Frequently Asked Gun Law Questions
Do I have to register my firearms in Ohio?
- No. There is no “Gun Registry” anywhere in the state of Ohio. In fact, under Ohio Revised Code 9.68 local governmental bodies are not authorized to institute a gun registry in contradiction of state law.
Can I own Machine Guns and other Title II firearms in Ohio?
- Yes. Under Ohio law if you properly register what is known as “Dangerous Ordnance” with the Federal Government it is possible to own items such as machine guns, suppressors, short barreled rifles and short barreled shot guns.
Can a person with a drug crime conviction own firearms?
- As of September 30, 2011 anyone convicted of a felonious crime involving a drug of abuse is prohibited under state law from possessing firearms.
If I have been convicted of a crime that prohibits me from owning a firearm can I have my rights restored?
- Yes. This is an extensive and not easily answered question as it depends on your specific facts and circumstances. Ohio has several processes for restoring your firearm rights – but not everyone is eligible.
Is open carry in Ohio really legal?
- Yes. It is a constitutionally protected right in Ohio. See Klein v. Leis, 99 Ohio St.3d 537.
Does Ohio have concealed carry reciprocity?
- Yes. See the Ohio Attorney General’s Website for details at http://www.ohioattorneygeneral.gov/Law-Enforcement/Concealed-Carry/Concealed-Carry-Reciprocity-Agreements
If I qualify for a concealed carry permit does the sheriff have to issue it to me?
- Yes. Ohio is what is known as a shall issue state. See Ohio Revised Code 2923.125.
Is it illegal for me to use a magazine that exceeds 31 rounds?
- Yes with exceptions. Under Ohio law as interpreted it is illegal for a citizen to use a magazine that is over 31 rounds with a semi-automatic firearm unless a license is first obtained from the sheriff. It is important to note that there is some question as to the constitutionality of this law.
My friend wants to sell me a firearm – can I buy it?
- As long as the buyer is not prohibited by law from owning a firearm, yes, person to person transactions are completely legal in Ohio and no background checks are necessary. If the item is Dangerous Ordnance the process is a bit more cumbersome yet still possible.
When I carry in a different state that has concealed carry reciprocity with Ohio, do I obey Ohio laws?
- No. You are under the jurisdiction of a different state and are obliged to follow their laws. It is advisable that you contact an attorney well versed in Gun Law before transporting a firearm to another state.
Gun Law Facts
- Criminal Charges: Under Ohio law various crimes can potentially disqualify an individual from owning a firearm including domestic violence, assault and even disorderly conduct. It is imperative that a client facing these type of criminal charges has an attorney ready at hand who understands not only state but also federal gun laws.
- Castle Doctrine: Under Ohio’s castle doctrine the elements of self-defense still apply. The castle doctrine simply creates a presumption that one has acted in self defense.
- Defense of Another: Under Ohio law one may defend another with deadly force if the person they defended with deadly force would have been legally able to do so themselves.
- Dangerous Ordnance: Under Ohio Law no one can own dangerous ordnance unless it is registered under the Federal National Firearms Act or licensed by the local sheriff. The type of registration required is a question that a client should consult with a knowledgeable gun law attorney about.
- Divorce and Guns: Under the Federal Gun Control Act a client who enters into an agreed entry in a divorce may disqualify themselves from owning firearms if they agree to an anti-harassment or stay away provision. See 18 USC 922(g)(8).
- Restoration of Rights: It is possible for someone to be disqualified under federal but not state law from possessing firearms and vice versa. It is imperative that a client facing what is referred to as a “firearm disability” to consult with a well versed gun law attorney about how to restore their rights.
- Pre-Emption: Ohio is what is commonly known as a “pre-emption state” in that local governments are “pre-empted” from enacting ordinances in contradiction of general state law.
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