New York State Gun Law Has Vast Reach
The NY SAFE Act – which contains the strictest gun laws in the nation – was signed into law by Governor Andrew Cuomo on January 15.
The law bans any gun magazine that can hold more than seven rounds – the prior limit was 10 rounds. It also calls for universal background checks on gun purchasers and tougher penalties on those who use illegal guns.
Some gun laws presently on the books have been drastically changed by the Safe Ammunition and Firearms Enforcement (SAFE) Act. Other new provisions have been added.
Binghamton injury law attorney Scott C. Gottlieb has set up a free and confidential NY SAFE Act legal info line to help people sort through the complicated provisions of the law.
The measure passed the state Assembly 104-43 after passing the state Senate 43-18 on January 14. Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed the legislation the next day.
Under the new law, all pistol permits must be recertified every five years, and ammunition purchases will be tracked in real time to alert law enforcement to high-volume buys. The legislation also imposes a universal background check – even for private sales.
In a press statement, Governor Cuomo said, “[T]his legislation is not about hunters, sportsmen, or legal owners who use their guns appropriately. It is about reducing gun violence and making New York a safer place to live.”
Important provisions of the NY SAFE Act include:
- Mental Health Alert: Mental health professionals must report to local mental health officials when there is reason to believe a patient is likely to engage in conduct that will cause serious harm to themselves or others. This information will then be crosschecked against a gun registration database. If the patient possesses a gun, the license will be suspended and law enforcement will be authorized to remove the person’s firearm.
- Tougher ban on assault weapons. Semi-automatic pistols and rifles with detachable magazines and one military-style feature will be considered assault weapons. Under the legislation, the Bushmaster used in the Newtown, Connecticut, shooting would be illegal. An assault weapon registry will be created.
- Stiffer regulations on ammunition: New York now has the strongest ban on high-capacity magazines in the country, with a limit on capacity of seven rounds. The legislation includes a ban on possession of pre-1994 high-capacity magazines and will require owners to sell the banned magazines out of state within one year.
- Safe storage: The law requires safe storage of firearms in households of individuals who have been convicted of a crime, involuntarily committed, or are subject to an order of protection.
Scott C. Gottlieb is available to answer your questions about the NY SAFE Act. Call 607-724-7700 or use this online contact form. There is no charge for the legal consultation. All discussions are strictly confidential.
For more information:
- Governor Cuomo press release http://www.governor.ny.gov/press/01152013-outline-of-nys-groundbreaking-gun-legislation
- NY Safe Act of 2013 website http://www.governor.ny.gov/2013/gun-reforms
- NY Safe Act FAQs http://www.governor.ny.gov/2013/gun-reforms-faq