Keeping Your New York City Gun Permit

Keeping Your NYC License

Keeping your New York City Firearm Permits requires diligence. You are required to know all the things that could get your permit revoked. You are also required to not say anything or do anything that could allow NYPD to question your fitness to possess firearms.

Reading the NYC Administrative Codes or the NYC License Rules will be an eye opening experience.

License – Residence or Business (green)

This is a restricted handgun license, issued for a specific business or residence location. The handgun shall be safeguarded at the specific address indicated on the license. This license permits the transporting of an unloaded handgun directly to and from an authorized small arms range/shooting club, secured unloaded in a locked container. Ammunition shall be carried separately.This permit allows you to possess a handgun in your home. You may keep it loaded and out while you are in your premises, but you must keep it in a locked box, with a trigger lock, with all ammunition stored separately when you are not at home, or while in transit. Recent changes to Beach v. Kelly seem to imply you can now transport your premise permit firearms out of state under FOPA. See the changes to Beach v. Kelly HERE. You must own at least one handgun to maintain the license (you cannot get a premise license just to rent a gun at a range, or keep it anywhere other than your home). On a business permit, the gun must be kept at the business at all times (except when taking it to the range). 

Full or Limited Carry License (yellow or red):

These allow either full carry (red) or limited carry (yellow). For limited carry, the limitations including the days/hours you are allowed to carry are printed on the license. These types of permits are only issued to those who show cause (or retired law enforcement). In most instances, unless you’re a celebrity (DeNiro and Howard Stern come to mind), an armed guard or employed protection agent, or transport large sums of cash, you won’t get a carry license. For those who think carrying cash justifies carrying concealed, know that you must show bank records proving that you carry at least $7,000.00 a week to even be considered for a business carry in NYC.

Rifle/Shotgun (brown):

Allows you to possess a rifle or shotgun. Unlike the premise license, you do not need to own a gun after getting this license. Rifle/shotgun permits are issued by a different agency in a different location from handguns. It is a separate application process, and having one type of license has no bearing on the other. Yes, you will need to be fingerprinted again, even if you have a handgun license.

More Than 4 Handguns NYC allows for up to 4 handguns on a premises license. Upon purchasing the 5th gun, you must prove you have a safe, and sign a waiver agreeing to spot inspections of your firearms in your home by the NYPD. There is no absolute limit on the number of guns you can own (at least none is stated anywhere I can find).

Ammunition You may not possess more than a total of 200 rounds of ammunition in your premises. Not 200 rounds of a certain caliber, not 200 rounds for each gun. Your TOTAL round count for ALL ammunition in your premises may not exceed 200 rounds. This is true for those with carry permits as well as premise permits. This is a NY Fire Department regulation.

Magazine Capacity Handguns cannot have a magazine capacity greater than 10 rounds, rifles and shotguns no greater than 5 rounds. Pre-ban Rifle Mags are illegal in NYC, no exceptions. Pre-ban pistol magazines over 17 rounds are illegal.

Travel NYC does not recognize licenses from ANY other jurisdiction (NYS or otherwise), period. DO NOT enter NYC without a NYC license, this includes airports, even if you are in accordance with federal (FOPA) guidelines for “safe passage” a firearm.

For those with NYC HANDGUN premises permits, you can only leave the 5 boroughs by obtaining a Hunting Authorization card. This card allows you to travel to “authorized” hunting grounds in NY State. Request the authorization card when you pick up your license.

If you need to get the Hunting Authorization card and you already have a NYC permit you will need to check the NYS Website and find a free class near you after completing the online portion. Only then, can you order your permit online and bring the hunting license to 1PP and get the authorization card.

Recent court decisions (Beach v Kelly) imply premises license holders can not go to another state via FOPA “safe passage” guidelines. You must obtain explicit permission from the NYPD to transport a firearm on a NYC premises license out of state. The ruling states FOPA (Firearm Owners Protection Act, “safe passage”) is not applicable. I expect this law to be overturned in the near future.

For those with a New York City Shotgun/Rifle permit, you can bring your long arms to other states and use the airports. Please check with the Rifle/shotgun division prior to making any out of state trips.

Duty to Retreat/Castle Doctrine NY State requires you to attempt retreat, whenever possible, before using deadly force. The court rulings on your duty to retreat are complex, in defining when, where and how one must retreat. I suggest further familiarization with them. NY State does not have a Castle Doctrine.

License Revocation Some words of warning… bear in mind that a gun license in NYC is much like a lease. Technically, you do not own your guns. The NYPD does. If, for any reason, the NYPD finds reason to revoke your license (or you let it lapse), they can (and will) take possession of all of your firearms, regardless of the fact that you rightfully paid for them. Getting them back is much more difficult than making sure you do the right thing beforehand. Be smart. Stay abreast of the laws, and follow the regulations.

NONE OF THIS SHOULD BE CONSIDERED LEGAL ADVICE. It is your responsibility to make yourself aware of NY gun laws. Handgun owners should read the booklet that NYPD gave you at the time of your Pistol Permit issuance.

If you get in trouble you should get legal representation IMMEDIATELY.

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