New Firearms Laws in 2012 for California

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There were over 875 laws that were signed into law by Governor Brown in 2012.  Several of them affect firearms.  The summaries of these laws below are not a legal opinion of any type and are only a synopsis of some of the items listed in the text of the laws.

I recommend consulting a lawyer experienced in firearms legislation in California.

AB 1527

Unloaded open carry exemptions.

Unloaded open carry illegal for all firearms that are not a handgun. New definition of “firearms” in certain circumstances:

  • “includes a rocket, rocket propelled projectile launcher, or similar device containing an explosive or incendiary material, whether or not the device is designed for emergency or distress signaling purposes.”
  • “includes the unfinished frame or receiver of a weapon that can be readily converted to the functional condition of a finished frame or
  • receiver.”
  • “a device, designed to be used as a weapon, from which is expelled through a barrel, a projectile by the force of an explosion or other form of combustion.”
  • “includes the frame or receiver of the weapon.”

Definition of “deadly weapon”:

  • “include an instrument or weapon of the kind commonly known as a blackjack, slungshot, billy, sandclub, sandbag, metal knuckles, a dirk, dagger, pistol, revolver, or any other firearm, a knife having a blade longer than five inches, a razor with an unguarded blade, and a metal pipe or bar used or intended to be used as a club.”

AB 1559

The Department of Justice may now issue a permit for the importation of “short-barreled rifles or short-barreled shotguns.”

Starting in 2014, additional reduced fees will be charged on multiple firearms transferred at the same time.

SB 1367

If you are a police officer or an honorably retired police officer you may now “may carry a firearm capable of being concealed on his or her person while engaged in the taking of deer with bow and arrow.”  You cannot use that firearm to hunt.  Before, you could not carry and firearm when hunting deer with a bow and arrow.

SB 1288

Reduced hunting license fees for disabled veterans and “recovering service” members.

SB 1221

You cannot use dogs to hunt bears or bobcats.

SB 1315

Allows Los Angeles County or any city in Los Angeles County to preempt state laws concerning imitation firearms, bb guns and air rifles.  They can now make laws that are more strict than the states.

All California Laws Enacted in 2012

A list of all California laws adopted in 2012 is available on a new web site.

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