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Out of towner new to OC in VA

StingMP9

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Can someone point me to the good thread that let me know how legal I am if I carry open or concealed and in what areas of Virginia are off limits.

I was in Blacksburg, Salem and Roanoke over this weekend but I wasn't sure what the letter of the Open Carry law is in Virgina although I know OC is allowed. I am from Michigan and have a permit to carry concealed. I know the CPL (name of our concealed license) is honored by Virginia. Just need all the good knowledge where I can carry and carry openly before I open the can of worms.

I carried most of the time there, but I did so concealed
 

jmelvin

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Generally off-limits for loaded carry: Federal properties (except National Parks, National Forests, etc.), state forests and wildlife management areas, airport non-secured areas (inside the building), schools (K-12, however if you have a CHP you can carry onto the parking lot as long as you stay in the car).

Off limits for concealed carry only: Places serving alcohol for on premises consumption.

Off limits for open carry only: state parks

I am not a lawyer and do not pretend to offer legal advice, but this is what I understand the limits are for my purposes only.


***Didn't intend to leave off the discussion of national forests for places off limits to open carry.***
 

SouthernBoy

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jmelvin wrote:
Generally off-limits for loaded carry: Federal properties (except National Parks, National Forests, etc.), state forests and wildlife management areas, airport non-secured areas (inside the building), schools (K-12, however if you have a CHP you can carry onto the parking lot as long as you stay in the car).

Off limits for concealed carry only: Places serving alcohol for on premises consumption.

Off limits for open carry only: state parks

I am not a lawyer and do not pretend to offer legal advice, but this is what I understand the limits are for my purposes only.
If I'm not mistaken, this may only be true for resident CHP holders, not folks from other states with which we have reciprocity agreements. I do know that the federal law prohibits being within a school zone unless you have been issued a permit within your state. So that would seem to mean that you could not even get onto school property with an out-of-state permit.

INAL and I most welcome corrections to this.
 

TFred

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SouthernBoy wrote:
jmelvin wrote:
Generally off-limits for loaded carry: Federal properties (except National Parks, National Forests, etc.), state forests and wildlife management areas, airport non-secured areas (inside the building), schools (K-12, however if you have a CHP you can carry onto the parking lot as long as you stay in the car).

Off limits for concealed carry only: Places serving alcohol for on premises consumption.

Off limits for open carry only: state parks

I am not a lawyer and do not pretend to offer legal advice, but this is what I understand the limits are for my purposes only.
If I'm not mistaken, this may only be true for resident CHP holders, not folks from other states with which we have reciprocity agreements. I do know that the federal law prohibits being within a school zone unless you have been issued a permit within your state. So that would seem to mean that you could not even get onto school property with an out-of-state permit.

INAL and I most welcome corrections to this.
It's fuzzy, and I have always suspected intentionally so. The bold text you highlighted above is state law. The Gun Free School Zone Act is federal, and the text of the law is such that it seems to read that the concealed permit must be issued by the state, but the wording is also such that it could be interpreted to be a license that is honored by the state.

I saw a post a while back that had a reprint of a letter from the DoJ opining that it must be issued by the actual state, but that was just an opinion from a nobody, and would not carry any weight in a court case.

The GFSZA is clearly designed to intimidate law-abiding citizens. I have long asked for, but have never heard of any case where an individual was prosecuted for the sole violation of the GFSZA. They do sometimes tack it on when other actual crimes have been committed. Nobody wants to be the test case, and the government doesn't want to test it because they would likely lose. It's one of those laws that make it virtually impossible for otherwise law-abiding citizens to not be a felon.

All IMHO, and IANAL, and I don't have links to the referenced posts for cites. :) How's that for a universal disclaimer!

TFred
 

Dutch Uncle

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Good advice, all! But Sting, I hope you will just keep those things in the back of your mind, and otherwise enjoy yourself here, open carrying most of the time. The weather's nice and the people are friendly out your way, so have a great time in the Commonwealth!

Stay safe. :celebrate
 

riverrat10k

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Dutch Uncle wrote:
Good advice, all! But Sting, I hope you will just keep those things in the back of your mind, and otherwise enjoy yourself here, open carrying most of the time. The weather's nice and the people are friendly out your way, so have a great time in the Commonwealth!

Stay safe. :celebrate


Agree , sting, don't want to discourage you. But just when I think Virginia is problem free as regard to OC, some little detail trips you up. Overall, we have very little problem OC'ing anywhere in the Commonwealth.

Welcome and enjoy your trip!


eta: one reason I even commented is because of the National Parks/National Forests/State Parks/State Forests near the area you visited.
 

StingMP9

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Thanks, the good folks in the Michigan forum along with it's spinoff incorporated MOC,Inc have been good at providing a wealth of open carry info and encouragement. Now I just want to extend that to my trips to my wife's family in Virginia so I can enjoy the same protection I am exploring back home. Recently got a digital voice recorder for taping my encounters wherever I may roam and always try to understand the State and Federal laws of the territories.
 

2a4all

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StingMP9 wrote:
In my state, if a CPL(CHL) holder is carrying a registered firearm they can open carry into most of the Pistol Free Zones that our laws designate illegal to conceal pistols in.

Anything similar to that in VA?

Sans the "registered firearm" requirement (doesn't exit in Va), a CHP holder may OC/CC a handgun in the General Assembly Building in Richmond per JRC (read that as a house) rule.

See www.vcdl.org for more info.
 

VApatriot

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StingMP9 wrote:
In my state, if a CPL(CHL) holder is carrying a registered firearm they can open carry into most of the Pistol Free Zones that our laws designate illegal to conceal pistols in.

Anything similar to that in VA?

We don't have gun registrationin Virginia, and, for the most part, if you can legallycarry concealed somewhere, you can also open carry there and vise versa. The two notable exceptionsto this rule-of-thumbwould be State Parks and place that have a license to serve alcohol.

Currently, to carry in a state park, you must havea CHP, and you can't open carry. And, until July 1st of this year, you MAY NOT carry concealed in places that are licensed to servealcohol (most restaurants). For the rest of this month, if you want to carry, you MUST open carry when in an ABC establishment.
 

gis

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I was a cop in Michgan and now acivilian in Virginia. Virginia is a great state for carry, but Michigan is pretty good too. A few thingsjumped out at me when I first moved here. Since I am near D.C., I was astounded by the number of federal facilities, which are few and far between in Michigan. This is a big time off-limits for both LEOSA/218 and civilian permits. I was also surprised by the private preperty no-guns signs, which are not very common, but definitely much more visible than in Michigan. There is no duty to inform in VA, but I still do and have all my life. I am sure that others will disagree with me.

OC is far more accepted than in Michigan and law enforcement is more knowledgeable about it. I have to admit that the only places I ever open carried in Michiganoff duty were where I knew who was going to see me. In the Michigan LE community it was considered bad form on the most part. Here in VA I enjoy open carry when the conditions are right for it.

Regarding the differences in open vs. concealed off-limits, you have to remember that even in Michigan there are off-limits polaces under penal law that you are exempted from with a CPL. Example, banks. Don't try open carrying in Michigan bank with or without a CPL. In Virginia, after the the restaurant concealed carry ban goes away in three weeks, I can't think of any places that you can't conceal carry where you can open carry. I am sure that others will correct me if I am wrong.

The main thing to remember is to use common sense. A friend of mine used to say that in front of every firearms charge stands a "being stupid" charge. I firmly believe that, especially in the gun friendly states. After one year in Virginia I came to a conclusion that Virginia is a bit more gun-friendly than Michigan, although every week I seem to discover things here (gun related) that I find weird. :)
 

ProShooter

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jmelvin wrote:
Off limits for concealed carry only: Places serving alcohol for on premises consumption.
Not exactly correct - Concealed carry is only illegal in restaurants and clubs serving alcoholic beverages on premises (and only until 7/1/10). The ABC Board has licenses for a bunch of other types of locations where CC is perfectly legal.
 

jmelvin

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Understood ProShooter, but for someone who is only going to be here a few days I figured my summary was perhaps easiest to get straight. OC is widely accepted so it's not like OCing would put our visitor in peril of doing something rare.
 

StingMP9

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gis wrote:
Regarding the differences in open vs. concealed off-limits, you have to remember that even in Michigan there are off-limits polaces under penal law that you are exempted from with a CPL.  Example, banks.  Don't try open carrying in  Michigan bank with or without a CPL. 

Not true. It is currently allowed, but I haven't tested it, to carry concealed or open into a Michigan bank or financial institution if you have a CPL. Only court houses and casinos are TOTALLY pistol free. I won't site the law but our good friends in the Michigan forum made up this carry chart attached. If anyone has any Virginia based docs like this I'd love to see them here.

Since my OP is about what is allowed in Virginia, I'll keep what you all said in mind. I do wish to have my protection on me if I set foot in a bar after July 1 and will just ask for sweet tea, soda, or an Nonalcoholic beer to sip.

Walking into an ABC probably won't interest me much, but that's good to know. We currently have to carry open AND possess a CPL (CHP) in my state to carry legally into a grocery store that carries wine, beer and alcohol because of our law code being a bit unclear as to can't conceal if an establishment makes %51 of its income from alcohol...if you aren't sure or don't know if they make majority of sales from Alcohol then you should OC. Never practiced that here either.
 

gis

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StingMP9 wrote:
We currently have to carry open AND possess a CPL (CHP) in my state to carry legally into a grocery store that carries wine, beer and alcohol

Sorry for getting off topic, but I have never heard of that one. Can you point to the law? The only prohibition related to alcohol for CPL concealed carry in Michigan is places with 51%+ income derived from liquor served/consumed on premisses. Even that is unenforceable unless specifically posted according to Michigan prosecutors I taked to. Are you saying that you can't conceal at Target because they sell beer/wine? That makes no sense to me.
 

2a4all

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StingMP9 wrote:
In my state, if a CPL(CHL) holder is carrying a registered firearm they can open carry into most of the Pistol Free Zones that our laws designate illegal to conceal pistols in.

Anything similar to that in VA?
When you moved from MI to VA, did you have to do anything about your registered firearms with MI, i.e. notify them that you've moved? As you've moved out of state, do they cancel your registration?


Just curious.
 

gis

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2a4all wrote:
StingMP9 wrote:
In my state, if a CPL(CHL) holder is carrying a registered firearm they can open carry into most of the Pistol Free Zones that our laws designate illegal to conceal pistols in.

Anything similar to that in VA?
When you moved from MI to VA, did you have to do anything about your registered firearms with MI, i.e. notify them that you've moved? As you've moved out of state, do they cancel your registration?


Just curious.
I can reply to that. When I was moving to Virginia, I asked the Michiagn State Police Firearms Unit what I needed to do, since I have more than a few guns. After doing a bit of checking they sad nothing, as Michigan law does not provide for unregistration except inspecific situations. So any guns (applies to handguns only) that were ever registered in Michagn will remain registered there forever, unlesstransfered to a Michigan FFL (has to report to state police) or another Michiagn resident (has to register with local police, which reports to the state). When someone moves and takes the gun with them or transfers to an FFL out of state, the Michigan registration is unaffected. The same is true, by the way, of Clark County Nevada, which years back required all visitors to register handguns, despite the fact thatI could carry on out of state credentials. I have a couple of handguns registered there. Sorry, perhaps this is more than you wanted to know. :)
 

TFred

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gis wrote:
I can reply to that. When I was moving to Virginia, I asked the Michiagn State Police Firearms Unit what I needed to do, since I have more than a few guns. After doing a bit of checking they sad nothing, as Michigan law does not provide for unregistration except inspecific situations. So any guns (applies to handguns only) that were ever registered in Michagn will remain registered there forever, unlesstransfered to a Michigan FFL (has to report to state police) or another Michiagn resident (has to register with local police, which reports to the state). When someone moves and takes the gun with them or transfers to an FFL out of state, the Michigan registration is unaffected. The same is true, by the way, of Clark County Nevada, which years back required all visitors to register handguns, despite the fact thatI could carry on out of state credentials. I have a couple of handguns registered there. Sorry, perhaps this is more than you wanted to know. :)
I guess the moral of the story is... never move to Michigan! ;)

TFred (native Virginian and very happy about that...)
 
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