Marijuana & Gun Use

Marijuana and Gun Use:

With the passage of Proposition 64 on November 9, 2016, California adults 21 years of age or older may now legally grow, possess, and use marijuana for non-medical purposes with certain restrictions.

Federal law [18 U.S.C. § 922(d)(3)] makes it unlawful for any person to sell or otherwise dispose of any firearm or ammunition to any person knowing or having reasonable cause to believe that such person is an unlawful user of, or addicted to, a controlled substance.

With these matters in mind, the California Department of Justice (DOJ) issued an “IMPORTANT NOTICE” on “Federal Law on Marijuana and Gun Ownership” to California gun dealers on December 29, 2016, which states:

“This notice serves as a reminder to California Firearms Dealers (CFDs) that any person who uses, or is addicted to, marijuana is prohibited by Federal law from possessing firearms and/or ammunition regardless of current state legislation authorizing the legal use of marijuana for medicinal or recreational purposes.”

Along those same lines, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ (ATF) addressed an Open Letter to All Federal Firearms Licensees in 2011, which states:

“Any person who uses or is addicted to marijuana, regardless of whether his or her State has passed legislation authorizing marijuana use for medicinal purposes, is an unlawful user of or addicted to a controlled substance, and is prohibited by Federal law from possessing firearms or ammunition. Such persons should answer “yes” to question 11.e. on ATF Form 4473 (August 2008), Firearms Transaction Record, and you may not transfer firearms or ammunition to them. Further, if you are aware that the potential transferee is in possession of a card authorizing the possession and use of marijuana under State law, then you have “reasonable cause to believe” that the person is an unlawful user of a controlled substance. As such, you may not transfer firearms or ammunition to the person, even if the person answered “no” to question 11.e. on ATF Form 4473.”

In a few days, it is anticipated that CFDs will receive a revised version of the ATF Form 4473; to include the following new language:

Warning: The use or possession of marijuana remains unlawful under Federal law regardless of whether it has been legalized or decriminalized for medicinal or recreational purposes in the state where you reside.


Gun Owners Be Aware

 

Important Changes for California Gun Owners to Be Aware of:

With the ever-changing laws affecting Californians, it is important for gun-owners to stay up-to-date on current requirements and restrictions.

Effective January 1, 2017:

AB 857 requires that serial numbers be placed on all firearms without serial numbers and on all home-built/owner assembled firearms.

AB 1135 and SB 880 ban common and constitutionally-protected firearms that have magazine locking devices (like the “Bullet Button”).

AB 1511 criminalizes loaning of firearms between personally known, law-abiding adults, including family members, sportspersons, and competitors.

AB 1695 makes a non-violent misdemeanor a prohibiting offense.

SB 1235 offers new restrictions on ammunition purchases and sellers, and creates a Department of Justice database of ammunition owners.

SB 1446 provides a confiscatory ban on all lawfully-possessed standard-capacity ammunition feeding devices that hold more than 10 rounds, with an exemption for retired police

Additionally, as of July 1, 2017:

Proposition 63 will totally prohibit and criminalize the possession of “large-capacity magazines”.


Don’t Get Caught On Your Cell Phone

 

New Law Affecting Drivers and Their Use of Electronic Devices

New cell phone laws have come to California. Governor Brown signed an extension to the current cell phone driving bill and the new rules impact where drivers can put their phones and how they may use them while operating a vehicle.

Assembly Bill 1785, signed at the end of December, 2016, and effective as of January 1, 2017, no longer allows Californians to hold their phone while operating a vehicle. If caught, drivers could be fined $20, with another $50 for each additional offense.

With the exception of making a single tap or swipe on your mobile device (while it is mounted or fixed to the vehicle), cell phone use is now almost entirely banned while operating a vehicle. Some of the simple operations now against the law while operating a vehicle are:

  • Reading, writing or sending a text message.
  • Holding your phone and talking.
  • Checking or posting to social media.
  • Taking a video.

This means drivers will need to set up their GPS, music and other applications prior to getting on the road.

Drivers who plan to continue to use their cell phones while driving should limit their usage to single taps and swipes and should invest in a cell phone mount for hands-free operation and easy access.

For a look at the entire Bill, please visit: https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billNavClient.xhtml?bill_id=201520160AB1785