PDA

View Full Version : What to do about an unregistered gun.


jskdn
02-20-2005, 7:02 PM
I just found out that California has a handgun registration law. I have a gun and it is not registered. How to I go about it? What will it cost? Will I be in trouble because it wasn't registered?

Also I have never shot it and would like to have someone show me the ropes. Any suggestions?

Thanks

jskdn
02-20-2005, 7:02 PM
I just found out that California has a handgun registration law. I have a gun and it is not registered. How to I go about it? What will it cost? Will I be in trouble because it wasn't registered?

Also I have never shot it and would like to have someone show me the ropes. Any suggestions?

Thanks

Rascal
02-20-2005, 7:21 PM
js, Welcome to the site.
How long have you been in California?

jskdn
02-20-2005, 8:07 PM
Born and raised here.

fun2none
02-20-2005, 11:17 PM
Excerpted from FAQ at CA DOJ website: (http://caag.state.ca.us/firearms/pubfaqs.htm):
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">
26. How do I know if my firearms need to be registered?
There is no firearm registration requirement in California except for assault weapon owners and personal handgun importers. However, you may submit a Firearm Ownership Record to the DOJ for any firearm you own. Having a Firearm Ownership Record on file with the DOJ may help in the return of your firearm if it is lost or stolen. With very few and specific exceptions, all firearm transactions must be conducted through a firearms dealer.
</div></BLOCKQUOTE>

What handgun registration law are you referring to ?

rkt88edmo
02-21-2005, 10:18 AM
JS, if you post your county or the largest metro area near you, you will probably receive better input about someone to show you the ropes.

jskdn
02-21-2005, 6:59 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by fun2none:
Excerpted from FAQ at CA DOJ website: (http://caag.state.ca.us/firearms/pubfaqs.htm):
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">
26. How do I know if my firearms need to be registered?
There is no firearm registration requirement in California except for assault weapon owners and personal handgun importers. However, you may submit a Firearm Ownership Record to the DOJ for any firearm you own. Having a Firearm Ownership Record on file with the DOJ may help in the return of your firearm if it is lost or stolen. With very few and specific exceptions, all firearm transactions must be conducted through a firearms dealer.
</div></BLOCKQUOTE>

What handgun registration law are you referring to ? </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

The reason I thought registration was required was that it was reported in the news. Here is an AP article in the San Jose Mercury News about a study showing blacks were charged more seriously for the crime.
http://www.mercurynews.com/mld/mercurynews/news/breaking_news/10723632.htm

From the article:
“The study examined four years of data on how a law that took effect Jan. 1, 2000, is being applied. The law makes it illegal for anyone to possess a gun if they are not registered with the state Department of Justice as the owner of that firearm.”

But then it had a link to the study that is apparently about concealed weapons. Perhaps it just represents a wish that is probably not uncommon among those who work for the media.

jskdn
02-21-2005, 7:00 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by ROKIT88:
JS, if you post your county or the largest metro area near you, you will probably receive better input about someone to show you the ropes. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I live in Santa Cruz County.

whatever
02-21-2005, 7:53 PM
I think you will find that most of what you read in the papers about guns and gun laws is wrong.

Technical Ted
02-21-2005, 8:09 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by whatever:
I think you will find that most of what you read in the papers about guns and gun laws is wrong. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
Not really. You just need to lean to the left, cover your ears and squint just right for it to make complete sense http://calguns.net/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

I believe JS is correct. There is a "bonus charge" if you are caught carrying a concealed handgun without a permit and it is not registered in your name. I know we touched on this in a thread within the last couple of months.

Librarian
02-21-2005, 11:12 PM
Also, if JS bought the handgun within the last 20 years or so, the DOJ knows about it - it's "registered" during the purchase process, even though the DOJ does not call it that.

Sounds more like a gift or an inheritance, since s/he says it has never been fired.

The law in question is probably
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">12025. (a) A person is guilty of carrying a concealed firearm when he or she does any of the following:
(1) Carries concealed within any vehicle which is under his or her control or direction any pistol, revolver, or other firearm capable of being concealed upon the person.
(2) Carries concealed upon his or her person any pistol, revolver, or other firearm capable of being concealed upon the person.
(3) Causes to be carried concealed within any vehicle in which he or she is an occupant any pistol, revolver, or other firearm capable of being concealed upon the person.
snip ...
(b) Carrying a concealed firearm in violation of this section is punishable, as follows:
snip ...
(6) By imprisonment in the state prison, or by imprisonment in a county jail not to exceed one year, by a fine not to exceed one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by both that fine and imprisonment if both of the following conditions are met:
(A) Both the pistol, revolver, or other firearm capable of being concealed upon the person and the unexpended ammunition capable of being discharged from that firearm are either in the immediate possession of the person or readily accessible to that person, or the pistol, revolver, or other firearm capable of being concealed upon the person is loaded as defined in subdivision (g) of Section 12031.

(B) The person is not listed with the Department of Justice pursuant to paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) of Section 11106, as the registered owner of that pistol, revolver, or other firearm capable of being concealed upon the person. </div></BLOCKQUOTE> 11106 (c) is <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content"> (c) (1) The Attorney General shall permanently keep and properly file and maintain all information reported to the Department of Justice pursuant to Sections 12071, 12072, 12078, 12082, and 12084 or any other law, as to handguns and maintain a registry thereof.
</div></BLOCKQUOTE>

bwiese
02-22-2005, 11:57 AM
Hi JS...

Let's clear the air here and cover the various aspects of "registration" and what's recorded, and what could've been done in the past...

<UL TYPE=SQUARE>
<LI> You appear been a CA resident your whole life, so your guns (incl. handguns) generally don't have to be specially and seperately registered (except assault weapons).

<LI> Anytime you bought a gun from a CA FFL dealer in the last 25+ (approx.) years it's been 'regsitered' already thru the Dealer Record of Sale ("DROS") process. A "DROSed" gun is a registered gun.

<LI> Paperless private party sales/transfers of all guns without any paperwork were legal before and until 01 Jan 1991 (unless othewise illegal - knowingly stolen, knowlingly sold to felon, etc.) These guns can stay in your possession without registration.

<LI> Private-party transfers of all firearms on or after 01 Jan 91 MUST use the services of a Calif. FFL dealer (or sheriff's office) and have the transfer to buyer 'papered': the buyer must show ID, undergo 10-day waiting period and background check, etc. (the "DROS process").

<LI> If you moved into CA on or after Jan 1 1998 with handguns, you're considered a personal handgun importer and have 60 days to register your handguns via a 'voluntary registration' form from DOJ website. If you failed to register within this time window, there is a provision in the law that a subsequent filing of registration papers w/DOJ even years later will NOT incriminate you for failing to file in a timely fashion earlier.

<LI> If you somehow (illegally) acquired a firearm without paperwork on or after 1/1/91, attempting to register it (or having police questions about it) might cause trouble if there were records of the gun having already been registered in someone else's name on/after 01 Jan 1991 or the gun were known to have been manufactured after that date. In either case, possession of it along with prior recordkeeping and/or mfgr. date could be considered prima facie evidence of your illegal acquisition of it.

<LI> If you somehow (illegally) acquired a firearm without paperwork on or after 1/1/91, and know there's no record of any registration, transferrence, etc. after that date, and any records of such activity were substantially before that date (or nonexistent) and the gun was manufactured somewhat before that date, there's not really any sufficient evidence of illegal transfer/acquisition, since you could've acuqired that gun perfectly legit before that cutoff date. Registering this gun will not cause you trouble.

<LI> Here's where the SJ Mercury News article comes into play. They're confusing escalated penalties for illegal CCW of a non-DROSd gun with what they assume to be a requirement for registration.

What this gig really is: illegal carry (i.e., unlicensed) of a concealed weapon has been a 'wobbler' (chargeable as misdemeanor or felony). A fairly recent law says that if you're popped for 1st-offense CCW, it should be charged as felony if the handgun's not in the DROS system; a 1st offense w/DROS gun will be charged as a misdemeanor. So if you ever have to 'pack' and don't have a CCW, use a gun that's been papered to you in CA.

<LI> There are provisions for parent/grandparent/child transfers without waiting period or FFL intervention, though recipient is supposed to fill out reg paperwork available from CA DOJ website.
[/list]


Bill Wiese
San Jose

rkt88edmo
02-22-2005, 12:17 PM
Nice post Bill!

bwiese
02-23-2005, 10:39 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by ROKIT88:
Nice post Bill! </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Gracias!
When someone asks a question like this I like to distill a relatively 'clean' answer so person doesn't have to read between various posts...

Bill Wiese
San Jose

qualityrockola
02-23-2005, 11:40 AM
Ive been wondering lately about C&R transfers for firearms 50 yrs or older. I seem to recall reading in the 60+ pages of CA firearm regs that these transfers could be "paperless" in a private transaction (in state as well as out of state transfers) and are not required to be done by an 01 FFL holder. All that is required is for the transfer to be recorded in the bound book per C&R license requirements.

I could be VERY wrong and all the "unless" or "exempt" provisions in the code drive me crazy and make it hard to discern what they are trying to say. If someone could clear this up it would help me out a lot.

maxicon
02-23-2005, 4:02 PM
Long guns greater than 50 years old need no paperwork at all for transfer between private parties in California, assuming they're otherwise legal (ie, not "assault weapons"). Trade money and goods, and walk away.

No C&R is required in California for this. If you're buying out of state, you need either a C&R or to go through an 01 FFL.

max

kenc9
02-23-2005, 4:16 PM
Every gun show I have been to in Ca. is cash and carry for C&R's...no paper work for private party transferred. Not sure about modern guns at gun shows between private partys.

jskdn
02-23-2005, 11:05 PM
I want to thank all for their help. I did inherit the gun from my uncle. He was a policeman and it was his service revolver. I would assume it is much older that 1991 as he retired well before that.

But I gather that no paperwork is required because I inherited it. Listed among the exemption to having a Handgun Safety Certificate was:
# Law enforcement service weapon passed to surviving family member

Is it a good idea to get one anyway?

Does anyone know of anything I need to do keep from going afoul of the law? Do I need to have a lock on it? There are no kids in my house and the gun is hidden away.

The legislature of California really likes to pass laws don't they? It make it very confusing.

Any suggestion of good places to shoot near Santa Cruz?

trever1t
02-25-2005, 4:14 PM
I wouldn't bother registering it, if it was not necessary. You are responsible for it, if you do not have a lock or safe and it is used in a crime you may have a liability.

There are only 2 places in SC county for you to go, Indoor range at Markley's in Watsonville or the Los Altos Rod and Gun Club on top of HyWy 9 and 35. Los Altos is a geat place to shoot.

Something nobody mentioned is that you must be 21 in CA to own a firearm, i'm not sure if that applies to inherited guns or not.

Pred@tor
02-25-2005, 4:15 PM
Only idiots register their firearms. Registration leads to confinscation...

fastmanusa
02-25-2005, 8:32 PM
A correction on the legal age to own a firearm. It is 18 for rifles ans shotguns and 21 for handguns.

bwiese
02-28-2005, 11:21 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by js:
I did inherit the gun from my uncle. He was a policeman and it was his service revolver. I would assume it is much older that 1991 as he retired well before that.

But I gather that no paperwork is required because I inherited it. Listed among the exemption to having a Handgun Safety Certificate was:
"Law enforcement service weapon passed to surviving family member"

Is it a good idea to get one anyway?

Does anyone know of anything I need to do keep from going afoul of the law? Do I need to have a lock on it? There are no kids in my house and the gun is hidden away. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

You are OK. Enjoy your gun. If you take it somewhere to shoot, carry it unloaded and in a locked case. Given vagueness of law, I would use a hardsided locking case and not just a lock thru the zipper tabs on a gun 'rug'.

The only reason to have an HSC is to buy/accept PPT transfers of handguns. It's prob worth having if you plan to buy more (hand)guns.

The only reason you might wish to register your handgun w/DOJ is to avoid a possible initial felony charge if you were busted fo illegally carrying concealed (without a CCW permit). This charge could happen if you were stopped and your handgun was - even unintentionally - not properly stored & locked in your car or going to/from your car in certain circumstances.

And if you don't have a receipt/proof of purchase for your gun (probably the case here) and if it were lost or stolen, there's a very good chance you could not regain possession of it from your local PD/Sheriff's Dept if recovered - even if you knew the S/N, make/model, detailed description, etc. Lotsa PDs/Sheriff's Depts are real finicky grabbers and like to not return guns to folks unless they really have to (like being sued!). So 'papering' such guns w/DOJ reg at least gives you the presumption of ownership, and puts your gun on same status with those bought at a gun store.

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Any suggestion of good places to shoot near Santa Cruz? </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Well someone mentioned Markley's in Watsonville and Los Altos Rod & Gun Club in Los Gatos/Saratoga Hills (Hwy 9/Hwy 35). But I will just add that if you're already over the hill this way, you can also go to Reed's Indoor Sports gun range (near 101/San Tomas), San Jose Municipal Firing Range (10th Street/Tully area, IIRC) and Sunnyvale Rod & Gun Club on Stevens Canyon Road about 2+ miles from Stevens Creek Blvd. There's also Target Masters in Milpitas which is an indoor range open til midnight!

Bill Wiese
San Jose

Rascal
02-28-2005, 7:51 PM
I'm sorry, but he still has to register that handgun. It doesn't make any difference if he inherited it. The exemption only states that he does not have to have a HSC, because of the uncles’ police service to the community, but he still has to fill out form 4544A and send in his 19 bucks.
There is no register exemption for handguns in this state.