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Old November 16, 2012, 07:50 PM   #1
raimius
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Military Residency Question

I know the BATFE sent out the letter about potential dual residencies for military members (PCS to a base in one state, but commute from another.)

I have a question that is a twist on that. I have a driver's license from TX, PCSed to a base in MD, and commute from VA. So, what state(s) can I legally buy firearms in (specifically with regards to pistols and AR-15s, as I know MD has some oddities).

(Pointers to any clarifying laws/documents would be greatly appreciated!)
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Old November 16, 2012, 07:55 PM   #2
ohen cepel
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You can have 2 states in the military. Your home of record state and the one you are assigned to. So, if I understand it right, you can buy in TX and MD. Not in VA unless you become a resident there and give up your TX (which I wouldn't do).

You aren't a resident of VA unless you declare it, start paying taxes, etc.

One exception to this which I know is being assigned to Ft. Campbell. ATF gives you both TN and KY in that case since the post straddles the state line.
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Old November 16, 2012, 09:44 PM   #3
ltc444
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Based on my son's experience, New Mexico does not allow SMs to purchase a firearm without a New Mexico DL or ID card.
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Old November 16, 2012, 10:10 PM   #4
raimius
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Ohen, Home of Record isn't necessarily State of Residence either! You can have two states of residence, for ATF purposes, according to one of their newsletters (they used the Andrews AFB MD, and VA commuter as an example). I'm just adding a TX driver's license (and declared state of legal residence) to the mix to make things more complicated!
The rest of what you say makes sense though...not quite what I wanted to hear, but what I suspected.
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Old November 18, 2012, 01:08 AM   #5
Eghad
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" If a member of the Armed Forces maintains a home in one State and the member’s permanent duty station is in a nearby State to which he or she commutes each day, then the member has two States of residence and may purchase a firearm in either the State where the duty station is located or the State where the home is maintained." from the ATF website
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Old November 18, 2012, 02:32 AM   #6
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BATF uses a different definition of 'residency' for military gun-buying, quite different from the rest of the US Code (specifically, Title 50) governing other aspects.

BATF Ruling 2001-5 is quite unambiguous:
Quote:
Held further, a purchaser who is a member of the Armed Forces on
active duty is a resident of the State in which his or her permanent
duty station is located
, and may satisfy the identification document
requirement by presenting his or her military identification card
along with official orders showing that his or her permanent duty
station is located within the State where the licensed premises are
located.
I would suggest that, consistent with the other ruling already noted, you should be eligible to buy in either Maryland, your PCS assignment, or Virginia, where you are currently living and commuting from.

With a Texas license, showing a Texas address, you might be able to get away with buying in Texas, unless the seller there somehow learned you were military and stationed outside Texas; BATF would likely be unsympathetic.

This is a bit of Federal law which deserves amendment; IMO, military already give up a lot (my father was active duty 27 years while I was growing up) and making some version of one's permanent home of record, perhaps where one claims residence for tax purposes, ALSO a place where the service member may legally purchase guns seems a very small bene with no cost whatsoever.
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Old November 18, 2012, 01:07 PM   #7
raimius
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Eghad and Librarian, thank you.
It seems that according to that, and the 4473 definitions (13 and 20a) I can buy in VA, as long as I have a gov. document with my current address.
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