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Carrying as a non-immigrant alien

Discussion in 'Carry Issues' started by BritStudent, Jan 4, 2010.

  1. BritStudent

    BritStudent

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    Hi,

    First some background. I've just turned 21, and I'm a British student at a university here in the UK. I finish my degree next year and I'm planning on coming to the US to do my Phd and eventually get a green card and stay there permanently. There's many reasons I want to study in the US, and many reasons I'd like to move, but one of them is that I believe in the right to defend one's self and in the United States people enjoy the right to carry the tools to defend themselves if, god forbid, they should need to. A luxury I do not enjoy in my own country but would like to share.

    I'm looking at universities in several states, but one of the most likely spots for me to touch down is Duke in Durham, North Carolina, so I'll use this as a sort of example, but I'd also like information on other states with schools I'm looking at such as CT, RI, NY, NJ, PA, MI, MN, OH and VA. A Phd course takes 5 years usually, so I'll be there a while. I can't get a green card until I can get an offer of long term employment in a skilled or professional job, which means finishing my Phd. So for those 5 years I'll be a non-immigrant on an F1 student visa.

    Now I've been told that only citizens and immigrants (i.e. green card holders) can own guns at all, let alone get CCW permits. This comes from the Federal law:

    Note the exemption for subsection (y)(2). That section reads:

    So, if a non-immigrant has a US hunting license, he can own guns. The North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission website says re: hunting licenses:

    So, as far as I can tell, I can get a hunting license, legally own firearms and, since NC has no law against it, carry them openly. However, while that's all good to know, I'd much rather carry concealed if possible.

    Unfortunately, the Durham County Government website says re: CCW permits:

    So what I need to find is:

    Somewhere that will issue non-citizens who are residents in other states, non-resident permits, and that has reciprocity in NC (and/or the other states I'm looking at).

    I think such a state may be Utah. The FAQ on the Utah Department of Public Safety says:

    This implies that I need to be a citizen, but I believe this is poor wording/a mistake on the part of whoever wrote the website.

    This is the text of Utah's CCW law and I see no residency or citizenship requirement in there. The law says they must issue an applicant a CCW if they are 21 years of age or older (I am), within 60 days, unless they can prove that the applicant is not of good character, with a list of things that satisfactorily demonstrate good character. Every item on the list applies to me. The only one concerning citizenship is:

    That Utah law's (Section 76-10-503) only mention of citizenship is that it is illegal to possess guns if the following applies to you:

    Since I will be legally and lawfully in the United States, I am qualified to purchase and possess a firearm pursuant to Section 76-10-503. I am also qualified under federal law as I explained above because I will have a hunting license, which exempts me from the federal bar on non-resident aliens.

    So, usually a non-resident would be barred from getting a Utah CCW because they're not qualified to possess guns under federal law. But I will be, so I qualify under federal law and meet all the other requirements for good character.

    Can someone confirm that I can indeed get a Utah CCW permit as a non-immigrant alien and non-resident of Utah, providing I hold a US hunting license?

    I'll just add, before anyone points it out, that I know NC does not allow carry on educational property. Obviously, not all my time is spent on campus!

    On another forum where I posted this, one helpful poster linked me to the law Washington State Department of licensing section on Alien Firearms Licenses. This is another layer of bureaucracy that Washington has (I don't believe most other states have such a thing) but it's the only place I've seen someone actually confirm that someone in my situation can indeed get a CCW, at least in Washington state:

     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2010
  2. IndyGunFreak

    IndyGunFreak

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    I think you're gonna have a tough time finding a state that will issue a carry permit to someone who is not a citizen.

    Good luck...

    IGF
     

  3. betyourlife

    betyourlife on a GLOCK

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    Yeah, good luck trying to get a permit to carry as an alien. You might think that states that require no permit are some kind of haven, but the reality is that their laws likely prohibit you from even possessing a single round of .22 ammunition, let alone a firearm.
     
  4. BritStudent

    BritStudent

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    See my original post. Most states will issue to non-citizens who are immigrants. Arizona and Washington certainly issue to non-citizens even if they are not immigrants, and so far as I can tell so does Utah. Arizona and Washington, however, require you to be a resident of the state (or be a citizen if not a resident of the state). If I were going to study in Arizona or Washington I'd be fine. Utah I think does not require you to be either so I think I can indeed get a non-resident Utah CCW and use it in states with reciprocity, but I want to check I'm not missing anything.

    Also I see nothing in Rhode Island law that prevents a non-immigrant alien who has a hunting license from getting a CCW, but the Attorney General can decides which applications to approve/block so I'm not sure what my chances are.

    I haven't looked at all the states though, was hoping others might know the law in their state to save me trawling through 50 different sets of statutes.
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2010
  5. Palouse

    Palouse The Resistance Lifetime Member

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    What are you studying? I work on a univ. campus in Washington, which is why I'm asking. We've had several PhD and post-docs from Manchester through our department. One got his PhD and he and his wife (also from the UK) are now working and living in Idaho.

    Both AK and VT do not require permits for citizens, but I've no idea if that spills over to non-resident aliens. Something to look into.
     
  6. MJC

    MJC

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    Have you looked @ Idaho?
     
  7. BritStudent

    BritStudent

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    Economics. I am looking at University of Washington actually, but details of funding (I need full funding) on their website don't make me optimistic "there are a number of assistantships available to some students of high academic merit." A number? Some? :whistling:

    Good call, I just checked Idaho state law and it's almost identical to Utah. I can't see any citizenship or residency requirement, and it has reciprocity with NC :supergrin:
     
  8. Lotus000

    Lotus000

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    Perhaps the best place to go is the Sheriff's office of the county where you'll reside once you come for your Doctorate. I know that in North Carolina, it'd be either Orange County or Durham County, depending on how close you wanted to be to Duke should you decide on their econ program.

    Just generally, though, they would be able to steer you towards the right path in obtaining a CCW as a 'carded' alien. If you do think you're going to stay here, why not simply consider nationalizing, or obtaining dual-citizenship? I think the latter would be quite simple to obtain given your current British nationality.

    By the way, I'll give a plug for Duke--my undergrad degree is in Econ from them--good program there.
     
  9. betyourlife

    betyourlife on a GLOCK

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    In WA you have to be a Permanent Resident or US Citizen. I believe they used to issue some kind of aien firearms license, but I'm not sure if they still do or what is required of it, but more than likely you have to be an immigrant alien.

    I don't have time to read through the law right now, but here is a link to WA state laws regarding firearms:

    http://apps.leg.wa.gov/RCW/default.aspx?Cite=9.41
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2010
  10. sourdough44

    sourdough44

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    Looks like you did some research. You should also check out handgunlaw.us , they have some good info. When you get over here I'd also look into taking a 'hunters safety' class. I know we're talking CC & gun ownership but it can help in other ways with shooting & 'open carry' in the woods. Good luck.
     
  11. hikerpaddler

    hikerpaddler

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    You don't need to be a citizen, but you need a green card.
     
  12. alexcc

    alexcc

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    Bump - I'm interested in this too and have never found out exactly what the laws are. If I come over I might only be moving in about 3 years - please let us know when you have a definitely answer :)
     
  13. Bren

    Bren NRA Life Member

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    Yes, generally any alien that can possess a gun under 922(g) can get a permit. it is unconstitutional for a state to require citizenship. My office had to defend this issue a couple of years ago against a suit by a British attorney who lives in Kentucky, after our legislature changed the statute (against our advice) and required citizenship. The attorney got his permit and $50,000.
     
  14. mad.gunsmith

    mad.gunsmith NRA and GSSF Life Member Silver Member

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  15. Palouse

    Palouse The Resistance Lifetime Member

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    Personally, I'd try to get into the best economics school I could, earn your doctorate, and then worry about getting resident status and a carry permit. Don't go to a potentially mediocre school just because the state it's in allows you to carry.
     
  16. HerrGlock

    HerrGlock Scouts Out CLM

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    It looks like you're getting some good points at usacarry.com too :supergrin:

    (edit) Used to be Utah would issue to non-US citizens but someone poked around and figured out how many Canadian citizens had Utah permits and now they'll only issue to US citizens.

    yes, you must be a US citizen to have a NC CCW permit as of right now.

    Try Pennsylvania. You do not have to be a US citizen apparently to get a CCW license.

    North Dakota makes it illegal for a non-citizen to fire a firearm within city limits except in self defense. Don't understand that one, though :)

    If you get any permit, apply for a New Hampshire permit. NC accepts a NH permit.
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2010
  17. HerrGlock

    HerrGlock Scouts Out CLM

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    Now that I'm looking, I cannot find where they actually changed the law to forbid non-immigrant aliens from getting CCW permits in Utah. I remember it being in all the UT papers and a big bruhaha going on over it for a while, though. Maybe the papers forgot about it before it got finalized.

    This is one for this particular number and email address:

    If you have any questions for the BCI Firearms Division, you may contact us by phone (801) 965-4445 or eMail to DPSFIREARMS@utah.gov.
     
  18. CitizenOfDreams

    CitizenOfDreams

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    Here in Florida, a non-immigrant alien can buy guns if he has a hunting licence.
    For concealed carry permit you have to be a permanent resident (green card).
    No restrictions for ammunition except for age check.
     
  19. Indy_Guy_77

    Indy_Guy_77 Thread Killer

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    You can here in Indiana...

    Perhaps look into Indiana University's Kelley School of Business; one of the better business colleges in the country.

    You can certainly own firearms with your "green card", and I know of a guy from Luxembourg, a green-card holder, who has his carry permit.

    Indiana is a shall-issue state and we have some quite "relaxed" firearms laws.

    -J-
     
  20. HerrGlock

    HerrGlock Scouts Out CLM

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    Seems the OP is talking about before he gets a green card. Getting the permit as a non-resident alien on a student visa or similar.