What the heck is going on with gun laws in the People's Republic of California!?
There's too much confusion out there, so grab your beverage of choice and dive in to this [hopefully] helpful s'plainer.
NOTE: This article assumes that you may want to do some catching up, that you've been under a rock since Gunpocalypse, or that you have no idea that Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom's Proposition 63 ammunition statutes were the law, but then some weren't because of a bill that was passed before it. (Read on for more on that.)
And much will change going forward, either in DOJ regulations or in the courts, or both. So this is not the end. But, perhaps, this is the end of the beginning. Onward!
Q: What are "regulations", anyway? Doesn't the Legislature make laws?
A: Regulations are rules -- a.k.a. "administrative laws" -- that are promulgated by executive branch officers or agencies under the authority of statutes.
Statutes are laws that are enacted by the Legislature -- which is found, surprisingly enough, in the legislative branch -- and are either signed into law, allowed to pass into law without a signature, or become law with a "veto override" vote of the Legislature.
[If you're still interested in learning more about this process -- and who isn't? -- see Sec. IV of the California Constitution, here.]
In California, permanent regulations are published in the California Code of Regulations, which you can access here. The gun stuff is mostly found in Title 11, Division 5.
Unless the Legislature (or the people, in initiative statutes) say otherwise, regulations -- or "rulemakings", get it? -- generally must follow the California Administrative Procedure Act ("APA") process, codified at Cal. Government Code section 11340, et seq.
The Office of Administrative Law ("OAL") is -- according to them, anyway -- an [executive branch] state agency which "ensures that agency regulations are clear, necessary, legally valid, and available to the public." You might or might not agree with that description. OAL has a handy little FAQ about the State's rulemaking process here.
Q: But isn't everything Governor Jerry Brown's fault?
A: Well, a lot of things are Gov. Brown's fault. But Gov. Brown's involvement in gun laws is generally limited to signing or vetoing bills passed by other people -- legislators -- in the Legislature. Though signing gun control bills into law is bad, so that would be his fault. And OAL does, ultimately, work for him, too.
So, to be fair, gun laws are primarily the Legislature's fault, but anti-gun governors have either signed gun control bills or actively lobbied for them. So you can and should blame them for that.
For example, Republican governors like Friend Richardson, Ronald Reagan, George Deukmejian, and Pete Wilson, as well as Democrats like Gray Davis, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Jerry Brown, have all either signed or promoted gun control laws, or both.
Wait -- Schwarzenegger was a Republican, you say? Huh. Does anybody else know this!?
Q: What's the difference between terms like "may" and "shall?"
A: It's hard to imagine any California gun owner who doesn't already know the difference between "may" and "shall" -- have you hugged your "may-issue" sheriff lately? -- but just in case, here it goes...
"Shall" generally signals a mandate, or duty, of someone to do something.
"May" generally indicates that someone can do something, but doesn't necessarily have to.
"Shall not" means....the opposite of shall. (Who saw that coming?)
Q: Where can I go read the laws for myself?
A: Swing over -- or however you browse for stuff on the Interwebz these days -- to the California Legislature's handy Legislative Information Web site and click, search, or browse away.
(Here's a direct link to the Penal Code.)
You can also use it to look up other things, like many bills.
Q: What's the easiest way to find out what California DOJ is up to?
A: Of course, we'd love for you to sign up for our e-mail alerts to stay up to date on gun bills, regulations, and lawsuits here.
And you might want to bookmark our California DOJ Regulation Watch and BulletButtonBan.com pages, two resources we established to help people keep track of all of these new gun regulations.
And you can always --
- Follow FPC on Facebook
- Follow FPC on Twitter
- and Follow FPC on Instagram
You can always find opportunities to sound off at FPC's Take Action grassroots activism tools, here.
And, you can also follow the "fun" -- at least, what DOJ wants you to see -- at the Attorney General's firearms regulation Website here.
Q: What do you mean, "what DOJ wants you to see?" Aren't these things supposed to be public?
A: Well, yes -- but that doesn't stop DOJ from trying to play games and keep people in the dark.
In fact, we filed a lawsuit -- DeLuz, et al. v. DOJ -- earlier this year to make sure that we (and you) have access to public records and information that DOJ has about its firearm regulations, etc.
Q: So, can I still buy ammo after January 1?
A: Yes, but differently.
Beginning 1/1/18, sales or delivery of ammunition [to a buyer/transferee] must generally be processed by a DOJ-licensed ammunition vendor in a face-to-face transaction.
Q: Didn't they ban "mail order" and Internet-purchased ammunition?
A: Sort of, but not quite.
With a few exceptions, the new ammunition laws say that "that ammunition may be purchased or acquired over the Internet or through other means of remote ordering if a licensed ammunition vendor initially receives the ammunition and processes the transaction in compliance with this section and Article 3 (commencing with Section 30342) of Chapter 1 of Division 10 of Title 4 of this part." See Penal Code section 30312.
So, "mail order" ammunition is being treated similarly -- but not identically -- to guns purchased online.
Q: What kind of exemptions are there to the "mail order" ammunition laws?
A: There are a handful of different exemptions for law enforcement, ammunition vendors, some federal firearms licensees, licensed shooting ranges and target facilities, someone "who purchases or receives ammunition from a spouse, registered domestic partner, or immediate family member as defined in Section 16720," a "consultant-evaluator," police cadets, police academy instructors and staff, and "A person who is licensed as a collector of firearms pursuant to Chapter 44 (commencing with Section 921) of Title 18 of the United States Code and the regulations issued pursuant thereto, whose licensed premises are within this state, and who has a current certificate of eligibility issued by the Department of Justice pursuant to Section 26710." See Penal Code section 30312.
Q: Can I still travel out of state and bring back ammunition I bought somewhere else?
A: With some exceptions, no.
Beginning January 1, 2018, "a resident of this state shall not bring or transport into this state any ammunition that he or she purchased or otherwise obtained from outside of this state unless he or she first has that ammunition delivered to a licensed ammunition vendor for delivery to that resident pursuant to the procedures set forth in Section 30312." (Emphasis added.) See generally Cal. Penal Code section 30314.
Q: What kind of exceptions are there to the ammunition importation thing?
A: Well, that provision doesn't apply to a number of people, including ammunition vendors.
It also does not apply to "[a] person who acquired the ammunition from a spouse, registered domestic partner, or immediate family member as defined in Section 16720."
Q: Doesn't that mean that my non-resident parent/child/grandparent/grandchild can drive in a bunch of ammo and give or sell it to me?
A: You'll want to seek specific legal advice from your attorney, of course, but that's what the statutes indicate when you read them all together.
Q: Does "ammunition" have two different definitions, now?
A: Yes. For non-prohibited persons, "ammunition" is defined as "one or more loaded cartridges consisting of a primed case, propellant, and with one or more projectiles," and "does not include blanks."
But for a prohibited person, the definition is far broader: "As used in subdivision (a) of Section 30305 and in Section 30306, 'ammunition' includes, but is not limited to, any bullet, cartridge, magazine, clip, speed loader, autoloader, or projectile capable of being fired from a firearm with a deadly consequence," but "does not include blanks."
A whole bunch of important legal definitions of terms in California's Penal Code can be found here.
Q: Can ammunition vendors charge me a fee for transferring ammunition?
A: Yes, an "ammunition vendor may charge the purchaser an administrative fee to process the transaction, in an amount to be set by the Department of Justice, in addition to any applicable fees that may be charged pursuant to the provisions of this title." See Penal Code section 30312.
Q: Will I need an "ammunition purchase permit" or some special DOJ thing in order to buy ammo?
A: No, SB 1235 'pre-amended' -- conditional on the passage of Proposition 63 -- repealing that part of Prop 63 and replacing those provisions with, well, other provisions.
Q: Uhh, what did what to what?
A: SB 1235 (2016, de Leon) was a bill that the Legislature passed. Proposition 63 was a ballot measure that enacted "initiative statutes" by a vote of the people of the State. And, in general, only other initiative statutes (passed by the people) can change other initiative statutes.
Article II, Section 10(a) of the California Constitution says that "The Legislature....may amend or repeal an initiative statute by another statute that becomes effective only when approved by the electors unless the initiative statute permits amendment or repeal without their approval."
But Proposition 63 had a provision (Section 13) that give the Legislature permission: "The provisions of this measure may be amended by a vote of 55 percent of the members of each house of the Legislature and signed by the Governor so long as such amendments are consistent with and further the intent of this Act."
And SB 1235 was, indeed, passed by such a vote and signed into law by Gov. Brown.
So, in a first-of-its-kind kind of thing, SB 1235 pre-emptively addressed parts of Proposition 63, and here we are.
Q: What kind of "other provisions" about ammunition did SB 1235 change?
A: Quite a few.
But regarding ammunition purchasing, SB 1235 replaced Proposition 63's "purchase permits" with a phased-in framework for ammunition buyers and sellers, eventually leading to a DOJ "point-of-sale" background check system for ammunition transfers (effective July 1, 2019).
Q: I have some of my own "home built" firearms, or would like to -- does anything change for me?
A: Yes. Effective January 1, 2017, the laws added an important new definition: "For purposes of this chapter, 'manufacturing' or 'assembling' a firearm means to fabricate or construct a firearm, or to fit together the component parts of a firearm to construct a firearm."
And, "Commencing July 1, 2018, prior to manufacturing or assembling a firearm, a person manufacturing or assembling the firearm shall" do things listed in Cal. Penal Code section 29180(b).
Moreover, before "January 1, 2019, any person who, as of July 1, 2018, owns a firearm that does not bear a serial number assigned to it pursuant to either Section 23910 or pursuant to Chapter 44 (commencing with Section 921) of Part 1 of Title 18 of the United States Code and the regulations issued pursuant thereto, shall do" things listed in Cal. Penal Code section 29180(c).
Also, you still can't "manufacture, assemble, or possess a weapon prohibited under Section 16590, an assault weapon as defined in Section 30510 or 30515, a machinegun as defined in Section 16880, a .50 BMG rifle as defined in Section 30530, or a destructive device as defined in Section 16460."
Q: But can I sell or transfer my "home built" guns?
Maybe not. "The sale or transfer of ownership of a firearm manufactured or assembled pursuant to this section is prohibited." See Cal. Penal Code section 29180(d)(1).
Q: Do all firearms need to have DOJ-issued serial numbers now?
A: Not all, but in general, most firearms that don't currently have a serial number will need to get one, have it applied, and have it reported to and registered with DOJ by January 1, 2019.
Q: Are there any exemptions to these new "home build" requirements?
A: Yes, some. For example, Cal. Penal Code section 29181 contains 5 exemptions you should read and understand.
For example, "Section 29180 does not apply to or affect any of the following:"
- (a) A firearm that has a serial number assigned to it pursuant to either Section 23910 or pursuant to Chapter 44 (commencing with Section 921) of Part 1 of Title 18 of the United States Code and the regulations issued pursuant thereto.
- (b) A firearm made or assembled prior to December 16, 1968, that is not a handgun.
- (c) A firearm which was entered into the centralized registry set forth in Section 11106 prior to July 1, 2018, as being owned by a specific individual or entity if that firearm has assigned to it a distinguishing number or mark of identification to that firearm by virtue of the department accepting entry of that firearm into the centralized registry.
- (d) A firearm that has a serial number assigned to it pursuant to Chapter 53 of Title 26 of the United States Code and the regulations issued pursuant thereto.
- (e) A firearm that is a curio or relic, or an antique firearm, as those terms are defined in Section 479.11 of Title 27 of the Code of Federal Regulations.
The "centralized registry set forth in Section 11106" are firearms registered pursuant to section 11106(b)(1), specifically including the following:
- (A) Article 1 (commencing with Section 26700) and Article 2 (commencing with Section 26800) of Chapter 2 of Division 6 of Title 4 of Part 6.
- (B) Article 1 (commencing with Section 27500) of Chapter 4 of Division 6 of Title 4 of Part 6.
- (C) Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 28050) of Division 6 of Title 4 of Part 6.
- (D) Any provision listed in subdivision (a) of Section 16585.
- (E) Former Section 12084.
- (F) Section 28255.
- (G) Section 29180.
- (H) Any other law.
The DOJ's "Firearm Ownership Report" (i.e., "volreg") is here.
Q: Is there anything else to consider about "home built" firearms?
A: Yes. While they are not published yet, the law requires that DOJ promulgate regulations about serialization and applications therefore. See Cal. Penal Code section 29182(f): "The department shall adopt regulations to administer this chapter."
Q: Do "bullet button assault weapons" have to be registered by January 1?
A: Technically, the registration period is still open, and will be through June 2018. But like many things in life, "it's complicated."
Earlier this year, the Legislature passed (and Gov. Brown signed) AB 103 into law. That "public safety omnibus" bill changed, among other things, the new "assault weapon" registration deadline from December 31, 2017, to June 30, 2018 (i.e., "by July 1, 2018, in accordance with subdivision (b) of Section 30900.")
However, there are other laws that apply to "assault weapons" (like transportation, etc.), and the exemption to those laws is, generally, registration. See, e.g., Cal. Penal Code section 30660.
So, while the registration period will be open through June 30, 2018, having a lawfully-possessed, eligible firearm registered before then might be a good idea for other reasons.
Q: How do I register my lawfully-possessed "bullet button assault weapon?"
A: You can register your lawfully-possessed, eligible firearms at DOJ's CFARS Internet application here.
NEW Q: Do I need to register my "featureless" firearm as an "assault weapon"?
A: Like everything else about California's insane number of gun laws, "it's complicated". See this new article for more.
Q: I will not comply!
A: We get it. We really do. Everyone is sick of being criminalized and treated like second-class citizens. The State of California hates you, hates your lawfully-owned property, and hates your constitutional rights. So everyone's joining the People's Front of Judea, or something like that.
So you do you. But we do encourage everyone to make informed decisions -- and make sure you know what it means.
For example, failing to register an assault weapon in accordance with the statutes means:
- During a law enforcement encounter, an unregistered "assault weapon" will almost certainly be confiscated and lost forever;
- An unregistered "assault weapon" firearm may be considered a "public nuisance" and subject to seizure, destruction, and fines (Cal. Penal Code section 30800);
- A person who, among other things, transports, lends, or imports an unregistered "assault weapon" may be subject to a stiff felony and who, "upon conviction shall be punished by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170 for four, six, or eight years" (Cal. Penal Code section 30600);
- A person who possesses an unregistered "assault weapon" may be subject to criminal penalties and fines (Cal. Penal Code section 30605;
- And so on...
These are potentially life-changing consequences.
It's worth more time and thoughtful consideration than the time it took to share that funny/awesome/inspiring meme on Facebook. Just something to think about.
Q: Who is going to enforce these new "assault weapon" laws, anyway? All my buddies with badges said they wouldn't!
A: Good on them! Seriously. We know a lot of courageous law enforcement officers who've indicated that they, too, have had enough of California's over-criminalization of law-abiding gun owners (and letting violent criminals go free).
But the answer to the question is, 'The same state and local, and sometimes federal, law enforcement agencies who have been seizing guns, enforcing laws, and prosecuting people on 'assault weapons' charges for nearly 30 years.'
People have lost their guns, their jobs, their families, and their rights over this stuff for a long time. Many of them were just regular, otherwise law-abiding people like you. If you don't believe us, ask some "gun lawyers" -- they've seen this movie more than once.
Q: Are the DOJ's "assault weapon" regulations being challenged in court?
A: Yep. One case, Holt v. Becerra, is a constitutional, statutory, and Administrative Procedure Act (APA) challenge to the DOJ's "bullet-button assault weapon" regulations. We believe that the DOJ’s regulations expose people to criminal liability that would not otherwise exist under the actual laws regulating firearms in California.
Q: Are you planning to file more lawsuits?
A: Yes. We're already actively working on a number of cases and preparing others. And while there are a lot of new gun laws, many don't even have DOJ regulations out yet.
Q: Ok, fine -- you're not giving away any litigation secrets. I get it. So how much longer before you get to the list of dates?
A: You sweet-talker, you. Because you asked nicely -- well, mainly because you asked -- we've put together a bunch of gun laws and dates and other things that you probably want to know about.
Organized by topic, of course. Because we know you like topical lists.
Hopefully more than Ron Swanson likes vegan bacon.
Q: Is there anything else I should know?
A: Honestly, there's probably a lot more you should know. And, while we worked hard to make this as informative as possible, California has mountains of gun control laws, regulations, rules, etc. We simply couldn't reasonably cover every little nook-and-cranny of California's copious gun laws in one article.
The bottom line is that anyone who lives in, travels through, or visits the Golden State needs to be aware of not only the crazy number of State laws that may apply, but also the laws and rules of the counties, cities, and/or special districts they may find themselves in.
And you should ALWAYS consult YOUR attorney for specific legal advice. You might want to have one on 'speed dial', too, just in case.
Q: I read all of this and I still have questions!
A: If you read through all the Q&As and the topical list below, clicked all the links, and still have questions....send us a note here and we'll do our best to get your question answered. Be sure to check back here for updates.
Q: Who is Firearms Policy Coalition?
A: We're a real grassroots group made up of rockstar individuals across the United States, constitutional and civil rights activists, policy experts, campaigners, and even some lawyers stop by from time to time.
Q: How can I Join FPC and help support gun rights?
A: Thanks - we love our people! You can Join FPC's Grassroots Army right here.
Q: Are you going to keep up this annoying Q&A stuff in your super-special topical list?
A: Probably not.
THE TOPICAL LIST (!!!)
12/31/2016: Last day to take possession, or have possession, of a "bullet button assault weapon" and be eligible for registration. Cal. Penal Code section 30900(b)(1).
6/30/2018: Last day to register lawfully-possessed, eligible firearms as "assault weapons." Cal. Penal Code section 30900(b)(1).
- For more on this, see BulletButtonBan.com.
(a.k.a. "Ghost Guns," a.k.a. "Thirty Magazine Clips")
TBD: DOJ shall issue regulations on firearm serialization and applications for serial numbers.
- Stay up to speed at FPC's DOJ Reg Watch page, here
7/1/2018: Prior to prior to manufacturing or assembling a firearm, a person manufacturing or assembling the firearm must request a serial number from DOJ and follow other steps. See Cal. Penal Code section 29180.
1/1/2019: Any person who, as of July 1, 2018, owns a firearm that does not bear a serial number assigned to it pursuant to either Section 23910 or pursuant to Chapter 44 (commencing with Section 921) of Part 1 of Title 18 of the United States Code and the regulations issued pursuant thereto, must request a serial number from DOJ and follow other steps. See Cal. Penal Code section 29180.
1/1/2017: Cal. DOJ and a new committee "shall convene" regarding local concealed carry (i.e., "CCW") licenses. Cal. Penal Code section 26175.
1/1/2018: AB 7 prohibits the carrying of, and make it a crime to carry, an unloaded firearm other than a handgun while in or upon a public place or public street within a prohibited area located within the unincorporated area of a county.
1/1/2018: School district superintendents, his or her designee, or equivalent school authority, may no longer provide written permission for a person to possess a firearm within a school zone. See AB 424.
FIREARM DEALERS, AMMUNITION VENDORS, & AMMUNITION, GENERALLY
11/9/2016: The ammunition sales "records required by this article shall be maintained on the premises of the vendor for a period of not less than five years from the date of the recorded transfer." (NOTE: This section was first enacted in AB 962 (2009), but appears to be first effective following the approval of Proposition 63 in 2016.)
11/9/2016: "Except as provided in subdivisions (b) and (c) of Section 26805, all firearms that are in the inventory of a licensee shall be kept within the licensed location." Cal. Penal Code section 26885.
11/9/2016: "An ammunition vendor shall not sell or otherwise transfer ownership of, offer for sale or otherwise offer to transfer ownership of, or display for sale or display for transfer of ownership of any ammunition in a manner that allows that ammunition to be accessible to a purchaser or transferee without the assistance of the vendor or an employee of the vendor." Cal. Penal Code section 30350.
11/9/2016: "Within 48 hours of discovery, an ammunition vendor shall report the loss or theft of any of the following items to the appropriate law enforcement agency in the city, county, or city and county where the vendor’s business premises are located..." Cal. Penal Code section 30363.
11/9/2016: Twenty-five million dollars ($25,000,000) "is hereby appropriated....from the General Fund as a loan for the start-up costs of implementing, operating and enforcing the provisions of the ammunition authorization program provided for in Sections 30352 and 30370," and, "For purposes of repaying the loan, the Controller shall, after disbursing moneys necessary to implement, operate and enforce the ammunition authorization program provided for in Sections 30352 and 30370, transfer all proceeds from fees received by the Ammunition Safety and Enforcement Special Fund up to the amount of the loan provided by this section, including interest at the pooled money investment account rate, to the General Fund." Cal. Penal Code section 30371.
1/1/2017: The DOJ "shall recover the reasonable cost of regulatory and enforcement activities related to this article by charging ammunition purchasers and transferees a per transaction fee not to exceed one dollar ($1), provided, however, that the fee may be increased at a rate not to exceed any increases in the California Consumer Price Index as compiled and reported by the Department of Industrial Relations, not to exceed the reasonable regulatory and enforcement costs." Cal. Penal Code section 30370(e).
1/1/2017: "A fund to be known as the 'Ammunition Safety and Enforcement Special Fund' is hereby created within the State Treasury. All fees received pursuant to this section shall be deposited into the Ammunition Safety and Enforcement Special Fund and, notwithstanding Section 13340 of the Government Code, are continuously appropriated for purposes of implementing, operating, and enforcing the ammunition authorization program provided for in this section and Section 30352 and for repaying the start-up loan provided for in Section 30371." Cal. Penal Code section 30370(f).
TBD (but presumably before 7/1/2017): "The ammunition vendor license shall be issued in a form prescribed by the department and shall be valid for a period of one year. The department may adopt regulations to administer the application and enforcement provisions of this article. The license shall allow the licensee to sell ammunition at the location specified in the license or at a gun show or event as set forth in Section 30348." Cal. Penal Code section 30385(b).
7/1/2017: "The Department of Justice is authorized to issue ammunition vendor licenses pursuant to this article. The department shall, commencing July 1, 2017, commence accepting applications for ammunition vendor licenses. If an application is denied, the department shall inform the applicant of the reason for denial in writing." Cal. Penal Code section 30385(a).
TBD (but presumably before 1/1/2018): "The ammunition vendor may charge the purchaser an administrative fee to process the transaction, in an amount to be set by the Department of Justice, in addition to any applicable fees that may be charged pursuant to the provisions of this title." Cal. Penal Code section 30312(a)(1).
1/1/2018: "Commencing January 1, 2018, a valid ammunition vendor license shall be required for any person, firm, corporation, or other business enterprise to sell more than 500 rounds of ammunition in any 30-day period," and "A violation of this section is a misdemeanor." Cal. Penal Code section 30342.
1/1/2018: "Commencing January 1, 2018, the sale of ammunition by any party shall be conducted by or processed through a licensed ammunition vendor." Cal. Penal Code section 30312(a)(1).
1/1/2018: "Commencing January 1, 2018, the sale, delivery, or transfer of ownership of ammunition by any party may only occur in a face-to-face transaction with the seller, deliverer, or transferor, provided, however, that ammunition may be purchased or acquired over the Internet or through other means of remote ordering if a licensed ammunition vendor initially receives the ammunition and processes the transaction in compliance with this section and Article 3 (commencing with Section 30342) of Chapter 1 of Division 10 of Title 4 of this part." Cal. Penal Code section 30312(b).
1/1/2018: "Commencing January 1, 2018, a resident of this state shall not bring or transport into this state any ammunition that he or she purchased or otherwise obtained from outside of this state unless he or she first has that ammunition delivered to a licensed ammunition vendor for delivery to that resident pursuant to the procedures set forth in Section 30312." Cal. Penal Code section 30314(a).
1/1/2018: "Commencing January 1, 2018, a firearms dealer shall require any agent or employee who handles, sells, or delivers firearms to obtain and provide to the dealer a certificate of eligibility from the Department of Justice pursuant to Section 26710. On the application for the certificate, the agent or employee shall provide the name and California firearms dealer number of the firearms dealer with whom the person is employed." Cal. Penal Code section 26915(a).
1/1/2018: "The licensee shall prohibit any agent who the licensee knows or reasonably should know is within a class of persons prohibited from possessing firearms pursuant to Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 29800) or Chapter 3 (commencing with Section 29900) of Division 9 of this title, or Section 8100 or 8103 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, from coming into contact with any firearms that is not secured and from accessing any key, combination, code, or other means to open any of the locking devices in subdivision (g)." Cal. Penal Code section 26915(e).
1/1/2018: AB 1525 requires a change in the required firearm "warning label".
1/1/2018: AB 1525 changes the requirements for DOJ-published "instruction manual" for the Firearm Safety Certificate.
1/1/2018: AB 1525 adds a requirement that the DOJ update Firearm Safety Certificate test material "at least" once every five years, and that DOJ must "update the Internet Web site referenced in subdivision (d) regularly to reflect current laws and regulations."
1/1/2019: AB 1525 changes the required postings at California licensed firearm dealers.
1/1/2019: AB 1525 adds a requirement for Firearm Safety Certificates to include new "warning information" and that test-takers "acknowledge receipt" before being issued a Firearm Safety Certificate.
7/1/2019: An "ammunition vendor shall not sell or otherwise transfer ownership of any ammunition without, at the time of delivery, legibly recording" specified information "on a form to be prescribed by the Department of Justice..." Cal. Penal Code section 30352(a).
TBD: DOJ may promulgate regulations and shall adopt forms.
- Stay up to speed at FPC's DOJ Reg Watch page, here
7/1/2019: DOJ "shall electronically approve the purchase or transfer of ammunition through a vendor, as defined in Section 16151, except as otherwise specified. This approval shall occur at the time of purchase or transfer, prior to the purchaser or transferee taking possession of the ammunition." Cal. Penal Code section 30352(a).
7/1/2019: An "ammunition vendor shall electronically submit to the department the information required by subdivision (a) for all sales and transfers of ownership of ammunition. The department shall retain this information in a database to be known as the Ammunition Purchase Records File..." Cal. Penal Code section 30352(b).
7/1/2019: Only "those persons listed in this subdivision, or those persons or entities listed in subdivision (e), shall be authorized to purchase ammunition. Prior to delivering any ammunition, an ammunition vendor shall require bona fide evidence of identity to verify that the person who is receiving delivery of the ammunition is a person or entity listed in subdivision (e) or...[a] person authorized to purchase ammunition pursuant to Section 30370," or "[a] person who was approved by the department to receive a firearm from the ammunition vendor, pursuant to Section 28220, if that vendor is a licensed firearms dealer, and the ammunition is delivered to the person in the same transaction as the firearm." Cal. Penal Code section 30352(c).
7/1/2019: "To determine if the purchaser or transferee is eligible to purchase or possess ammunition, the department shall cross-reference the ammunition purchaser’s or transferee’s name, date of birth, current address, and driver’s license or other government identification number, as described in Section 28180, with the information maintained in the AFS. If the purchaser’s or transferee’s information does not match an AFS entry, the transaction shall be denied. If the purchaser’s or transferee’s information matches an AFS entry, the department shall determine if the purchaser or transferee falls within a class of persons who are prohibited from owning or possessing ammunition by cross-referencing with the Prohibited Armed Persons File. If the purchaser or transferee is prohibited from owning or possessing a firearm, the transaction shall be denied." Cal. Penal Code section 30370(b).
TBD (presumably before 7/1/2019): The DOJ "shall develop a procedure in which a person who is not prohibited from purchasing or possessing ammunition may be approved for a single ammunition transaction or purchase. The department shall recover the cost of processing and regulatory and enforcement activities related to this section by charging the ammunition transaction or purchase applicant a fee not to exceed the fee charged for the department’s Dealers’ Record of Sale (DROS) process, as described in Section 28225 and not to exceed the department’s reasonable costs." Cal. Penal Code section 30370(c).
7/1/2019: An ammunition "vendor is prohibited from providing a purchaser or transferee ammunition without department approval. If a vendor cannot electronically verify a person’s eligibility to purchase or possess ammunition via an Internet connection, the department shall provide a telephone line to verify eligibility. This option is available to ammunition vendors who can demonstrate legitimate geographical and telecommunications limitations in submitting the information electronically and who are approved by the department to use the telephone line verification." Cal. Penal Code section 30370(d).
MISC., COURTS, & LAW ENFORCEMENT
1/1/2017: "The Department of Justice shall maintain and make available upon request information concerning both....[t]he number of serial numbers issued pursuant to Section 29182" and "[t]he number of arrests for violations of Section 29180." Cal. Penal Code section 29184.
7/1/2017: Mandatory reporting of lost and stolen firearms. NOTE: People who knowingly file a false report may be subject to a misdemeanor, or an infraction and fine, or both.
10/14/17: The "large-capacity" magazine ban in "Section 32310 does not apply to the sale, gift, or loan of a large-capacity magazine to a person enrolled in the course of basic training prescribed by the Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training, or any other course certified by the commission, nor to the possession of, or purchase by, the person, for purposes of participation in the course during his or her period of enrollment. Upon completion of the course the large-capacity magazine shall be removed from the state, sold to a licensed firearms dealer, or surrendered to a law enforcement agency, unless another exemption to Section 32310 applies." Cal. Penal Code section 32455.
1/1/2018: New "Prohibited Persons Relinquishment Form" and court notice regarding firearm prohibitions. ("The court shall also provide the defendant with a Prohibited Persons Relinquishment Form developed by the Department of Justice.") See the "new" Cal. Penal Code section 29810 (effective 1/1/2018). (The current section 29810, which will be repealed on 1/1/18, is here.)
1/1/2018: AB 785 adds "hate crimes" to the list of misdemeanor crimes that cause a 10-year firearms prohibition. AB 785 also repealed the "parallel" section 29805 and left the Proposition 63 version, amending it.
1/1/2018: SB 536 requires that "DOJ shall make information relating to gun violence restraining orders that is maintained in the California Restraining and Protective Order System, or any similar database maintained by DOJ, available to researchers affiliated with the University of California Firearm Violence Research Center, or, at the department’s discretion, to any other nonprofit educational institution or public agency immediately concerned with the study and prevention of violence, for academic and policy research purposes, provided that any material identifying individuals is not transferred, revealed, or used for other than research or statistical activities and reports or publications derived therefrom shall not identify specific individuals."
Last updated 12/19/17
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