Borrowing guns?

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Hi Folks,
I'm newly licensed, and some relatives (both in MA and NH) have offered to loan me a few guns to take to the range to both practice with and evaluate as possible purchases. Is it legal for me to possess, transport, and carry (LTC A, no restrictions) firearms that are owned and registered to others?
Mark
 
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I think the summary here is:

If the firearms and magazines are legal to possess in MA, it is perfectly legal to borrow them.
 
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Is it legal for me to possess, transport, and carry (LTC A, no restrictions) firearms that are owned and registered to others?

It is likely not legal for you to carry anything borrowed from a NH resident for self defense purposes. Interstate firearms loans can only be for temporary use for lawful sporting purposes.
 

RKG

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Huh?

Presuming (as the OP stipulates) that no transfer is involved, what law governs the use by a borrower of a firearm borrowed from a resident of another state?
 
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Presuming (as the OP stipulates) that no transfer is involved, what law governs the use by a borrower of a firearm borrowed from a resident of another state?

18 USC 44 § 922(a)(5). It is illegal "to transfer, sell, trade, give, transport, or deliver any firearm to any person [...] who the transferor knows or has reasonable cause to believe does not reside in [...] the State in which the transferor resides" but it does not apply to "the loan or rental of a firearm to any person for temporary use for lawful sporting purposes;"

Clearly by the text of this and other sections, according to federal law a loan is considered a transfer.
 

RKG

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1) I guess one should learn something every day. I am not conscious of ever having been aware of the caveat in section 922(a)(5) or the interpretation that has been put on it. Tip of the hat to jdubois.

2) This leaves the question of whether the safe harbor caveat denotes that a temporary loan for something dehors "lawful sporting purpose" is necessarily one of the things proscribed by the main portion of the section. I must say I have my doubts, though I concede that a literal reading could be interpreted that way.

3) Let's say I go up to New Hampshire for the weekend with some friends. I bring my pistol (for which I have a NH license). We start out for dinner and I realize I've forgotten my pistol back in Jim's house. Instead of going back for it, Jim hands me his backup and says I can carry it for the evening. A violation?

I'm inclined to think not, for I think the best way to construe "transfer, sell, trade, give, transport, or deliver" is that they all refer to a more or less permanent shift of dominion over the firearm. A temporary transfer that is not a "transfer, sell, trade, give, transport, or deliver" would thus not be proscribed, even though it is also not (perhaps) a "loan or rental of a firearm to any person for temporary use for lawful sporting purposes."

Put a different way, I'm not sure the two sets ("transfer, sell, trade, give, transport, or deliver" and "loan or rental of a firearm to any person for temporary use for lawful sporting purposes") are intended to represent 100% of the possibilities. Unless they do, there is room for a third set of circumstances that is neither the safe harbor nor the prohibition.
 

drgrant

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It is likely not legal for you to carry anything borrowed from a NH resident for self defense purposes. Interstate firearms loans can only be for temporary use for lawful sporting purposes.

While this is true according to fed law, I doubt it has ever been used to actually convict anyone, or even charge anyone, for that matter. (If there's case law on this, It'd be interesting to see it... but IMHO this law is even a couple of steps dumber than GFSZ is. )

Even a jury that is dumb as a sack of rusty hammers is not going to convict someone on it, and it's likely the local AUSA/USA's office knows this, too.

There's "doctrine of competing harms" and a whole bunch of other stuff that make this a pretty nonviable avenue for federal prosecution.

I realize "the law is the law" but that little chunk of federal law is the dumbest thing going. This is even before getting into the fact that it might be subject to an interstate commerce test, which it would fail miserably like the way GFSZ did with US v Lopez... actually it would be even worse, considering a loan doesn't even involve a purchase or sale of a firearm, and isn't even an act of commerce.

Oh, and here's a fun one... is there an exemption in this law for LEOs? If not, then this means any LEO that works in State "X" but is a resident of State "Y" is breaking federal law because he's using a borrowed out of state firearm (eg, like a departmentally owned duty sidearm) for something other than "sporting purposes" [laugh]


-Mike
 
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Put a different way, I'm not sure the two sets ("transfer, sell, trade, give, transport, or deliver" and "loan or rental of a firearm to any person for temporary use for lawful sporting purposes") are intended to represent 100% of the possibilities. Unless they do, there is room for a third set of circumstances that is neither the safe harbor nor the prohibition.

Hmm, I don't know if that passes the sniff test with me. "I let him borrow my gun but it wasn't a loan." Sounds a bit Clintonesque to me- "It depends on what the meaning of the word 'is' is." [thinking]

While this is true according to fed law, I doubt it has ever been used to actually convict anyone, or even charge anyone, for that matter.

I'm more willing to buy that.
 

AHM

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While this is true according to fed law, I doubt it has ever been used to actually convict anyone, or even charge anyone, for that matter. (If there's case law on this, It'd be interesting to see it... but IMHO this law is even a couple of steps dumber than GFSZ is. ) ...

((ATF FAQ)): To whom may an unlicensed person transfer firearms under the GCA?

While the ostensible purpose is to explain the law to proles,
I bet an ATF agent who has a hard on to arrest someone
will use it as a sanity check before they saddle up.


I can believe that a non-FPP (LTCed?) Mass. resident wandering NH
with a handgun borrowed from someone in NH
won't set the machine in motion if it's noticed during a traffic stop.

However, if a Mass resident on vacation
actually uses a borrowed NH handgun in self-defense in NH,
that's going to have consequences.

If they have to defend against assault/murder charges,
the prosecution will at least troll the jury that the possession was a Federal crime
during the trial, even if they don't try to convince ATF to start a Federal case.

(Ayoob acts like the prosecutor will go FR about a gun being extra-killy
if the lab so much as detects a drop of Rem Oil on the sear,
let alone has "Smile and wait for flash" engraved in the muzzle crown.
How could a prosecutor resist piling on about an illegal loan?)

And the NH guy that loaned the gun is going to get in trouble in ways
he probably wouldn't if he had loaned it to a NH resident.

So loaning a NH Glock to a buddy vacationing from Mass
may be a really stupid thing to do.
 
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