D.C. VOTES TO AMEND ITS “GHOST GUN” BAN IN RESPONSE TO LEGAL CHALLENGE

November 23, 2021 On November 16, 2021, the D.C. Council voted to amend its recently enacted law banning “ghost guns” on an emergency basis in response to a lawsuit filed by Dick Heller.  Renzulli Law Firm, LLP previously reported on the lawsuit filed against the District of Columbia in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia challenging the constitutionality of the new D.C. law b...
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NINTH CIRCUIT UPHOLDS CALIFORNIA’S BAN ON MAGAZINES WITH A CAPACITY OF MORE THAN TEN ROUNDS

December 2, 2021 In a split decision by an en banc panel in the case of Duncan v. Bonta, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit upheld California’s ban on magazines with a capacity of more than ten rounds (often referred to as large-capacity magazines). In so doing, the court reversed a decision by Judge Benitez of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California, which...
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NEVADA SUPREME COURT HOLDS THE NEVADA IMMUNITY STATUTE PROHIBITS CLAIMS AGAINST FIREARM DEFENDANTS FROM THE ROUTE 91 HARVEST FESTIVAL SHOOTING

December 2, 2021 Today the Nevada Supreme Court unanimously held that the Nevada firearm industry immunity statute, NRS 41.131(1), provides the manufacturers and dealers of the AR-type rifles used in the October 1, 2017 shooting at the Route 91 Harvest Festival in Las Vegas with immunity from the lawsuit filed against them. The court’s decision was issued in response to three questions that Ju...
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‘Tis the Season for Internet Scams

November 18, 2021 The holiday season is upon us, and along with the increase in online shopping comes an increase in online scammers.At Renzulli Law Firm, we have been tracking an increase in the number of scam sites which use the name of a legitimate company in the domain name in order to attract unsuspecting customers and steal their financial information.  These scam sites have some te...
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NEW YORK STATE ENACTS NEW GUN CONTROL LAWS

November 12, 2021 Several New York bills were recently signed into law banning “ghost guns,” defining the term “unfinished frame or receiver,” and expanding the definition of “disguised guns.” These new laws are poorly written, conflict with federal law, expand the class of prohibited items, and are likely to result in significant confusion.S.13A/A.2666A, the Unfinished Receiver Act, effective...
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ORAL ARGUMENT BEFORE THE U.S. SUPREME COURT IN SECOND AMENDMENT CASE

November 3, 2021 Oral argument was held before the United States Supreme Court this morning in the case of New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Kevin P. Bruen, in his Official Capacity of Superintendent of New York State Police. As previously reported, this lawsuit arises from a challenge to New York’s concealed carry law that requires applicants to make a showing of “proper ...
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ILLINOIS SUPREME COURT STRIKES DOWN FIREARM AND AMMUNITION TAX

October 29, 2021 The Illinois Supreme Court issued a 6-0 decision this week holding that two Cook County ordinances that impose a tax on the retail purchase of firearms and ammunition violate the Illinois State Constitution. This case arises from a 2012 ordinance enacted by the Cook County Board of Commissioners that imposed a $25 tax on the retail purchase of a firearm, and a 2015 o...
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Pennsylvania Supreme Court Allows Lawsuit Challenging Local Firearm Restrictions to Go Forward

October 22, 2021 The Pennsylvania Supreme Court issued a ruling this week allowing a group of plaintiffs to proceed with their lawsuit challenging firearm restrictions enacted by the City of Harrisburg, PA.  The court held that the plaintiffs were entitled to proceed with their lawsuits even though they have not yet been prosecuted for violations of the laws at issue. In particular, at issue a...
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D.C.’s “GHOST GUN” BAN FACES LEGAL CHALLENGE

October 15, 2021 On September 8, 2021, Dick Heller filed a lawsuit against the District of Columbia in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia challenging the constitutionality of a new D.C. law purporting to ban the possession or manufacture of “ghost guns” as overly broad and unconstitutionally vague. Dick Heller is the same plaintiff who brought the lawsuit ...
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PROPOSED ILLINOIS LEGISLATION WOULD ALLOW ANYONE TO SUE THE FIREARMS INDUSTRY IN STRICT LIABILITY FOR INJURIES CAUSED BY THE UNLAWFUL DISCHARGE OF FIREARMS

October 8, 2021 The Firearms Dealer and Importer Liability Act, a/k/a/ the Protecting Heartbeats Act, HB4156, which was introduced in Illinois on September 28, 2021 would hold firearms manufacturers, importers and dealers strictly liable for any bodily injury or death caused by the unlawful discharge of a firearm in Illinois.  It would allow anyone, other than a state or local government offic...
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American Bar Association Weighs In On Major Second Amendment Case

October 1, 2021 According to the American Bar Association (“ABA”), state and local governments have the right to tailor firearms regulations according to their own judgment regarding public health and safety.  This was the broad theme of an amicus brief filed by the ABA last week in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association Inc. v. Bruen,* the first major Second Amendment case before the S...
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RENZULLI LAW FIRM IS VICTORIOUS BEFORE THE MISSOURI COURT OF APPEALS IN CASE ALLEGING STRAW PURCHASE OF AMMUNITION

September 24, 2021 On September 21, 2021, the Missouri Court of Appeals issued a decision affirming the dismissal of a case in which plaintiffs alleged that a sporting goods store illegally sold ammunition to a straw purchaser.  Renzulli Law Firm represented the store in both the trial court and on appeal. Plaintiffs claimed that the store sold ammunition to a straw purchaser, w...
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ATF FILES PETITION FOR REHEARING EN BANC TO THE FOURTH CIRCUIT IN THE HIRSCHFELD V. ATF CASE

September 15, 2021 As Renzulli Law Firm previously reported, in a 2-1 decision dated July 13, 2021, a panel of the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals declared the provision in the Gun Control Act prohibiting federally licensed firearms dealers from transferring handguns to persons between 18-20 years old to be unconstitutional on the basis that it violates the Second Amendment in the case of Hirs...
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President Biden Pulls Nomination of Chipman

September 9, 2021 It is being widely reported that President Biden is withdrawing the nomination of David Chipman to be the next Director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.  Mr. Chipman’s nomination was uniformly opposed by firearms industry members and Second Amendment advocates, and widely supported by gun control groups, such as Brady United, Everytown for Gun ...
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Texas Constitutional Carry Law Takes Effect

September 3, 2021 On September 1, 2021, Texas House Bill 1927 took effect, making Texas the 21st state to eliminate a license requirement to carry a handgun.  Prior to Sept. 1, Texans were required to submit fingerprints, complete four to six hours of training, and pass a written exam and shooting proficiency test to obtain a license to carry a handgun.  These requirements have ...
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U.S. Supreme Court to Hear Oral Argument in Pivotal Second Amendment Case

August 18, 2021 It was announced yesterday that the case of New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Keith M. Corlett, in His Official Capacity as Superintendent of New York State Police is scheduled for oral argument before the Supreme Court on November 3, 2021. The appeal is the final step in a lawsuit challenging New York’s concealed carry law that was brought by the Associati...
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US Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit Issues Precedential Second Amendment Decision Reinstating Challenge to Pennsylvania Zoning Restrictions

August 24, 2021 On August 17, 2021, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit issued a precedential Second Amendment decision in the case of Drummond v. Robinson Township.  The court reversed the district court’s dismissal of a lawsuit brought by William Drummond against Robinson Township challenging certain zoning regulations it put in place after he purchased the Greater Pitt...
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Mexico Sues Firearms Companies in Boston Federal Court

August 9, 2021 On August 4, 2021, Estados Unidos Mexicanos (Mexico) filed a Complaint in the District of Massachusetts against several firearms manufacturers and one distributor. Mexico deceptively claims that these defendants manufacture a large majority of the illegal firearms used to commit crimes in Mexico, especially those used by drug cartels. Mexico claims that the defendants ...
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USPTO Publishes Draft Regulations That Allow Anonymous Challenges to Trademark Registrations

August 9, 2021 In late 2020, Congress passed the Trademark Modernization Act of 2020 (“TMA”), the first major revision to U.S. trademark law in years.  The TMA will have an impact on many current and prospective trademark owners (for more information on how the TMA affects trademark owners outside the U.S., click here). The TMA directed the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) t...
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ATF INTRODUCES GUIDANCE TO INCREASE THE REVOCATION OF FFLS

JULY 27, 2021 The ATF’s Acting Assistant Director for Field Operations issued a memorandum on July 14, 2021 directing the ATF to seek to revoke an FFL for situations that previously would not have likely justified revocation.  The subject of the memorandum is “Implementation of the Administration’s Comprehensive Strategy to Prevent and Respond to Gun Crime and Ensure Public Safe...
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Fourth Circuit Strikes Down Gun Control Act Ban as Unconstitutional

July 16, 2021 In a 2-1 decision dated July 13, 2021, the Fourth Circuit struck down certain provisions of the Gun Control Act (“GCA”) as a violation of the Second Amendment.  At issue in Hirschfeld v. ATF were the federal statutes that prohibit licensed dealers from selling handguns and handgun ammunition to 18-, 19-, and 20-year-olds.  It has long been the law that persons...
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Renzulli Law Firm Successfully Defeats Appeal on Behalf of New York Shooting Association

July 23, 2021 RLF achieved another victory for one of its firearm industry clients by successfully defeating an appeal brought by the Plaintiff in a case against the Long Island Practical Shooters Association (LIPSA).  The case involved a competitive quick-draw shooting competition hosted by LIPSA on August 21, 2016.  The Plaintiff, who had extensive experience participating in compe...
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NEW YORK GOVERNOR SIGNS LAW INTENDED TO BYPASS THE PLCAA AND DECLARES GUN VIOLENCE EMERGENCY

On July 6, 2021, Governor Cuomo signed Senate Bill 7196 (which is a revised version of Senate Bill 1048A) into law.  The express purpose of SB7196 is to bypass the immunity provided to members of the firearms industry by the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (“PLCAA”).  It does so by creating a broad statute applicable to the sale and marketing of firearms, that can be argued to satisfy t...
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TEXAS ISSUES UNANIMOUS DECISION IN PLCAA IMMUNITY CASE ARISING FROM THE SUTHERLAND SPRINGS CHURCH SHOOTING

June 25, 2021 Today the Texas Supreme Court issued a unanimous decision granting a petition for a writ of mandamus filed by Academy, Ltd. d/b/a Academy Sports + Outdoors (“Academy”) to dismiss lawsuits arising from the 2017 church shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas pursuant to the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (“PLCAA”). Plaintiffs in four consolidated lawsuits had argued t...
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Biden Administration Announces “Zero Tolerance” Enforcement of Firearm Dealer Laws and Regulations

June 24, 2021 In a national address on Wednesday, President Biden and Attorney General Merrick Garland revealed the Administration’s plan to address the rising level of violent crime across the country by specifically targeting firearm dealers. They will be implementing a “zero tolerance” policy with respect to alleged “rogue gun dealers” who fail to abide by relevant federal laws that are enf...
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New York Senate Passes Series of Gun Control Bills Targeting the Firearms Industry

June 9, 2021 The New York Senate and Assembly recently passed a series of gun control bills targeting the firearms industry at-large, as well as law abiding gun owners in the Empire State. The following are some of the key aspects of the bills that are likely to be signed into law by Governor Andrew Cuomo.  Assembly Bill A6762B (passed by both the NY Senate and Assembly) declares the i...
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PROPOSED NEW FEDERAL GUN CONTROL LEGISLATION

June 5, 2021 On May 18, 2021, seven Democratic members of the House of Representatives introduced H.R. 3299, the Protecting Our Communities Act.  The text of H.R. 3299 is not yet available and its official name is currently “To help reduce gun violence through background checks and the National Firearms Act and for other purposes.”  Based on statements provided by one of its sponsors...
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CONSTITUTIONAL CARRY BILL HEADED TO TEXAS GOVERNOR

June 5, 2021 On May 27, 2021, the Texas legislature passed H.B. 1927, the Firearm Carry Act of 2021.  H.B. 1927 would allow persons who are at least twenty-one years old, are not prohibited by federal or state law from possessing firearms, and are not intoxicated, to carry a handgun concealed or openly (in a holster) without the need for a license.  There are various specified locations at whi...
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Connecticut Looks to Reinstate COVID-19 Executive Order that Suspended Processing of Firearm Permit Applications

May 27, 2021 Shortly after the COVD-19 pandemic took hold in the spring of 2020, State Governors began to impose sweeping Executive Orders with the stated purpose of combating infections and “flattening the curve.” On March 17, 2020, Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont issued Executive Order 7E which suspended Conn. Gen. Stat. § 29-17c, a law that requires state and local law enforcement to collec...
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Supreme Court References Red Flag Laws in Fourth Amendment Unlawful Search and Seizure Case

May 22, 2021 ATF Officially Publishes its Proposed Changes to Alter the Federal Definition of a “Firearm” On May 21, 2021, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives’ (“ATF”) published its official proposal to amend the federal definition of a “firearm,” and implement other corresponding changes.  RLF previously reported that the new proposal is designed to enable the federa...
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ATF Officially Publishes its Proposed Changes to Alter the Federal Definition of a “Firearm”

May 22, 2021 On May 21, 2021, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives’ (“ATF”) published its official proposal to amend the federal definition of a “firearm,” and implement other corresponding changes.  RLF previously reported that the new proposal is designed to enable the federal government to regulate and control the production of so-called “ghost guns.” If enacted, th...
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ATF Documents Reveal Proposed Regulations on “Ghost Guns”

April 22, 2021 The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ plan to regulate “ghost guns” is starting to take shape. A 107-page internal document was leaked yesterday which included a number of proposals specifically targeted at manufacturers and sellers of 80% receivers and component parts, often referred to as “ghost guns.” These proposals surfaced two weeks after the Biden Admin...
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ATTEMPT BY CONGRESS TO REPEAL PLCAA

May 19, 2021 Democrats on Capitol Hill recently introduced bicameral legislation called the “Equal Access to Justice for Victims of Gun Violence Act” that will open the gun industry to even more frivolous lawsuits.  In 2005, the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (“PLCAA”) became law.  The PLCAA protects the licensed and heavily regulated firearms and ammunition industries fro...
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SUPREME COURT TO DECIDE MAJOR SECOND AMENDMENT CASE

April 26, 2021 For the first time in more than a decade, the Supreme Court is poised to issue a major decision regarding the scope of the right to keep and bear arms protected by the Second Amendment.  Earlier today, the Supreme Court granted a petition for a writ of certiorari in the case of New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Keith M. Corlett, in H...
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ATF Documents Reveal Proposed Regulations on “Ghost Guns”

April 23, 2021 The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ plan to regulate “ghost guns” is starting to take shape. A 107-page internal document was leaked yesterday which included a number of proposals specifically targeted at manufacturers and sellers of 80% receivers and component parts, often referred to as “ghost guns.” These proposals surfaced two weeks after the Biden Admin...
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Walmart Win Provides Lifeline for Companies Dealing With CCPA Private Actions

April 15, 2021 The California Consumer Protection Act (CCPA), which went into effect on January 1, 2020, permits private citizens to sue companies for failing to adequately protect their personal information in addition to imposing regulatory fines connected to the rights of California residents under the CCPA (read more about the CCPA here and here).  As expected, this has lead to dozens...
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President Biden Unveils New Executive Actions on Gun Control

April 8, 2021 Today, from the Rose Garden, President Joe Biden announced a series of Executive Actions to further the Biden Administration’s gun control agenda.  Realizing that Congressional action on gun control is unlikely due to a deeply divided Senate and a filibuster that affords Republicans the ability to block excessive gun control proposals from becoming law, President Biden is, o...
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EXECUTIVE AUTHORITY TO BAN BUMP STOCKS QUESTIONED

April 4, 2021 After a series of set-backs endured by bump stock owners and gun rights organizations around the country, on March 25, 2021, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in the case of Gun Owners of America, Inc. v. Garland, held that bump stocks cannot be classified as “machineguns” as defined by the National Firearms Act, 26 U.S.C. § 5845(b).  As you may recall, bump stocks ...
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Ninth Circuit Rules There is No Constitutional Right to Carry

March 26, 2021 This week an en banc panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued a 7-4 decision holding that states may regulate and restrict the public carry of firearms. This decision reversed a prior holding of the same court that had struck down as unconstitutional a Hawaii County statute that effectively limited the issuance of carry permits to security guards only. In ...
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RLF OBTAINS DISMISSAL FOR PISTOL MANUFACTURER PURSUANT TO THE PLCAA

March 19, 2021 The U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona issued a decision on March 11, 2021 granting a motion to dismiss pursuant to the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (“PLCAA”) that Renzulli Law Firm had filed on behalf of a pistol manufacturer. Plaintiff was shot and severely injured (paraplegia) while a passenger in a vehicle when a fourteen-year-old girl (“shooter”), ...
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Multiple States Attempt to Preempt Potential New Federal Firearm Restrictions

March 12, 2021 It is no secret that the Biden Administration – along with a Democrat led Congress – is attempting to enact new federal firearms restrictions into law.  The new Administration recently called on Congress to pass laws requiring background checks on all firearms sales, ban “assault weapons” and high-capacity magazines, and eliminate the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, a...
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NRA Countersues New York Attorney General

March 2, 2021 The latest chapter in the saga of Letitia James’ attempts to dismantle the NRA unfolded this week, as the NRA countersued the New York Attorney General, claiming that she has violated the group’s rights under the New York Constitution and engaged in her present lawsuit to pursue a political vendetta.The counterclaims allege that Ms. James has engaged in selective enforcement of N...
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Biden Considers Executive Action to Control “Ghost Guns”

March 2, 2021 Over the course of last year’s Democratic Party Primary and the General Election, then-Candidate Biden unveiled a gun control agenda that ranged from “common-sense” initiatives to truly outlandish efforts such as banning all online sales of ammunition (if you missed it, you can read Renzulli Law Firm’s summary of the Biden agenda here).However, the Biden administration faces an ...
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SURGE OF ONLINE SCAMMERS IMITATING FIREARMS COMPANIES

February 18, 2021 The Internet is full of scammers, identity thieves, and a host of other criminals.  Everyone knows this, and many people do their best to avoid the ever-evolving schemes that circulate in the digital world. But what happens when the scammer doesn’t target you, but instead goes after your customers?  Using your company name, they trick people into “buying” produ...
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FIREARMS IMPORT-EXPORT UPDATE PART III – ENFORCEMENT OF EXPORT LAWS BY THE DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE AND THE VOLUNTARY SELF-DISCLOSURE PROGRAM

February 12, 2021 This is the third and final update regarding the valuable information obtained from the NSSF’s January 11-14 firearms import-export webinars.  As explained in our January 21 and January 26 updates, jurisdiction over the export of the majority of firearms and ammunition was formally transferred from the Department of State to the Department of Commerce on March 9, 2020.&n...
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UNDERTAKING A RECALL: WHAT A MANUFACTURER SHOULD KNOW

February 5, 2021 UNDERTAKING A RECALL: WHAT A MANUFACTURER SHOULD KNOW  Christopher Renzulli and Howard Schilsky of Renzulli Law Firm, LLP were published in the February 2021 edition of Westchester Lawyer Magazine for their article addressing the legal implications of undertaking a recall.  Whether to issue a recall of a product, and how to effectively proceed in that endeavor, are s...
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TRADEMARK MODERNIZATION ACT OF 2020 ESTABLISHES NEW RULES FOR NON-U.S. OWNERS OF REGISTRATIONS ISSUED UNDER §§ 66(A) AND 44(E) OF U.S. TRADEMARK ACT

February 1, 2021 In the waning days of 2020, the United States Congress enacted and President Trump signed into law the Trademark Modernization Act of 2020 (“TMA”).  The legislation establishes a new category of administrative proceeding within the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) and may significantly impact the way non-U.S. firearms companies and other clients approach their U...
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FIREARMS IMPORT-EXPORT UPDATE PART I – DETERMINING THE APPLICABLE ECCN AND NEED FOR AN EXPORT LICENSE

January 21, 2021 We attended the NSSF’s January 11-14 firearms import-export webinars so that we can pass on the valuable information to those of you who were unable to attend.  As many of you know, jurisdiction over the export of the majority of firearms and ammunition was formally transferred from the Department of State to the Department of Commerce on March 9, 2020.  Most firearm...
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“Hearing Protection Act” Aimed at Eliminating Red Tape for the Purchase of Suppressors Reintroduced in the 117th Congress

January 16, 2021 H.R. 155, the Hearing Protection Act, first introduced to Congress in 2015, was reintroduced on January 4, 2021, by Republican Congressman from South Carolina, Jeff Duncan.  The bill, if passed into law, would remove suppressors from the National Firearms Act (NFA), removing several restrictions on the purchase and possession of suppressors.  A suppressor (sometimes ...
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REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON REINTRODUCES BILL TO ALLOW INTERSTATE CARRY OF CONCEALED HANDGUNS

January 8, 2021 On January 4, 2021, the opening day of the 117th Congress, North Carolina Representative Richard Hudson introduced H.R. 38, the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act (“CCRA”). This bill would allow a qualified individual to carry a concealed firearm in another state that allows individuals to carry concealed firearms. In order to be considered a “qualified individual,” one must be el...
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SUPREME COURT PETITIONED TO ADDRESS NEW YORK CONCEALED CARRY LAW

December 31, 2020 As Renzulli Law Firm reported, New York State Rifle & Pistol Association (NYSRPA) previously challenged New York City’s restriction on traveling with firearms outside of New York City. Although the Supreme Court accepted the case for review, New York City removed its restrictions before the case was heard by the Court. The Court ultimately declined to decide the Second Am...
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THINGS TO REMEMBER WHEN GIFTING FIREARMS THIS HOLIDAY SEASON

December 23, 2020 With the Holidays upon us, the tradition of last minute, frenzied gift buying is in full swing. For sport shooters, hunters, and collectors what could be better than receiving a brand new firearm or a family heirloom that is being passed down to a younger generation? Despite our good intentions, there are legal considerations and potential pitfalls to be aware of when gifting...
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ATF TAKING STEPS TO CLASSIFY PISTOLS WITH STABILIZING BRACES AS SHORT-BARRELED RIFLES

December 18, 2020 The ATF is expected to publish a notice in the Federal Register today regarding “Objective Factors for Classifying Weapons with ‘Stabilizing Braces.’”.  This notice suggests that the ATF is changing its interpretation of firearms with stabilizing braces and will treat the majority of them as short-barreled rifles that are subject to the National Firearms Act (“...
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WHAT DOES A BIDEN ADMINISTRATION MEAN FOR THE FIREARMS INDUSTRY?

December 14, 2020 While President Trump’s legal challenges to the election results continue, it becomes more apparent every day that on January 20, 2021, Joseph R. Biden Jr. will be sworn in as the 46th President of the United States.  What does a Biden administration mean for the firearms industry?Biden’s team released an extensive plan to “End Gun Violence.”  Major components of th...
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RLF CONVINCES PA SUPERIOR COURT TO WITHDRAW DECISION DECLARING THE PLCAA UNCONSTITUTIONAL

December 4, 2020 Renzulli Law Firm was successful in convincing the Pennsylvania Superior Court (the state’s intermediate appellate court) to withdraw its prior decision declaring the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (“PLCAA”) to be unconstitutional.  A September 28, 2020 decision by a three-judge panel had held that Congress did not have the authority to enact the PLCAA pur...
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HAPPY THANKSGIVING – A PERFECT TIME TO HUNT

November 25, 2020 As Thanksgiving Day approaches, we look forward to seeing family and enjoying a fantastic home cooked meal with the people we love.  This is a time to be grateful for the things in our lives that we often take for granted.  For many, however, Thanksgiving is also inescapably linked to hunting season.  Hunters around the country look forward to the Thanksgiving ...
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PROPOSED LEGISLATION SEEKS TO REPEAL RESTRICTIONS ON THE ATF

November 20, 2020 U.S. Representative Don Beyer (D-VA) and U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) recently introduced S. 4841, the ATF Improvement and Modernization Act of 2020 (“AIM Act”) which would repeal numerous restrictions on the ATF that have been added to federal law through appropriations bills over the years.  Among other provisions, the AIM Act would repeal the “Tiahrt...
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FEDERAL LEGISLATION INTRODUCED TO CIRCUMVENT THE PLCAA

November 11, 2020 Democratic members of Congress have introduced the Stopping the Fraudulent Sales of Firearms Act (S. 4718/HR __) to make it easier for plaintiffs to plead around the immunity provided by the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (“PLCAA”).  The Stopping the Fraudulent Sales of Firearms Act is an effort to provide a federal law that would allow plaintiffs th...
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CALIFORNIA VOTES “YES” ON NEW PRIVACY RIGHTS ACT

November 9, 2020 California voters cast their ballots for more than elected officials on Election Night.  In a ballot initiative titled Proposition 24, Californians voted “yes” to strengthen existing data privacy laws with the implementation of the California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA).  The CPRA is intended to strengthen the existing California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), which was ...
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MICHIGAN JUDGE STRIKES DOWN SECRETARY OF STATE’S DIRECTIVE BANNING OPEN CARRY AT POLLING PLACES ON ELECTION DAY

October 31, 2020 Michigan Court of Claims Judge Christopher Murray recently issued a preliminary injunction against Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson’s directive banning the open carry of firearms at polling places on Election Day.  Secretary of State Benson, also acting as the state’s chief elections officer, issued the directive banning open carry at polling places on October 1...
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RLF PROVES FIREARMS DEALER DID IT RIGHT – CASE AND APPEAL DISMISSED (UPDATE)

October 23, 2020 On October 16, 2020 the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania issued an Order declining to review the appeal in a lawsuit by a customer against a Pennsylvania firearms retailer for slander and for allegedly failing to adequately supervise and control its employees during an altercation with  a customer. This ruling brings finality to this matter and highlights the value of common...
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ATF ISSUES UPDATED FIREARMS TRANSFER PROCEDURES

October 6, 2020 The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (“ATF”) recently released two updated Procedure documents, Procedures 2020-1 and 2020-2, which supersede the ATF’s previous guidance regarding the sale and transfer of firearms by FFLs to purchasers off of the FFL’s business premises and an FFL’s facilitation of firearms transfers between private parties. These procedures ...
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SETTLEMENT OF CASE AGAINST MGM ARISING FROM LAS VEGAS SHOOTING

October 6, 2020 Numerous persons who were shot during the October 1, 2017 shooting at the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival in Las Vegas, families of persons who were killed, and others claiming non-physical injuries, previously filed lawsuits against MGM in Nevada state court.  Those cases were consolidated into a single action, captioned Shepherd v. MGM, on September 9.  A settl...
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TEXAS JUSTICE – HANDGUN MANUFACTURER DISMISSED AT EARLY STAGES OF TWO LAWSUITS BASED ON PLCAA IMMUNITY

September 23, 2020 Litigators in the Lone Star State are the first to admit: justice often doesn’t come swiftly in Texas courts.  And parties to lawsuits can attest that when a case drags on through the court system – even where there are strong defenses – it will be a costly endeavor for the client.  RLF bucked this trend for its handgun manufacturer client when it was successful in...
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LEGISLATION INTRODUCED IN NEW LAW TO CIRCUMVENT THE PROTECTION OF LAWFUL COMMERCE IN ARMS ACT

September 11, 2020 A Democratic member of the New York Senate recently introduced S-8926A, which would add a new provision to the General Business Law (proposed Article 39-DDDD), that aims to make it easier to file lawsuits against federal firearms licensees (“FFLs”).  The proposed law seeks to circumvent the immunity provided to FFLs by the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (“PLCAA”) ...
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CALIFORNIA ADOPTS FINAL CCPA REGULATIONS

September 4, 2020 The California Office of Administrative Law (OAL) approved the final proposed regulations for compliance with the California Consumer Protection Act (CCPA).   Enforcement of the first robust data privacy law in the nation commenced on July 1, 2020.  The CCPA was enacted in 2018 and established consumer rights to access to, deletion and sharing of personal information ...
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FOUR CITIES AND EVERYTOWN FOR GUN SAFETY SUE ATF TO CHANGE DEFINITION OF FIREARM

On August 26, 2020, the cities of Syracuse, San Jose, Chicago, and Columbia (SC), and the gun control group Everytown for Gun Safety, sued the ATF in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York seeking to require it to change the definition of a firearm to apply to “ghost guns.” A firearm is defined by the Gun Control Act (“GCA”) to include the “frame or receiver” of any we...
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RICHMOND TO EXPAND BAN ON FIREARMS

August 20, 2020 Last week, Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney introduced an ordinance that would expand the city’s current ban on carrying firearms in city-owned and operated parks and facilities.The new ordinance would “prohibit the possession, carrying or transportation of any firearms in any public street, road, alley, sidewalk, public right-of-way or any open public space when it is being used by...
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A COUNTRY WITHOUT THE NRA?

August 20,2020 The National Rifle Association is generally cast as either a hero or a villain in political debates.  Now the organization is fighting for its existence against what many are calling a purely political maneuver by New York Attorney General Letitia James. The NRA, however, is far more than a collection of political action committees and does far more than raise donations for p...
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NINTH CIRCUIT AFFIRMS DECISION HOLDING THAT CALIFORNIA’S MAGAZINE CAPACITY BAN VIOLATES THE SECOND AMENDMENT

August 17, 2020 California’s 2016 ban on so-called “high capacity magazines” (defined as any magazine holding more than ten rounds of ammunition) has been struck down by the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. A three judge panel issued a decision today holding that California’s ban was not narrowly tailored to the state’s interest in preventing mass shootings,...
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CALIFORNIA MICROSTAMPING BILL PASSED BY SENATE SUBCOMMITTEE

On July 31, 2020, California Bill AB 2847, which revises the criteria for handguns to be certified for sale in California by requiring microstamping in one place on a discharged cartridge, was passed by California’s Senate Public Safety Committee. AB 2847 was proposed following litigation surrounding California’s adoption of Cal. Penal Code § 31910 (b)(7)(A) regarding “unsafe handguns,” which req...
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FIREARMS NEWS AND EVENTS: THIS IS WHAT’S HAPPENING IN NEW YORK

August 10, 2020 Jose Webster Untraceable Firearms Act.  The New York State Senate recently passed the Jose Webster Untraceable Firearms Act, a proposed law that would prohibit the sale of “ghost guns” in New York.  “Ghost Guns” are firearms that are referred to as “untraceable” because they lack serial numbers and are often built from plastics or other materials, and in many cases ha...
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PROTECTION OF A PRODUCT’S DESIGN FEATURES AS “TRADE DRESS”

July 31, 2020 Trademarks are a type of commercial speech.  The presence of a trademark on a product assures the marketplace that all goods bearing the mark come from the same source and are of uniform quality.  To many, the term “trademark” refers to a word, phrase, or design/emblem that appears on a product or its packaging.  While this is true, trademark law in the United States has long rec...
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NEW YORK EXECUTIVE ORDER RESTRICTING FIREARMS RETAILERS HELD CONSTITUTIONAL

July 24, 2020 On March 30, 2020 a firearms retailer based in Long Island, New York, Dark Storm Industries LLC, filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Northern District of New York naming New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and the Empire State Development Corporation (“ESD”) as defendants. The lawsuit alleged that Governor Cuomo’s Executive Order No. 202.6, issued in response t...
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DEPARTMENT OF STATE UPDATES SUPPRESSOR EXPORT REGULATIONS

July 24, 2020 Earlier this month, the Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (“DDTC”), an organization within the Department of State responsible for regulating the import and export of certain defense technology, published a web notice updating its suppressor policy. The notice stated that effective immediately the Department of State has rescinded its April 18, 2020 firearms suppressor policy...
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U.S. SUPREME COURT REJECTS USPTO’S PER SE RULE DENYING REGISTRATION TO “GENERIC.COM” TRADEMARKS

Trademarks help companies communicate with their customers.  The presence of a trademark on a product assures the marketplace that all goods bearing the mark come from the same producer and are of uniform quality.  The system of trademark registration in the United States is administered by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”).  The USPTO generally functions well...
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COLORADO SUPREME COURT UPHOLDS BAN ON MAGAZINES THAT HOLD MORE THAN 15 ROUNDS OF AMMUNITION

On June 29, 2020, in a unanimous opinion, the Colorado Supreme Court upheld the state’s ban on “large-capacity magazines.”  In 2013, the Colorado Governor, John Hickenlooper, signed HB 13-1224 into law. HB 13-1224 banned the sale, transfer, or possession of “large-capacity magazines,” which are defined as “any fixed or detachable magazine, box, drum, feed strip, or similar device capabl...
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ILLINOIS ADOPTS FINAL REGULATIONS GOVERNING FIREARMS DEALERS

June 26, 2020 The Illinois Firearms Dealers License Certification Act was enacted on January 17, 2019.  It required the Illinois State Police (“ISP”) to adopt regulations governing the security measures required to be adopted by all federally licensed firearms dealers that operate retail stores in Illinois.  The permanent regulations adopted by the ISP were approved on June...
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FLORIDA SUPREME COURT REJECTS ASSAULT WEAPON BAN BALLOT INITIATIVE

On June 4, 2020, the Florida Supreme Court rejected as misleading the proposed citizen backed initiative that would have asked Florida citizens to vote in 2022 on whether to amend the Florida Constitution to include an explicit “assault weapon” ban.  Under Florida law, citizens may propose an amendment or revision to any portion(s) of the Florida Constitution by filing a petition with the Se...
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CALIFORNIA ATTORNEY GENERAL SUBMITS FINAL PROPOSED CCPA REGULATIONS

Enforcement of the first robust data privacy law in the nation will commence on July 1, 2020.  The California Consumer Protection Act (CCPA) was enacted in 2018 and established consumer rights to access to, deletion and sharing of personal information that is collected by businesses.  Read more about the CCPA in RLF’s newsletter “Is Your Company Ready for the California Consumer Pr...
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SENATORS STRUGGLE TO FIND SOLUTIONS TO IMPROVE “INSTANT” BACKGROUND CHECKS AMIDST LENGTHY DELAYS

May 29, 2020 Gun sales and the number of instant background checks performed have soared since the COVID-19 lockdown began two months ago.  Due to the rising number of background checks, they have often lagged to the point that “instant” does not always apply.  A group of Republican senators wrote to FBI Director Christopher Ray, proposing ways that the National Instant Criminal Back...
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MARYLAND GOVERNOR VETOES LONG GUN BACKGROUND CHECK FOR PRIVATE SALES

May 22, 2020 In Maryland, as the legislature attempted to criminalize private transfers of long guns, Governor Hogan stood up for gun rights and vetoed the legislation. The bill would have required a Federal Firearms Licensee to facilitate the transfer, with associated fees, and a NICS background check of the transferee before privately selling, renting, loaning or transferring a rif...
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HUNTING AND FISHING DURING THE PANDEMIC – PERHAPS

May 15, 2020 Hunters and anglers across the country have seen major changes in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Not only have many public places been shut down, but the offices issuing permits have been closed in response to the stay-at-home orders issued in various states. This comes at a time when access to firearms and ammunition is inconsistent from state-to-state (as we’ve been reportin...
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PANDEMIC UPDATE IN NEW JERSEY: TENNIS COURTS AND GOLF COURSES — BUT NO SHOOTING RANGES?

May 15, 2020 In New Jersey, following a number of lawsuits seeking the reopening of firearm retailers and Governor Murphy’s subsequent decision to add them to the essential services list, shooting ranges have filed a lawsuit in New Jersey this week over their right to reopen to the public. Owners and operators of shooting ranges are seeing tennis courts and golf courses across the st...
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CANADA BANS “MILITARY STYLE ASSAULT WEAPONS” IN THE WAKE OF MASS SHOOTING

May 4, 2020 Approximately two weeks after Canada’s deadliest mass shooting in its history, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau declared a ban on “military style assault weapons.”  The shooting occurred over a span of two days in April when a lone gunman murdered 22 people in Nova Scotia, Canada.  The shooter did not have a firearms license and used semi-automatic rifles believed to have be...
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US SUPREME COURT DECLINES TO ISSUE SUBSTANTIVE DECISION ON THE SECOND AMENDMENT

April 27, 2020The Supreme Court issued its decision today in the Second Amendment case of New York State Rifle and Pistol Association, Inc. v. City of New York, New York.  The case involved a Second Amendment challenge to restrictions that the City of New York placed on premises pistol permits that prevented permit holders from transporting handguns (unloaded and in a locked case) to another resi...
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CALIFORNIA’S PROPOSITION 63 FOUND UNCONSTITUTIONAL

On April 23, 2020, a federal judge in California held that Proposition 63, which requires background checks to purchase ammunition, violates the Second Amendment.  “The experiment has been tried.  The casualties have been counted.  California’s new ammunition background check law misfires and the Second Amendment rights of California citizens have been gravely injured,” remark...
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NON-ESSENTIAL SECOND AMENDMENT RIGHTS?

April 13, 2020 As we reported in our 3/23/20 newsletter, the NSSF lobbied the White House and the Department of Homeland Security to change its designation of firearms retailers from “non-essential” to “essential.” Although the NSSF was successful, the Department of Homeland Security’s decision effectively gave states the option to close down firearms retailers:  “[t]his list [of essentia...
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ATF ISSUES OPEN LETTER ON FIREARMS SALES BY DEALERS DURING THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC

April 13, 2020 As noted in our April 10, 2020 blast, some states have closed down firearms dealers based on their non-essential business designation.   The majority of states, however, have allowed firearms dealers to remain open for business and demand for firearms is at a record high.  Open firearms dealers, like all other businesses, are being urged to practice social distancing.&...
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RLF PROVES FIREARMS DEALER DID IT RIGHT – CASE AND APPEAL DISMISSED

On March 25, 2020 the Superior Court of Pennsylvania affirmed the dismissal of a lawsuit by a customer against a Pennsylvania firearms retailer for slander and allegedly failing to adequately supervise and control its employees during an altercation with  a customer.  A customer who had lawfully purchased a semi-automatic pistol from the firearms retailer returned two-weeks later and re...
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Renzulli Law Firm Successfully Opposes Second Department Appeal in Oil Spill Case

On March 11, 2020, the Supreme Court of the State of New York Appellate Division, Second Department denied an appeal filed by a New York State Municipality against a private Land Developer.  The appeal was successfully opposed by Renzulli Law Firm.  The case arises from two fuel oil spills that occurred in 2008.  The Municipality sold a large plot of land to the Land Developer in 1...
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THE DESIGNATION OF FIREARMS AND AMMUNITIONS RETAILERS AS “ESSENTIAL” OR “NON-ESSENTIAL” BUSINESSES DURING THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC

March 23, 2020 To combat the spread of COVID-19, multiple states enacted broad restrictions requiring most businesses to close and ordering Americans to stay at home and ensure they wear an n95-mask if they do need to go outside. To date, the states that enacted these restrictive orders include California, New York, Illinois, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Ohio, Louisiana, Connecticut, and Del...
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ILLINOIS APPELLATE COURT: COOK COUNTY FIREARMS AND AMMUNITION TAXES ARE CONSTITUTIONAL

March 20, 2020 An Illinois appellate court upheld an ordinance that imposes a firearms and ammunition tax. The court found that while the tax increases the cost of firearms and ammunition, it does not infringe on the ownership of firearms.  Citing the landmark Supreme Court case District of Columbia v. Heller, the court held that the taxes are at most a “marginal, incremental or even appreciab...
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IS YOUR COMPANY READY FOR THE CALIFORNIA CONSUMER PROTECTION ACT (CCPA)?

Privacy on the internet has been a concern for years and the adoption of laws related to data privacy has been a question of “when,” not “if.”  The answer to that question is “now.”  The California Consumer Protection Act (CCPA) was enacted in 2018 and creates new consumer rights relating to the access to, deletion and sharing of personal information that is collected by businesses.&nbs...
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LEGISLATION INTRODUCED IN MARYLAND TO REGULATE THE FIREARMS INDUSTRY

Legislators in Maryland have recently introduced three house bills designed to regulate various aspects of the firearms industry. Here is the Renzulli Run Down of what you need to know:House Bill 1257 is a proposed amendment to the Firearms Dealers’ Safety Act in Maryland. The Act requires licensed dealers to keep records of all firearms acquisitions and dispositions.  House Bill 1257 would impos...
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LEGISLATION INTRODUCED TO REPEAL THE TIAHRT AMENDMENT

The Tiahrt Amendment, Public Law 112-55, 125 Stat. 609-610, generally prohibits the ATF from disclosing trace data, and records required to be maintained or reported by federal firearms licensees pursuant to the Gun Control Act, such as acquisition and disposition records, Form 4473s, and multiple sale reports.  Exceptions are made for disclosure to law enforcement agencies for use in crimin...
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NEW YORK GOVERNOR PROPOSES NEW GUN CONTROL LAWS

New York law makers began their new session on January 8, 2020, marking the second year since 2010 that Democrats have had full control of the state government. Seizing on this opportunity to prevent Republicans from using their state senate majority to block proposed firearms measures, New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo has proposed six gun control bills in his 2021 Executive Budget.  T...
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LEGISLATION INTRODUCED TO REPEAL THE PLCAA AND TIAHRT AMENDMENT

Although all previous attempts have failed, Democratic members of the Senate and House of Representatives have once again introduced legislation to repeal the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (“PLCAA”) and aspects of the Tiahrt Amendment.  Introduced on June 11, 2019, the “Equal Access to Justice for Victims of Gun Violence Act” comprises just two pages and, if...
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CA SEEKS STAY OF RULING STRIKING DOWN BAN ON STANDARD CAPACITY MAGAZINES; SIGNALS INTENT TO APPEAL

As we recently reported, on March 29, 2019, Judge Benitez of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California issued a decision in the case of Duncan v. Becerra holding that California’s ban on the possession of magazines with a capacity of more than ten rounds (“LCM”) violates the Second Amendment and issued a permanent injunction against the continued enforcement of the ban. ...
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FEDERAL COURT STRIKES DOWN CALIFORNIA BAN ON STANDARD CAPACITY MAGAZINES; APPEAL LIKELY

FEDERAL COURT STRIKES DOWN CALIFORNIA BAN ON STANDARD CAPACITY MAGAZINES; APPEAL LIKELY In a lengthy decision entered on March 29, 2019 in the case of Duncan v. Becerra, a copy of which can be found here, Judge Benitez of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California held that California’s ban on the possession of magazines with a capacity of more than ten rounds violates the...
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