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Here is a question for Fulltimers who have guns in their RVs.

 

What do you do if you have to transit a anti-gun state like New Jersey or Maryland. Is the Motorhome (in our case) considered our "home" and thus exempt from the laws that say you cannot carry a gun in your vehicle?

 

What am I supposed to do with my deer rifle, shotgun, & 9MM Pistol?

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There may be some really good individual stories that come up on this thread and but the best source for your safety, protection and peace of mind would be the individual state governments website for example New Jersey: http://www.njsp.org/firearms/transport-firearm.shtml

 

Firearms Information
Transporting a Firearm Into / Through the State of New Jersey
NJSP Firearms Investigation Unit

P.O. Box 7068
West Trenton, New Jersey 08628-0068
609-882-2000 Extension 2290 (Phone)
609-406-9826 Fax

All firearms transported into the State of New Jersey:
  • Shall be carried unloaded and contained in a closed and fastened case, gunbox, securely tied package, or locked in the trunk of the automobile in which it is being transported, and in the course of travel, shall include only such deviations as are reasonably necessary under the circumstances.
  • The firearm should not be directly accessible from the passenger compartment of the vehicle. If the vehicle does not have a compartment separate from the passenger compartment, the firearm and ammunition must be in a locked container other than the vehicle's glove compartment or console.

For additional exemptions refer to Chapter 39, namely 2C:39-6g.

 

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The USA Carry app on my phone is very helpful, as is www.handgunlaws.us along with a book published annually titled "Travelers Guide to the Firearm Laws of the Fifty States." BUT, some anit-gun states are very unpredictable, and NJ is one of the worst. I try very hard to avoid travel in NJ and NY plus some others in the NE. Going around them if possible would be my choice. Otherwise, unloaded, locked up, and well away from the driver area would be very wise. The other important point is that you stop for nothing but fuel in that state ...get in and out as expeditiously as possible without bringing any attention to yourself.

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For starters I have nothing on my vehicles to identify me as a person who appreciates firearms. When in traversing the more liberal leaning states, as far as anyone is concerned, I have now firearms. There are no reasons to search my 5th wheel while in those states as I don't travel in my 5th wheel. It is towed behind my. If I am in my 5th wheel I am parked and hooked up. It is my home at that time. A search warrant is required. A traffic infraction while moving is not an indication to search a separate vehicle I am not occupying while on the road. Basically I don't worry about it. I don't carry in those states so as far as anyone is concerned I have no firearms. There are other ways to protect yourself that can not be removed from your possession for those states.

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The USA Carry app on my phone is very helpful, as is www.handgunlaws.us along with a book published annually titled "Travelers Guide to the Firearm Laws of the Fifty States." BUT, some anit-gun states are very unpredictable, and NJ is one of the worst. I try very hard to avoid travel in NJ and NY plus some others in the NE. Going around them if possible would be my choice. Otherwise, unloaded, locked up, and well away from the driver area would be very wise. The other important point is that you stop for nothing but fuel in that state ...get in and out as expeditiously as possible without bringing any attention to yourself.

 

 

For starters I have nothing on my vehicles to identify me as a person who appreciates firearms. When in traversing the more liberal leaning states, as far as anyone is concerned, I have now firearms. There are no reasons to search my 5th wheel while in those states as I don't travel in my 5th wheel. It is towed behind my. If I am in my 5th wheel I am parked and hooked up. It is my home at that time. A search warrant is required. A traffic infraction while moving is not an indication to search a separate vehicle I am not occupying while on the road. Basically I don't worry about it. I don't carry in those states so as far as anyone is concerned I have no firearms. There are other ways to protect yourself that can not be removed from your possession for those states.

Ron,

 

Unfortunately we are in a Motorhome and it would be a PITA to put 'em in the TOAD :)

 

Ron & AFChap,

 

Here is something I found out today talking to a guy at work about this issue. Did you know that your carry permit is tied to your driver's license and license plate? (!!) The story I was told is a guy with an AL Carry License was pulled over in NJ and the police searched his vehicle on probable cause that he had a handgun on him (passed on his issued carry permit).

 

Fortunately for the guy he did not have his handgun on this particular trip.

 

Now, having recounted this story I have no clue weather this is a urban legend or what! (Anyone know if your CCW permit is tied to your Driver's license? License Plate?

 

Separate weapons and ammunition and lock in separate places. Nothing else is required.

 

Thanks Mark - that sounds like the way to go!

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Anyone know if your CCW permit is tied to your Driver's license? License Plate?

Don't know about other states, but it definately is the case in TX. If they run your drivers license they will know you also have a handgun license. (Which now allows you both concealed or open carry in TX).
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Recently had to take a CCW class to get a new license due to change in residence.(new state would not accept my old CCW license) Asked the instructor the question if it was true a CCW was tied to your driver's license. he said yes it is entered into the national data base that a LEO uses to run your license plate number against. It also includes things like warrants. Apparently a LEO can check all of that quickly before he even exits his cruiser. Don't know if this is true but it is what the instructor told the class. I assume it is true and expect to be asked if stopped. Interestingly the instructor recommended telling a LEO up front you have a CCW license and whether or not you have a weapon on board. His argument was that the LEO knows you are more likely law abiding by virtue of having a CCW license and you are honest by declaring so up front. Not sure I agree with this and have never discussed it with any LEOs. Haven't been stopped so have no track record to report. Best Wishes, Jay

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LEO hasn't seen your DL before leaving his cruiser. If I have a weapon, I show the DL and CHL. Well, it used to be CHL. But, open carry is now legal in Texas. I don't remember what it's called now.

 

Newt

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I travel with a current copy of "Travelers Guide to the Firearm Laws of the Fifty States" and study it frequently. Their website sells them for $15 or you can get one from Amazon Marketplace for $10.45 if you prefer.

 

One disadvantage of a concealed carry license is that connection to the driver's license, if your state is one which does so. In such event, should you be stopped by an LEO anywhere and they run your driver's license they will know that you have a permit and may want to look for a firearm.

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And I can tell you that if pulled over in the wrong towns in NJ, LEOs will create cause to search. Most towns aren't like that, but there is at least one that I counseled my two sons not to drive in after seeing the things they pulled when I served on grand jury duty.

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North Carolina definitely has your concealed carry info on your driver's license record. In fact, your concealed carry permit number is your DL number. I have been stopped several times at "safe driver" stops and I have always told the LEO that "I am armed and have a permit". it has never been a problem and most times the LEO said words to the effect good for you.

Catfish

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This is not the place for the answer check the Federal, State laws on your travel path know them and obey them and there will be no problems. We will be going across Illinois this summer. We will fuel in Indiana and cross Ill without a stop any firearms will be properly secured in the 5th wheel. BTW if you get stopped how do you know if the LEO is a liberal or Conservative are they identified as such.

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In Texas it is now called a License To Carry Handgun just go mine renewed.

I was born and raised in NJ and they are for sure anti-guns. Although I have not lived there

in 45 years I do go there. When I last passed thru I was stopped by a State Trooper and when I gave him my

Texas Driver's License he took it back to his auto and when he came back he knew that I had, at that time, a

concealed handgun license. He asked if I had a handgun and I told him that I did and that it was back in my fiver.

He never said any more about it and he gave me back my driver's license and I was on my way. I have Texas plates on both my truck and

my fiver.

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It's a complex issue. Handgunlaw.us, as mentioned above, is one of the best resources.

 

Yes, there is a national "firearm travel" law that gives you the right to transport a weapon through a state where it would not otherwise be lawful to possess, while TRAVELING. That means in motion. It probably also covers stopping for fuel. It does NOT cover stopping overnight, nor visting a tourist attraction, etc. Passing through only.

 

Beyond that, you are subject to the local laws. The great majority of places allow the great majority of firearms if unloaded in a locked case or compartment. HOWEVER, if the state has bans on certain types of weapons, like so called "assault weapon" bans, or bans on certain handguns, those laws do apply to you when you are not covered by the "firearm travel" law.

 

Bottom line, you need to carefully review handgunlaw.us for every state you will travel through. Details are important. And, there are a few states and/or municipalities, where firearm repression can be lawless, as noted above. New Jersey is reputed to be the worst, and certain other NE states are not far behind. I would not take any gun into New Jersey, no matter what the law says. The law isn't on your side until you hire a lawyer, and that gets expensive.

 

In most of the country other than the Northeast, Chicago, and the Left Coast, you're pretty much good to go, but even then you need to be aware of what details change when you cross state lines. I make it a practice to pull over and review before crossing each state line.

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...Here is a question for Fulltimers who have guns in their RVs...What do you do if you have to transit a anti-gun state like New Jersey...

Having at one time actually lived in New Jersey for a period of over twenty years, I'll address this question. I and many of my friends and neighbors transported firearms including handguns in the manor described in post number two without ever being stopped and searched by law enforcement. We hunted and shot at local ranges and gun clubs (some used by law enforcement for training) far more often and over a longer period of time than any transient RVer ever will. No one that I know ever had their firearms confiscated. However, a neighbor did after being convicted of multiple deer and turkey poaching violations and being accused of domestic violence by his spouse. One of the most notorious cases in New Jersey involved a Colorado man who was actually convicted of firearms violations and jailed because an activist judge would not allow the jury to be informed of the federal transportation exclusion. What is often not mentioned about this case is that it was not the result of a traffic stop. It started with an investigation of a domestic dispute and a family member informed the investigating officers that there were guns in the trunk of the car.

 

If you abide by the traffic laws, speed limits, length laws, double towing restrictions, windshield obstructions, etc. (which it seems many motorists and Rvers do not); you will not be stopped other than for DUI or special security check points. Even in New Jersey, probable cause that a violation has occurred is required to stop and search a vehicle.

 

...Is the Motorhome (in our case) considered our "home" and thus exempt from the laws that say you cannot carry a gun in your vehicle?...

Here is a U.S. Supreme Court Case that discusses when an RV is a motor vehicle versus a home.

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First you have to consider the difference between handgun laws and long gun laws. Concealed carry is only for hand guns. Some states tie the information on your drivers license some do not. Some states require you to disclose to an LEO that you have a license to carry, some do not. Long guns always should be unloaded while in a vehicle, unless the vehicle is stopped and you are sleeping in it,(hopefully in a campground) which then becomes an extension of your home. Weapons in a tow vehicle or trailer are not in your vehicle. Motorhomes present a special situation. As long as the weapons are not in the driving compartment you should be ok (again long guns should be unloaded). When the motorhome is stopped and you are sleeping in it, it is an extension of your home. You may have a weapon in your home.

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Thanks for the link. As an attorney originally from San Diego it was very interesting. However this is an argument as to the 4th amendment search not if you can have a weapon in your home. This case can be distinguished in court as there was illegal activity within the motor home and a warrant to search could have been obtained. You have the right to have a weapon in your home and this is not illegal activity. A motorhome parked is your home if you are sleeping in it. No need for hook up you can be boo docking. I had a case with hunters who were sleeping in their vehicle waiting for daylight and had there weapons with them. Their arrest was thrown out. The issue is you must be using thevehiclefor sleeping. Then it is home.

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TXTiger,

The OP's question was

...Is the Motorhome (in our case) considered our "home" and thus exempt from the laws that say you cannot carry a gun in your vehicle?...

I believe the Supreme Court decision we are discussing addresses that even though the main focus is on fourth amendment search and seizure/warrant requirements. There are a number of other cases that I don't want to take the time to look up at the moment. I am not sure that the OP is using the term "carry" in its proper legal meaning or whether he really means transport. I am sure you are aware that there is a very significant difference. More than likely an RVer is going to be moving the RV and thus using it as a motor vehicle at which time they will have to comply with the appropriate regulations for carrying or transporting the firearm in a motor vehicle. Possessing a firearm in the home and actually using one in self-defense are also two very different issues with differences in the laws such as castle doctrine and stand your ground in the various states.

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You are very correct. Transport and possess are totally different. However transporting a weapon in a motorhome is different from a car. Each state has different laws, but most will allow a weapon in the motorhome as long as it is not in the driving compartment (within reach of the driver) while traveling down the road.

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You are very correct. Transport and possess are totally different. However transporting a weapon in a motorhome is different from a car. Each state has different laws, but most will allow a weapon in the motorhome as long as it is not in the driving compartment (within reach of the driver) while traveling down the road.

I think this is addressed in 18 USC 926A : "Provided, That in the case of a vehicle without a compartment separate from the driver’s compartment the firearm or ammunition shall be contained in a locked container other than the glove compartment or console."

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