Gun laws are constantly changing in Florida and nationwide as state and federal entities wage a war on gun violence. Keeping up with ever-changing laws and interpretations of regulations is difficult for average citizens, so it is always best to consult a criminal defense lawyer if you need advice or guidance.
Gun laws can be enacted at both the state and federal levels. The primary differences between these two categories lie in which entity makes the law, who investigates and prosecutes violations, and the penalties they can impose if you are found guilty of a gun law violation.
Gun laws are many and varied and cover many aspects of possession, ownership, sales, transfer, and more.
Federal vs. State Gun Laws
Federal laws apply across the United States and are enforced by federal agencies, while Florida gun laws apply specifically within the state and are enforced by local law enforcement agencies. Some differences include the types of firearms that are regulated, the requirements for background checks, and the rules for carrying guns.
For instance, Florida does not require a permit to purchase a gun but has a three-day waiting period for any firearm.
The state also issues licenses for individuals to carry concealed handguns, which refers to carrying a weapon in public in a concealed manner, either on your person or in proximity.
Concealment can be achieved through various means, including clothing and accessories like specially designed holsters and bags. This practice has become a significant concern in Florida due to the state's dense population and high tourist traffic.
Moreover, Florida's robust "Stand Your Ground" law allows individuals who feel threatened to use deadly force in self-defense.
These combined factors heighten the potential for incidents involving concealed weapons, making it a considerable public safety concern. This underlines the importance of adhering to Florida's gun laws, including the prohibition of concealed carry for specific individuals.
In Florida, the following individuals are not allowed to carry a concealed weapon:
- Those under the age of 21
- Convicted felons who have not had their civil rights restored
- Individuals convicted of certain misdemeanor crimes of violence within the last three years
- Individuals with restraining orders for domestic violence
- Those adjudicated as mentally incapacitated or who have been committed to a mental institution
- Noncitizens or undocumented migrants
- Those ordered to undergo drug abuse treatment by a court
- Those impaired by chronic drug or alcohol addiction
Violations of Florida concealed carry and other gun laws can lead to severe legal consequences for both misdemeanor and felony charges.
Local police can arrest those whom they believe have violated state gun laws. If they believe a federal gun law has been broken, they can turn the matter over to the ATF (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives) or a federal prosecutor in the U.S. Attorney’s office.
The ATF and federal prosecutors have the full backing and funding of the U.S. government to investigate and prosecute federal gun crimes thoroughly. Penalties for these crimes may carry more severe consequences than those at the state level.
Accused of a State or Federal Weapons Violation? Call Hubbs Law Firm.
At Hubbs Law Firm, we have a wealth of experience dealing with gun law cases. Our team of former prosecutors have extensive trial experience and a deep understanding of both federal and Florida gun laws.
Our combination of knowledge and experience means we are well-equipped to effectively represent and defend your rights if you have been arrested for violating any gun law in Miami.
Contact Hubbs Law Firm at (305) 570-4802 for a free initial consultation with a criminal defense lawyer at our Miami offices.