I have to drive over 30 miles home to gather my stuff and drive roughly 85 miles to the cabin on the free side of the Delaware..
     
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  18. RickD427

    RickD427 Member

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    The FOPA is not completely meaningless. As was correctly pointed out by a previous poster, the FOPA does have effect as an affirmative defense to folks who are criminally charged. But so long as there is no recognized right to sue in order to enforce its objectives, it still remains pretty much a "Paper Tiger."
     
  19. Gun4Fun90

    Gun4Fun90 Member

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    Yeah I would agree with this for the most part. Not meaningless as long as it keeps 1 innocent red blooded American out of jail, but I will admit the vagueness of “continues and uninterrupted” is problematic. Also I think it’s unfortunate that FOPA dose not specify that it is a bar from prosecution as most states have interpreted it to be leaving the door open to places like New Jersey to treat it as an affirmative defense.

    I think there is a bill by a congress person from South Carolina that is designed to help fix some of these issues by clarifying “transport” to include stops for gas, food, lodging ect… but I don’t think it has gotten any real traction…. Maybe we should be a bit louder about supporting bills and politicians that do pro 2a stuff…. God knows yelling and screaming seems to work well enough for the anti 2a people

    edit: it was Ralph Norman and the bill is HR5935 and it has just been sitting in the house doing nothing since it was referred to committee in March of 2020. The wheels of government turn slow.
     
  20. GooseGestapo

    GooseGestapo Member

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    Avoid New Jersey. It’s called boycotting.

    I traveled to New England for several decades.
    I made it a point to go around New Jersey for the most part. It meant 100 or more miles driving each way. I definitely would not stop and eat or buy fuel.
    (They don’t even trust you to pump your own gas, you know!)
    Fortunately I no longer have occasion to ever go back....
     
  21. Blue Jays

    Blue Jays Member

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    This is solid counsel for all FIFTY STATES and overall how to behave. Be the gray man or gray woman.
     
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  22. loadedround

    loadedround Member

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    Just don't get caught with hollow point pistol bullets in New Jersey either. Could get you 5 years as a guest in a New Jersey jail.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 29, 2022
  23. Shanvanvocht

    Shanvanvocht Member

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    A little background. In 1966 New Jersey passed what is one of the most restrictive gun laws in the country; it introduced the Firearms Purchaser Identification Card--required to purchase long arms--as well as the Permit to Purchase Pistol or Revolver. It also placed severe restrictions on how, where, and why one may transport firearms. That law was used as a basis for GCA 68. Since then, successive legislatures have added more onerous restrictions and enforcement, especially by State Police, has been extremely strict. (Full disclosure: I was born and raised in NJ and lived there for many years)
     
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  24. HankB

    HankB Member

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    If trying to avoid being stopped in NJ - or anywhere else hostile to firearms - avoid having any pro-RKBA or pro-TRUMP bumper stickers. You may have a target on you simply by having out-of-state license plates - DON'T add anything else that may draw attention to you. (I live in Texas, and I don't have any bumper or window stickers on my vehicles - keeping a low profile is GOOD everywhere.)
     
  25. Gun4Fun90

    Gun4Fun90 Member

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    I mean avoiding bumper stickers or any stickers on your car in general is just generally good practice, they lower resale value.
     
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