An Act Relative to Firearm Owners Protection

Latest News: H.2144 was filed for the 191st General Court by Rep. David Vieira.

What it does: This bill would expand protection for people who have unexpectedly experienced travel delays in Massachusetts.

Why it’s important: On the federal level there is some legal protection for lawful gun owners traveling across the country. It is commonly referred to as FOPA, the Firearms Owners Protection Act. Basically this law allows citizens who are legal where they are starting from and going to transport firearms as long as they are unloaded and stored in the trunk or locked container. Sadly some states are causing problems with this federal protection. Because of these issues GOAL has found it prudent to file similar legislation on the state level.

Bill Language:

SECTION 1. Chapter 140 of the Massachusetts General Laws shall be amended by inserting the following new section;

Section 131Z: Notwithstanding any general, special law or regulation to the contrary any person, not being a resident of the Commonwealth, who is not otherwise prohibited under federal law from transporting, shipping, or receiving a weapon shall be entitled to transport a weapon for any lawful purpose from any place where he or she may lawfully possess and carry such weapon to any other place where he may lawfully possess and carry such weapon.3¾4

During such transportation the weapon shall be unloaded.3¾4 Neither the weapon nor any ammunition being transported shall be readily accessible or directly accessible from the passenger compartment of such transporting vehicle: Provided, That in the case of a vehicle without a compartment separate from the driver’s compartment the weapon and ammunition shall be contained in a locked container other than the glove compartment or console.

If a person is found to be in compliance and exempt under this section no persons or property shall be detained, held or confiscated unless an arrestable offense exists outside of the parameters of this section.
If a person who is exempt under this section is unexpectedly delayed in their travel including but no limited to mechanical, weather, illness, flight or other commercial travel delays such person shall retain the protections of this section.