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Concealed Carry Law Changes Impact Employer Policies

Posted on March 01, 2017

With Governor Kasich’s signature on December 19, 2016, a bill expanding Ohio citizens’ right to carry concealed firearms became law. Most notably, S.B. 199 will lift the current ban on carrying concealed weapons on college campuses, day cares and public areas of airports.  The bill permits the Boards of Trustees of any institution of higher learning to adopt policies and rules that permit certain individuals to carry concealed weapons on their campuses.  The bill also provides active duty members of the military who have completed appropriate firearms training with the right to carry a concealed weapon without a concealed carry license.

Employers should be aware of a less publicized change within the bill. Effective March 21, 2017, Ohio Revised Code Section 2923.1210 will prohibit employers (and all private property owners) from establishing, maintaining or enforcing any rule or policy that prohibits a person with a valid concealed carry license from storing a firearm or ammunition in a car on their private property.  To comply with the new law, the firearm and ammunition must remain in the vehicle while the owner is physically present, and if the owner exits the vehicle, the firearm and/or ammunition must be locked in the trunk glove box or other enclosed compartment within the vehicle.  The law also provides private property owners with immunity for any civil liability resulting from another person’s actions in regard to a firearm that is stored on their private property.

Employers need to review their policies and signage regarding weapons to ensure they do not improperly prohibit licensed concealed carry holders from storing firearms within their locked vehicles within the employer’s parking lot. If you have any questions regarding this new law, contact the attorneys at Harpst Ross, Ltd.Business Lawyers for the Construction Industry®, at (330) 983-9971.

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