January 3, 2014: The last week has produced both clarification and confusion for New Yorkers interested in complying with the NY SAFE Act.  Tuesday marked the conclusion (at least for the moment) of the most comprehensive legal challenge to the NY SAFE Act. That lawsuit, filed in early 2013 by the New York State Rifle and Pistol Association, asserted that various provisions of the NY SAFE Act violated the Second Amendment, were void for vagueness and also violated the dormant commerce clause as an excessive burden on interstate commerce. Renzulli Law Firm filed an amicus brief on behalf of the NSSF and in support of the New York State Rifle and Pistol Association.  On Tuesday, U.S. District Judge William Skretny, of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of New York, concluded that parts of the statute were unconstitutional. 
Specifically, the judge found that permitting possession of 10 round magazines while prohibiting loading such magazines with more than 7 rounds violated the Second Amendment as it would not serve New York State’s claimed purpose of reducing violence.  Judge Skretny also found several provisions to be void for vagueness, including references to “muzzle break” (as opposed to “muzzle brake”) and provisions prohibiting semi-automatic “versions” of automatic firearms.  Despite these findings, however, Judge Skretny also rejected the dormant commerce clause and a number of other void for vagueness challenges, and found that the assault weapons and large capacity magazine restrictions did not violate the Second Amendment as New Yorkers are still able to arm themselves.  Just after 3pm today, the plaintiffs in the case filed a notice of appeal concerning Judge Skretny’s decision.  A copy of the 54-page decision is available

Last Friday, the NY State Police released information concerning the seller of ammunition registration provisions which become effective January 15, 2014.  Notably, the NY State Police announced that existing NY FFLs will be automatically registered as sellers of ammunition, while other businesses interested in selling ammunition must complete a registration form which must be postmarked no later than January 15, 2014.  The Frequently Asked Questions section at www.nysafeact.com has since been updated.   A copy of the announcement from the NY State Police is available here, and a copy of the registration form is available here.