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Restricted non-Res MA LTC-A

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After reading the threads here I thought I was familiar enough with the process of getting an LTC-A (unrestricted). For 6 years, I've jumped through the hoops, sent scads of money, and been issued an unrestricted LTC-A non-res each year. Last year, I successfully navigated the system, doing the drive to Chelsea, did the admin interview, and again was issued an unrestricted LTC-A. This year - bam - restricted LTC.

Now before anyone says "something changed," nothing changed in my life, personal history, circumstances, etc....nothing except the admin interview, that is. I articulated very specific reasons for fear, same as last year, discussed where I visit the state, etc, etc. The interviewer made a point of showing me paperwork about the process "being tightened up" for non-res, but noted that I had been issued an unrestricted non-res LTC-A for years, and he anticipated the same going forward. He also pointed out that I had articulated "very specific and good reasons" for my request.

Roll forward to almost 7 weeks after the interview, and I just received a "Target and Hunting/No other carry" restricted LTC-A. I know that the interview papers I was shown (but not allowed to copy or take) mentioned an appeal process for an issuance with restriction, along with seeing that there was only a 30 day window to appeal. I am seeking anyone who can provide the info I need to initiate that appeal. My calls to the telephone number in Chelsea result in no response, and there seems no way to reach a human being.

I am also seeking referrals/personal recommendations for legal counsel, should I determine it necessary. I really do see this new scheme of forcing non-residents to go to Chelsea as a way to report "Oh, look - fewer and fewer non-residents are applying. Lets just do away with it." or "Look, these non-residents are only applying for target and hunting, there is no need to worry about people asking to carry any more."

Of course the powers that be count on people sucking it up, or giving up in frustration, but I don't plan on just rolling over. If anyone has made such an appeal within the last 3 or 4 months I would appreciate hearing about your experience, and any tips you can offer on what worked.
 
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drgrant

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So what did they tell you when they interviewed you? Did they state it would be unrestricted? I've had people tell me that the interviewer basically lied to them and then when they got the license in the mail it was basically a frosted turd. (H+T restricted. )

You might want to contact Comm2A about this.

-Mike
 

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One of my friends whom owns a gun-shop in RI recently applied for his annual MA non-res LTC, and was informed that unless you have a good reason to carry, non-res LTC's may start coming out restricted.
 

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This whole idea of restricted non-resident LTCs is the idea of either the Governor or one of his meat-puppets at FRB. They didn't used to exist for the simple reason that a non-resident doesn't need an LTC in order to possess a firearm while hunting legally or taking part in any kind of competition. They're doing for the simple reason that raising the fees to an unconscionable $100 per year, requiring a special trip to Chelsea in order to ask nicely for the chance of being allowed to carry, and then deliberately waiting ridiculous amounts of time before issuing the license, still hasn't stopped everybody from applying.

Ken
 
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The whole idea of restrictions on permits is ridiculous, but unfortunately restrictions have legality to them in MA. The AG in RI also applies restrictions, but they have no legality to them so I am not sure why they bother. Even RI Superior Court Judge said he was perplexed at the limitation (Target Range only) since the RI Firearms Act specifically says you don't need a permit to go to the range...
You might have to seek a 2A lawyer on this one, but once you have been licensed you have a vested property right that they cannot just take away from you (you have lost that right by getting a restricted permit) without due process. I would not bother calling since there won't be a history that you have tried contacting them. You should write them (email or certified letter) and tell them that you would like to appeal their decision and that you would like to know what the appeals process is. Also ask for all information that was used to make that decision. If they cannot provide any logical reason to why they would place a restriction on the permit (other than being a non-resident), then this should be valuable information to a lawyer. It's important that you get their response in writing.
 
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I have had a MA NR unrestricted for 2 years, and this year, the guy told me they were getting stricter, and because I only applied for self defense, and didnt have a legitimate reason to fear injury or death, that I would be restricted, and asked which restriction I wanted. I told him any restriction would be useless, as I had no intention of target shooting or hunting in MA. He asked why I would bother applying for unrestricted, and I told him that I already have had it unrestricted, but he replied that it didnt matter.

Just got my third year license in the mail. Restricted to Target and Hunting. First and last time I waste my money. No more for me. I just threw the license in the trash.
 
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Just got my third year license in the mail. Restricted to Target and Hunting. First and last time I waste my money. ...
And that is precisely the intent. You're one less out-of-stater that the FRB has to worry about.

A restricted NR LTC is a waste of time since you really don't need an NR LTC for anything other than carry. There seems to be a much larger number of NR LTCs being issued with restrictions and I strongly suspect that the state wants to cut down on the number they issue.
 

drgrant

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Just got my third year license in the mail. Restricted to Target and Hunting. First and last time I waste my money. No more for me. I just threw the license in the trash.

This is completely stupid because even with the restriction the license is still a stay out of jail card in MA. With the license the worst they can do to you for violating the restriction is revoke the license and whack you with a fine (which rarely happens). It still prevents criminal penalties for illegal possession and carry. In other words, it's still a lot better than nothing.

There's a big difference between a fine and getting the license taken away and getting arrested for a felony.

I agree with you however on the "not worth wasting my money" part. Until these thugs get punched in the face the license is of lesser value.

-Mike
 
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drgrant

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And that is precisely the intent. You're one less out-of-stater that the FRB has to worry about.

A restricted NR LTC is a waste of time since you really don't need an NR LTC for anything other than carry.

This isn't entirely true. Even shooting recreationally in MA without a permit doesn't work unless you're covered by one of the very narrow, nearly worthless exemptions. For example a friend of mine in NH can't just bring his guns down here and go to the range with me anytime he wants without a state sanctioned "excuse" like a competition.

There seems to be a much larger number of NR LTCs being issued with restrictions and I strongly suspect that the state wants to cut down on the number they issue.

PM incoming on this one... my suspicion is a little much for public consumption.

-Mike
 
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This is completely stupid because even with the restriction the license is still a stay out of jail card in MA. With the license the worst they can do to you for violating the restriction is revoke the license and whack you with a fine (which rarely happens). It still prevents criminal penalties for illegal possession and carry. In other words, it's still a lot better than nothing.

There's a big difference between a fine and getting the license taken away and getting arrested for a felony.

I agree with you however on the "not worth wasting my money" part. Until these thugs get punched in the face the license is of lesser value.

-Mike
Absolutely true, however, carrying on an expired license is a civil offense with a fine of $500 to $5000, whereas carry outside a restriction is a fine of $1000 to $10,000. The "expired license" exemption from the criminal penalties of Ch 269 does not apply if the LTC has been revoked, or an application for a renewal denied. There is also an exception to the exception, so that a license revoked for failure to provide notice of change of address does not terminate the protection of this "expired license" provision of MGL.

Curiously enough, someone who picks up a MA disqualifier and holds an expired license retains the protections of this section of law, but loses said protections if that individual applies to get a current LTC and is denied. This is a classic example of unintended consequences where what the legislature intended to accomplish, vs what was actually implemented, are strikingly different.

If "inoculation from felony conviction" is the issue, you're good for life once you have an LTC - as long as you don't apply and get denied. Furthermore, the law does not provide a mechanism to revoke an expired LTC (though the state could get creative and try) so someone with a state level disqualifier who holds an expired, not a revoked, LTC, could still invoke the protection provided under MGL 131(m). [Scaflin points out that this is probably not the case and I agree - see his post later in this thread] I cannot find anything in MGL that terminates the protection afforded by an expired license, even if the holder is successfully charged under an "expired carry" offense and is caught doing to a second time.

What I am not certain of is how the two civil offense would interact. For example, if someone carried on an expired license and outside of their restriction, could they be charged with both civil offenses and subject to a separate fine for each one?
 
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My last MA NR expired in June. I didn't renew. It looks like I made the right choice. If I gave my opinions of that hell hole of a state I'd most likely get banned for using far too many obscenities.
 

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Rob, so this might mean that if someone moved out of MA, notified properly and never applied for a MA NR LTC . . . and subsequently was caught in MA with guns/ammo, the most they could face is a civil fine (which I've been told by the gurus that no MA District Court will deal with)?
 
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Do we know when they started to really crack down on issuing unrestricted NR's? They were always tough, but it seems to be that recently (2-5 months?) they really tightened up. Anyone know anything more definitive.
 
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Rob, so this might mean that if someone moved out of MA, notified properly and never applied for a MA NR LTC . . . and subsequently was caught in MA with guns/ammo, the most they could face is a civil fine (which I've been told by the gurus that no MA District Court will deal with)?

I suggest you take Len's law course, as he will do an excellent job of explaining this in detail. Check out MGL 131(m).

When I took the Ron Glidden law course, I asked if the action taken upon notifying the state that you have moved out of MA and hold a resident LTC is "revocation" or "expiration", and I was told that the DCJIS "Expires" the license, and this is not considered a "revocation", so presumably, the protections would remain in place.

When I explain this, I also advise people that they should not expect police officers or "the system" to understand this nuance, and there might be a royal hassle. It's in the same category as being caught with a firearm "not carried on your person" while on school property - legal, but the first few layers of the system may refuse to acknowledge such.
 
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There is NO hope for MA. Anyone in that state either needs to step up or step out. Talk about a lost cause.

MA is a really mixed bag. I have far fewer restrictions on where I may carry concealed and loaded in MA that I would in TX, AZ, NM or FL to name a few. No, that does not excuse the abuses in MA, but it's an interesting detail.
 

drgrant

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MA is a really mixed bag. I have far fewer restrictions on where I may carry concealed and loaded in MA that I would in TX, AZ, NM or FL to name a few. No, that does not excuse the abuses in MA, but it's an interesting detail.

True enough, but it's also worth noting that the other states in the northeast are also not that restrictive, particularly NH, VT, and ME. Maine only has binding signage for bars, I think... the rest are all pretty "clean" the same way MA's is in that regard.

NH also has a definite advantage as there is no 269(10) J equivalent up there. While some schools might be covered by Fed GFSZ, colleges, etc, certainly aren't, at least not as a matter of law.

-Mike
 
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Do we know when they started to really crack down on issuing unrestricted NR's? They were always tough, but it seems to be that recently (2-5 months?) they really tightened up. Anyone know anything more definitive.
From what I can tell, this is a pretty recent change of policy. In fact, I was pretty surprised when we first were hearing from people. It wasn't too long ago that they were issuing non-restricted LTCs if people made a decent effort to articulate a need. Folks in that similar situation now seem to be getting restricted.

I think it may largely be a capacity issue. As long as they're bound and determined that everyone travel to Chelsea each year, there are only so many they can process and I think they're overwhelmed. If they start restricting people who haven't been restricted in the past, maybe they'll just go away next year.
 
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Curiously enough, someone who picks up a MA disqualifier and holds an expired license retains the protections of this section of law, but loses said protections if that individual applies to get a current LTC and is denied. This is a classic example of unintended consequences where what the legislature intended to accomplish, vs what was actually implemented, are strikingly different.

If "inoculation from felony conviction" is the issue, you're good for life once you have an LTC - as long as you don't apply and get denied. Furthermore, the law does not provide a mechanism to revoke an expired LTC (though the state could get creative and try) so someone with a state level disqualifier who holds an expired, not a revoked, LTC, could still invoke the protection provided under MGL 131(m). I cannot find anything in MGL that terminates the protection afforded by an expired license, even if the holder is successfully charged under an "expired carry" offense and is caught doing to a second time.

G.L. 140 § 131(m) states, “ Notwithstanding the provisions of section 10 of chapter 269, any person in possession of a firearm, rifle or shotgun whose license issued under this section is invalid for the sole reason that it has expired, meaning after 90 days beyond the stated expiration date on the license, but who shall not be disqualified from renewal upon application therefor under this section, shall be subject to a civil fine of not less than $500 nor more than $5,000 and the provisions of section 10 of chapter 269 shall not apply.”

I read the above emphasized phrase to mean that you cannot rely on the protection of 131(m) if you are disqualified from obtaining an LTC, irregardless of whether or not you reapplied and were denied after being convicted of a disqualifying offense. This never came up in practice, and I never gave much thought to it, so I may be wrong . . .
 
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, but who shall not be disqualified from renewal upon application therefor under this section,

Excellent point, rep inbound. I expect you are right, but I would also guess this applies to "hard disqualifications", not dq's of the nature "not statutorily prohibited, but deemed to be unsuitable"
 
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While some schools might be covered by Fed GFSZ, colleges, etc, certainly aren't, at least not as a matter of law.

The federal GFSZ contains an exemption for persons licensed by the state to carry in that area, so in the case of NH, so I would expect a NH carry permit would cover it assuming there is no NH equivalent o 269-10(j). VT, however, does not "license" people to carry, so the GFSZ may in fact be applicable in that state.
 

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The federal GFSZ contains an exemption for persons licensed by the state to carry in that area, so in the case of NH, so I would expect a NH carry permit would cover it assuming there is no NH equivalent o 269-10(j). VT, however, does not "license" people to carry, so the GFSZ may in fact be applicable in that state.

You didn't read far enough. This ONLY applies if LE are the only ones authorized to issue permits. In NH, RSA allows either the PD OR "First Selectman" to issue permits. Therefore one of the NH pro-gun org lawyer has determined that NH is NOT exempt from the GFSZ law!

However, since all NH NR permits are issued only by NH SP, I do not know if we are exempt from the GFSZ law. Or if the Feds take the "a state is all or nothing" stance that they do with MA Residents who are prohibited by MGL from obtaining a LTC but eligible for a FID.
 

drgrant

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You didn't read far enough. This ONLY applies if LE are the only ones authorized to issue permits. In NH, RSA allows either the PD OR "First Selectman" to issue permits. Therefore one of the NH pro-gun org lawyer has determined that NH is NOT exempt from the GFSZ law!

However, since all NH NR permits are issued only by NH SP, I do not know if we are exempt from the GFSZ law. Or if the Feds take the "a state is all or nothing" stance that they do with MA Residents who are prohibited by MGL from obtaining a LTC but eligible for a FID.

One also has to wonder if the "spirit and intent" of the requirement imposed by GFSZ would be met by the "accused" permit actually having been issued by a law enforcement authority.

The crappy thing is this will likely never get tested. The closest thing I've seen to a GFSZ case in NH was some guy who (somehow) got bagged with a loaded pistol in his truck at a school during Obama's pending visit there, and he did not have a P/R license, IIRC, or something to that effect. My guess is the USSS didn't push for a GFSZ prosecution or basically just let the locals handle it... but who knows...

August 12, Portsmouth Herald – (New Hampshire) Man with gun at NH Obama event ‘intended no harm.’ A Hampton contractor charged with having a loaded pistol in his truck, outside the high school where the U.S. President was due to visit, “intended no harm,” according to someone who answered the phone at his business Wednesday. “He’s just somebody who was forgetful and he made a big mistake,” said a man who answered the phone at Plain & Fancy Brick Work. The masonry company is owned by the 62 year-old suspect who was arrested Tuesday on a charge of having a concealed weapon without a license. The arresting officer said that after the suspect was taken into custody for sneaking past security officials at the high school in advance of the Presidential visit, a warrant was obtained for a search of his pickup truck. Inside, he said, police found a loaded .380 Kel Tec semiautomatic pistol, with a round in the chamber and concealed in some type of bag.

http://www.bostonherald.com/business/healthcare/view.bg?articleid=1190596


-Mike
 
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mikem317

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IMHO, don't even bother getting the non-res MA license. Stiff the state the $100 and stay in your freedom-loving state. Don't bother with MA. If we can't "persuade" them politically, we can certainly do it economically.
 

mikem317

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I have had a MA NR unrestricted for 2 years, and this year, the guy told me they were getting stricter, and because I only applied for self defense, and didnt have a legitimate reason to fear injury or death, that I would be restricted, and asked which restriction I wanted. I told him any restriction would be useless, as I had no intention of target shooting or hunting in MA. He asked why I would bother applying for unrestricted, and I told him that I already have had it unrestricted, but he replied that it didnt matter.

Just got my third year license in the mail. Restricted to Target and Hunting. First and last time I waste my money. No more for me. I just threw the license in the trash.

Thanks for posting up on this. Maybe take a number with GOAL and Comm2A for good measure too, if that's important to you.
 
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Following up on my post, I was told by the gentleman that answered the phone at frb that I needed to write a letter to the director of the firearms board and inform him I was appealing the restrictions placed. I was told that I should be as detailed as possible articulating my "fear" and it might be considered. I was specifically told that my years of prior unrestricted licenses in MA were irrelevant and that each year was "starting from scratch" with regards to the "temporary permit." I'm now putting together my appeal and will send it certified/return receipt. We'll see how it goes. I'm not going to roll over on this.
 
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Following up on my post, I was told by the gentleman that answered the phone at frb that I needed to write a letter to the director of the firearms board and inform him I was appealing the restrictions placed. I was told that I should be as detailed as possible articulating my "fear" and it might be considered. I was specifically told that my years of prior unrestricted licenses in MA were irrelevant and that each year was "starting from scratch" with regards to the "temporary permit." I'm now putting together my appeal and will send it certified/return receipt. We'll see how it goes. I'm not going to roll over on this.

Good luck, but if it were me, I'd hire an attorney familiar with MA firearms laws.
 
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