2020 Florida Statutes
Lawful ownership, possession, and use of firearms and other weapons.
Lawful ownership, possession, and use of firearms and other weapons.
790.25 Lawful ownership, possession, and use of firearms and other weapons.—
(1) DECLARATION OF POLICY.—The Legislature finds as a matter of public policy and fact that it is necessary to promote firearms safety and to curb and prevent the use of firearms and other weapons in crime and by incompetent persons without prohibiting the lawful use in defense of life, home, and property, and the use by United States or state military organizations, and as otherwise now authorized by law, including the right to use and own firearms for target practice and marksmanship on target practice ranges or other lawful places, and lawful hunting and other lawful purposes.
(2) USES NOT AUTHORIZED.—
(a) This section does not authorize carrying a concealed weapon without a permit, as prohibited by ss. 790.01 and 790.02.
(b) The protections of this section do not apply to the following:
1. A person who has been adjudged mentally incompetent, who is addicted to the use of narcotics or any similar drug, or who is a habitual or chronic alcoholic, or a person using weapons or firearms in violation of ss. 790.07-790.115, 790.145-790.19, 790.22-790.24;
3. A person in or about a place of nuisance as defined in s. 823.05, unless such person is there for law enforcement or some other lawful purpose.
(3) LAWFUL USES.—The provisions of ss. 790.053 and 790.06 do not apply in the following instances, and, despite such sections, it is lawful for the following persons to own, possess, and lawfully use firearms and other weapons, ammunition, and supplies for lawful purposes:
(a) Members of the Militia, National Guard, Florida State Defense Force, Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, organized reserves, and other armed forces of the state and of the United States, when on duty, when training or preparing themselves for military duty, or while subject to recall or mobilization;
(b) Citizens of this state subject to duty in the Armed Forces under s. 2, Art. X of the State Constitution, under chapters 250 and 251, and under federal laws, when on duty or when training or preparing themselves for military duty;
(c) Persons carrying out or training for emergency management duties under chapter 252;
(d) Sheriffs, marshals, prison or jail wardens, police officers, Florida highway patrol officers, game wardens, revenue officers, forest officials, special officers appointed under the provisions of chapter 354, and other peace and law enforcement officers and their deputies and assistants and full-time paid peace officers of other states and of the Federal Government who are carrying out official duties while in this state;
(e) Officers or employees of the state or United States duly authorized to carry a concealed weapon;
(f) Guards or messengers of common carriers, express companies, armored car carriers, mail carriers, banks, and other financial institutions, while actually employed in and about the shipment, transportation, or delivery of any money, treasure, bullion, bonds, or other thing of value within this state;
(g) Regularly enrolled members of any organization duly authorized to purchase or receive weapons from the United States or from this state, or regularly enrolled members of clubs organized for target, skeet, or trap shooting, while at or going to or from shooting practice; or regularly enrolled members of clubs organized for modern or antique firearms collecting, while such members are at or going to or from their collectors’ gun shows, conventions, or exhibits;
(h) A person engaged in fishing, camping, or lawful hunting or going to or returning from a fishing, camping, or lawful hunting expedition;
(i) A person engaged in the business of manufacturing, repairing, or dealing in firearms, or the agent or representative of any such person while engaged in the lawful course of such business;
(j) A person firing weapons for testing or target practice under safe conditions and in a safe place not prohibited by law or going to or from such place;
(k) A person firing weapons in a safe and secure indoor range for testing and target practice;
(l) A person traveling by private conveyance when the weapon is securely encased or in a public conveyance when the weapon is securely encased and not in the person’s manual possession;
(m) A person while carrying a pistol unloaded and in a secure wrapper, concealed or otherwise, from the place of purchase to his or her home or place of business or to a place of repair or back to his or her home or place of business;
(n) A person possessing arms at his or her home or place of business;
(o) Investigators employed by the several public defenders of the state, while actually carrying out official duties, provided such investigators:
1. Are employed full time;
2. Meet the official training standards for firearms established by the Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission as provided in s. 943.12(5) and the requirements of ss. 493.6108(1)(a) and 943.13(1)-(4); and
3. Are individually designated by an affidavit of consent signed by the employing public defender and filed with the clerk of the circuit court in the county in which the employing public defender resides.
(p) Investigators employed by the capital collateral regional counsel, while actually carrying out official duties, provided such investigators:
1. Are employed full time;
2. Meet the official training standards for firearms as established by the Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission as provided in s. 943.12(1) and the requirements of ss. 493.6108(1)(a) and 943.13(1)-(4); and
3. Are individually designated by an affidavit of consent signed by the capital collateral regional counsel and filed with the clerk of the circuit court in the county in which the investigator is headquartered.
(q)1. A tactical medical professional who is actively operating in direct support of a tactical operation by a law enforcement agency provided that:
a. The tactical medical professional is lawfully able to possess firearms and has an active concealed weapons permit issued pursuant to s. 790.06.
b. The tactical medical professional is appointed to a law enforcement tactical team of a law enforcement agency by the head of the law enforcement agency.
c. The law enforcement agency has an established policy providing for the appointment, training, and deployment of the tactical medical professional.
d. The tactical medical professional successfully completes a firearms safety training and tactical training as established or designated by the appointing law enforcement agency.
e. The law enforcement agency provides and the tactical medical professional participates in annual firearm training and tactical training.
2. While actively operating in direct support of a tactical operation by a law enforcement agency, a tactical medical professional:
a. May carry a firearm in the same manner as a law enforcement officer, as defined in s. 943.10 and, notwithstanding any other law, at any place a tactical law enforcement operation occurs.
b. Has no duty to retreat and is justified in the use of any force which he or she reasonably believes is necessary to defend himself or herself or another from bodily harm.
c. Has the same immunities and privileges as a law enforcement officer, as defined in s. 943.10, in a civil or criminal action arising out of a tactical law enforcement operation when acting within the scope of his or her official duties.
3. This paragraph may not be construed to authorize a tactical medical professional to carry, transport, or store any firearm or ammunition on any fire apparatus or EMS vehicle.
4. The appointing law enforcement agency shall issue any firearm or ammunition that the tactical medical professional carries in accordance with this paragraph.
5. For the purposes of this paragraph, the term “tactical medical professional” means a paramedic, as defined in s. 401.23, a physician, as defined in s. 458.305, or an osteopathic physician, as defined in s. 459.003, who is appointed to provide direct support to a tactical law enforcement unit by providing medical services at high-risk incidents, including, but not limited to, hostage incidents, narcotics raids, hazardous surveillance, sniper incidents, armed suicidal persons, barricaded suspects, high-risk felony warrant service, fugitives refusing to surrender, and active shooter incidents.
(4) CONSTRUCTION.—This act shall be liberally construed to carry out the declaration of policy herein and in favor of the constitutional right to keep and bear arms for lawful purposes. This act is supplemental and additional to existing rights to bear arms now guaranteed by law and decisions of the courts of Florida, and nothing herein shall impair or diminish any of such rights. This act shall supersede any law, ordinance, or regulation in conflict herewith.
(5) POSSESSION IN PRIVATE CONVEYANCE.—Notwithstanding subsection (2), it is lawful and is not a violation of s. 790.01 for a person 18 years of age or older to possess a concealed firearm or other weapon for self-defense or other lawful purpose within the interior of a private conveyance, without a license, if the firearm or other weapon is securely encased or is otherwise not readily accessible for immediate use. Nothing herein contained prohibits the carrying of a legal firearm other than a handgun anywhere in a private conveyance when such firearm is being carried for a lawful use. Nothing herein contained shall be construed to authorize the carrying of a concealed firearm or other weapon on the person. This subsection shall be liberally construed in favor of the lawful use, ownership, and possession of firearms and other weapons, including lawful self-defense as provided in s. 776.012.
History.—s. 1, ch. 65-410; s. 32, ch. 69-216; s. 32, ch. 73-334; s. 2, ch. 77-302; s. 2, ch. 82-131; s. 15, ch. 83-167; ss. 45, 49, ch. 83-334; s. 32, ch. 84-258; s. 68, ch. 85-62; s. 5, ch. 85-332; s. 15, ch. 87-274; s. 2, ch. 87-537; s. 1, ch. 89-60; s. 8, ch. 90-364; s. 1, ch. 93-269; s. 7, ch. 93-416; s. 89, ch. 95-211; s. 1218, ch. 97-102; s. 110, ch. 2006-1; s. 2, ch. 2006-103; s. 1, ch. 2019-77.
1Note.—Repealed by s. 3, ch. 72-133.