Unless you have been living under a rock, you should be aware that Florida Carry has filed and won lawsuits against colleges and universities to protect the individual right of self-defense on campus. Additional cases are pending.
Florida Carry v. UNF - Right to bear arms in private vehicles.
Florida Carry v. UF - Right to bear arms in private vehicles and inside the home.
Florida Carry v. Eastern FL State - Right to bear arms in private vehicles.
Florida Carry v. St. Petersburg College - Right to bear arms in private vehicles and carry non/less-lethal defensive weapons on campus.
We take no pleasure in being forced to file these lawsuits but we will not sit idly by while colleges and universities repeatedly fail to protect their students from criminal attack while illegally infringing on their right to bear arms for their own defense. In Florida Carry v. UNF we clearly established that colleges and universities must comply with state law and the constitutional right to keep and bear arms. It is shocking that so many colleges have chosen to disobey the law and continue their illegal violations of the right to bear arms even after the clear decision of the court of appeals. We will continue to demand that colleges and universities cease their illegal activities and respect the right to bear arms.
Florida Carry also fully supports the mission of the Students for Concealed Carry and has extended reciprocal Florida Carry membership to their Florida members since 2011.
You may legally posses a firearm in your personal vehicle (Handguns must be "securely encased") at any Florida public Career Center (tech school), College, or University. It is also legal to store a firearm in your personal vehicle at any private school. Private schools may however attempt to impose academic sanctions. It is also legal for a registered student, employee, or faculty member of a college or university who has a valid concealed carry license to carry a concealed stun gun or nonlethal electric weapon/device designed solely for defensive purposes as long as it does not fire a dart or projectile.
If your college, career center, or university is violating these rights, please contact us.
This information is provided to educate our members and is not an endorsement of any particular plan.
Lately there have been a lot of new companies trying to sell different forms of self-defense insurance. None that I am aware of are true insurance plans. They are membership organizations sometimes with an insurance company backing them. You should be very careful when purchasing any of these plans since there are a wide variety of plans with very different coverage. It is your responsibility to make sure that you know what you are getting.
None of the plans in my opinion offer everything that a person might need, but if you shop carefully, the right two plans should cover almost anyone's needs. Because of the different needs of individuals Florida Carry cannot make a recommendation on what company you should buy this coverage from, but the companies listed at the bottom of this article (in no particular order) are some of the better companies on the market. This should not be taken as an endorsement, nor should you rely solely on this information in making your decision.
A few important questions need to be asked up front before purchasing any of these memberships. A bad answer to any of these questions does not mean that company is not acceptable, but you need to know what you are paying for.
1. Can you pick your own attorney, or do you have to use someone they select?
2. If you already have an attorney in mind, is he already included in their network? If not, why?
3. Do they have a referral network of attorneys and experts?
4. Do they have a 24 hour response hotline?
5. Does the plan cover you as costs are incurred or does it only pay if acquitted?
6. Does it only cover attorneys fees or other costs as well? (such as bail and expert witnesses.)
7. How long have they been in existence?
8. What organizations are they affiliated with?
9. What is covered?
Use of a firearm, possession (printing, accidental exposure), criminal attorney fees, civil attorney fees, civil damages, weapons used other than firearms, other self defense not involving a firearm?
9. What is the financial backing of the organization?
10. Is it backed by an insurance company and is that company "A" rated?
One plan that is not insurance backed that should be considered regardless of insurance backing is Armed Citizen Legal Defense Network (ACLDN). Its resources make it a contender even without insurance backing.
After carefully considering all of these factors, buy what suits your needs. Don't forget to check your homeowner's policy as well to see if it covers you for reasonable use of force in your home.
A few companies to consider (in no particular order).
Armed Citizen Legal Defense Network- www.armedcitizensnetwork.org
Defenders Choice- www.defenderschoice.com
US Concealed Carry Association (USCCA)- www.usconcealedcarry.com
Special thanks to Patrick Buckley, Esq., Consulting Attorney, Florida Carry, Inc., for his assistance with this article.
Florida Carry, Inc.
October 24, 2011 - HB 179 Withdrawn
House Bill 179, Possession of Weapons on School Property, was withdrawn today prior to introduction by its sponsor, Rep. Ari Porth (D-Coral Springs). The bill would have criminalized of common pocketknives at school sponsored events, on school property, school buses, or at a school bus stop. Incredible as it seems, a boy scout found in posession of an official Boy Scout pocketknife would have been charged with a THIRD DEGREE FELONY under the ill-conceived bill.
In an over-zealous crusade against the tool, rather than the misuse of it, Rep. Porth was willing to destroy the future of children, parents, faculty, and staff. This is simply unforgiveable. What's next? Nail clippers?
Florida Carry and its membership, in close association with KnifeRights.org, takes great pride in leading the charge to get this bill squashed before it created unknowing felons out of the very cream of American youth, the Boy Scouts.
So, you have your Florida Concealed Weapon or Firearm License (CWFL) and you know that Florida preempts all firearms laws throughout the state so that you don't accidentally break some ridiculous local ordinance and end up in the hoosegow for carrying your weapon. You have a license from the state and we fought hard to make preemption enforceable last legislative session!
Well, you are half right. Your pistol won't get you in trouble but your pocket knife could put you away for a MINIMUM of six months, cost you a cool grand, and yeah... they'll take your knife too.
But wait! I have a license from the state to carry that! Yep you do, but not from Miami-Dade County and your assisted opening pocket knife just violated their laws.
(a) Concealed dangerous weapons. It shall be unlawful for any person to wear under his clothes, or concealed about his person, or to display in a threatening manner any dangerous or deadly weapon including, but not by way of limitation, any pistol, revolver, slingshot, cross-knuckles or knuckles of lead, brass or other metal, or any bowie knife, razor, dirk, dagger, or any knife resembling a bowie knife, or any other dangerous or deadly weapon, except as hereinafter provided.
(b) Switch blades. It shall be unlawful for any person to sell, offer to sell, display, use, possess or carry any knife or knives having the appearance of a pocket knife, the blade or blades of which can be opened by a flick of a button, pressure on the handle, or other mechanical contrivance. Any such knife is hereby declared to be a dangerous or deadly weapon, within the meaning of subsection (a) and shall be subject to forfeiture to the County as provided by subsection (c).
(e) Penalty. Every person who is convicted for a violation of subsection (a) shall for first conviction thereof be punished by imprisonment for not less than six (6) months and by a fine of not less than one thousand dollars ($1,000.00); for a second or subsequent conviction of a violation of subsection (a) such person shall be punished by imprisonment for not less than one (1) year and by a fine of not less than one thousand dollars ($1,000.00).
Come on, nobody gets arrested for a pocket knife! Pulino's chef Nate Appleman arrested for pocket knife.
There were even bills in the 2012 Florida legislature to ban common pocketknives from university campuses. HB179 and SB356. See here for a satirical look at the: "Bill to Stop Dangerous Cubs Scouts and ROTC Who Terrorize Schools and Colleges"
These Florida pocketknife charges still go all the way to the US Supreme Court ever after the Florida Supreme Court said that folding knives with a blade length of 4" or less are common pocket knives. See Bunkley v. Florida, 538 US 835 - Supreme Court (2003)
This gives us a bad mix of a patchwork of local laws and people thinking that they have a license that lets them carry the weapons, that the license is good for, statewide. We need a preemption statute to cover our other carry weapons and knives.
West Palm Beach is now banning all knives and weapons except firearms from its library and City Hall.
Ft. Lauderdale has adopted new ordinances to ban knives and other weapons that may commonly be carried at outdoor events like parades and local festivals.
Florida Carry had just started kicking around language for a bill when out of the blue, Florida Carry Board Member Richard Smith ran smack in to our friends at Knife Rights. They just passed knife preemption in Arizona and are looking for help the rest of the states.
It's time open the second front in the fight to protect your Second Amendment Rights in Florida!
Florida Carry Sues Over University Parking Lot Gun Ban
Florida Carry, Inc. has filed a lawsuit against the University of North Florida (UNF), seeking a permanent injunction against enforcement or promulgation of its unlawful ban on firearms and weapons that are properly stored in student's private automobiles. We also seek a court order to repeal their unlawful regulations and remove all preempted signs/publications. Since 1987 the Florida Legislature has preempted firearms law and issued statewide licenses to carry for self-defense.
Florida Carry filed this case on behalf of Florida Gun Owners and our members. One such member, Alexandria Lainez, is a single mother who has received extensive training in firearms and self-defense to be prepared to protect herself and her young child should that horrible need arise. Alexandria is a full time student at UNF and worries that she has to choose between her family's safety and her education on a daily basis while attending college.
No public college or university has any authority to prevent students from having a firearm in their car as long as the firearm is lawfully possessed under state law. Any public college or university which attempts to restrict students’ rights on this issue is subject to being sued under Florida Firearms Preemption law which was amended in 2011 to make the then 24 year-old statute easier to enforce by organizations like Florida Carry.
Docket Overview: Lower Court Case Number: 2011-CA-08012
Duval County Clerk of the Circuit Court
Lower Court Filings:
10/03/2011 Plaintiffs' Original Complaint
11/10/2011 Plaintiffs' Motion for Temporary Injunction
12/15/2011 Defendants' Motion to Dismiss
01/04/2012 Plaintiffs' Amended Complaint
01/25/2012 Defendants' Second Motion to Dismiss
01/27/2012 Defendants' Memo of Law Opposing Temporary Injunction
03/21/2012 Plaintiffs' Notice of Priority Case & Motion for Ruling
03/22/2012 Order Denying Temp. Injunction
03/26/2012 Plaintiffs' Memo of Law Opposing Motion to Dismiss
04/03/2012 Final Order Granting Motion to Dismiss
04/26/2012 Plaintiffs' Notice of Appeal
Docket Overview: Appellate Court Case Number: 1D12-2174
Florida First District Court of Appeal Docket
Appellate Court Filings:
04/27/2012 Plaintiffs' Notice of Appeal