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Old June 3, 2013, 08:15 PM   #1
Lavan
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My ...renewed... CCW says this:

Usual alcohol yada yada but this is NEW.

"If contacted by law enforcement and carrying a concealed weapon, you must advise the officer of the presence of a firearm either on your person or otherwise present."

That's all in red ink.

Now what does it mean? I get a ticket and tell the LEO I have a gun so it can escalate his concern about the stop?

If I ...don't... tell a cop I have it and he SEES it (or suspects he sees it) then I've violated my CCW terms by NOT telling him.

This seems a can of worms.

It just does not seem common sense to run around saying anything about guns when there is no violent offense involved with anyone.

I hate these new unexplained blurbs.
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Old June 3, 2013, 08:35 PM   #2
Dr Big Bird PhD
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I read that as saying "you should feel guilty you have a CCW"
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Old June 3, 2013, 08:39 PM   #3
Spats McGee
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It means that you really need to be aware that police react much differently to:
Quote:
Good afternoon, officer. Here's my license, my CCL, and, yes, I am carrying a concealed pistol.
than they do to:

Quote:
I'VE GOT A GUN!!!
And yes, it means that if you get pulled over, you need to politely inform the officer that you have both a CCL and a CCW.
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Old June 3, 2013, 08:49 PM   #4
Garycw
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My ...renewed... CCW says this:

In Ohio when/ if they pull you over and license plate ran, it automatically comes up that you are a CCL holder. In not sure about other states. . It's best to inform them. My response would be
( while hands in sight) : and.... By the way,I'm a CCW lic holder its with me. ANY SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS???
Since it automatically comes up it may be a good idea to inform them of license even if you don't have a weapon just to be safe.
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Old June 3, 2013, 08:53 PM   #5
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Drive careful.Avoid tickets.
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Old June 3, 2013, 09:23 PM   #6
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Many states do not require you to inform an officer, apparently yours does.
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Old June 3, 2013, 09:27 PM   #7
Tom Servo
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Correct me if I'm wrong, but hasn't California always had a duty to inform?

If so, this is just some bean-counter deciding to change the font, and nothing to worry about.
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Old June 3, 2013, 09:29 PM   #8
cslinger
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I always inform / hand LEO my license and Permit. I have never had an issue. As a matter of fact the three times it has come up over the years one was completely uneventful. The other two were downright funny.

1st funny was getting stopped by a TN state trooper. I was hoping that by being polite, showing the permit, I am carrying etc. might get me out of a ticket. So I told the officer I had a permit and I was armed. He looked at me and as deadpan as a bored Robocop simply asked. "Are you planning on shooting me? I said no, of course not. He said great, now we can back to writing this ticket."

2nd funny was when I was involved in non fault accident. Metro PD shows up and the person who hit me was in a bit of hysterics. I had just gotten her calmed down and didn't want to yell "HEY I GOT GUN!!" so I discretely approached the officer, told him I had my license in my wallet as well as carry permit but I was NOT currently carrying. I was then dressed down by the metro cops for NOT carrying my weapon as I had gone through the checks, was obviously one of the "good guys" and I might have to save their bacon someday and that if the ever ran into me again I was expected to be carrying.

Ahhhh TN the patron state of shooting stuff.
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Old June 3, 2013, 09:40 PM   #9
Aguila Blanca
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lavan
"If contacted by law enforcement and carrying a concealed weapon, you must advise the officer of the presence of a firearm either on your person or otherwise present."

That's all in red ink.

Now what does it mean? I get a ticket and tell the LEO I have a gun so it can escalate his concern about the stop?

If I ...don't... tell a cop I have it and he SEES it (or suspects he sees it) then I've violated my CCW terms by NOT telling him.

This seems a can of worms.

It just does not seem common sense to run around saying anything about guns when there is no violent offense involved with anyone.
What does your state's law say about informing an officer when you are carrying? If the law requires it, you can be charged for NOT doing so whether or not your actual carry permit contains a friendly reminder.

If your state's law does NOT require it, you can ignore what it says on the permit because they can't use a printed form to change state law. However, you might find yourself being arrested and having to go to court to make the point.

There are, I believe, only 12 states out of 50 that require notification. What state are you in?
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Old June 3, 2013, 10:08 PM   #10
SamNavy
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Massad Ayoob has a YT video out there where he talks about this very thing.

You simply have to be smart. If YOU are the "suspect" or it seems obvious that the police are going to be nervous discovering you have a gun with or without a permit, just be intelligent about it. At some point very early in the conversation, with your hands in front of you in a non-threatening manner, simply say something like "Officer, before we talk further, I'm required by state law to inform you that I have a CCW license, and am currently carrying"... and let them take it from there. Some police may react negatively to the phrase "and am currently armed"... so I would simply say "carrying".

If you get pulled over in a regular traffic stop, just hand him your CCW permit when he asks for your drivers license, then put your hands back on the steering wheel. Be sure when you reach for your wallet that you don't accidentally expose or you may get shot. When he sees your CCW permit, he'll naturally ask you if you're carrying, and the conversation (with your hands still on the wheel) will proceed with him saying something predictable such as "Well, I see you've got a permit and assume you're armed... just keep your hands where I can see'em and don't make any sudden movements"... duh!

Although I haven't yet been "contacted" by a LEO when carrying, I've learned from friends and by reading this forum that 99% of all encounters are a non-issue, since us honest law-abiding citizens are usually non-issues in general (except when we've been caught speeding).
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Old June 3, 2013, 10:17 PM   #11
SamNavy
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A quick random Google search for "duty to inform" returns Ohio legalese for just such an occasion:

If a licensee is the driver or an occupant of a motor vehicle that is stopped as the result of a traffic stop or a stop for another law enforcement purpose and if the licensee is transporting or has a loaded handgun in the motor vehicle at that time, the licensee shall promptly inform any law enforcement officer who approaches the vehicle while stopped that the licensee has been issued a concealed handgun license and that the licensee currently possesses or has a loaded handgun;

If a licensee is stopped for a law enforcement purpose and if the licensee is carrying a concealed handgun at the time the officer approaches, the licensee shall promptly inform any law enforcement officer who approaches the licensee while stopped that the licensee has been issued a concealed handgun license and that the licensee currently is carrying a concealed handgun;


You can interpret "promptly" however you want... but if I was in Ohio, having my Drivers License and CCW License in my hand when the Officer approaches the car should be satisfactory.

On the street, in public... maybe something like "Officer, before we continue talking, my CCW permit is in my wallet in my back pocket, you'll probably want to see it." At which point he'll ask you if you're carrying and yadda yadda... keep your hands in front of you... yadda yadda.

I'm sure most "duty to inform" states have similar language... again, just be smart. If you're the good guy, the LEO will know it and the gun won't be an issue.
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Old June 3, 2013, 10:20 PM   #12
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Quote:
Correct me if I'm wrong, but hasn't California always had a duty to inform?
No, not generally. Seems to be a matter of policy with the issuing agencies.
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Old June 3, 2013, 10:37 PM   #13
JWT
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The instructor I had when I took the CCW course advised us to keep both hands on the wheel and in plain sight and tell the police officer there was a concealed gun in the car and that we possessed a permit and wait for instructions.
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Old June 3, 2013, 10:43 PM   #14
csmsss
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TX also has a duty to inform for CHL holders. Interestingly enough, when they modified the statute to provide for non-CHL holders to keep a concealed firearm in a vehicle, no such requirement was put into the law - basically, non-CHL holders have no duty to inform LEO's who have stopped them whereas a CHL possessing a concealed must inform or lose the CHL. They didn't get around to fixing it this session, so this remains the law.

As far as what I do, well...my hands never go lower than the top of the steering wheel. I keep my DL and CHL permit in the same vinyl pouch I keep my insurance card in, thus any LEO who might stop me will never have to worry about where my hands might be reaching. It's a hassle having to transfer my DL and CHL all the time, but once it's a habit it tends to stick with you.

I've been stopped one time while carrying, and the trooper told me he appreciated the way I handled the interaction and gave me a warning, not a ticket (this is an EXTREME rarity for me - I draw speeding tickets like barbecues draw blue bottle flies).
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Old June 3, 2013, 11:24 PM   #15
JohnKSa
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Quote:
...a CHL possessing a concealed must inform or lose the CHL. They didn't get around to fixing it this session, so this remains the law.
Sorta...

TX law requires that if an LEO asks a CHL holder who is currently carrying for any form of ID, the CHL holder must also provide his/her CHL along with the requested form if identification.

BUT!!!

The law has been changed (can't recall which session, but not the latest one) so that the penalty for failing to inform was stricken from the law. If carrying, a CHL is still required by law to inform by providing a CHL if asked for ID, but there is no longer any penalty for failing to do so.

I still inform. Your CHL is going to show up when they run your license and it's been my experience that they're happier if you let them know up front instead of making them find out for themselves.
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Old June 4, 2013, 12:01 AM   #16
Frank Ettin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aguila Blanca
What does your state's law say about informing an officer when you are carrying? If the law requires it, you can be charged for NOT doing so whether or not your actual carry permit contains a friendly reminder.

If your state's law does NOT require it, you can ignore what it says on the permit because they can't use a printed form to change state law....
Tread very lightly and carefully here.

Whether or not that legend printed on the form means anything can be subject to debate, and the outcome is far from clear.

California is "may issue", and issuing Sheriffs often impose their own special conditions on LTCs (Licenses To Carry). Courts have thus far given them a great deal of discretion regarding issuing LTCs and special conditions.

One might ultimately prevail in a challenge, but it will be an unpleasant and expensive experience. A favorable outcome can not be a foregone conclusion.
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Old June 4, 2013, 02:01 AM   #17
natman
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Quote:
Now what does it mean? I get a ticket and tell the LEO I have a gun so it can escalate his concern about the stop?
The approach above, politely handled, is far superior to the approach below, which could have far more serious consequences than just violating the terms of your CCW:

Quote:
If I ...don't... tell a cop I have it and he SEES it (or suspects he sees it) then I've violated my CCW terms by NOT telling him.
Seems like an easy choice to me.
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Old June 4, 2013, 02:47 AM   #18
fragtagninja
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In my experience most officers are supportive of law abiding citizens owning and carrying firearms. The key here is not to say "I got a gun!". Rather something to the effect "Excuse me officer I am sorry to interrupt you, but I am required to inform you that I have CCW and that I am currently carrying a handgun" would be far more effective. Like pretty much everyone has said handing them your permit with you driver's license is probably the best method. However if verbal communication of this message is needed simply be as polite and respectful as possible. This will go a long way. Keep in mind these guys deal with the scum of the earth all day and these people are usually very unhappy with them. Just being pleasant to talk with can make a big difference in their attitude towards you. The most important thing is to make sure you are acting in accordance with the law, but that does not mean just because you are not required to do something you should not do it. In other words put yourself in an officers shoes and say. Would I appreciate someone letting me know in a polite respectful manner that they are armed rather than having an incident I have to write a 5 page report on? I'm pretty sure most people are not gonna want an extra 3 pages tacked onto a report they most likely don't want to write in the first place.
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Old June 4, 2013, 08:06 AM   #19
kevinjmiller
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Quote:
"If contacted by law enforcement and carrying a concealed weapon, you must advise the officer of the presence of a firearm either on your person or otherwise present."
Whether this is a legal requirement, or merely a "polite request", depends up the jurisdiction. It sounds like your state may be one where notification may not be required by state law, but issuing authority additions may effectively have the force of law. Maybe you can call the issuing authority and ask exactly what they mean by this statement and whether it is legally binding.

By way of example, my state does not require notification, and although licenses can have restrictions added by the issuing chief I've never heard of this kind of restriction being added or even discussed. The subject of whether to notify in MA is frequently discussed with good arguments on both sides. Some people have had positive experiences when politely notifying at a traffic stop, and have even been complimented by the LEO for doing so. Some have been advised not to notify in the future by the LEO. Others have had rather negative experiences; backup called for a simple stop, removed from their vehicles, proned on the vehicle or even the ground, and disarmed, sometimes unsafely because the LEO(s) were unfamiliar with the person's CCW.

The majority opinion here, but by no means a full consensus, is not to notify unless there is a chance of discovery. If one's gun(s) are concealed and out of sight (ex. being transported in the trunk versus the back seat) then don't bring up the issue unless the situation begins to look like more than a routine stop, such as backup being called, the officer asks you to step out of the vehicle and/or requests permission to search the vehicle. If that happens the suggested approach is to keep ones hands in plain view, inform the officer that you have a CCL, tell them where and what the guns are, and ask them what they want to do next.

Everyone agrees that it is "not a good thing" for an LEO to discover guns on a person or in their vehicle even if they are legally owned/carried/transported. LEOs (like most people) don't like surprises.

Last edited by kevinjmiller; June 4, 2013 at 09:55 AM.
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Old June 4, 2013, 08:44 AM   #20
Spats McGee
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Arkansas has a duty to inform, and I've had two occasions to inform since I got my CHCL. In both instances, the alarm at my parents' house went off in the wee hours when they were out of town. Naturally, the alarm company called them & the police, and my parents called me. In both cases, the police arrived and cleared the house before I did. Trying to think ahead, I had my DL and my CHCL in hand when I approached the officers. Both times, I handed over the DL & CHCL and said something to the effect of "My name's Spats McGee, this is my parents' house, and yes, I'm carrying. You guys want me to turn off the alarm?" Both times, the fact that I was carrying was a non-issue.
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Old June 4, 2013, 08:48 AM   #21
Lavan
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Jeez.

I guess the one thing that's for sure is that it would be a bad idea to say to the cop, "Hey, wanna see my gun and see if we can hit that streetlight?"

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Old June 4, 2013, 10:08 AM   #22
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MO has no duty to inform, but I see this as a common sense measure. Police, when in the course of their duties, tend not to appreciate surprises. IMO, volunteering the information (that they'd find easily enough anyway) is a sign of good faith that I am interested in their security and in getting along. Sure, I can remain mum and be within my rights- they can also choose to be more adversarial if they like as well.
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Old June 4, 2013, 10:19 AM   #23
Pahoo
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It's the law !!!

Quote:
MO has no duty to inform, but I see this as a common sense measure.
Same is true for IA. and not only is it common sense, it's displaying a courtesy that is appreciated by LEO's. Don't wait to be asked, just hand him your license and permit. .....

Be Smart and;
Be Safe !!!
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Old June 4, 2013, 12:22 PM   #24
spacecoast
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Quote:
MO has no duty to inform, but I see this as a common sense measure.
Not picking on you, but several of you on this thread seem to be anxious to volunteer to police that you have a CWP whether it's required or not. I disagree, if it's a routine traffic stop then there is no way I'm going to inform unless I'm in a "must inform" state. To my way of thinking, it only opens you up to the possibility of an over-zealous officer taking offense and deciding to spread-eagle you on the ground for no reason at all. Cops are human too, and some of them seem to like to make a point of letting you know who's in charge, forgetting who pays their salary.
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Old June 4, 2013, 01:07 PM   #25
spacemanspiff
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In my state (Alaska) anyone who is carrying is required to hand the officer their photo ID (and carry permit if they have one) and advise the officer they are carrying immediately.

In the handful of times I have been pulled over, all I did was hand my ID to the officer as he came to my window and said "Hello. State law requires me to give you this (my photo ID) and inform you that I am carrying concealed." Only once did that result in anything more than a 'Okay, reason I pulled you over is.....'

By and large, when an officer sees an Alaskan resident following the law about informing them they are armed, they realize you are a law abiding citizen, and if the reason for the stop was something small they just give a warning.
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