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Tennessee Gun Laws

last updated: February 5, 2017

Gun laws are posted here as a courtesy only and are updated as often as possible. Please check with the actual state website for any additions / revisions to law that may have been made. Up to date information can be found at http://www.lexisnexis.com/hottopics/tncode/.

Tennessee Constitution Article I, Section 26

That the citizens of this State have a right to keep and to bear arms for their common defense; but the Legislature shall have power, by law, to regulate the wearing of arms with a view to prevent crime.

TITLE 4 - STATE GOVERNMENT

CHAPTER 54 - Tennessee Firearms Freedom Act

§4-54-101 - Short title

This chapter shall be known and may be cited as the "Tennessee Firearms Freedom Act."

HISTORY: Acts 2009, ch. 435, § 2.

§4-54-102 - Constitutional authority

The general assembly declares that the authority for this chapter is the following:

  1. The tenth amendment to the United States constitution guarantees to the states and their people all powers not granted to the federal government elsewhere in the constitution and reserves to the state and people of this state certain powers as they were understood at the time that this state was admitted to statehood. The guarantee of those powers is a matter of contract between the state and people of this state and the United States as of the time that the compact with the United States was agreed upon and adopted by this state and the United States;
  2. The ninth amendment to the United States constitution guarantees to the people rights not granted in the constitution and reserves to the people of this state certain rights as they were understood at the time that this state was admitted to statehood. The guarantee of those rights is a matter of contract between the state and people of this state and the United States as of the time that the compact with the United States was agreed upon and adopted by this state and the United States;
  3. The regulation of intrastate commerce is vested in the states under the ninth and tenth amendments to the United States constitution, particularly if not expressly preempted by federal law. Congress has not expressly preempted state regulation of intrastate commerce pertaining to the manufacture on an intrastate basis of firearms, firearms accessories and ammunition;
  4. The second amendment to the United States constitution reserves to the people the right to keep and bear arms as that right was understood at the time that this state was admitted to statehood, and the guarantee of the right is a matter of contract between the state and people of this state and the United States as of the time that the compact with the United States was agreed upon and adopted by this state and the United States; and
  5. The Tennessee constitution clearly secures to Tennessee citizens, and prohibits government interference with, the right of individual Tennessee citizens to keep and bear arms.

HISTORY: Acts 2009, ch. 435, § 3.

§4-54-103 - Chapter definitions

As used in this chapter, unless the context otherwise requires:

  1. "Firearms accessories" means items that are used in conjunction with or mounted upon a firearm but are not essential to the basic function of a firearm, including, but not limited to, telescopic or laser sights, magazines, flash or sound suppressors, folding or aftermarket stocks and grips, speedloaders, ammunition carriers and lights for target illumination;
  2. "Generic and insignificant parts" includes, but is not limited to, springs, screws, nuts and pins; and
  3. "Manufactured" means creating a firearm, a firearm accessory or ammunition from basic materials for functional usefulness, including, but not limited to, forging, casting, machining or other processes for working materials.

HISTORY: Acts 2009, ch. 435, § 4.

§4-54-104 - Firearms, firearm accessories and ammunition manufactured in this state not subject to federal regulation under interstate commerce clause

A personal firearm, a firearm accessory or ammunition that is manufactured commercially or privately in this state and that remains within the borders of this state is not subject to federal law or federal regulation, including registration, under the authority of congress to regulate interstate commerce. It is declared by the legislature that those items have not traveled in interstate commerce. This section applies to a firearm, a firearm accessory or ammunition that is manufactured in this state from basic materials and that can be manufactured without the inclusion of any significant parts imported into this state. Generic and insignificant parts that have other manufacturing or consumer product applications are not firearms, firearms accessories or ammunition, and their importation into this state and incorporation into a firearm, a firearm accessory or ammunition manufactured in this state does not subject the firearm, firearm accessory or ammunition to federal regulation. It is declared by the legislature that basic materials, such as unmachined steel and unshaped wood, are not firearms, firearms accessories or ammunition and are not subject to congressional authority to regulate firearms, firearms accessories and ammunition under interstate commerce as if they were actually firearms, firearms accessories or ammunition. The authority of congress to regulate interstate commerce in basic materials does not include authority to regulate firearms, firearms accessories and ammunition made in this state from those materials. Firearms accessories that are imported into this state from another state and that are subject to federal regulation as being in interstate commerce do not subject a firearm to federal regulation under interstate commerce because they are attached to or used in conjunction with a firearm in this state.

HISTORY: Acts 2009, ch. 435, § 5.

§4-54-105 - Application of § 4-54-104

Section 4-54-104 shall not apply to:

  1. A firearm that cannot be carried and used by one (1) person;
  2. A firearm that has a bore diameter greater than one and one half inches (1 1/2'') and that uses smokeless powder, not black powder, as a propellant;
  3. Ammunition with a projectile that explodes using an explosion of chemical energy after the projectile leaves the firearm; or
  4. A firearm that discharges two (2) or more projectiles with one (1) activation of the trigger or other firing device.

HISTORY: Acts 2009, ch. 435, § 6.

§4-54-106 - Firearm must be clearly stamped with words "Made in Tennessee"

A firearm manufactured or sold in this state under this chapter must have the words "Made in Tennessee" clearly stamped on a central metallic part, such as the receiver or frame.

HISTORY: Acts 2009, ch. 435, § 7.

TITLE 38 - PREVENTION AND DETECTION OF CRIME

CHAPTER 2 - Self Defense

§38-2-101 - Lawful resistance -- By whom made

Lawful resistance to the commission of a public offense may be made by the party about to be injured, or by others.

HISTORY: Code 1858, §4928; Shan., §6889; Code 1932, §11413; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), §38-101.

§38-2-102 - Resistance by party about to be injured

Resistance sufficient to prevent the offense may be made by the party about to be injured to prevent an:

  1. Offense against the party's person; or
  2. Illegal attempt by force to take or injure property in the party's lawful possession.

HISTORY: Code 1858, §4929; Shan., §6890; Code 1932, §11414; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), §38-102.

§38-2-103 - Resistance by others

Any other person, in aid or defense of the person about to be injured, may make resistance sufficient to prevent the offense.

HISTORY: Code 1858, §4930; Shan., §6891; Code 1932, §11415; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), §38-103.

Chapter 3 - Public Officers Preventing Commission of Offenses

§38-3-115 - (2016) No public funds, personnel or property of state to be allocated to enforce federal laws governing firearms where it would violate state laws
  1. On or after July 1, 2015, no public funds of this state, or any political subdivision of this state, shall be allocated to the implementation, regulation, or enforcement of any federal law, executive order, rule, or regulation regulating the ownership, use, or possession of firearms, ammunition, or firearm accessories.
  2. On or after July 1, 2015, no personnel or property of this state, or any political subdivision of this state, shall be allocated to the implementation, regulation, or enforcement of any federal law, executive order, rule, or regulation regulating the ownership, use, or possession of firearms, ammunition, or firearm accessories.
    1. On or after July 1, 2016, no personnel or property of this state, or any political subdivision of this state, shall be allocated to the implementation, regulation, or enforcement of any international law or treaty regulating the ownership, use, or possession of firearms, ammunition, or firearm accessories, if the use of personnel or property would result in the violation of another Tennessee statute, Tennessee common law, or the Constitution of Tennessee.
    2. On or after July 1, 2016, no public funds of this state, or any political subdivision of this state, shall be allocated to the implementation, regulation, or enforcement of any international law or treaty regulating the ownership, use, or possession of firearms, ammunition, or firearm accessories, if the expenditure of public funds would result in the violation of another Tennessee statute, Tennessee common law, or the Constitution of Tennessee.
  3. For purposes of this section, "firearm" has the same meaning as defined in § 39-11-106.

HISTORY: 2015, ch. 380, §1; 2016 ch. 864 § 1

CHAPTER 9 - Civil Emergencies

§38-9-101 - (2013) Chapter definitions

As used in this chapter, unless the context otherwise requires:

  1. "Chief administrative officer" means the mayor of any municipality incorporated under the general law pursuant to title 6, chapter 1, part 2, or of any metropolitan government as chartered pursuant to the provisions of title 7, chapter 1; and the city manager of any municipality incorporated pursuant to the provisions of title 6, chapter 18, or of any municipality incorporated pursuant to title 6, chapter 30. In the case of other municipalities the chief administrative officer shall be the city manager or if there be none, the mayor. Any municipality, however, may by ordinance, specially designate any official as chief administrative officer for purposes of this chapter;
  2. "Civil emergency" means:
    1. A riot or unlawful assembly characterized by the use of actual force or violence or a threat to use force, if accompanied by the immediate power to execute, by three (3) or more persons acting together without authority of law;
    2. Any natural disaster or man-made calamity, including, but not limited to, flood, conflagration, cyclone, tornado, earthquake or explosion within the geographic limits of a municipality resulting in the death or injury of persons, or the destruction of property to such an extent that extraordinary measures must be taken to protect the public health, safety and welfare; and
    3. The destruction of property, or the death or injury of persons brought about by the deliberate acts of one (1) or more persons acting either alone or in concert with others, when such acts are a threat to the peace of the general public or any segment of the general public;
  3. "Curfew" means a prohibition against any person or persons walking, running, loitering, standing or motoring upon any alley, street, highway, public property or vacant premises within the corporate limits of the municipality, except persons officially designated to duty with reference to the civil emergency, or those lawfully on the streets as defined in this chapter; and
  4. "Substitute officer" means an official who shall act in the absence or inability to act of the chief administrative officer as provided in this chapter. Each municipality shall by ordinance designate a "substitute officer" for the purpose of this chapter.

HISTORY: Acts 1968, ch. 485, §1; 1971, ch. 57, §1; T.C.A., §38-901.

§38-9-102 - (2013) Proclamation of civil emergency

When, in the judgment of the chief administrative officer of a municipality, a civil emergency as defined in this chapter is determined to exist, the officer shall immediately proclaim in writing the existence of the civil emergency, a copy of which proclamation will be filed with the clerk of the municipality, or if there is none, with the recorder.

HISTORY: Acts 1968, ch. 485, §2; T.C.A., §38-902.

§38-9-103 - (2013) General curfew

After proclamation of a civil emergency by the chief administrative officer, the officer may order a general curfew applicable to the geographical areas of the municipality or to the municipality as a whole, as the officer deems advisable, and applicable during those hours of the day or night the officer deems necessary in the interest of the public safety and welfare. The proclamation and general curfew shall have the force and effect of law and shall continue in effect until rescinded in writing by the chief administrative officer, but not to exceed fifteen (15) days.

HISTORY: Acts 1968, ch. 485, §3; T.C.A., §38-903.

§38-9-104 - (2013) Restrictive orders

After proclamation of a civil emergency, the chief administrative officer may, at the officer's discretion, in the interest of public safety and welfare:

  1. Order the closing of all retail liquor stores;
  2. Order the closing of all establishments where beer or alcoholic beverages are served;
  3. Order the closing of all private clubs or portions of private clubs where the consumption of intoxicating liquor or beer is permitted;
  4. Order the discontinuance of the sale of beer;
  5. Order the discontinuance of selling, distribution, or giving away of gasoline or other liquid flammable or combustible products in any container other than a gasoline tank properly affixed to a motor vehicle;
  6. Order the closing of gasoline stations, and other establishments, the chief activity of which is the sale, distribution or dispensing of liquid flammable or combustible products;
  7. Order the discontinuance of selling, distributing, dispensing or giving away any firearms or ammunition of any character whatsoever;
  8. Order the closing of any or all establishments or portions of establishments, the chief activity of which is the sale, distribution, dispensing or giving away of firearms or ammunition; and
  9. Issue such other orders as are necessary for the protection of life and property.

HISTORY: Acts 1968, ch. 485, §4; T.C.A., §38-904.

TITLE 39 - CRIMINAL OFFENSES

CHAPTER 11 - General Provisions

Part 2 - Burden Of Proof

§39-11-201 - Burden of proof
  1. No person may be convicted of an offense unless each of the following is proven beyond a reasonable doubt:
    1. The conduct, circumstances surrounding the conduct, or a result of the conduct described in the definition of the offense;
    2. The culpable mental state required;
    3. The negation of any defense to an offense defined in this title if admissible evidence is introduced supporting the defense; and
    4. The offense was committed prior to the return of the formal charge.
  2. In the absence of the proof required by subsection (a), the innocence of the person is presumed.
  3. A person charged with an offense has no burden to prove innocence.
  4. Evidence produced at trial, whether presented on direct or cross-examination of state or defense witnesses, may be utilized by either party.
  5. No person may be convicted of an offense unless venue is proven by a preponderance of the evidence.
  6. If the issue is raised in defense, no person shall be convicted of an offense unless jurisdiction and the commission of the offense within the time period specified in title 40, chapter 2 are proven by a preponderance of the evidence.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1; 1990, ch. 1030, §3.

§39-11-202 - Exception
  1. An exception to an offense in this title is so labeled by the phrase: "It is an exception to the application of ...," or words of similar import.
    1. Unless the statute defining an offense states to the contrary, the state need not negate the existence of an exception in the charge alleging commission of the offense.
    2. An exception to be relied upon by a person must be proven by a preponderance of the evidence.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1; 1990, ch. 1030, §4.

§39-11-203 - Defense
  1. A defense to prosecution for an offense in this title is so labeled by the phrase: "It is a defense to prosecution under ... that ..."
  2. The state is not required to negate the existence of a defense in the charge alleging commission of the offense.
  3. The issue of the existence of a defense is not submitted to the jury unless it is fairly raised by the proof.
  4. If the issue of the existence of a defense is submitted to the jury, the court shall instruct the jury that any reasonable doubt on the issue requires the defendant to be acquitted.
    1. A ground of defense, other than one (1) negating an element of the offense or an affirmative defense, that is not plainly labeled in accordance with this part has the procedural and evidentiary consequences of a defense.
    2. Defenses available under common law are hereby abolished.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1.

§39-11-204 - Affirmative defense
  1. An affirmative defense in this title is so labeled by the phrase: "It is an affirmative defense to prosecution under ..., which must be proven by a preponderance of the evidence, that ..." or words of similar import.
  2. The state is not required to negate the existence of an affirmative defense in the charge alleging commission of the offense.
    1. If a person intends to rely upon an affirmative defense, the person shall, no later than ten (10) days before trial, notify the district attorney general in writing of the intention, or at such time as the court may direct naming the affirmative defense(s) to be asserted, and file a copy of the notice with the clerk.
    2. Except as provided in this title, if there is a failure to comply with the provisions of this subsection (c), the affirmative defense may not be raised; provided, that this shall not limit the right of the person to testify on the person's own behalf.
    3. The court may, for cause shown, allow late filing of the notice or grant additional time to the parties to prepare for trial or make other orders as may be appropriate.
    4. Evidence of an intention to raise an affirmative defense, which is later withdrawn, is not admissible in any civil or criminal proceeding against the person who gave the notice of the intention.
    5. The provisions of this subsection (c) shall only apply in courts of record.
  3. The issue of the existence of an affirmative defense may not be submitted to the jury unless it is fairly raised by the proof and notice has been provided according to subsection (c).
  4. If the issue of the existence of an affirmative defense is submitted to the jury, the court shall instruct the jury that the affirmative defense must be established by a preponderance of the evidence.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1; 1990, ch. 1030, §5.

Part 6 - Justification Excluding Criminal Responsibility

§39-11-601 - Justification a defense

It is a defense to prosecution that the conduct of the person is justified under this part.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1.

§39-11-602 - Justification definitions

As used in this part, unless the context otherwise requires:

  1. "Custody" means under arrest by a law enforcement officer, or under restraint by an officer, employee or agent of government pursuant to an order of a court;
  2. "Deadly force" means force that is intended or known by the defendant to cause or, in the manner of its use or intended use, is capable of causing death or serious bodily injury; and
  3. "Escape" means unauthorized departure from custody or failure to return to custody following temporary leave for a specific purpose of limited period, but does not include a violation of conditions of probation or parole.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1.

§39-11-603 - Confinement as justifiable force

Confinement is justified when force is justified by this part, if the person takes reasonable measures to terminate the confinement as soon as the person knows it can be done safely, unless the individual confined has been arrested for an offense.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1.

§39-11-604 - Reckless injury of innocent third person

Even though a person is justified under this part in threatening or using force or deadly force against another, the justification afforded by this part is unavailable in a prosecution for harm to an innocent third person who is recklessly injured or recklessly killed by the use of such force.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1.

§39-11-605 - Civil remedies unaffected

The fact that conduct is justified under this part does not abolish or impair any remedy for the conduct that is or may be available in a civil suit.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1.

§39-11-609 - Necessity

Except as provided in §39-11-611 -- 39-11-616, 39-11-620 and 39-11-621, conduct is justified, if:

  1. The person reasonably believes the conduct is immediately necessary to avoid imminent harm; and
  2. The desirability and urgency of avoiding the harm clearly outweigh the harm sought to be prevented by the law proscribing the conduct, according to ordinary standards of reasonableness.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1.

§39-11-610 - Public duty
  1. Except as qualified by subsections (b) and (c), conduct is justified if the person reasonably believes the conduct is required or authorized by law, by the judgment or order of a competent court or other tribunal, or in the execution of legal process.
  2. The following sections of this part control:
    1. When force is threatened or used against a person to protect persons, pursuant to §39-11-611 -- 39-11-613;
    2. To protect property, pursuant to §39-11-614 -- 39-11-616; or
    3. For law enforcement, pursuant to §39-11-620.
  3. The justification afforded by this section is available if:
    1. The person reasonably believes the court or tribunal has jurisdiction or the process is lawful, even though the court or tribunal lacks jurisdiction or the process is unlawful; or
    2. The person reasonably believes the conduct is required or authorized to assist a public servant in the performance of the public servant's official duty, even though the public servant exceeds the public servant's lawful authority.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1.

§39-11-611 - (2012) Self-defense
  1. As used in this section, unless the context otherwise requires:
    1. "Business" means a commercial enterprise or establishment owned by a person as all or part of the person's livelihood or is under the owner's control or who is an employee or agent of the owner with responsibility for protecting persons and property and shall include the interior and exterior premises of the business;
    2. "Category I nuclear facility" means a facility that possesses a formula quantity of strategic special nuclear material, as defined and licensed by the United States nuclear regulatory commission, and that must comply with the requirements of 10 CFR Part 73;
    3. "Curtilage" means the area surrounding a dwelling that is necessary, convenient and habitually used for family purposes and for those activities associated with the sanctity of a person's home;
    4. "Deadly force" means the use of force intended or likely to cause death or serious bodily injury;
    5. "Dwelling" means a building or conveyance of any kind, including any attached porch, whether the building or conveyance is temporary or permanent, mobile or immobile, that has a roof over it, including a tent, and is designed for or capable of use by people;
    6. "Nuclear security officer" means a person who meets the requirements of 10 CFR Part 73, Appendix B, who is an employee or an employee of a contractor of the owner of a category I nuclear facility, and who has been appointed or designated by the owner of a category I nuclear facility to provide security for the facility;
    7. "Residence" means a dwelling in which a person resides, either temporarily or permanently, or is visiting as an invited guest, or any dwelling, building or other appurtenance within the curtilage of the residence; and
    8. "Vehicle" means any motorized vehicle that is self-propelled and designed for use on public highways to transport people or property.
    1. Notwithstanding §39-17-1322, a person who is not engaged in unlawful activity and is in a place where the person has a right to be has no duty to retreat before threatening or using force against another person when and to the degree the person reasonably believes the force is immediately necessary to protect against the other's use or attempted use of unlawful force.
    2. Notwithstanding §39-17-1322, a person who is not engaged in unlawful activity and is in a place where the person has a right to be has no duty to retreat before threatening or using force intended or likely to cause death or serious bodily injury, if:
      1. The person has a reasonable belief that there is an imminent danger of death or serious bodily injury;
      2. The danger creating the belief of imminent death or serious bodily injury is real, or honestly believed to be real at the time; and
      3. The belief of danger is founded upon reasonable grounds.
  2. Any person using force intended or likely to cause death or serious bodily injury within a residence, business, dwelling or vehicle is presumed to have held a reasonable belief of imminent death or serious bodily injury to self, family, a member of the household or a person visiting as an invited guest, when that force is used against another person, who unlawfully and forcibly enters or has unlawfully and forcibly entered the residence, business, dwelling or vehicle, and the person using defensive force knew or had reason to believe that an unlawful and forcible entry occurred.
  3. The presumption established in subsection (c) shall not apply, if:
    1. The person against whom the force is used has the right to be in or is a lawful resident of the dwelling, business, residence, or vehicle, such as an owner, lessee, or titleholder; provided, that the person is not prohibited from entering the dwelling, business, residence, or occupied vehicle by an order of protection, injunction for protection from domestic abuse, or a court order of no contact against that person;
    2. The person against whom the force is used is attempting to remove a person or persons who is a child or grandchild of, or is otherwise in the lawful custody or under the lawful guardianship of, the person against whom the defensive force is used;
    3. Notwithstanding §39-17-1322, the person using force is engaged in an unlawful activity or is using the dwelling, business, residence, or occupied vehicle to further an unlawful activity; or
    4. The person against whom force is used is a law enforcement officer, as defined in §39-11-106, who enters or attempts to enter a dwelling, business, residence, or vehicle in the performance of the officer's official duties, and the officer identified the officer in accordance with any applicable law, or the person using force knew or reasonably should have known that the person entering or attempting to enter was a law enforcement officer.
  4. The threat or use of force against another is not justified:
    1. If the person using force consented to the exact force used or attempted by the other individual;
    2. If the person using force provoked the other individual's use or attempted use of unlawful force, unless:
      1. The person using force abandons the encounter or clearly communicates to the other the intent to do so; and
      2. The other person nevertheless continues or attempts to use unlawful force against the person; or
    3. To resist a halt at a roadblock, arrest, search, or stop and frisk that the person using force knows is being made by a law enforcement officer, unless:
      1. The law enforcement officer uses or attempts to use greater force than necessary to make the arrest, search, stop and frisk, or halt; and
      2. The person using force reasonably believes that the force is immediately necessary to protect against the law enforcement officer's use or attempted use of greater force than necessary.
  5. A nuclear security officer is authorized to use deadly force under the following circumstances:
    1. Deadly force appears reasonably necessary to prevent or impede an act, or attempted act, of radiological sabotage at a category I nuclear facility, including, but not limited to, situations where a person is attempting to, or has, unlawfully or forcefully entered a category I nuclear facility, and where adversary tactics are employed to attempt an act of radiological sabotage, such as, but not limited to:
      1. Use of firearms or small arms;
      2. Use of explosive devices;
      3. Use of incendiary devices;
      4. Use of vehicle borne improvised explosive devices;
      5. Use of water borne improvised explosive devices;
      6. Breaching of barriers; and
      7. Use of other adversary or terrorist tactics which could be employed to attempt an act of radiological sabotage;
    2. Deadly force appears reasonably necessary to protect the nuclear security officer or another person if the nuclear security officer reasonably believes there is an imminent danger of death or serious bodily injury;
    3. Deadly force appears reasonably necessary to prevent the imminent infliction or threatened infliction of death or serious bodily harm or the sabotage of an occupied facility by explosives;
    4. Deadly force appears reasonably necessary to prevent the theft, sabotage, or unauthorized control of a nuclear weapon or nuclear explosive device or special nuclear material from a category I nuclear facility; or
    5. Deadly force reasonably appears to be necessary to apprehend or prevent the escape of a person reasonably believed to:
      1. Have committed an offense of the nature specified under this subsection (f); or
      2. Be escaping by use of a weapon or explosive or who otherwise poses an imminent danger of death or serious bodily harm to nuclear security officers or others unless apprehended without delay.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1; 1990, ch. 1030, §8; 2007, ch. 210, §1; 2008, ch. 1012, §1; 2009, ch. 194, §2; 2012, ch. 627, §1, 2.

§39-11-612 - Defense of third person

A person is justified in threatening or using force against another to protect a third person, if:

  1. Under the circumstances as the person reasonably believes them to be, the person would be justified under §39-11-611 in threatening or using force to protect against the use or attempted use of unlawful force reasonably believed to be threatening the third person sought to be protected; and
  2. The person reasonably believes that the intervention is immediately necessary to protect the third person.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1.

§39-11-613 - Protection of life or health

A person is justified in threatening or using force, but not deadly force, against another, when and to the degree the person reasonably believes the force is immediately necessary to prevent the other from committing suicide or from the self-infliction of serious bodily injury.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1.

§39-11-614 - Protection of property
  1. A person in lawful possession of real or personal property is justified in threatening or using force against another, when and to the degree it is reasonably believed the force is immediately necessary to prevent or terminate the other's trespass on the land or unlawful interference with the property.
  2. A person who has been unlawfully dispossessed of real or personal property is justified in threatening or using force against the other, when and to the degree it is reasonably believed the force is immediately necessary to reenter the land or recover the property, if the person threatens or uses the force immediately or in fresh pursuit after the dispossession:
    1. The person reasonably believes the other had no claim of right when the other dispossessed the person; and
    2. The other accomplished the dispossession by threatening or using force against the person.
  3. Unless a person is justified in using deadly force as otherwise provided by law, a person is not justified in using deadly force to prevent or terminate the other's trespass on real estate or unlawful interference with personal property.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1; 2009, ch. 194, §1.

§39-11-615 - Protection of third person's property

A person is justified in threatening or using force against another to protect real or personal property of a third person, if, under the circumstances as the person reasonably believes them to be, the person would be justified under §39-11-614 in threatening or using force to protect the person's own real or personal property.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1.

§39-11-616 - Use of device to protect property
  1. The justification afforded by §39-11-614 and 39-11-615 extends to the use of a device for the purpose of protecting property, only if:
    1. The device is not designed to cause or known to create a substantial risk of causing death or serious bodily harm;
    2. The use of the particular device to protect the property from entry or trespass is reasonable under the circumstances as the person believes them to be; and
    3. The device is one customarily used for such a purpose, or reasonable care is taken to make known to probable intruders the fact that it is used.
  2. Nothing in this section shall affect the law regarding the use of animals to protect property or persons.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1.

§39-11-620 - Use of deadly force by a law enforcement officer
  1. A law enforcement officer, after giving notice of the officer's identity as such, may use or threaten to use force that is reasonably necessary to accomplish the arrest of an individual suspected of a criminal act who resists or flees from the arrest.
  2. Notwithstanding subsection (a), the officer may use deadly force to effect an arrest only if all other reasonable means of apprehension have been exhausted or are unavailable, and where feasible, the officer has given notice of the officer's identity as such and given a warning that deadly force may be used unless resistance or flight ceases, and:
    1. The officer has probable cause to believe the individual to be arrested has committed a felony involving the infliction or threatened infliction of serious bodily injury; or
    2. The officer has probable cause to believe that the individual to be arrested poses a threat of serious bodily injury, either to the officer or to others unless immediately apprehended.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1; 1990, ch. 1030, §9.

§39-11-621 - Use of deadly force by private citizen

A private citizen, in making an arrest authorized by law, may use force reasonably necessary to accomplish the arrest of an individual who flees or resists the arrest; provided, that a private citizen cannot use or threaten to use deadly force except to the extent authorized under self-defense or defense of third person statutes, §39-11-611 and 39-11-612.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1.

§39-11-622 - Justification for use of force -- Exceptions -- Immunity from civil liability
    1. A person who uses force as permitted in §39-11-611 -- 39-11-614 or §29-34-201, is justified in using such force and is immune from civil liability for the use of such force, unless:
      1. The person against whom force was used is a law enforcement officer, as defined in §39-11-106 who:
        1. Was acting in the performance of the officer's official duties; and
        2. Identified the officer in accordance with any applicable law; or
        3. The person using force knew or reasonably should have known that the person was a law enforcement officer; or
      2. The force used by the person resulted in property damage to or the death or injury of an innocent bystander or other person against whom the force used was not justified.
  1. The court shall award reasonable attorney's fees, court costs, compensation for loss of income, and all expenses incurred by a person in defense of any civil action brought against the person based upon the person's use of force, if the court finds that the defendant was justified in using such force pursuant to §39-11-611 -- 39-11-614 or §29-34-201.

HISTORY: Acts 2007, ch. 210, §3.

CHAPTER 17 - Offenses Against Public Health, Safety And Welfare

Part 13 - Weapons

§39-17-1301 - Part definitions

As used in this part, unless the context otherwise requires:

  1. "Adjudication as a mental defective or adjudicated as a mental defective" means:
    1. A determination by a court in this state that a person, as a result of marked subnormal intelligence, mental illness, incompetency, condition or disease:
      1. Is a danger to such person or to others; or
      2. Lacks the ability to contract or manage such person's own affairs due to mental defect;
    2. A finding of insanity by a court in a criminal proceeding; or
    3. A finding that a person is incompetent to stand trial or is found not guilty by reason of insanity pursuant to §50a and 72b of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, codified in 10 U.S.C. §850a and 876b;
  2. "Club" means any instrument that is specially designed, made or adapted for the purpose of inflicting serious bodily injury or death by striking a person with the instrument;
  3. "Crime of violence" includes any degree of murder, voluntary manslaughter, aggravated rape, rape, especially aggravated robbery, aggravated robbery, burglary, aggravated assault or aggravated kidnapping;
    1. "Explosive weapon" means any explosive, incendiary or poisonous gas:
      1. Bomb;
      2. Grenade;
      3. Rocket;
      4. Mine; or
      5. Shell, missile or projectile that is designed, made or adapted for the purpose of inflicting serious bodily injury, death or substantial property damage;
    2. "Explosive weapon" also means:
      1. Any breakable container which contains a flammable liquid with a flashpoint of one hundred fifty degrees Fahrenheit (150 degrees F) or less and has a wick or similar device capable of being ignited, other than a device which is commercially manufactured primarily for purposes of illumination; or
      2. Any sealed device containing dry ice or other chemically reactive substances for the purposes of causing an explosion by a chemical reaction;
  4. "Firearm silencer" means any device designed, made or adapted to muffle the report of a firearm;
  5. "Hoax device" means any device that reasonably appears to be or is purported to be an explosive or incendiary device and is intended to cause alarm or reaction of any type by an official of a public safety agency or a volunteer agency organized to deal with emergencies;
  6. "Immediate vicinity" refers to the area within the person's immediate control within which the person has ready access to the ammunition;
  7. "Judicial commitment to a mental institution" means a judicially ordered involuntary admission to a private or state hospital or treatment resource in proceedings conducted pursuant to title 33, chapter 6 or 7;
  8. "Knife" means any bladed hand instrument that is capable of inflicting serious bodily injury or death by cutting or stabbing a person with the instrument;
  9. "Knuckles" means any instrument that consists of finger rings or guards made of a hard substance and that is designed, made or adapted for the purpose of inflicting serious bodily injury or death by striking a person with a fist enclosed in the knuckles;
  10. "Machine gun" means any firearm that is capable of shooting more than two (2) shots automatically, without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger;
  11. "Mental institution" means a mental health facility, mental hospital, sanitarium, psychiatric facility and any other facility that provides diagnoses by a licensed professional of an intellectual disability or mental illness, including, but not limited to, a psychiatric ward in a general hospital;
  12. "Restricted firearm ammunition" means any cartridge containing a bullet coated with a plastic substance with other than a lead or lead alloy core or a jacketed bullet with other than a lead or lead alloy core or a cartridge of which the bullet itself is wholly composed of a metal or metal alloy other than lead. "Restricted firearm ammunition" does not include shotgun shells or solid plastic bullets;
  13. "Rifle" means any firearm designed, made or adapted to be fired from the shoulder and to use the energy of the explosive in a fixed metallic cartridge to fire a projectile through a rifled bore by a single function of the trigger;
  14. "Short barrel" means a barrel length of less than sixteen inches (16'') for a rifle and eighteen inches (18'') for a shotgun, or an overall firearm length of less than twenty-six inches (26'');
  15. "Shotgun" means any firearm designed, made or adapted to be fired from the shoulder and to use the energy of the explosive in a fixed shotgun shell to fire through a smooth-bore barrel either a number of ball shot or a single projectile by a single function of the trigger;
  16. "Switchblade knife" means any knife that has a blade which opens automatically by:
    1. Hand pressure applied to a button or other device in the handle; or
    2. Operation of gravity or inertia; and
  17. "Unloaded" means the rifle, shotgun or handgun does not have ammunition in the chamber, cylinder, clip or magazine, and no clip or magazine is in the immediate vicinity of the weapon.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1; 1990, ch. 1029, §1; 2001, ch. 375, §1, 2; 2009, ch. 578, §8; 2010, ch. 734, §1.

§39-17-1302 - (2015) Prohibited weapons
  1. A person commits an offense who intentionally or knowingly possesses, manufactures, transports, repairs or sells:
    1. An explosive or an explosive weapon;
    2. A device principally designed, made or adapted for delivering or shooting an explosive weapon;
    3. A machine gun;
    4. A short-barrel rifle or shotgun;
    5. A firearm silencer;
    6. Hoax device;
    7. Knuckles; or
    8. Any other implement for infliction of serious bodily injury or death that has no common lawful purpose.
  2. It is an exception to the application of subsection (a) that the person acquiring or possessing a weapon described in subdivisions (a)(3), (a)(4), or (a)(5) is in full compliance with the requirements of the National Firearms Act, codified in 26 U.S.C., Sections 5841-5862.
  3. It is a defense to prosecution under this section that the person's conduct:
    1. Was incident to the performance of official duty and pursuant to military regulations in the army, navy, air force, coast guard or marine service of the United States or the Tennessee national guard, or was incident to the performance of official duty in a governmental law enforcement agency or a penal institution;
    2. Was incident to engaging in a lawful commercial or business transaction with an organization identified in subdivision (b)(1);
    3. Was incident to using an explosive or an explosive weapon in a manner reasonably related to a lawful industrial or commercial enterprise;
    4. Was incident to using the weapon in a manner reasonably related to a lawful dramatic performance or scientific research;
    5. Was incident to displaying the weapon in a public museum or exhibition;
    6. Was licensed by the state of Tennessee as a manufacturer, importer or dealer in weapons; provided, that the manufacture, import, purchase, possession, sale or disposition of weapons is authorized and incident to carrying on the business for which licensed and is for scientific or research purposes or sale or disposition to an organization designated in subdivision (b)(1);
  4. It is an affirmative defense to prosecution under this section that the person must prove by a preponderance of the evidence that:
    1. The person's conduct was relative to dealing with the weapon solely as a curio, ornament or keepsake, and if the weapon is a type described in subdivisions (a)(1)-(5), that it was in a nonfunctioning condition and could not readily be made operable; or
    2. The possession was brief and occurred as a consequence of having found the weapon or taken it from an aggressor.
    1. An offense under subdivision (a)(1) is a Class B felony.
    2. An offense under subdivisions (a)(2)-(5) is a Class E felony.
    3. An offense under subdivision (a)(6) is a Class C felony.
    4. An offense under subdivisions (a)(7)-(8) is a Class A misdemeanor.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1; 1990, ch. 1029, §2, 11; 2001, ch. 375, §3, 4; 2002, ch. 849, §5; 2006, ch. 798, §1; Acts 2014, ch. 647, §§1, 2; 2015, ch. 85, §1.

§39-17-1303 - (2014) Unlawful sale, loan or gift of firearm
  1. A person commits an offense who:
    1. Intentionally, knowingly or recklessly sells, loans or makes a gift of a firearm to a minor;
    2. Intentionally, knowingly or recklessly sells a firearm or ammunition for a firearm to a person who is intoxicated; or
    3. Intentionally, knowingly, recklessly or with criminal negligence violates the provisions of §39-17-1316.
  2. It is a defense to prosecution under subdivision (a)(1) that:
    1. A firearm was loaned or given to a minor for the purposes of hunting, trapping, fishing, camping, sport shooting or any other lawful sporting activity; and
    2. The person is not required to obtain a license under §39-17-1316.
  3. For purposes of this section, "intoxicated" means substantial impairment of mental or physical capacity resulting from introduction of any substance into the body.
  4. An offense under this section is a Class A misdemeanor.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1; 1990, ch. 1029, §3; Acts 2014, ch.647, §3.

§39-17-1304 - Restrictions on firearm ammunition
  1. It is an offense for any person to possess, use or attempt to use restricted firearm ammunition while committing or attempting to commit a crime of violence. A violation of this section constitutes a separate and distinct felony.
  2. It is an offense for any person or corporation to manufacture, sell, offer for sale, display for sale or use in this state any ammunition cartridge, metallic or otherwise, containing a bullet with a hollow-nose cavity that is filled with an explosive material and designed to detonate upon impact; provided, that the provisions of this section shall not apply to any state or federal military unit or personnel for use in the performance of its duties.
    1. A violation of subsection (a) by possession of restricted firearm ammunition is a Class E felony.
    2. A violation of subsection (a) by use or attempted use of restricted firearm ammunition is a Class D felony.
    3. A violation of subsection (b) is a Class E felony.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1.

§39-17-1306 - (2014) Carrying weapons during judicial proceedings
  1. No person shall intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly carry on or about the person while inside any room in which judicial proceedings are in progress any weapon prohibited by §39-17-1302(a), for the purpose of going armed; provided, that if the weapon carried is a firearm, the person is in violation of this section regardless of whether the weapon is carried for the purpose of going armed.
  2. Any person violating subsection (a) commits a Class E felony.
  3. The provisions of subsection (a) shall not apply to any person who:
    1. Is in the actual discharge of official duties as a law enforcement officer, or is employed in the army, air force, navy, coast guard or marine service of the United States or any member of the Tennessee national guard in the line of duty and pursuant to military regulations, or is in the actual discharge of official duties as a guard employed by a penal institution, or as a bailiff, marshal or other court officer who has responsibility for protecting persons or property or providing security;
    2. Has been directed by a court to bring the firearm for purposes of providing evidence; or
    3. Is in the actual discharge of official duties as a judge, and:
      1. Is authorized to carry a handgun pursuant to §39-17-1351;
      2. Keeps the handgun concealed at all times when in the discharge of such duties; and
      3. Is vested with judicial powers under §16-1-101.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1; 1990, ch. 1029, §5; 2000, ch. 988, §2; 2011, ch. 469, §1; 2014, ch. 663, §1.

§39-17-1307 - (2014) Unlawful carrying or possession of a weapon
    1. A person commits an offense who carries with the intent to go armed a firearm or a club.
      1. The first violation of subdivision (a)(1) is a Class C misdemeanor, and, in addition to possible imprisonment as provided by law, may be punished by a fine not to exceed five hundred dollars ($500).
      2. A second or subsequent violation of subdivision (a)(1) is a Class B misdemeanor.
      3. A violation of subdivision (a)(1) is a Class A misdemeanor if the person's carrying of a handgun occurred at a place open to the public where one (1) or more persons were present.
    1. A person commits an offense who unlawfully possesses a firearm, as defined in §39-11-106, and:
      1. Has been convicted of a felony involving the use or attempted use of force, violence, or a deadly weapon; or
      2. Has been convicted of a felony drug offense.
    2. An offense under subdivision (b)(1)(A) is a Class C felony.
    3. An offense under subdivision (b)(1)(B) is a Class D felony.
    1. A person commits an offense who possesses a handgun and has been convicted of a felony.
    2. An offense under subdivision (c)(1) is a Class E felony.
    1. A person commits an offense who possesses a deadly weapon other than a firearm with the intent to employ it during the commission of, attempt to commit, or escape from a dangerous offense as defined in §39-17-1324.
    2. A person commits an offense who possesses any deadly weapon with the intent to employ it during the commission of, attempt to commit, or escape from any offense not defined as a dangerous offense by §39-17-1324.
      1. Except as provided in subdivision (d)(3)(B), a violation of this subsection (d) is a Class E felony.
      2. A violation of this subsection (d) is a Class E felony with a maximum fine of six thousand dollars ($6,000), if the deadly weapon is a switchblade knife.
  1. It is an exception to the application of subsection (a) that a person is carrying or possessing a firearm in a motor vehicle if:
    1. The person is not otherwise prohibited from carrying or possessing a firearm; and
    2. The motor vehicle is privately-owned.
    1. A person commits an offense who possesses a firearm, as defined in §39-11-106(a), and:
      1. Has been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence as defined in 18 U.S.C. §921, and is still subject to the disabilities of such a conviction;
      2. Is, at the time of the possession, subject to an order of protection that fully complies with 18 U.S.C. §922(g)(8); or
      3. Is prohibited from possessing a firearm under any other provision of state or federal law.
    2. If the person is licensed as a federal firearms dealer or a responsible party under a federal firearms license, the determination of whether such an individual possesses firearms that constitute the business inventory under the federal license shall be determined based upon the applicable federal statutes or the rules, regulations and official letters, rulings and publications of the bureau of alcohol, tobacco, firearms and explosives.
    3. For purposes of this section, a person does not possess a firearm, including, but not limited to, firearms registered under the National Firearms Act, compiled in 26 U.S.C. §5801 et seq., if the firearm is in a safe or similar container that is securely locked and to which the respondent does not have the combination, keys or other means of normal access.
    4. A violation of subdivision (f)(1) is a Class A misdemeanor and each violation constitutes a separate offense.
    5. If a violation of subdivision (f)(1) also constitutes a violation of §36-3-625(h) or §39-13-113(h), the respondent may be charged and convicted under any or all such sections.
    1. A person commits an offense who employs a switchblade knife during the commission of, attempt to commit, or escape from a dangerous offense as defined in §39-17-1324.
    2. A violation of this subsection (g) is a Class D felony.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1; 1990, ch. 1029, §6; 2007, ch. 412, §1; 2007, ch. 594, §3; 2008, ch. 1166, §1; 2008, ch. 1176, §1; 2009, ch. 431, §1; 2009, ch. 455, §6; 2010, ch. 793, §1; 2012, ch. 726, §1; Acts 2014, ch.647, §4, §§5, §§6; 2014, ch. 870, §1.

§39-17-1308 - Defenses to unlawful possession or carrying of a weapon
  1. It is a defense to the application of §39-17-1307 if the possession or carrying was:
    1. Of an unloaded rifle, shotgun or handgun not concealed on or about the person and the ammunition for the weapon was not in the immediate vicinity of the person or weapon;
    2. By a person authorized to possess or carry a firearm pursuant to §39-17-1315 or §39-17-1351;
    3. At the person's:
      1. Place of residence;
      2. Place of business; or
      3. Premises;
    4. Incident to lawful hunting, trapping, fishing, camping, sport shooting or other lawful activity;
    5. By a person possessing a rifle or shotgun while engaged in the lawful protection of livestock from predatory animals;
    6. By a Tennessee valley authority officer who holds a valid commission from the commissioner of safety pursuant to this part while the officer is in the performance of the officer's official duties;
    7. By a state, county or municipal judge or any federal judge or any federal or county magistrate;
    8. By a person possessing a club or baton who holds a valid state security guard/officer registration card as a private security guard/officer, issued by the commissioner, and who also has certification that the officer has had training in the use of club or baton that is valid and issued by a person certified to give training in the use of clubs or batons;
    9. By any person possessing a club or baton who holds a certificate that the person has had training in the use of a club or baton for self-defense that is valid and issued by a certified person authorized to give training in the use of clubs or batons, and is not prohibited from purchasing a firearm under any local, state or federal laws; or
    10. By any out-of-state, full-time, commissioned law enforcement officer who holds a valid commission card from the appropriate out-of-state law enforcement agency and a photo identification; provided, that if no valid commission card and photo identification are retained, then it shall be unlawful for that officer to carry firearms in this state and the provisions of this section shall not apply. The defense provided by this subdivision (a)(10) shall only be applicable if the state where the out-of-state officer is employed has entered into a reciprocity agreement with this state that allows a full-time, commissioned law enforcement officer in Tennessee to lawfully carry or possess a weapon in the other state.
  2. The defenses described in this section are not available to persons described in §39-17-1307(b)(1).

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1; 1990, ch. 1029, §7; 1993, ch. 200, §1; 1996, ch. 1009, §20, 21; 1997, ch. 476, §3; 1999, ch. 295, §1; 2003, ch. 144, §2.

§39-17-1309 - (2016) Carrying weapons on school property
  1. As used in this section, "weapon of like kind" includes razors and razor blades, except those used solely for personal shaving, and any sharp pointed or edged instrument, except unaltered nail files and clips and tools used solely for preparation of food, instruction and maintenance.
    1. It is an offense for any person to possess or carry, whether openly or concealed, with the intent to go armed, any firearm, explosive, explosive weapon, bowie knife, hawk bill knife, ice pick, dagger, slingshot, leaded cane, switchblade knife, blackjack, knuckles or any other weapon of like kind, not used solely for instructional or school-sanctioned ceremonial purposes, in any public or private school building or bus, on any public or private school campus, grounds, recreation area, athletic field or any other property owned, used or operated by any board of education, school, college or university board of trustees, regents or directors for the administration of any public or private educational institution.
    2. A violation of this subsection (b) is a Class E felony.
    1. It is an offense for any person to possess or carry, whether openly or concealed, any firearm, not used solely for instructional or school-sanctioned ceremonial purposes, in any public or private school building or bus, on any public or private school campus, grounds, recreation area, athletic field or any other property owned, used or operated by any board of education, school, college or university board of trustees, regents or directors for the administration of any public or private educational institution. It is not an offense under this subsection (c) for a nonstudent adult to possess a firearm, if the firearm is contained within a private vehicle operated by the adult and is not handled by the adult, or by any other person acting with the expressed or implied consent of the adult, while the vehicle is on school property.
    2. A violation of this subsection (c) is a Class B misdemeanor.
    1. Each chief administrator of a public or private school shall display in prominent locations about the school a sign, at least six inches (6'') high and fourteen inches (14'') wide, stating:

      FELONY. STATE LAW PRESCRIBES A MAXIMUM PENALTY OF SIX (6) YEARS IMPRISONMENT AND A FINE NOT TO EXCEED THREE THOUSAND DOLLARS ($3,000) FOR CARRYING WEAPONS ON SCHOOL PROPERTY.

    2. As used in this subsection (d), "prominent locations about a school" includes, but is not limited to, sports arenas, gymnasiums, stadiums and cafeterias.
  2. The provisions of subsections (b) and (c) do not apply to the following persons:
    1. Persons employed in the army, air force, navy, coast guard or marine service of the United States or any member of the Tennessee national guard when in discharge of their official duties and acting under orders requiring them to carry arms or weapons;
    2. Civil officers of the United States in the discharge of their official duties;
    3. Officers and soldiers of the militia and the national guard when called into actual service;
    4. Officers of the state, or of any county, city or town, charged with the enforcement of the laws of the state, when in the discharge of their official duties;
    5. Any pupils who are members of the reserve officers training corps or pupils enrolled in a course of instruction or members of a club or team, and who are required to carry arms or weapons in the discharge of their official class or team duties;
    6. Any private police employed by the administration or board of trustees of any public or private institution of higher education in the discharge of their duties; and
    7. Any registered security guard/officer who meets the requirements of title 62, chapter 35, and who is discharging the officer's official duties.
    8. Persons permitted to carry a handgun on the property of private K-12 schools by § 49-50-803, and persons permitted to carry a handgun on the property of private forprofit or non-profit institutions of higher education pursuant to § 49-7-161.
      1. Employees of any state college or university operating under the state board of regents or the University of Tennessee board of trustees if the employee is:
        1. Authorized to carry a handgun pursuant to § 39-17-1351; and
        2. Carrying the handgun only on property owned, operated, or in use by the college or university employing the employee;
      2. For purposes of this subdivision (e)(9), "employee" includes all faculty, staff, and other persons who are employed on a full-time basis by the college or university;

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1; 1990, ch. 1029, §8; 1991, ch. 510, §1-3; 1996, ch. 1009, §24, 2016 ch. 698 §3, 2016 ch. 1061 § 1

§39-17-1310 - Affirmative defense to carrying weapons on school property

It is an affirmative defense to prosecution under §39-17-1309(a)-(d) that the person's behavior was in strict compliance with the requirements of one (1) of the following classifications:

  1. A person hunting during the lawful hunting season on lands owned by any public or private educational institution and designated as open to hunting by the administrator of the educational institution;
  2. A person possessing unloaded hunting weapons while transversing the grounds of any public or private educational institution for the purpose of gaining access to public or private lands open to hunting with the intent to hunt on the public or private lands unless the lands of the educational institution are posted prohibiting entry;
  3. A person possessing guns or knives when conducting or attending "gun and knife shows" and the program has been approved by the administrator of the educational institution; or
  4. A person entering the property for the sole purpose of delivering or picking up passengers and who does not remove, utilize or allow to be removed or utilized any weapon from the vehicle.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1; 1991, ch. 510, §4.

§39-17-1311 - (2015) Carrying weapons on public parks, playgrounds, civic centers and other public recreational buildings and grounds
  1. It is an offense for any person to possess or carry, whether openly or concealed, with the intent to go armed, any weapon prohibited by §39-17-1302(a), not used solely for instructional, display or sanctioned ceremonial purposes, in or on the grounds of any public park, playground, civic center or other building facility, area or property owned, used or operated by any municipal, county or state government, or instrumentality thereof, for recreational purposes.
    1. The provisions of subsection (a) shall not apply to the following persons:
      1. Persons employed in the army, air force, navy, coast guard or marine service of the United States or any member of the Tennessee national guard when in discharge of their official duties and acting under orders requiring them to carry arms or weapons;
      2. Civil officers of the United States in the discharge of their official duties;
      3. Officers and soldiers of the militia and the national guard when called into actual service;
      4. Officers of the state, or of any county, city or town, charged with the enforcement of the laws of the state, in the discharge of their official duties;
      5. Any pupils who are members of the reserve officers training corps or pupils enrolled in a course of instruction or members of a club or team, and who are required to carry arms or weapons in the discharge of their official class or team duties;
      6. Any private police employed by the municipality, county, state or instrumentality thereof in the discharge of their duties;
      7. A registered security guard/officer, who meets the requirements of title 62, chapter 35, while in the performance of the officer's duties;
      8. Persons possessing a handgun, who are authorized to carry the handgun pursuant to §39-17-1351, while within or on a public park, natural area, historic park, nature trail, campground, forest, greenway, waterway or other similar public place that is owned or operated by the state, a county, a municipality or instrumentality thereof;
      9. Persons possessing a handgun, who are authorized to carry the handgun pursuant to §39-17-1351, while within or on property designated by the federal government as a national park, forest, preserve, historic park, military park, trail or recreation area, to the extent permitted by federal law; and
      10. Also, only to the extent a person strictly conforms the person's behavior to the requirements of one (1) of the following classifications:
        1. A person hunting during the lawful hunting season on lands owned by any municipality, county, state or instrumentality thereof and designated as open to hunting by law or by the appropriate official;
        2. A person possessing unloaded hunting weapons while transversing the grounds of any public recreational building or property for the purpose of gaining access to public or private lands open to hunting with the intent to hunt on the public or private lands unless the public recreational building or property is posted prohibiting entry;
        3. A person possessing guns or knives when conducting or attending "gun and knife shows" when the program has been approved by the administrator of the recreational building or property;
        4. A person entering the property for the sole purpose of delivering or picking up passengers and who does not remove any weapon from the vehicle or utilize it in any manner; or
        5. A person who possesses or carries a firearm for the purpose of sport or target shooting and sport or target shooting is permitted in the park or recreational area.
    2. At any time the person's behavior no longer strictly conforms to one (1) of the classifications in subdivision (b)(1), the person shall be subject to the provisions of subsection (a).
  2. A violation of subsection (a) is a Class A misdemeanor.
  3. For the purposes of this section, a "greenway" means an open-space area following a natural or man-made linear feature designed to be used for recreation, transportation, conservation, and to link services and facilities. A greenway is a paved, gravel-covered, woodchip covered, or wood-covered path that connects one greenway entrance with another greenway entrance. In the event a greenway traverses a park that is owned or operated by a county, municipality or instrumentality thereof, the greenway shall be considered a portion of that park unless designated otherwise by the local legislative body. Except as provided in this part, the definition of a greenway in this section shall not be applicable to any other provision of law.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1; 1990, ch. 1029, §9; 1993, ch. 480, §1-3; 1996, ch. 1009, §23; 2009, ch. 428, §1, 2; 2010, ch. 1006, §1; 2015, ch. 250, §§1, 2.

§39-17-1312 - Inaction by persons eighteen (18) years of age or older, including parents or guardians, knowing a minor or student illegally possesses a firearm
  1. It is an offense if a person eighteen (18) years of age or older, including a parent or other legal guardian, knows that a minor or student is in illegal possession of a firearm in or upon the premises of a public or private school, in or on the school's athletic stadium or other facility or building where school sponsored athletic events are conducted, or public park, playground or civic center, and the person, parent or guardian fails to prevent the possession or fails to report it to the appropriate school or law enforcement officials.
  2. A violation of this section is a Class A misdemeanor.

HISTORY: Acts 1992, ch. 907, §1; 1999, ch. 309, §1.

§39-17-1313 - (2014) Transporting and storing a firearm or firearm ammunition in permit holder's privately owned motor vehicle
  1. Notwithstanding any provision of law or any ordinance or resolution adopted by the governing body of a city, county or metropolitan government, including any ordinance or resolution enacted before April 8, 1986, that prohibits or regulates the possession, transportation or storage of a firearm or firearm ammunition by a handgun carry permit holder, the holder of a valid handgun carry permit recognized in Tennessee may transport and store a firearm or firearm ammunition in the permit holder's motor vehicle, as defined in §55-1-103, while on or utilizing any public or private parking area if:
    1. The permit holder's motor vehicle is parked in a location where it is permitted to be; and
    2. The firearm or ammunition being transported or stored in the motor vehicle:
      1. Is kept from ordinary observation if the permit holder is in the motor vehicle; or
      2. Is kept from ordinary observation and locked within the trunk, glove box, or interior of the person's motor vehicle or a container securely affixed to such motor vehicle if the permit holder is not in the motor vehicle.
  2. No business entity, public or private employer, or the owner, manager, or legal possessor of the property shall be held liable in any civil action for damages, injuries or death resulting from or arising out of another's actions involving a firearm or ammunition transported or stored by the holder of a valid handgun carry permit in the permit holder's motor vehicle unless the business entity, public or private employer, or the owner, manager, or legal possessor of the property commits an offense involving the use of the stored firearm or ammunition or intentionally solicits or procures the conduct resulting in the damage, injury or death. Nor shall a business entity, public or private employer, or the owner, manager, or legal possessor of the property be responsible for the theft of a firearm or ammunition stored by the holder of a valid handgun carry permit in the permit holder's motor vehicle.
  3. For purposes of this section:
    1. "Parking area" means any property provided by a business entity, public or private employer, or the owner, manager, or legal possessor of the property for the purpose of permitting its invitees, customers, clients or employees to park privately owned motor vehicles; and
    2. "Parking area" does not include the grounds or property of an owner-occupied, single-family detached residence, or a tenant-occupied single-family detached residence.
    3. "Motor vehicle" means any motor vehicle as defined in §55-1-103, which is in the lawful possession of the permit holder, but shall not include any motor vehicle which is owned or leased by a governmental or business entity and that is provided by such entity to an employee for use during the course of employment if the entity has adopted a written policy prohibiting firearms or ammunition not required for employment within the entity's motor vehicles;
  4. A handgun carry permit holder transporting, storing or both transporting and storing a firearm or firearm ammunition in accordance with this section does not violate this section if the firearm or firearm ammunition is observed by another person or security device during the ordinary course of the handgun carry permit holder securing the firearm or firearm ammunition from observation in or on a motor vehicle.

HISTORY: Acts 2013, ch. 16, §1; Acts 2014, ch. 498, §1; Acts 2014, ch. 505, §1-6; 2014, ch. 768, §1.

§39-17-1314 - (2014) Local regulation of firearms and ammunition preempted by state regulation -- Actions against firearms or ammunition manufacturers, trade associations or dealers
  1. The general assembly hereby declares that it is occupying the whole field of regulation of firearms, ammunition, or components of firearms or ammunition, or combinations thereof including, but not limited to, the purchase, transfer, taxation, manufacturer, ownership, possession, carrying, sale, acquisition, gift, devise, licensing, registration, storage, and transpiration thereof, to the exclusion of all existing and future county, city, town, municipality, or metropolitan government ordinance or regulation. No county, city, town, municipality, or metropolitan government nor any state or local agency, department, or official shall occupy any part of the field regulation of the use, transfer, ownership, possession, discharge, or transportation of firearms, ammunition or components of firearms or ammunition, or combinations thereof.
  2. The general assembly declares that the lawful design, marketing, manufacture and sale of firearms and ammunition to the public are not unreasonably dangerous activities and do not constitute a nuisance per se.
    1. The authority to bring suit and right to recover against any firearms or ammunition manufacturer, trade association or dealer by or on behalf of any state entity, county, municipality or metropolitan government for damages, abatement or injunctive relief resulting from or relating to the lawful design, manufacture, marketing or sale of firearms or ammunition to the public shall be reserved exclusively to the state.
    2. Nothing in this subsection (c) shall be construed to prohibit a county, municipality, or metropolitan government from bringing an action against a firearms or ammunition manufacturer or dealer for breach of contract or warranty as to firearms or ammunition purchased by such county, municipality, or metropolitan government.
    3. Nothing in this subsection (c) shall preclude an individual from bringing a cause of action for breach of a written contract, breach of an express warranty, or for injuries resulting from defects in the materials or workmanship in the manufacture of the firearm.
  3. The provisions of subsections (b) and (c) shall not apply in any litigation brought by an individual against a firearms or ammunition manufacturer, trade association or dealer.
  4. It is the intent of the general assembly that this part is preemptive with respect to the transfer, ownership, possession or transportation of knives and no city, county, or metropolitan government shall occupy any part of the field of regulation of the transfer, ownership, possession or transportation of knives.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1; 1999, ch. 293, §1, 2; 2009, ch. 428, §3; 2013, ch. 418, §1; 2014, ch. 822, §1.

§39-17-1315 - (2012) Written directive and permit to carry handguns
      1. The following persons may carry handguns at all times pursuant to a written directive by the executive supervisor of the organization to which the person is or was attached or employed, regardless of the person's regular duty hours or assignments:
        1. Any law enforcement officer, police officer, bonded and sworn deputy sheriff, director, commissioner, county magistrate or retired law enforcement officer who is bonded and who, at the time of receiving the written directive, has successfully completed and, except for a law enforcement officer who has retired in good standing as certified by the chief law enforcement officer of the organization from which the officer retired, continues to successfully complete on an annual basis a firearm training program of at least eight (8) hours duration;
        2. Any director or full-time employee of the Tennessee emergency management agency in the performance of the director's or employee's duty;
        3. Any duly authorized representative or full-time employee of the department of correction who has been specifically designated by the commissioner of the department to execute warrants issued pursuant to §40-28-121 or §40-35-311 or to perform such other duties as specifically designated by the commissioner; or
        4. Any other officer or person authorized to carry handguns by this, or any other law of this state.
      2. A copy of the written directive shall be retained as a portion of the records of the particular law enforcement agency that shall issue the directive. Nothing in this subdivision (a)(1) shall prevent federal officers from carrying firearms as prescribed by federal law.
    1. Any duly elected and sworn constable in any county having a population of not less than eleven thousand one hundred (11,100) nor more than eleven thousand two hundred (11,200), according to the 1970 federal census or any subsequent federal census, and being a county in which constables retain law enforcement powers and duties under the provisions of §8-10-108, 40-6-210, 55-8-152, 57-5-202 and 57-9-101, are authorized to and may carry handguns at all times and may equip their vehicles with blue and red lights and sirens. The sheriff of such county shall issue a written directive or permit authorizing the constables to carry a handgun; provided, that each constable has completed the same eight-hour annual firearm training program as is required by this subsection (a).
    2. The county commission may, by a two-thirds (2/3) vote, require the constable to have in effect a liability policy or a corporate surety bond in an amount of not less than fifty thousand dollars ($50,000).
    1. An individual, corporation or business entity is authorized to prohibit the possession of weapons by employees otherwise authorized by this subsection (b) on premises owned, operated or managed by the individual, corporation or business entity. Notice of the prohibition shall be posted or otherwise noticed to all affected employees.
    2. An individual, corporation, business entity or governmental entity or agent thereof is authorized to prohibit possession of weapons by any person otherwise authorized by this subsection (b), at meetings conducted by, or on premises owned, operated, managed or under control of the individual, corporation, business entity or governmental entity. Notice of the prohibition shall be posted or announced.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1; 1990, ch. 1029, §10; 1993, ch. 471, §2, 4; 1994, ch. 943, §2-9, 11-13; 1995, ch. 434, §1; 1996, ch. 905, §1; 1999, ch. 498, §1; 2003, ch. 144, §1; 2007, ch. 318, §1; 2007, ch. 586, §3; 2012, ch. 727, §8.

§39-17-1316 - (2013) Sales of dangerous weapons -- Certification of purchaser -- Exceptions -- Licensing of dealers -- Definitions
    1. Any person appropriately licensed by the federal government may stock and sell firearms to persons desiring firearms; however, sales to persons who have been convicted of the offense of stalking, as prohibited by §39-17-315, who are addicted to alcohol, who are ineligible to receive firearms under 18 U.S.C. §922, or who have been judicially committed to a mental institution pursuant to title 33 or adjudicated as a mental defective are prohibited. For purposes of this subdivision (a)(1), the offense of violation of a protective order as prohibited by §39-13-113 shall be considered a "misdemeanor crime of domestic violence" for purposes of 18 U.S.C. §921.
    2. The provisions of this subsection (a) prohibiting the sale of a firearm to a person convicted of a felony shall not apply if:
      1. The person was pardoned for the offense;
      2. The conviction has been expunged or set aside; or
      3. The person's civil rights have been restored pursuant to title 40, chapter 29; and
      4. The person is not prohibited from possessing a firearm by the provisions of §39-17-1307.
    1. As used in this section, "firearm" has the meaning as defined in §39-11-106, including handguns, long guns, and all other weapons that meet the definition except "antique firearms" as defined in 18 U.S.C. §921.
    2. As used in this section, "gun dealer" means a person engaged in the business, as defined in 18 U.S.C. §921, of selling, leasing, or otherwise transferring a firearm, whether the person is a retail dealer, pawnbroker, or otherwise.
  1. Except with respect to transactions between persons licensed as dealers under 18 U.S.C. §923, a gun dealer shall comply with the following before a firearm is delivered to a purchaser:
    1. The purchaser shall present to the dealer current identification meeting the requirements of subsection (f);
    2. The gun dealer shall complete a firearms transaction record as required by 18 U.S.C. §921-929, and obtain the signature of the purchaser on the record;
    3. The gun dealer shall request by means designated by the bureau that the Tennessee bureau of investigation conduct a criminal history record check on the purchaser and shall provide the following information to the bureau:
      1. The federal firearms license number of the gun dealer;
      2. The business name of the gun dealer;
      3. The place of transfer;
      4. The name of the person making the transfer;
      5. The make, model, caliber and manufacturer's number of the firearm being transferred;
      6. The name, gender, race, and date of birth of the purchaser;
      7. The social security number of the purchaser, if one has been assigned; and
      8. The type, issuer and identification number of the identification presented by the purchaser; and
    4. The gun dealer shall receive a unique approval number for the transfer from the bureau and record the approval number on the firearms transaction record.
  2. Upon receipt of a request of the gun dealer for a criminal history record check, the Tennessee bureau of investigation shall immediately, during the gun dealer's telephone call or by return call:
    1. Determine, from criminal records and other information available to it, whether the purchaser is disqualified under the provisions of subdivision (a)(1) from completing the purchase; and
    2. Notify the dealer when a purchaser is disqualified from completing the transfer or provide the dealer with a unique approval number indicating that the purchaser is qualified to complete the transfer.
    1. The Tennessee bureau of investigation may charge a reasonable fee, not to exceed ten dollars ($10.00), for conducting background checks and other costs incurred under the provisions of this section, and shall be empowered to bill gun dealers for checks run.
    2. Funds collected by the Tennessee bureau of investigation pursuant to this section shall be deposited in a continuing deferred interest-bearing revenue fund that is created in the state treasury. This fund will not revert to the general fund on June 30 of any year. This fund shall be used to offset the costs associated with conducting background checks. By February 1 of each year the Tennessee bureau of investigation shall report to the senate judiciary committee and the criminal justice committee of the house of representatives the amount of money collected pursuant to this section in excess of the costs associated with conducting background checks as required by this section. The excess money shall be appropriated by the general assembly to the Tennessee bureau of investigation for other law enforcement related purposes as it deems appropriate and necessary.
    1. Identification required of the purchaser under subsection (c) shall include one (1) piece of current, valid identification bearing a photograph and the date of birth of the purchaser that:
      1. Is issued under the authority of the United States government, a state, a political subdivision of a state, a foreign government, a political subdivision of a foreign government, an international governmental organization or an international quasi-governmental organization; and
      2. Is intended to be used for identification of an individual or is commonly accepted for the purpose of identification of an individual.
    2. If the identification presented by the purchaser under subdivision (f)(1)(A) does not include the current address of the purchaser, the purchaser shall present a second piece of current identification that contains the current address of the purchaser.
  3. The Tennessee bureau of investigation may require that the dealer verify the identification of the purchaser if that identity is in question by sending the thumbprints of the purchaser to the bureau.
  4. The Tennessee bureau of investigation shall establish a telephone number that shall be operational seven (7) days a week between the hours of eight o'clock a.m. and ten o'clock p.m. Central Standard Time (8:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m. (CST)), except Christmas Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Independence Day, for the purpose of responding to inquiries from dealers for a criminal history record check under this section.
  5. No public employee, official or agency shall be held criminally or civilly liable for performing the investigations required by this section; provided the employee, official or agency acts in good faith and without malice.
  6. Upon the determination that receipt of a firearm by a particular individual would not violate this section, and after the issuance of a unique identifying number for the transaction, the Tennessee bureau of investigation shall destroy all records (except the unique identifying number and the date that it was assigned) associating a particular individual with a particular purchase of firearms.
  7. A law enforcement agency may inspect the records of a gun dealer relating to transfers of firearms in the course of a reasonable inquiry during a criminal investigation or under the authority of a properly authorized subpoena or search warrant.
    1. The background check does not apply to transactions between licensed importers, licensed manufacturers, licensed dealers, or licensed collectors who meet the requirements of subsection (b) and certify prior to the transaction the legal and licensed status of both parties. The burden shall fall upon the transferor to determine the legality of the transaction in progress.
    2. The background check does not apply to transactions or transfers between a licensed importer, licensed manufacturer, or licensed dealer and a bona fide law enforcement agency or such agency's personnel. However, all other provisions and requirements of subsection (b) must be observed. The burden of proof of the legality of the transactions or transfers shall rest upon the transferor.
    3. The background check does not apply to any person eligible to purchase a firearm as set out in this section who wishes to make an occasional sale of a used or second-hand firearm legally purchased by the seller.
  8. The director of the Tennessee bureau of investigation is authorized to make and issue all rules and regulations necessary to carry out the provisions of this section.
  9. In addition to the other grounds for denial, the bureau shall deny the transfer of a firearm if the background check reveals information indicating that the purchaser has been charged with a crime for which the purchaser, if convicted, would be prohibited under state or federal law from purchasing, receiving, or possessing a firearm; and, either there has been no final disposition of the case, or the final disposition is not noted.
  10. Upon receipt of the criminal history challenge form indicating a purchaser's request for review of the denial, the bureau shall proceed with efforts to obtain the final disposition information. The purchaser may attempt to assist the bureau in obtaining the final disposition information. If neither the purchaser nor the bureau is able to obtain the final disposition information within fifteen (15) calendar days of the bureau's receipt of the criminal history challenge form, the bureau shall immediately notify the federal firearms licensee that the transaction that was initially denied is now a "conditional proceed." A "conditional proceed" means that the federal firearms licensee may lawfully transfer the firearm to the purchaser.
  11. In any case in which the transfer has been denied pursuant to subsection (n), the inability of the bureau to obtain the final disposition of a case shall not constitute the basis for the continued denial of the transfer as long as the bureau receives written notice, signed and verified by the clerk of the court or the clerk's designee, that indicates that no final disposition information is available. Upon receipt of the letter by the bureau, the bureau shall immediately reverse the denial.
    1. It is an offense for a person to purchase or attempt to purchase a firearm knowing that the person is prohibited by state or federal law from owning, possessing or purchasing a firearm.
    2. It is an offense to sell or offer to sell a firearm to a person knowing that the person is prohibited by state or federal law from owning, possessing or purchasing a firearm.
    3. A violation of this subsection (q) is a Class A misdemeanor.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1; 1993, ch. 372, §1; 1994, ch. 1001, §1-6; 1995, ch. 371, §1; 1996, ch. 1075, §1, 2; 1998, ch. 1071, §1; 2001, ch. 396, §1; 2005, ch. 482, §8; 2006, ch. 920, §4; 2009, ch. 102, §1, 2; 2009, ch. 195, §2; 2009, ch. 578, §9; 2013, ch. 236, §36.

§39-17-1317 - (2015) Confiscation and disposition of confiscated weapons
  1. Subject to § 40-33-211 and notwithstanding the remaining provisions of title 40, chapter 33, all firearms that are forfeited or abandoned to or received by any law enforcement agency of the state or a political subdivision of the state, including the Tennessee wildlife resources agency, or are otherwise acquired and no longer needed by the state or a political subdivision of the state, shall be disposed of as provided in this section.
  2. Prior to the disposal of any firearm that has been forfeited or abandoned to the state or a political subdivision of the state, the agency with custody or possession of the firearm shall use best efforts to determine if the firearm has been lost by or stolen or otherwise unlawfully obtained from an innocent owner, and if so, shall return the firearm to the owner, if ascertainable, unless that person is ineligible to possess, receive, or purchase a firearm under state or federal law.
    1. Except as provided in subsection (b) or (d), the agency shall dispose of any firearms it receives under subsection (a) by sale at public auction to persons licensed as firearms collectors, dealers, importers, or manufacturers under 18 U.S.C. § 921 et seq. who are authorized to receive such firearms under the terms of such license.
    2. The auctions required by this subsection (c) may occur online on a rolling basis or at live events, but in no event shall an auction occur less frequently than once every six (6) months during any time the agency has an inventory of saleable firearms.
    3. The agency shall retain only such proceeds as are necessary to cover the costs of administering this section, with any surplus to be transferred to the state general fund, or applicable localgeneral fund if a local agency; provided, that an agency may be reimbursed for any firearms formerly in use by the agency that are sold under this section.
    4. Employees of the agency shall not be eligible to bid on the firearms at an auction conducted under this section, and except for the costs of administration authorized under subdivision (c) (3), neither the agency nor its employees may retain any proceeds from any sale required by this section, nor may the agency or its employees retain any firearm required to be sold under this section.
    1. Subsection (c) shall not apply to a firearm if:
      1. No bids from eligible recipients are received within six (6) months from when bidding opened on the item; or
      2. The chief of police, agency director, or designee of such official certifies the firearm is unsafe for use because of wear, damage, age, or modification.
    2. At the discretion of the chief of police, agency director, or designee of such official, firearms subject to subdivision (d)(1) shall be:
      1. Transferred to the Tennessee bureau of investigation forensic services division for training or experimental purposes;
      2. Transferred to a museum or historical society that displays such items to the public and is lawfully eligible to receive the item; or
      3. Destroyed.
  3. All agencies subject to this section shall keep records of the firearms acquired and disposed of pursuant to this section, as well as the proceeds of the sales and the disbursement of proceeds, and shall maintain these records for not less than ten (10) years from the date on which a firearm is disposed of or on which a disbursement of funds is made, as the case may be.
  4. Neither the state nor any political subdivision of the state, nor any of their officers, agents, and employees, shall be liable to any person, including the purchaser of a firearm, for personal injuries or damage to property arising from the sale of a firearm under subsection (c), unless the state or political subdivision acted with gross negligence or recklessness.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1; 1991, ch. 111, §1-6; 1992, ch. 734, §1-5; 2006, ch. 798, §2; 2009, ch. 116, §1; 2010, ch. 629, §1-11; 2011, ch. 159, §1; 2015, ch.408, §1, eff. July 1, 2015.

§39-17-1318 - New serial numbers for confiscated firearms
  1. If any firearm confiscated and adjudicated as contraband pursuant to this part or any other provision of law could be sold at public auction or retained by a law enforcement agency for law enforcement as provided in §39-17-1317, but for the fact that the serial number of the firearm has been defaced or destroyed, the commissioner of safety or the sheriff or chief of police, as appropriate, of the county in which the firearm was confiscated may send the firearm to the director of the Tennessee bureau of investigation. The director shall assign the firearm a new serial number, permanently affix the number to the firearm, record the number in the bureau's computer system, and send the firearm back to the commissioner of safety, the sheriff or chief of police for disposition in accordance with this part.
  2. If any firearm assigned a new serial number pursuant to subsection (a) is later sold at public auction, ten percent (10%) of the proceeds of the sale shall be returned to the general fund of the state to defray the costs incurred by the director in administering this section.

HISTORY: Acts 1989, ch. 591, §1; 1991, ch. 111, §7, 8.

§39-17-1319 - Handgun possession prohibited -- Exceptions
  1. As used in this section and §39-17-1320, unless the context otherwise requires:
    1. "Handgun" means a pistol, revolver, or other firearm of any description, loaded or unloaded, from which any shot, bullet, or other missile can be discharged, the length of the barrel of which, not including any revolving, detachable, or magazine breech, does not exceed twelve inches (12''); and
    2. "Juvenile" means any person less than eighteen (18) years of age.
  2. Except as provided in this section, it is an offense for a juvenile to knowingly possess a handgun.
    1. Illegal possession of a handgun by a juvenile is a delinquent act and, in addition to any other disposition authorized by law, the juvenile may be required to perform not more than one hundred (100) hours of community service work to be specified by the judge, and the juvenile's driving privileges shall be suspended for a period of one (1) year in accordance with the procedure set out in title 55, chapter 10, part 7.
    2. A second or subsequent violation of this section is a delinquent act and, in addition to any other disposition authorized by law, the juvenile may be required to perform not less than one hundred (100) nor more than two hundred (200) hours of community service work to be specified by the judge, and the juvenile's driving privileges shall be suspended for a period of two (2) years in accordance with the procedure set out in title 55, chapter 10, part 7.
    3. Any handgun illegally possessed in violation of this section shall be confiscated and disposed of in accordance with the provisions of §39-17-1317.
    1. It is a defense to prosecution under this section that the juvenile is:
      1. In attendance at a hunter's safety course or a firearms safety course;
      2. Engaging in practice in the use of a firearm or target shooting at an established range authorized by the governing body of the jurisdiction in which such range is located or any other area where the discharge of a firearm is not prohibited;
      3. Engaging in an organized competition involving the use of a firearm, or participating in or practicing for a performance by an organized group which is exempt from federal income taxation under §501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 ( 26 U.S.C. §501(c)(3)), as amended, and which uses firearms as part of the performance;
      4. Hunting or trapping pursuant to a valid license issued to the juvenile pursuant to title 70;
      5. Accompanied by the juvenile's parent or guardian and is being instructed by the adult or guardian in the use of the handgun possessed by the juvenile;
      6. On real property which is under the control of an adult and has the permission of that adult and the juvenile's parent or legal guardian to possess a handgun;
      7. Traveling to or from any activity described in subdivision (d)(1) with an unloaded gun; or
      8. At the juvenile's residence and with the permission of the juvenile's parent or legal guardian, possesses a handgun and is justified in using physical force or deadly force.
    2. For purposes of subdivision (d)(1)(G), a handgun is "unloaded" if:
      1. There is not a cartridge in the chamber of the handgun;
      2. There is not a cartridge in the cylinder of the handgun if the handgun is a revolver; or
      3. The handgun, and the ammunition for the handgun, are not carried on the person of a juvenile or are not in such close proximity to the juvenile that the juvenile could readily gain access to the handgun and the ammunition and load the handgun.
  3. Notwithstanding any other provision of this part to the contrary, the provisions of this section shall govern a juvenile who possesses a handgun.

HISTORY: Acts 1994, ch. 802, §1.

§39-17-1320 - Providing handguns to juveniles -- Penalties
  1. It is an offense for a person intentionally, knowingly or recklessly to provide a handgun with or without remuneration to any person that the person providing the handgun knows or has reason to believe is a juvenile in violation of §39-17-1319.
  2. It is an offense for a parent or guardian intentionally, knowingly or recklessly to provide a handgun to a juvenile or permit a juvenile to possess a handgun, if the parent or guardian knows of a substantial risk that the juvenile will use a handgun to commit a felony.
  3. Unlawfully providing or permitting a juvenile to possess a handgun in violation of subsection (a) is a Class A misdemeanor and in violation of subsection (b) is a Class D felony.

HISTORY: Acts 1994, ch. 802, §1.

§39-17-1321 - (2012) Possession of handgun while under influence -- Penalty
  1. Notwithstanding whether a person has a permit issued pursuant to §39-17-1315 or §39-17-1351, it is an offense for a person to possess a handgun while under the influence of alcohol or any controlled substance or controlled substance analogue.
  2. It is an offense for a person to possess a firearm if the person is both:
    1. Within the confines of an establishment open to the public where liquor, wine or other alcoholic beverages, as defined in §57-3-101(a)(1)(A), or beer, as defined in §57-6-102(1), are served for consumption on the premises; and
    2. Consuming any alcoholic beverage listed in subdivision (b)(1).
    1. A violation of this section is a Class A misdemeanor.
    2. In addition to the punishment authorized by subdivision (c)(1), if the violation is of subsection (a), occurs in an establishment described in subdivision (b)(1), and the person has a handgun permit issued pursuant to §39-17-1351, such permit shall be suspended in accordance with §39-17-1352 for a period of three (3) years.

HISTORY: Acts 1994, ch. 943, §10; 1997, ch. 476, §4; 2010, ch. 1009, §2; 2012, ch. 848, §22.

§39-17-1322 - Defenses

A person shall not be charged with or convicted of a violation under this part if the person possessed, displayed or employed a handgun in justifiable self-defense or in justifiable defense of another during the commission of a crime in which that person or the other person defended was a victim.

HISTORY: Acts 1994, ch. 943, §1.

§39-17-1323 - (2012) Commission of certain offenses while wearing a body vest
  1. A person commits an offense who knowingly wears a body vest, when acting either alone or with one (1) or more other persons, while committing:
    1. Any felony whose statutory elements involve the use or threat of violence to a human being;
    2. Any burglary, car-jacking, theft of a motor vehicle, or arson; or
    3. Any felony offense involving a controlled substance or controlled substance analogue.
  2. For purposes of this section, a "body vest" means a bullet-resistant soft armor providing, as a minimum standard, the level of protection known as threat level I which shall mean at least seven (7) layers of bullet-resistant material providing protection from three (3) shots of one hundred fifty-eight-grain lead ammunition fired from a .38 caliber handgun at a velocity of eight hundred fifty feet (850') per second.
  3. The unlawful wearing of a body vest is a Class E felony.
  4. Nothing in this section shall prohibit the possession of a body vest for lawful purposes.
  5. Any sentence imposed under this section shall run consecutively to any other sentence imposed for the conviction of the underlying offense.

HISTORY: Acts 1997, ch. 321, §1; 2012, ch. 848, §23.

§39-17-1350 - (2016) Law enforcement officers permitted to carry firearms -- Exceptions -- Restrictions -- Identification card for corrections officers
  1. Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, any law enforcement officer may carry firearms at all times and in all places within Tennessee, on-duty or off-duty, regardless of the officer's regular duty hours or assignments, except as provided by subsection (c), federal law, lawful orders of court or the written directives of the executive supervisor of the employing agency.
  2. The authority conferred by this section is expressly intended to and shall supersede restrictions placed upon law enforcement officers' authority to carry firearms by other sections within this part.
  3. The authority conferred by this section shall not extend to a law enforcement officer:
    1. Who is not engaged in the actual discharge of official duties as a law enforcement officer and carries a firearm onto school grounds or inside a school building during regular school hours unless the officer immediately informs the principal that the officer will be present on school grounds or inside the school building and in possession of a firearm. If the principal is unavailable, the notice may be given to an appropriate administrative staff person in the principal's office;
    2. Who is consuming beer or an alcoholic beverage or who is under the influence of beer, an alcoholic beverage, or a controlled substance or controlled substance analogue; or
    3. Who is not engaged in the actual discharge of official duties as a law enforcement officer while attending a judicial proceeding.
    1. For purposes of this section, "law enforcement officer" means a person who is a full-time employee of the state in a position authorized by the laws of this state to carry a firearm and to make arrests for violations of some or all of the laws of this state, or a full-time police officer who has been certified by the peace officer standards and training commission, or a commissioned reserve deputy sheriff as authorized in writing by the sheriff, or a commissioned reserve or auxiliary police officer as authorized in writing by the chief of police, or a sheriff who has been certified by the peace officer standards and training commission, or a deputy sheriff employed by a county as a court officer or corrections officer as authorized in writing by the sheriff.
    2. For purposes of this section, "law enforcement officer" also means a vested inmate relations coordinator employed by the department of correction, or a vested correctional officer employed by the department of correction, a person employed by the department of correction as a warden, deputy warden, associate warden, correctional administrator, assistant or deputy commissioner, or commissioner who has successfully completed firearms training in accordance with department of correction standards, which standards shall include, at a minimum, forty (40) hours initial training and eight (8) hours annual in-service training in firearms qualification administered by an instructor with certification from the Tennessee Correction Academy's firearms instructor program or from a police firearms instructor training program conducted or sanctioned by the federal bureau of investigation or the National Rifle Association.
    3. For purposes of this section, "law enforcement officer" also means a duly elected and sworn constable in a county where constables retain law enforcement powers and duties under § 8-10-108.
  4. In counties having a population of not less than thirty thousand two hundred (30,200) nor more than thirty thousand four hundred seventy-five (30,475) or not less than one hundred eighteen thousand four hundred (118,400) nor more than one hundred eighteen thousand seven hundred (118,700), according to the 1990 federal census or any subsequent federal census, the authority conferred by this section shall only apply to law enforcement officers who are law enforcement officers for those counties or law enforcement officers for municipalities located therein.
    1. The secretary of state shall, in consultation with the commissioner of correction, design and issue to each requesting inmate relations coordinator or correctional officer who is vested and employed by the department of correction, a state identification card certifying that the inmate relations coordinator or correctional officer is authorized to carry a firearm pursuant to this section.
    2. Any inmate relations coordinator or correctional officer desiring an identification card shall notify the secretary of state and shall provide the inmate relations coordinator's or correctional officer's full name and residential address. Upon receipt of the request, the secretary of state shall notify the commissioner of correction of the request. The commissioner of correction shall verify to the secretary of state whether the requesting inmate relations coordinator or correctional officer is vested and employed by the department of correction and shall so certify in a letter to be maintained by the secretary.
    3. If the secretary of state receives certification that a requesting inmate relations coordinator or correctional officer is vested and employed by the department, the secretary shall issue the inmate relations coordinator or correctional officer an identification card so certifying. The card shall be valid for as long as the inmate relations coordinator or correctional officer remains vested and in the employment of the department of correction.
    4. An inmate relations coordinator or correctional officer issued a card pursuant to this subsection (f) shall carry the card at all times the inmate relations coordinator or correctional officer is carrying a firearm. The card shall be sufficient proof that the inmate relations coordinator or correctional officer is authorized to carry a firearm pursuant to this section.
    5. If a vested inmate relations coordinator or correctional officer employed by the department resigns, is terminated, or is otherwise no longer employed by the department, the commissioner shall, within ten (10) days, so notify the secretary of state. Upon receiving the notice, the secretary of state shall revoke the identification card and send a letter of revocation to the inmate relations coordinator or correctional officer at the coordinator's or officer's last known address.
      1. A person who is no longer a vested inmate relations coordinator or correctional officer employed by the department of correction but who still has an identification card issued by the secretary of state shall have ten (10) days from receipt of the letter of revocation from the secretary of state to return the card to the secretary.
      2. It is a Class C misdemeanor punishable by fine only of fifty dollars ($50.00) for a person to knowingly fail to return an identification card as required by subdivision (f)(6)(A).

HISTORY: Acts 2000, ch. 988, §1; 2001, ch. 175, §1; 2002, ch. 682, §1; 2009, ch. 605, §1; 2010, ch. 631, §1, 2; 2010, ch. 895, §1; 2012, ch. 603, §2; 2012, ch. 848, §25; 2016, ch. 746 section 1 - ch. 641 section 1

§39-17-1351 - (2016) Handgun carry permits
  1. The citizens of this state have a right to keep and bear arms for their common defense; but the general assembly has the power, by law, to regulate the wearing of arms with a view to prevent crime.
  2. Except as provided in subsection (r), any resident of Tennessee who is a United States citizen or lawful permanent resident, as defined by § 55-50-102, who has reached eighteen (18) years of age, may apply to the department of safety for a handgun carry permit. If the applicant is not prohibited from possessing a firearm in this state pursuant to § 39-17-1307(b), 18 U.S.C. § 922(g), or any other state or federal law, and the applicant otherwise meets all of the requirements of this section, the department shall issue a permit to the applicant.
  3. The application for a permit shall be on a standard form developed by the department. The application shall clearly state in bold face type directly above the signature line that an applicant who, with intent to deceive, makes any false statement on the application commits the felony offense of perjury pursuant to §39-16-702. The following are eligibility requirements for obtaining a handgun carry permit and the application shall require the applicant to disclose and confirm compliance with, under oath, the following information concerning the applicant and the eligibility requirements:
    1. Full legal name and any aliases;
    2. Addresses for the last five (5) years;
    3. Date of birth;
    4. Social security number;
    5. Physical description (height, weight, race, sex, hair color and eye color);
    6. That the applicant has not been convicted of a criminal offense that is designated as a felony, or that is one of the disqualifying misdemeanors set out in subdivisions (c)(11), (c)(16), or (c)(18), with the exception of any federal or state offenses pertaining to antitrust violations, unfair trade practices, restraints of trade or other similar offenses relating to the regulations of business practices;
    7. That the applicant is not currently under indictment or information for any criminal offense that is designated as a felony, or that is one of the disqualifying misdemeanors set out in subdivisions (c)(11), (c)(16), or (c)(18), with the exception of any federal or state offenses pertaining to antitrust violations, unfair trade practices, restraints of trade or other similar offenses relating to the regulations of business practices;
    8. That the applicant is not currently subject to any order of protection and, if so, the applicant shall provide a copy of the order;
    9. That the applicant is not a fugitive from justice;
    10. That the applicant is not an unlawful user of or addicted to alcohol, any controlled substance or controlled substance analogue, and the applicant has not been either:
      1. A patient in a rehabilitation program pursuant to a court order or hospitalized for alcohol, controlled substance or controlled substance analogue abuse or addiction pursuant to a court order within ten (10) years from the date of application; or
      2. A voluntary patient in a rehabilitation program or voluntarily hospitalized for alcohol, controlled substance or controlled substance analogue abuse or addiction within three (3) years from the date of application;
    11. That the applicant has not been convicted of the offense of driving under the influence of an intoxicant in this or any other state two (2) or more times within ten (10) years from the date of the application and that none of the convictions has occurred within five (5) years from the date of application or renewal;
    12. That the applicant has not been adjudicated as a mental defective, has not been judicially committed to or hospitalized in a mental institution pursuant to title 33, has not had a court appoint a conservator for the applicant by reason of a mental defect, has not been judicially determined to be disabled by reason of mental illness, developmental disability or other mental incapacity, and has not, within seven (7) years from the date of application, been found by a court to pose an immediate substantial likelihood of serious harm, as defined in title 33, chapter 6, part 5, because of mental illness;
    13. That the applicant is not an alien and is not illegally or unlawfully in the United States;
    14. That the applicant has not been discharged from the armed forces under dishonorable conditions;
    15. That the applicant has not renounced the applicant's United States citizenship;
    16. That the applicant has not been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence as defined in 18 U.S.C. §921(33);
    17. That the applicant is not receiving social security disability benefits by reason of alcohol dependence, drug dependence or mental disability; and
    18. That the applicant has not been convicted of the offense of stalking.
    1. The department shall also require an applicant to submit proof of the successful completion of a department approved handgun safety course within one (1) year of the date of application. The applicant's fingerprints may be taken by the department at the time the application is submitted or the applicant may have the fingerprints taken at any sheriff's office and submit the fingerprints to the department along with the application and other supporting documents. The sheriff may charge a fee not to exceed five dollars ($5.00) for taking the applicant's fingerprints. At the time an applicant's fingerprints are taken either by the department or a sheriff's office, the applicant shall be required to present a photo identification. If the person requesting fingerprinting is not the same person as the person whose picture appears on the photo identification, the department or sheriff shall refuse to take the fingerprints. The department shall also be required to photograph the applicant in a manner that is suitable for use on the permit.
    2. An applicant shall also be required to present a photo identification to the department at the time of filing the application. If the name on the photo identification, name on the application and name on the fingerprint card, if taken by a sheriff, are not the same, the department shall refuse to accept the application. If the person whose picture appears on the photo identification is not the same as the applicant, the department shall refuse to accept the application.
  4. Except as provided in subsection (y) or this subsection (e), the department shall also require an applicant to submit proof of the successful completion of a department approved handgun safety course. Any form created by the department to show proof of the successful completion of a department approved handgun safety course shall not require the applicant to provide the applicant's social security number. Any instructor of a department approved handgun safety course shall not withhold proof of the successful completion of the course solely on the fact the applicant did not disclose the applicant's social security number. The course shall include both classroom hours and firing range hours. Beginning September 1, 2010, and thereafter, a component of the classroom portion of all department-approved handgun safety courses shall be instruction on alcohol and drugs, the effects of those substances on a person's reflexes, judgment and ability to safely handle a firearm, and the provisions of §39-17-1321. An applicant shall not be required to comply with the firing range and classroom hours requirements of this subsection (e) if the applicant submits proof to the department that within five (5) years from the date the application for a handgun carry permit is filed the applicant has:
    1. Been certified by the peace officer standards and training commission;
    2. Successfully completed training at the law enforcement training academy;
    3. Successfully completed the firearms training course required for armed security guard/officer registration, pursuant to §62-35-118(b); or
    4. Successfully completed all handgun training of not less than four (4) hours as required by any branch of the military.
  5. The department shall make applications for permits available for distribution at any location where the department conducts driver license examinations.
    1. Upon receipt of a permit application, the department shall:
      1. Forward two (2) full sets of fingerprints of the applicant to the Tennessee bureau of investigation; and
      2. Send a copy of the application to the sheriff of the county in which the applicant resides.
    2. Within thirty (30) days of receiving an application, the sheriff shall provide the department with any information concerning the truthfulness of the applicant's answers to the eligibility requirements of subsection (c) that is within the knowledge of the sheriff.
  6. Upon receipt of the fingerprints from the department, the Tennessee bureau of investigation shall:
    1. Within thirty (30) days from receipt of the fingerprints, conduct computer searches to determine the applicant's eligibility for a permit under subsection (c) as are available to the bureau based solely upon the applicant's name, date of birth and social security number and send the results of the searches to the department;
    2. Conduct a criminal history record check based upon one (1) set of the fingerprints received and send the results to the department; and
    3. Send one (1) set of the fingerprints received from the department to the federal bureau of investigation, request a federal criminal history record check based upon the fingerprints, as long as the service is available, and send the results of the check to the department.
  7. The department shall deny a permit application if it determines from information contained in the criminal history record checks conducted by the Tennessee and federal bureaus of investigation pursuant to subsection (h), from information received from the clerks of court regarding individuals adjudicated as a mental defective or judicially committed to a mental institution pursuant to title 33, or from other information that comes to the attention of the department, that the applicant does not meet the eligibility requirements of this section. The department shall not be required to confirm the applicant's eligibility for a permit beyond the information received from the Tennessee and federal bureaus of investigation, the clerks of court and the sheriffs, if any.
  8. The department shall not deny a permit application if:
    1. The existence of any arrest or other records concerning the applicant for any indictment, charge or warrant have been judicially or administratively expunged; or
    2. An applicant's conviction has been set aside by a court of competent jurisdiction; or
    3. The applicant, who was rendered infamous or deprived of the rights of citizenship by judgment of any state or federal court, has had the applicant's full rights of citizenship duly restored pursuant to procedures set forth within title 40, chapter 29, or other federal or state law; provided, however, that this subdivision (j)(3) shall not apply to any person who has been convicted of burglary, any felony offense involving violence or use of a firearm or any felony drug offense involving a Schedule I, II, III, IV or V controlled substance or a controlled substance analogue. If the applicant has been convicted of a felony drug offense involving a Schedule VI controlled substance, this subdivision (j)(3) shall not apply if the offense occurred within ten (10) years of the date of application or renewal.
    4. The applicant, who was adjudicated as a mental defective or judicially committed to a mental institution, as defined in § 39-17-1301, has had the applicant's firearm disability removed by an order of the court pursuant to title 16, and either a copy of that order has been provided to the department by the TBI or a certified copy of that court order has been provided to the department by the applicant.
  9. If the department denies an application, the department shall notify the applicant in writing within ten (10) days of the denial. The written notice shall state the specific factual basis for the denial. It shall include a copy of any reports, records or inquiries reviewed or relied upon by the department.
  10. The department shall issue a permit to an applicant not prohibited from obtaining a permit under this section no later than ninety (90) days after the date the department receives the application. A permit issued prior to the department's receipt of the Tennessee and federal bureaus of investigation's criminal history record checks based upon the applicant's fingerprints shall be subject to immediate revocation if either record check reveals that the applicant is not eligible for a permit pursuant to the provisions of this section.
  11. A permit holder shall not be required to complete a handgun safety course to maintain or renew a handgun carry permit. No permit holder shall be required to complete any additional handgun safety course after obtaining a handgun carry permit. No person shall be required to complete any additional handgun safety course if the person applies for a renewal of a handgun carry permit within eight (8) years from the date of expiration.
    1. Except as provided in subdivision (n)(2) and subsection (x), a permit issued pursuant to this section shall be good for eight (8) years and shall entitle the permit holder to carry any handgun or handguns that the permit holder legally owns or possesses. The permit holder shall have the permit in the holder's immediate possession at all times when carrying a handgun and shall display the permit on demand of a law enforcement officer.
    2. A Tennessee permit issued pursuant to this section to a person who is in or who enters into the United States armed forces shall continue in effect for so long as the person's service continues and the person is stationed outside this state, notwithstanding the fact that the person may be temporarily in this state on furlough, leave, or delay en route, and for a period not to exceed sixty (60) days following the date on which the person is honorably discharged or separated from service or returns to this state on reassignment to a duty station in this state, unless the permit is sooner suspended, cancelled or revoked for cause as provided by law. The permit is valid only when in the immediate possession of the permit holder and the permit holder has in the holder's immediate possession the holder's discharge or separation papers, if the permit holder has been discharged or separated from the service.
    3. After the initial issuance of a handgun carry permit, the department shall conduct a name-based criminal history record check every four (4) years or upon receipt of an application.
  12. The permit shall be issued on a wallet-sized laminated card of the same approximate size as is used by the state of Tennessee for driver licenses and shall contain only the following information concerning the permit holder:
    1. The permit holder's name, address and date of birth;
    2. A description of the permit holder by sex, height, weight and eye color;
    3. A color photograph of the permit holder; and
    4. The permit number, issuance date, and expiration date.
    1. Except as provided in subsection (x), the department shall charge an application and processing fee of one hundred dollars ($100). In addition to any other portion of the permit application fee that goes to the Tennessee bureau of investigation, fifteen dollars ($15.00) of the fee shall go to the bureau for the sole purpose of updating and maintaining its fingerprint criminal history data base. On an annual basis, the comptroller of the treasury shall audit the bureau to ensure that the extra fifteen dollars ($15.00) received from each handgun permit application fee is being used exclusively for the purpose set forth in this subsection (p). By February 1 of each year the bureau shall provide documentation to the senate judiciary committee and the criminal justice committee of the house of representatives that the extra fifteen dollars ($15.00) is being used exclusively for the intended purposes. The documentation shall state in detail how the money earmarked for fingerprint data base updating and maintenance was spent, the number and job descriptions of any employees hired and the type and purpose of any equipment purchased.
    2. The provisions of subdivision (p)(1) increasing each permit application fee by fifteen dollars ($15.00) for the purpose of fingerprint data base updating and maintenance shall not take effect if the general appropriation act provides a specific appropriation in the amount of two hundred fifty thousand dollars ($250,000), to defray the expenses contemplated in subdivision (p)(1). If the appropriation is not included in the general appropriations act, the fifteen dollar ($15.00) permit fee increase imposed by subdivision (p)(1) shall take effect on July 1, 1997, the public welfare requiring it.
    3. Beginning July 1, 2008, fifteen dollars ($15.00) of the fee established in subdivision (p)(1) shall be submitted to the sheriff of the county where the applicant resides for the purpose of verifying the truthfulness of the applicant's answers as provided in subdivision (g)(1).
    1. Prior to the expiration of a permit, a permit holder may apply to the department for the renewal of the permit by submitting, under oath, a renewal application with a renewal fee of fifty dollars ($50.00). The renewal application shall be on a standard form developed by the department of safety and shall require the applicant to disclose, under oath, the information concerning the applicant as set forth in subsection (c), and shall require the applicant to certify that the applicant still satisfies all the eligibility requirements of this section for the issuance of a permit. In the event the permit expires prior to the department's approval or issuance of notice of denial regarding the renewal application, the permit holder shall be entitled to continue to use the expired permit; provided, however, that the permit holder shall also be required to prove by displaying a receipt for the renewal application fee that the renewal application was delivered to the department prior to the expiration date of the permit.
      1. A person may renew that person's handgun carry permit beginning six (6) months prior to the expiration date on the face of the card, and, if the permit is not expired, the person shall only be required to comply with the renewal provisions of subdivision (q)(1).
      2. Any person who applies for renewal of that person's handgun carry permit after the expiration date on the face of the card shall only be required to comply with the renewal provisions of subdivision (q)(1) unless the permit has been expired for more than eight (8) years.
      3. Any person who applies for renewal of a handgun carry permit when the permit has been expired for more than eight (8) years, shall, for all purposes, be considered a new applicant.
    2. If a person whose handgun carry permit remained valid pursuant to subdivision (n)(2) because the person was in the United States armed forces applies for a renewal of the permit within eight (8) years of the expiration of the sixty (60) day period following discharge, separation, or return to this state on reassignment to a duty station in this state as provided in subdivision (n)(2), the person shall only be required to comply with the renewal provisions of subdivision (q)(1). If the renewal application is filed eight (8) years or more from expiration of the sixty (60) day period following the date of honorable discharge, separation, or return to this state on reassignment to a duty station in this state, the person shall, for all purposes, be considered a new applicant.
    1. A facially valid handgun permit, firearms permit, weapons permit or license issued by another state shall be valid in this state according to its terms and shall be treated as if it is a handgun permit issued by this state; provided, however, the provisions of this subsection (r) shall not be construed to authorize the holder of any out-of-state permit or license to carry, in this state, any firearm or weapon other than a handgun.
    2. For a person to lawfully carry a handgun in this state based upon a permit or license issued in another state, the person must be in possession of the permit or license at all times the person carries a handgun in this state.
      1. The commissioner of safety shall enter into written reciprocity agreements with other states that require the execution of the agreements. The commissioner of safety shall prepare and publicly publish a current list of states honoring permits issued by the state of Tennessee and shall make the list available to anyone upon request. The commissioner of safety shall also prepare and publicly publish a current list of states who, after inquiry by the commissioner, refuse to enter into a reciprocity agreement with this state or honor handgun carry permits issued by this state. To the extent that any state may impose conditions in the reciprocity agreements, the commissioner of safety shall publish those conditions as part of the list. If another state imposes conditions on Tennessee permit holders in a reciprocity agreement, the conditions shall also become a part of the agreement and apply to the other state's permit holders when they carry a handgun in this state.
      2. If a person with a handgun permit from another state decides to become a resident of Tennessee, the person must obtain a Tennessee handgun permit within six (6) months of establishing residency in Tennessee. The permit may be issued based on the person having a permit from another state provided the other state has substantially similar permit eligibility requirements as this state. However, if during the six-month period the person applies for a handgun permit in this state and the application is denied, the person shall not be allowed to carry a handgun in this state based upon the other state's permit.
        1. If a person who is a resident of and handgun permit holder in another state is employed in this state on a regular basis and desires to carry a handgun in this state, the person shall have six (6) months from the last day of the sixth month of regular employment in this state to obtain a Tennessee handgun carry permit. The permit may be issued based on the person having a permit from another state provided the other state has substantially similar permit eligibility requirements as this state. However, if during the six-month period the person applies for a handgun permit in this state and the application is denied, the person shall not be allowed to carry a handgun in this state based upon the other state's permit.
        2. The provisions of this subdivision (r)(3)(C) shall not apply if the state of residence of the person employed in Tennessee has entered into a handgun permit reciprocity agreement with this state pursuant to this subsection (r).
        3. As used in this subdivision (r)(3)(C), "employed in this state on a regular basis" means a person has been gainfully employed in this state for at least thirty (30) hours a week for six (6) consecutive months not counting any absence from employment caused by the employee's use of sick leave, annual leave, administrative leave or compensatory time.
    1. The department shall make available, on request and payment of a reasonable fee to cover the costs of copying, a statistical report that includes the number of permits issued, denied, revoked, or suspended by the department during the preceding month, listed by age, gender and zip code of the applicant or permit holder and the reason for any permit revocation or suspension. The report shall also include the cost of the program, the revenues derived from fees, the number of violations of the provisions of the handgun carry permit law, and the average time for issuance of a handgun carry permit. By January 1 of each year, a copy of the statistical reports for the preceding calendar year shall be provided to each member of the general assembly.
      1. The department shall maintain statistics related to responses by law enforcement agencies to incidents in which a person who has a permit to carry a handgun under this section is arrested and booked for any offense.
      2. The department by rule promulgated pursuant to the Uniform Administrative Procedures Act, compiled in title 4, chapter 5 shall adopt procedures for state and local law enforcement officials to report the information required by subdivision (s)(2)(A) to the department.
  13. Any law enforcement officer of this state or of any county or municipality may, within the realm of the officer's lawful jurisdiction and when the officer is acting in the lawful discharge of the officer's official duties, disarm a permit holder at any time when the officer reasonably believes it is necessary for the protection of the permit holder, officer or other individual or individuals. The officer shall return the handgun to the permit holder before discharging the permit holder from the scene when the officer has determined that the permit holder is not a threat to the officer, to the permit holder, or other individual or individuals provided that the permit holder has not violated any provision of this section and provided the permit holder has not committed any other violation that results in the arrest of the permit holder.
  14. Substantial compliance with the requirements of this section shall provide the department and any political subdivision thereof with immunity from civil liability alleging liability for issuance of the permit.
  15. Any permit issued pursuant to this section shall be deemed a "license" within the meaning of title 36, chapter 5, part 7, dealing with the enforcement of child support obligations through license denial and revocation.
    1. Notwithstanding any other law or rule to the contrary, neither the department nor an instructor or employee of a department approved handgun safety course is authorized to require any applicant for a handgun carry permit to furnish or reveal identifying information concerning any handgun the applicant owns, possesses or uses during the safety course in order to apply for or be issued the permit.
    2. For purposes of subdivision (w)(1), "identifying information concerning any handgun" includes, but is not limited to, the serial number, model number, make of gun or manufacturer, type of gun, such as revolver or semi-automatic, caliber or whether the applicant owns the handgun used for the safety course.
    1. Any resident of Tennessee who is a United States citizen or lawful permanent resident, as defined by § 55-50-102, who has reached twenty-one (21) years of age, may apply to the department of safety for a lifetime handgun carry permit. If the applicant is not prohibited from purchasing or possessing a firearm in this state pursuant to § 39-17-1316 or § 39-17-1307(b), 18 U.S.C. § 922(g), or any other state or federal law, and the applicant otherwise meets all of the requirements of this section, the department shall issue a permit to the applicant. The lifetime handgun carry permit shall entitle the permit holder to carry any handgun or handguns the permit holder legally owns or possesses and shall entitle the permit holder to any privilege granted to handgun carry permit holders. The requirements imposed on handgun carry permit holders by this section shall also apply to lifetime handgun carry permit holders.
    2. The department shall charge an application and processing fee of two hundred dollars ($200) for a lifetime handgun carry permit. The application process shall otherwise be the same as the application process for a handgun carry permit as set out in this section. A lifetime handgun carry permit shall not expire and shall continue to be valid for the life of the permit holder unless the permit holder no longer meets the requirements of this section. A lifetime handgun carry permit shall not be subject to renewal.
    3. A lifetime handgun carry permit shall not expire and shall continue to be valid for the life of the permit holder unless the permit holder no longer meets the requirements of this section. A lifetime handgun carry permit shall not be subject to renewal; provided, however, that every five (5) years after issuance of the lifetime handgun carry permit, the department shall conduct a criminal history record check in the same manner as required for handgun carry permit renewals. Upon discovery that a lifetime handgun carry permit holder no longer satisfies the requirements of this section, the department shall suspend or revoke the permit pursuant to § 39-17-1352.
      1. If the lifetime handgun carry permit holder's permit is suspended or revoked, the permit holder shall deliver, in person or by mail, the permit to the department within thirty (30) days of the suspension or revocation.
      2. If the department does not receive the lifetime handgun carry permit holder's suspended or revoked permit within thirty (30) days of the suspension or revocation, the department shall send notice to the permit holder that:
        1. The permit holder has thirty (30) days from the date of the notice to deliver the permit, in person or by mail, to the department; and
        2. If the permit holder fails to deliver the suspended or revoked permit to the department within thirty (30) days of the date of the notice, the department will suspend the permit holder's driver license.
      3. If the department does not receive the lifetime handgun carry permit holder's suspended or revoked permit within thirty (30) days of the date of the notice provided by the department, the department shall suspend the permit holder's driver license in the same manner as provided in § 55-50-502.
    4. An applicant shall not be required to pay the application and processing fee required by subdivision (x)(2) if the applicant is a retired federal, state, or local law enforcement officer, as defined in § 39-11-106, and the applicant resides in this state and retired in good standing as certified by the chief law enforcement officer of the organization from which the applicant retired.
  16. An applicant shall not be required to comply with the firing range and classroom hours requirements of subsection (e) if the applicant:
    1. Is an honorably discharged or retired veteran of the United States armed forces;
    2. Presents a certified copy of the applicant's certificate of release or discharge from active duty, department of defense form 214 (DD 214) that:
      1. Documents a date of discharge or retirement within five (5) years from the date of application for a handgun carry permit; and
      2. May have all or a portion of the applicant's social security identification number redacted; and
    3. Presents documentation of the successful completion of all handgun training of not less than four (4) hours as required by any branch of the United States armed forces.

HISTORY: Acts 1996, ch. 905, §3; 1997, ch. 476, §1; 2000, ch. 947, §8C; 2001, ch. 218, §1; 2002, ch. 601, §1; 2003, ch. 300, §1, 2; 2003, ch. 349, §1, 2; 2004, ch. 483, §1, 2; 2004, ch. 776, §1; 2005, ch. 343, §1; 2005, ch. 423, §1; 2008, ch. 1174, §1; 2009, ch. 101, §1; 2009, ch. 433, §1; 2009, ch. 578, §10, 11; 2010, ch. 1009, §4; 2012, ch. 848, §26, 27; 2013, ch. 236, §35; 2013, ch. 270, §1; 2014, ch 866, §§1, 2; 2015, ch. 281, §§§1, 2, 3, eff. July 1, 2015; 2015, ch. 459, §7, eff. July1, 2015; 2016 ch. 875 § 1; 2016 ch. 736 § 1 through 8 - ch. 903 § 1 - ch. 925 - ch. 1037 § 1

NOTE: For purposes of implementing the staggered handgun permit renewal dates subsection (n)(3), it shall take effect when the department of safety's "A-List" driver license program is capable of implementing the provisions of this act, the public welfare requiring it. However, in no event shall it take effect later than January 1, 2016.

§39-17-1352 - Suspension or revocation of license
  1. The department shall suspend or revoke a handgun permit upon a showing by its records or other sufficient evidence that the permit holder:
    1. Is prohibited from purchasing a handgun under applicable state or federal law;
    2. Has not accurately disclosed any material information required by §39-17-1351;
    3. Poses a material likelihood of risk of harm to the public;
    4. Has been arrested for a felony involving the use or attempted use of force, violence or a deadly weapon or a felony drug offense;
    5. Has been convicted of a felony;
    6. Has violated any other provision of §39-17-1351 -- 39-17-1360;
    7. Has at any time committed an act or omission or engaged in a pattern of conduct that would render the permit holder ineligible to apply for or obtain a permit under the eligibility requirements of §39-17-1351;
    8. Has been convicted of domestic assault as defined in §39-13-111, or any other misdemeanor crime of domestic violence and is still subject to the disabilities of such a conviction;
    9. Is subject to a current order of protection that fully complies with 18 U.S.C. §922(g)(8); or
    10. Has been judicially committed to a mental institution pursuant to title 33, chapter 6 or title 33, chapter 7 or has been adjudicated as a mental defective.
    1. It is an offense for a permit holder to knowingly fail or refuse to surrender to the department a suspended or revoked handgun permit within ten (10) days from the date appearing on the notice of suspension or revocation sent to such permit holder by the department.
    2. A violation of this subsection (b) is a Class A misdemeanor.
    1. Upon the suspension or revocation of a permit, the department shall send notice of the suspension or revocation to the permit holder and the appropriate local law enforcement officers. The notice shall state the following:
      1. That the permit has been immediately suspended or revoked;
      2. That the permit holder must surrender the permit to the department within ten (10) days of the date appearing on the notice;
      3. That it is a Class A misdemeanor punishable by up to one (1) year in jail for the permit holder to knowingly fail or refuse to surrender the permit to the department within the ten-day period;
      4. That if the permit holder does not surrender the suspended or revoked permit within the ten-day period, a law enforcement officer will be directed to take possession of the permit; and
      5. That the permit holder has thirty (30) days from the date appearing on the notice of suspension or revocation to request a hearing on the suspension or revocation.
    2. If the permit holder fails to surrender the suspended or revoked permit as required by this section, the department shall issue authorization to the appropriate local law enforcement officials to take possession of the suspended or revoked permit and send it to the department.
  2. The applicant shall have a right to petition the general sessions court of the applicant's county of residence for judicial review of departmental denial, suspension or revocation of a permit. At the review by the general sessions court, the department shall be represented by the district attorney general.
    1. If a permit holder is arrested and charged with burglary, a felony drug offense or a felony offense involving violence or the use of a firearm, then the court first having jurisdiction over the permit holder with respect to the felony charge shall inquire as to whether the person has been issued a Tennessee handgun carry permit, order the permit holder to surrender the permit and send the permit to the department with a copy of the court's order that required the surrender of the permit. The department shall suspend the permit pending a final disposition on the felony charge against the permit holder.
    2. If a permit holder is arrested and charged with any felony offense other than an offense subject to subdivision (e)(1), then the court first having jurisdiction over the permit holder with respect to the felony charge shall inquire as to whether the person has been issued a Tennessee handgun carry permit, order the permit holder to surrender the permit and send the permit to the department with a copy of the court's order that required the surrender of the permit, unless the permit holder petitions the court for a hearing on the surrender. If the permit holder does petition the court, the court shall determine whether the permit holder will present a material risk of physical harm to the public if released and allowed to retain the permit. If the court determines that the permit holder will present a material risk of physical harm to the public, it shall condition any release of the permit holder, whether on bond or otherwise, upon the permit holder's surrender of the permit to the court. Upon surrender of the permit, the court shall send the permit to the department with a copy of the court's order that required the surrender of the permit and the department shall suspend the permit pending a final disposition of the felony charges against the permit holder.
    3. If the permit holder is acquitted on the charge or charges, the permit shall be restored to the holder and the temporary prohibition against the carrying of a handgun shall be lifted.
    4. If the permit holder is convicted of the charge or charges, the permit shall be revoked by the court and the revocation shall be noted in the judgment and minutes of the court. The court shall send the surrendered permit to the department.
    5. If the permit holder is placed on pre-trial diversion or judicial diversion, the permit holder's privilege to lawfully carry a handgun shall be suspended for the length of time the permit holder is subject to the jurisdiction of the court. The court shall send the surrendered permit to the department.
    1. If a permit holder is convicted of a Class A misdemeanor offense, the permit holder shall surrender the permit to the court having jurisdiction of the case for transmission to the department.
    2. The permit holder shall not be permitted to lawfully carry a handgun or exercise the privileges conferred by the permit for the term of the sentence imposed by the court for the offense or offenses for which the permit holder was convicted.
  3. In order to reinstate a permit suspended pursuant to subsection (e) or (f), the permit holder shall pay a reinstatement fee of twenty-five dollars ($25.00) with one half (1/2) of the fee payable to the department of safety and one half (1/2) payable to the court that suspended the permit.
    1. Prior to the reinstatement of the permit, the permit holder shall have paid in full all fines, court costs and restitution, if any, required by the sentencing court.
    2. Failure to complete any terms of probation imposed by the court shall be a bar to reinstatement of the permit.
    3. Prior to reissuance of the permit, the department shall verify that the permit holder has complied with all reinstatement requirements of this subsection (g).

HISTORY: Acts 1996, ch. 905, §4; 1997, ch. 476, §2; 2009, ch. 455, §7; 2009, ch. 578, §12.

§39-17-1353 - Review of revocation or suspension
  1. Any person who has received a notice of suspension or revocation may make a written request for a review of the department's determination by the department at a hearing. The request shall be made on a form available from the department. If the person's permit has not been previously surrendered, it must be surrendered at the time the request for a hearing is made. A request for a hearing does not stay the permit suspension or revocation.
  2. Within thirty (30) days from the date the request for a hearing is filed, the department shall establish a hearing date and set the case on a docket. Nothing in this section shall be construed as requiring the hearing to be conducted within such thirty-day period. The hearing shall be held at a place designated by the department. The department shall provide written notice of the time and place of the hearing to the party requesting the hearing at least ten (10) days prior to the scheduled hearing, unless the party agrees to waive this requirement.
  3. The presiding hearing officer shall be the commissioner or an authorized representative designated by the commissioner. The presiding hearing officer shall have the authority to:
    1. Administer oaths and affirmations;
    2. Examine witnesses and take testimony;
    3. Receive relevant evidence;
    4. Issue subpoenas, take depositions, or cause depositions to interrogatories to be taken;
    5. Regulate the course and conduct of the hearing; and
    6. Make a final ruling on the issue.
  4. The sole issue at the hearing shall be whether by a preponderance of the evidence the person has violated any provision of §39-17-1351 -- 39-17-1360. If the presiding hearing officer finds the affirmative of this issue, the suspension or revocation order shall be sustained. If the presiding hearing officer finds the negative of this issue, the suspension or revocation order shall be rescinded.
  5. The hearing shall be recorded. The decision of the presiding hearing officer shall be rendered in writing, and a copy will be provided to the person who requested the hearing.
  6. If the person who requested the hearing fails to appear without just cause, the right to a hearing shall be waived, and the department's earlier determination shall be final.
  7. Witnesses under subpoena shall be entitled to the same fees as are now or may hereafter be provided for witnesses in civil actions in the circuit court and, unless otherwise provided by law or by action of the agency, the party requesting the subpoenas shall bear the cost of paying fees to the witnesses subpoenaed.

HISTORY: Acts 1996, ch. 905, §5.

§39-17-1354 - Judicial review of department determination
  1. Within thirty (30) days of the issuance of the final determination of the department following a hearing under §39-17-1353, a person aggrieved by the determination shall have the right to file a petition in the chancery court of the county of the person's residence for judicial review. The filing of a petition for judicial review shall not stay the revocation order.
  2. The review shall be on the record, without taking additional testimony. If the court finds that the department exceeded its constitutional or statutory authority, made an erroneous interpretation of the law, acted in an arbitrary and capricious manner, or made a determination that is unsupported by the evidence in the record, the court may reverse the department's determination.

HISTORY: Acts 1996, ch. 905, §6.

§39-17-1355 - Applicability of Uniform Administrative Procedures Act

The Uniform Administrative Procedures Act, compiled in title 4, chapter 5, applies to the extent it is consistent with the proceedings under §39-17-1353 and 39-17-1354 relating to administrative hearing and judicial review.

HISTORY: Acts 1996, ch. 905, §7.

§39-17-1356 - Duplicate permits

The department shall issue a duplicate permit to a permit holder upon the payment by the permit holder of a fee of five dollars ($5.00).

HISTORY: Acts 1996, ch. 905, §8.

§39-17-1357 - (2014) Notice of address change
  1. Within sixty (60) days of any change in a permit holder's principal place of residence, the permit holder shall notify the department in writing of the permit holder's new address.
  2. On or after January 1, 2014, the department shall provide a method for permit holders to notify the department electronically on the department's web site.

HISTORY: Acts 1996, ch. 905, §9; 2014, ch. 816, §1.

§39-17-1358 - Retention of records -- Violations
  1. The sheriff or chief law enforcement officer may retain applications and files related to the approval or denial of any application submitted from October 1, 1994, to October 1, 1996, if the applications and files are relevant to any pending litigation. After the pending litigation is concluded, the applications and files shall be destroyed.
  2. Except as otherwise specifically provided in §39-17-1351 and 39-17-1352, a violation of §39-17-1351 -- 39-17-1360 is a Class B misdemeanor punishable only by a fine not to exceed five hundred dollars ($500).
  3. Any party aggrieved under the terms of §39-17-1351 -- 39-17-1360 by the denial, suspension or revocation of a permit, or otherwise, may file a writ of mandamus, as provided by law. The action shall also allow the recovery of any actual damages sustained by the party. The aggrieved party, if prevailing in action, shall also be entitled to recover those costs and attorney's fees reasonably incurred or relating to the action.
  4. Nothing contained in this section shall be construed to alter, reduce or eliminate any personal civil or criminal liability that an applicant may have for the intentional or negligent use of a firearm.

HISTORY: Acts 1996, ch. 905, §10; 1997, ch. 476, §5.

§39-17-1359 - (2016) Prohibition at certain meetings -- Posting notice
    1. Except as provided in § 39-17-1313, an individual, corporation, business entity or local, state or federal government entity or agent thereof is authorized to prohibit the possession of weapons by any person who is at a meeting conducted by, or on property owned, operated, or managed or under the control of the individual, corporation, business entity or government entity.
    2. The prohibition in subdivision (a)(1) shall apply to any person who is authorized to carry a firearm by authority of §39-17-1351.
    1. Notice of the prohibition permitted by subsection (a) shall be accomplished by displaying the notice described in subdivision (b)(3) in prominent locations, including all entrances primarily used by persons entering the property, building, or portion of the property or building where weapon possession is prohibited. The notice shall be plainly visible to the average person entering the building, property, or portion of the building or property, posted.
    2. The notice required by this section shall be in English, but a duplicate notice may also be posted in any language used by patrons, customers, or persons who frequent the place where weapon possession is prohibited.
      1. A sign shall be used as the method of posting. The sign shall include the phrase “NO FIREARMS ALLOWED”, and the phrase shall measure at least one inch (1?) high and eight inches (8?) wide. The sign shall also include the phrase “As authorized by T.C.A. § 39-17-1359”.
      2. The sign shall include a pictorial representation of the phrase “NO FIREARMS ALLOWED” that shall include a red circle with a red diagonal line through the circle and a black image of a firearm inside the red circle under the diagonal line. The entire pictorial representation shall be at least four inches (4?) high and four inches (4?) wide. The diagonal line shall be at a forty-five degree (45°) angle from the upper left to the lower right side of the circle.
    3. An individual, corporation, business entity, or government entity that, as of January 1, 2015, used signs to provide notice of the prohibition permitted by subsection (a) shall have until January 1, 2018, to replace existing signs with signs that meet the requirements of subdivision (b)(3).
    1. It is an offense to possess a weapon in a building or on property that is properly posted in accordance with this section.
    2. Possession of a weapon on posted property in violation of this section is a Class B misdemeanor punishable by fine only of five hundred dollars ($500).
  1. Nothing in this section shall be construed to alter, reduce or eliminate any civil or criminal liability that a property owner or manager may have for injuries arising on their property.
  2. The provisions of this section shall not apply to title 70 regarding wildlife laws, rules and regulations.
  3. This section shall not apply to the grounds of any public park, natural area, historic park, nature trail, campground, forest, greenway, waterway or other similar public place that is owned or operated by the state, a county, a municipality or instrumentality thereof. The carrying of firearms in those areas shall be governed by §39-17-1311.

HISTORY: Acts 1996, ch. 905, §11; 2000, ch. 929, §1; 2009, ch. 428, §4; 2010, ch. 1009, §3; 2013, ch. 16, § 2; 2016 ch. 638

§39-17-1360 - Rules and regulations

The department of safety is authorized to promulgate rules and regulations pursuant to the Uniform Administrative Procedures Act, compiled in title 4, chapter 5, to implement the provisions of §39-17-1351 -- 39-17-1360.

HISTORY: Acts 1996, ch. 905, §12.

§39-17-1361 - (2015) Execution of documents by sheriff or chief of police
  1. As used in this section:
    1. "Chief law enforcement officer" or "officer" means any official, or the official's designee, that the federal bureau of alcohol, tobacco, firearms and explosives, or any successor agency, identifies by regulation or otherwise as eligible to provide any required certification for the making or transfer of a firearm;
    2. "Certification" means the participation and assent of the chief law enforcement officer necessary under federal law for the approval of the application to transfer or make a firearm; and
    3. "Firearm" has the same meaning as provided in the National Firearms Act, 26 U.S.C. § 5845(a).
  2. When a chief law enforcement officer's certification is required by federal law or regulation for the transfer or making of a firearm, the officer shall, within fifteen (15) days of receipt of a request for certification, provide such certification if the applicant is not prohibited by law from receiving or possessing the firearm and is not the subject of a proceeding that could result in the applicant being prohibited by law from receiving or possessing the firearm. If the officer is unable to make a certification as required by this section, the officer shall provide the applicant a written notification of the denial and the reason for this determination.
  3. An officer shall not be required by this section to make any certification the officer knows to be untrue, but the officer may not refuse to provide certification based on a generalized objection to private persons or entities making, possessing, or receiving firearms or any certain type of firearm the possession of which is not prohibited by law.
  4. An officer and the officer's employees who act in good faith are immune from civil liability arising from any act or omission in making a certification as required by this section.
  5. An applicant whose request for certification is denied may appeal the officer's decision to the circuit court that is located in the jurisdiction in which the applicant resides or maintains its address of record. The court shall review the officer's decision to deny the certification de novo. If the court finds that the applicant is not prohibited by law from receiving or possessing the firearm and is not the subject of a proceeding that could result in such prohibition and that no substantial evidence supports the officer's determination that the officer cannot truthfully make the certification, the court shall order the officer to issue the certification.
  6. In making the determination required by subsection (b), an officer may conduct a criminal background check, including an inquiry of the national instant criminal background check system, and may require of the applicant only the information that is necessary to identify the applicant for that purpose or to determine the disposition of an arrest or proceeding relevant to the applicant's eligibility to lawfully possess or receive a firearm. An officer may not require access to or inspection of any private residential premises as a condition of granting an application under this section.

HISTORY: Acts 2003, ch. 275, §1; 2015, ch. 234, §1.

§39-17-1362 - Imitation firearm -- Defined -- Offense to display in threatening manner in public place
  1. As used in this section, unless the context otherwise requires:
    1. "Imitation firearm" means an object or device substantially similar in coloration and overall appearance to a firearm, as defined in §39-11-106(a), as to lead a reasonable person to perceive that the object or device is a firearm; and
    2. "Public place" means a place to which the public or a group of persons has access and includes, but is not limited to, highways, transportation facilities, schools, places of amusement, parks, places of business, playgrounds and hallways, lobbies and other portions of apartment houses and hotels not constituting rooms or apartments designed for actual residence. An act is deemed to occur in a public place if it produces its proscribed consequences in a public place, even if the person engaging in the prohibited conduct is not in a public place.
  2. A person commits an offense who intentionally displays in a threatening manner an imitation firearm in a public place in a way that would cause a reasonable person to fear bodily injury to themselves or another.
  3. It is a defense to a violation of subsection (b) if the imitation firearm is displayed in connection with, or as a part of, any justifiable defense as set forth in chapter 11, part 6 of this title.
  4. A violation of this section is a Class B misdemeanor.
  5. Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit prosecution under any other law.

HISTORY: Acts 2008, ch. 1173, §1.

§39-17-1364 - (2014) Purchase and shipment of antique firearms and certain edged weapons

Notwithstanding §39-17-1307, or any other law, it is lawful in this state for a person to purchase, and have shipped directly to such person's residence, the following:

  1. A black powder weapon; provided, that it meets the definition of 18 U.S.C. §921;
  2. A knife, even if the blade is in excess of four inches (4''); or
  3. A sword or bayonet, whether for ornamental, ceremonial, historical, theatrical or collecting purposes, or otherwise.

HISTORY: Acts 2012, ch. 608, §1; Acts 2014, ch.647, §7.

new section - (2016) Title Not Yet Assigned
  1. It is the intent of this section to balance the right of a handgun carry permit holder to carry a firearm in order to exercise the right of self-defense and the ability of a property owner or entity in charge of the property to exercise control over governmental or private property.
  2. Any person or entity authorized to post property pursuant to § 39-17-1359 who elects, pursuant to that authority, to prohibit the possession of firearms by a person authorized to carry a handgun pursuant to § 39-17-1351, thereby assumes absolute custodial responsibility for the safety and defense of the permit holder while on the posted property and while on any property the permit holder is required to traverse in order to travel to and from the location where the permit holder's firearm is stored.
  3. The responsibility of the person or entity posting for the safety and defense of the permit holder shall extend to the conduct of other invitees, trespassers, employees of the person or entity, vicious animals, wild animals, and defensible man-made and natural hazards.
    1. Any handgun carry permit holder who is injured, suffers bodily injury or death, incurs economic loss or expense, property damage or any other compensable loss as the result of conduct occurring on property that is posted pursuant to § 39-17-1359, shall have a cause of action against the person or entity posting. In addition to damages, the person shall be entitled to reasonable attorney fees, expert witness costs, and other costs necessary to bring the cause of action.
    2. The statute of limitations for such an action shall be two (2) years from the date of the occurrence giving rise to the damages, loss, or injury.
  4. Any notice or signage that property is posted pursuant to § 39-17-1359 shall also contain language citing this section and stating that any permit holder on the posted property is under the custodial responsibility of the posting person or entity.
  5. To prevail in an action brought under this section, the plaintiff must show by a preponderance of the evidence that:
    1. The plaintiff was authorized to carry a handgun pursuant to §39-17-1351 at the time of the incident giving rise to the action;
    2. The plaintiff was prohibited from carrying a firearm on the property where the incident occurred because it was posted pursuant to §39-17-1359; and
    3. The property was not required to be posted by state or federal law but was posted by choice of the defendant.
  6. This section shall be liberally construed to effectuate its purpose.

2016 ch. 947 §1

TITLE 49 - EDUCATION

CHAPTER 2 - Local Administration

Part 1 - General Provisions

§49-2-129 - (2015) Information on firearm ownership by student, parent, teacher, or LEA employee
  1. No school administrator, teacher, or other employee of an LEA shall require a student or the student's parent to provide information on firearm ownership by the student's family.
  2. No school administrator or other employee of an LEA shall require a teacher or other school employee to provide information on firearm ownership by the teacher or school employee.
  3. Any information on firearm ownership that is voluntarily provided by a student, parent, teacher, or LEA employee shall not be the basis for adverse disciplinary action against a student or adverse employment action against a teacher or LEA employee; provided, however, that this subsection shall not prohibit adverse disciplinary or employment action based on a violation of title 39, chapter 17, part 13.

HISTORY: Acts 2015, ch. 214, §1.

CHAPTER 6 - Elementary and Secondary Education

Part 8 - Schools Against Violence in Education (SAVE) Act

§49-6-815 - (2013) People permitted to possess and carry a firearm on school grounds
  1. As used in this section "person" means a school board member, trustee, administrator, employee, independent contractor, volunteer, or other person affiliated with a public or private K-12 school.
  2. In addition to persons who are authorized to possess a firearm on school property under another provision of law, an LEA and the board of directors of a private school may authorize any qualified person to carry a handgun on the grounds of, or in the various buildings of the school or schools with which the person is affiliated. If an LEA or the board of directors of a private school permits the carrying of a handgun on the property of a public or private school, it shall also determine if the permitted method of carry is open carry, concealed carry, or both.
  3. An LEA and the board of directors of a private school may also approve any person to carry a handgun on property or in vehicles owned or operated by the school and at other locations within the control of the LEA or private school while the location or vehicle is being used by the school for educational, recreational, athletic, or other purposes.
    1. If students are traveling in a school or private vehicle for a schoolrelated activity that is located outside the jurisdiction of the LEA, the director of the public school LEA may contact the director of the destination public school LEA, or board of directors of the destination private school, to request permission to allow the persons authorized to carry a handgun during the course of traveling to and from the public or private school activity, and during the school activity. If the director of the destination LEA or board of directors of the destination private school approves the request, the director of schools of the requesting LEA shall transmit a list of all people who will be authorized to carry a firearm for that particular school activity.
    2. The board of directors of a private school may seek permission from a destination private school or destination public school to allow an authorized person affiliated with the requesting private school to carry a handgun while involved in a school activity on property owned or operated by the destination public school or private school in the same manner as provided in subdivision (d)(1) for public schools.
  4. To qualify to carry a handgun pursuant to this section, the person shall:
    1. Notify the principal of the school and the LEA's director of schools for public schools, or the chief administrative officer and board of directors of the private school, of the person's desire to carry a handgun in, or on the property of, a public or private school;
    2. Have, at the time of notification, a valid handgun carry permit issued by the state of Tennessee pursuant to § 39-17-1351;
    3. Not be prohibited from carrying a firearm under state or federal law; and
    4. Have successfully completed any additional training designed and required by the LEA of the public school or board of directors of the private school that may include school training, tactical training, and active shooter training.
  5. The cost of the handgun carry permit, any additional training, and the handgun and ammunition the person will be using, shall be at the expense of the person who has been authorized to carry a handgun according to this section. The LEA of a public school and the board of directors of a private school assume no financial responsibility for a firearm possessed by a person pursuant to this section. Nothing in this subsection shall be construed as prohibiting an LEA of a public school or board of directors of a private school from paying a portion or all of the costs associated with the required training or handgun carry permit fees.
  6. For the safety of law enforcement officers, other first responders, the faculty and staff, and the person carrying the handgun pursuant to this section, the administrative head of each public or private school authorizing the carrying of handguns under this section shall compile a list of each person qualified and authorized to carry a handgun on the property of the public school or private school and transmit the list to the appropriate law enforcement agency.
  7. Nothing in § 49-3-315 shall be construed to require an LEA or a law enforcement agency of the county to assign or provide funding for a school resource officer, as defined in § 49-6-4202, to any city school system within that county on the basis of the WFTEADA as defined in § 49-3-302. The providing of security or school resource officers by a sheriff shall be considered a law enforcement function and not a school operation or maintenance purpose that requires the apportionment of funds pursuant to § 49-3-315.

HISTORY: Acts 2013, ch. 358, § 2; 2016 ch. 1049 § 1

§49-50-803 - (2016) Handgun carry policy
    1. The chief administrative officer of each private K-12 school shall devise and implement a handgun carry policy for any property on which the school is located that is owned or operated by the school and for any building or structure located on the school property.
    2. Any handgun carry policy devised by the chief administrative officer may:
      1. Prohibit the carrying or possession of a handgun on the property of or in a building located at the private school;
      2. Permit the carrying of handguns by persons qualified under subsection (b) on all property constituting the campus of the school and in all buildings owned or operated by the school; or
      3. Permit the carrying of handguns by persons qualified under subsection (b) in certain areas on the property of the school or in certain buildings but prohibit the carrying in other areas or buildings.
  1. If the chief administrative officer permits the possession of handguns in accordance with this section at the private school, the following rules and limitations shall apply:
    1. No person who is otherwise prohibited from possessing a handgun is permitted to carry a handgun on private school property; and
    2. The person must have a valid Tennessee handgun carry permit.
    1. The handgun carry policy for each private school shall be reduced to writing, disseminated in a manner likely to ensure that it is known by students attending the school, the parent or guardian of each student, the faculty and other employees, and others who may go upon the grounds or enter a building on property owned or operated by the school. The policy shall be made available in the principal's office to anyone desiring a copy and distributed to the parents of children enrolled in the school by a method or methods reasonably likely to ensure dissemination of the policy, such as emails, text messaging, or posting on the school's web site.
    2. The policy shall go into effect thirty (30) days after it is announced by the chief administrative officer and disseminated to the students and parents.

(2016 ch. 698 section 1)

CHAPTER 7 - Postsecondary and Higher Education Generally

Part 1 - Miscellaneous Provisions

§49-7-161 - (2016) Handgun carry policy of private institutions of higher education -- Establishment -- Rules and limitations.
    1. The chief administrative officer of each private institution of higher education, whether for-profit or not-for-profit, shall establish the policy for the carrying of handguns on the campus and grounds of any property owned or operated by the institution, and in any building or structure located on property owned or operated by the institution.
    2. Any handgun carry policy devised by the chief administrative officer may:
      1. Prohibit the carrying or possession of a handgun on all property owned or operated by the institution, and in any building or structure located on property owned or operated by the institution;
      2. Permit the carrying of handguns by persons qualified under subsection (b) on all property owned or operated by the institution, and in any building or structure located on property owned or operated by the institution; or
      3. Permit the carrying of handguns by persons qualified under subsection (b) in certain areas on the property of the institution or in certain buildings, and prohibit the carrying in other areas or buildings.
  1. If the chief administrative officer permits the possession of handguns at the private institution, the following rules and limitations shall apply:
    1. No person who is otherwise prohibited from possessing a handgun is permitted to carry a handgun on property owned or operated by the institution; and
    2. The person must be authorized to carry a handgun pursuant to § 39-17-1351.
    1. The handgun carry policy for each private institution shall be reduced to writing and disseminated in a manner most likely to ensure that it is known by students attending the institution, the parent or guardian of each student, the faculty, staff, and employees of the institution, and others who may go upon the grounds or enter a building on property owned or operated by the institution. The policy shall be made available in the administration building to anyone desiring a copy, distributed to all interested parties, including parents of minor students enrolled at the institution, and others by a method or methods reasonably likely to ensure dissemination of the policy, such as emails, text messaging, or posting on the school's web site.
    2. The policy shall go into effect thirty (30) days after it is implemented and disseminated as provided in this subsection.

(2016 ch. 698 section 2)

§49-7-163 - (2016) Possession and storage of firearms or firearms ammunition in accordance with 39-17-1313 -- Prohibition against disciplinary action.

No public postsecondary institution shall take any adverse or disciplinary action against an employee or student of the postsecondary institution for such person's transportation and storage of a firearm or firearm ammunition in compliance with § 39-17-1313 while on or using a parking area located on property owned, used, or operated by the postsecondary institution.

(2016 ch. 806 section 1)

TITLE 50 - EMPLOYER AND EMPLOYEE

CHAPTER 1 - Employment Relationship And Practices

Part 3 - Working Conditions Generally

§50-1-312 - (2015) Adverse employment action for transporting or storing firearm or ammunition in employer parking area prohibited -- Cause of action
  1. For the purposes of this section:
    1. "Employee" means a natural person who performs services for an employer for valuable consideration and who possesses a valid handgun carry permit recognized in this state; and
    2. "Employer" means a person, association, or legal or commercial entity receiving services from an employee and, in return, giving compensation of any kind to the employee.
      1. No employer shall discharge or take any adverse employment action against an employee solely for transporting or storing a firearm or firearm ammunition in an employer parking area in a manner consistent with § 39-17-1313(a).
      2. An employee discharged, or subject to an adverse employment action, in violation of subdivision (b)(1)(A) shall have a cause of action against the employer to enjoin future acts in violation of this section and to recover economic damages plus reasonable attorney fees and costs.
      3. Any action brought under this section shall be filed in the chancery or circuit court having jurisdiction in the county where the alleged violation of subdivision (b)(1)(A) occurred.
    1. In any action brought pursuant to this section, the employee shall have the burden of establishing a prima facie case of discharge, or adverse employment action, based solely on the employee's transporting or storing a firearm or firearm ammunition in the employer's parking area in a manner consistent with § 39-17-1313(a). If the employee satisfies this burden, the burden shall then be on the employer to produce evidence that one (1) or more legitimate reasons existed for the employee's discharge or adverse employment action. The burden on the employer is one of production and not persuasion. If the employer produces such evidence, the presumption of discharge, or adverse employment action, raised by theemployee's prima facie case is rebutted, and the burden shifts to the employee to demonstrate that the reason given by the employer was not the true reason for the employee's discharge, or adverse employment action, and that the stated reason was a pretext for discharge or adverse employment action. The allocations of burdens of proof set out in this subdivision (b)(2) shall apply at all stages of the proceedings, including motions for summary judgment. The employee at all times retains the burden of persuading the trier of fact that the employee has been the victim of discharge, or adverse employment action, based solely on the employee's adherence with § 39-17-1313(a).
    2. The employee has one (1) year from the date of termination of employment, or the date of adverse employment action, to file an action pursuant to this section.
  2. The presence of a firearm or ammunition within an employer's parking area in accordance with § 39-17-1313 does not by itself constitute a failure by the employer to provide a safe workplace.
  3. Except as otherwise provided in § 39-17-1313 for parking areas, nothing in this section shall be construed as prohibiting an employer from prohibiting firearms or firearm ammunition on the premises of the employer.

HISTORY: Acts 2015, ch 80, §1 eff. July 1, 2015

TITLE 58 - MILITARY AFFAIRS, EMERGENCIES AND CIVIL DEFENSE

CHAPTER 1 - Military Forces

Part 1 - Military Forces -- In General

§58-1-112 - Martial rule -- Proclamation by governor -- Procedure
  1. Whenever any portion of the national guard is employed pursuant to § 58-1-106, the governor, if in the governor's judgment the maintenance of law and order will thereby be promoted, may, by proclamation, declare the county or city in which troops are serving, or any specified portion thereof, to be under martial rule.
  2. Following the governor's martial rule proclamation, the governor may promulgate the following orders to protect life and property or to bring the emergency situation under control:
    1. The establishment of a curfew and the prohibition and control of pedestrian and vehicular traffic, except essential emergency vehicles and personnel;
    2. The designation of specific zones within which the occupance and use of buildings and the ingress and egress of vehicles and persons may be prohibited or regulated;
    3. The regulation and closing of places of amusement and assembly;
    4. The prohibition of the sale and distribution of alcoholic beverages;
    5. The prohibition and control of the presence of persons on public streets;
    6. The regulation and control of the possession, storage, display, sale, transport and use of firearms, other dangerous weapons and ammunition; provided, that nothing in this subdivision (b)(6) shall be construed as authorizing confiscation of lawfully possessed firearms and ammunition during any period of martial rule; and
    7. The regulation and control of the possession, storage, display, sale, transport and use of explosives, and flammable materials and liquids.
  3. Such orders shall be effective from the time and in the manner prescribed in such orders and shall be given to the press, radio and television media for publication and broadcast.
  4. Nothing in this section shall be construed to authorize a declaration of martial law, in the sense of the unrestricted power of military officers, or others, to dispose of the persons, liberties or property of the citizen.

HISTORY: Acts 1970, ch. 596, § 11; T.C.A., § 7-112; Acts 2009, ch. 288, § 1.

CHAPTER 2 - Disasters, Emergencies And Civil Defense

Part 1 - General Emergency Provisions

§58-2-107 - Emergency management powers of the governor
    1. The governor is responsible for addressing the dangers presented to this state and its people by emergencies. In the event of an emergency beyond local control, the governor, or, in the governor's absence, the governor's successor as provided by law, may assume direct operational control over all or any part of the emergency management functions within this state, and such person has the power through proper process of law to carry out the provisions of this chapter. The governor is authorized to delegate such powers as the governor may deem prudent.
    2. Pursuant to the authority vested in the governor under subdivision (a) (1), the governor may issue executive orders, proclamations, and rules and may amend or rescind them. Such executive orders, proclamations, and rules have the force and effect of law.
  1. The governor or the governor's designee, shall declare a state of emergency or a disaster declaration in one (1) of two (2) ways:
    1. By executive order or proclamation; or
    2. By the activation of the TEMP.

      These two (2) types of threats may be declared by the governor if the governor finds an emergency has occurred or the occurrence of threat thereof is imminent. The state of emergency shall continue until the governor finds that the threat or danger has been dealt with to the extent that the emergency conditions no longer exist and the governor terminates the state of emergency by executive order or proclamation, but no state of emergency may continue for longer than sixty (60) days unless renewed by the governor. All executive orders or proclamations issued under this section shall indicate the nature of the emergency, the area or areas threatened, and the conditions which have brought the emergency about or which make possible its termination. An executive order or proclamation shall be promptly disseminated by means calculated to bring its contents to the attention of the general public; and, unless the circumstances attendant upon the emergency prevent or impede such filing, the order or proclamation shall be filed promptly with the department of state and in the office of the chief executive officer in each county to which the order or proclamation applies.

  2. An executive order or proclamation of a state of emergency shall:
    1. Activate the emergency mitigation, response, and recovery aspects of the state, local, and interjurisdictional emergency management plans applicable to the political subdivision or area in question;
    2. Be authority for the deployment and use of any forces to which the plan or plans apply and for the use or distribution of any supplies, equipment, and materials and facilities assembled, stockpiled, or arranged to be made available pursuant to this chapter or any other provision of law relating to emergencies; and
    3. Identify whether the state of emergency is due to a minor, major, or catastrophic disaster.
  3. During the continuance of a state emergency, the governor is commander in chief of the Tennessee national guard and of all other forces available for emergency duty. To the greatest extent practicable, the governor shall delegate or assign command authority by prior arrangement embodied in appropriate executive orders or rules, but nothing in this section restricts the governor's authority to do so by orders issued at the time of the emergency.
  4. In addition to any other powers conferred upon the governor by law, the governor may:
    1. Suspend the provisions of any law, order, rule or regulation prescribing the procedures for conduct of state business or the orders or rules or regulations of any state agency, if strict compliance with the provisions of any such law, order, rule, or regulation would in any way prevent, hinder, or delay necessary action in coping with the emergency;
    2. Utilize all available resources of the state government and of each political subdivision of the state, as reasonably necessary to cope with the emergency;
    3. Transfer the direction, personnel, or functions of state departments and agencies or units thereof for the purpose of performing or facilitating emergency services;
    4. Subject to any applicable requirements for compensation, commandeer or utilize any private property, which term shall not be construed to include firearms, ammunition, or firearm or ammunition components, if the governor finds this necessary to cope with the emergency;
    5. Direct and compel the evacuation of all or part of the population from any stricken or threatened area within the state if the governor deems this action necessary for the preservation of life or other emergency mitigation, response, or recovery;
    6. Prescribe routes, modes of transportation, and destinations in connection with evacuation;
    7. Control ingress and egress to and from an emergency area, the movement of persons within the area, and the occupancy of premises therein;
    8. Suspend or limit the sale, dispensing, or transportation of alcoholic beverages, explosives, or combustibles, which terms shall not be construed to include firearms, ammunition, or firearm or ammunition components;
    9. Make provision for the availability and use of temporary emergency housing;
    10. Take effective measures for limiting or suspending lighting devices and appliances, gas and water mains, electric power distribution, and all other utility services in the general public interest;
    11. Take measures concerning the conduct of civilians, the movement and cessation of movement of pedestrian and vehicular traffic prior to, during, and subsequent to drills and actual or threatened emergencies, the calling of public meetings and gatherings, and the evacuation and reception of civilian population, as provided in the TEMP and political subdivisions thereof; and
    12. Authorize the use of forces already mobilized as the result of an executive order, rule, or proclamation to assist the private citizens of the state in clean up and recovery operations during emergencies when proper permission to enter onto or into private property has been obtained from the property owner.
  5. The governor shall take such action and give such direction to state and local law enforcement officers and agencies as may be reasonable and necessary for the purpose of securing compliance with the provisions of this chapter and with the orders and rules made pursuant thereto.
  6. The governor shall employ such measures and give such directions to the department of health and department of human services, division of vocational rehabilitation, as may be reasonable and necessary for the purpose of securing compliance with the provisions of this chapter or with the findings or recommendations of such agency by reason of conditions arising from emergencies or threats of emergency.
  7. The governor shall delegate emergency responsibilities to the officers and agencies of the state and of the political subdivisions thereof prior to an emergency or threat of an emergency, and shall utilize the services and facilities of existing officers and agencies of the state and of the political subdivisions thereof, including their personnel and other resources, as the primary emergency management forces of the state, and all such officers and agencies shall cooperate with and extend their services and facilities to the agency, as it may require.
  8. The governor and the agency shall establish agencies and offices and appoint executive, professional, technical, clerical and other personnel as may be necessary to carry out the provisions of this chapter.
  9. The governor shall formulate and execute plans and rules for the control of traffic in order to provide for the rapid and safe movement or evacuation over public highways and streets of people, troops, or vehicles and materials for national defense or for use in any defense industry, and may coordinate the activities of the departments or agencies of the state and the political subdivisions thereof concerned directly or indirectly with public highways and streets in a manner which will effectuate such plans.
  10. The governor may delegate to the director of TEMA the authority to declare a state of emergency in order that certain commercial vehicles engaged in the distribution of electric power, the supply of fuel, or telecommunications services to residences and businesses may be considered to be participating in an emergency relief effort for the purpose of the federal hours-of-service regulations promulgated by the federal motor carrier safety administration. Pursuant to the delegation of authority granted by this subsection (k), the director of TEMA may declare a state of emergency prospectively in anticipation of an emergency.
    1. If the governor of Tennessee declares an emergency in response to a catastrophic or major disaster, voluntary health care providers, including hospitals and community mental health care centers, participating in the Emergency Management Assistance Compact or Southern Regional Emergency Management Assistance Compact are immune from liability in providing the health care to victims or evacuees of the catastrophic or major disaster, as long as the services are provided within the limits of the provider's license, certification or authorization, unless an act or omission was the result of gross negligence or willful misconduct.
    2. If additional medical resources are required, the governor, by executive order, may provide limited liability protection to health care providers, including hospitals and community mental health care centers and those licensed, certified or authorized under titles 33, 63 or 68, and who render services within the limits of their license, certification or authorization to victims or evacuees of such emergencies; provided, however, that this protection may not include any act or omission caused by gross negligence or willful misconduct.
    3. The duration of the protection provided by this subsection l shall not exceed thirty (30) days, but may be extended by the governor by executive order for an additional thirty (30) days, if required to ensure the provision of emergency medical services in response to the catastrophic or major disaster.
  11. During any state of emergency, major disaster or natural disaster, the state, a political subdivision or a public official shall not prohibit nor impose additional restrictions on the lawful possession, transfer, sale, transport, carrying, storage, display or use of firearms and ammunition or firearm and ammunition components.

HISTORY: Acts 2000, ch. 946, §1; 2004, ch. 487, §1; 2006, ch. 560, §1; 2007, ch. 129, §1; 2010, ch. 885, §1.

TITLE 70 - WILDLIFE RESOURCES

CHAPTER 4 - Miscellaneous Regulations

Part 1 - Hunting and Fishing

§70-4-117 - Possession of weapons in areas inhabited by big game -- Penalty
  1. It is unlawful for any person to be in possession of any firearm, bow and arrow, shotgun or rifle in, on, or while traversing any refuge, public hunting area or wildlife management area frequented or inhabited by big game, except during specified or lawful open seasons on these areas. Any person violating this section is guilty of hunting big game and shall be punished as provided for in subsections (b) and (c).
    1. A violation of this section is a Class B misdemeanor.
    2. It is mandatory upon the court to impose the prison sentence, upon conviction for a second or subsequent offense, and the prison sentence is not subject to suspension.
  2. In the prosecution of a second or subsequent offense, the indictment or presentment must allege the prior conviction for violating any of the provisions of this section, setting forth the time and place of each such prior conviction. The court shall prohibit such convicted person, either a first or subsequent offender, from hunting, fishing or trapping in this state for a period of one (1) year.
  3. Notwithstanding subsection (a), a person with a handgun carry permit pursuant to § 39-17-1351 may possess a handgun the entire year while on the premises of any refuge, public hunting area, wildlife management area or, to the extent permitted by federal law, national forest land maintained by the state. Nothing in this subsection (d) shall authorize a person to use any handgun to hunt unless the person is in full compliance with all wildlife laws, rules and regulations.
  4. Nothing in this section shall authorize a person with a hand gun carry permit to possess such weapon in the portion of any refuge, public hunting area or wildlife management area that is within the boundaries of a state park or state natural area unless otherwise authorized in accordance with state law.
  5. Nothing in this section shall authorize a person to access any area unless the person is in full compliance with all current wildlife laws, rules, proclamations and regulations.

HISTORY: Acts 1951, ch. 115, §§ 44, 47 (Williams, §§ 5178.73, 5178.76); Acts 1957, ch. 382, § 7; 1957, ch. 384, § 2; 1961, ch. 198, § 3; 1976, ch. 681, § 1; 1982, ch. 701, §§ 4-6; 1982, ch. 738, § 21; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), §§ 51-427, 51-429; Acts 1989, ch. 591, § 113; 1990, ch. 981, § 3; 2009, ch. 606, § 1.

§70-4-134 - (2015) Availability of self-defense to person charged with taking, attempting to take, or harming wild animal
  1. As used in this section:
    1. "Enter" means the intrusion of any part of the body of a wild animal into the interior space of a structure;
    2. "Property" means commercial agricultural products, livestock, and domestic animals;
    3. "Serious bodily injury" means bodily injury that involves:
      1. A substantial risk of death;
      2. Protracted unconsciousness;
      3. Extreme physical pain;
      4. Protracted or obvious disfigurement; or
      5. Protracted loss or substantial impairment of a function of a bodily member, organ, or mental faculty; and
    4. "Wild animal" means any wild creature, the taking of which is authorized by the fish and game laws of this state.
  2. Notwithstanding §70-4-102, §70-6-102, or §70-4-116, a person is legally justified in using self-defense to kill or injure a threatening wild animal when the person reasonably believes the action is necessary to protect the person or any other individual against an imminent attack by the wild animal that will likely result in serious bodily injury or death.
  3. A person is legally justified in killing or injuring a threatening wild animal when the person reasonably believes the action is necessary to protect the person's property from imminent harm.
      1. A person shall notify the agency within twelve (12) hours after killing or seriously injuring a wild animal pursuant to this section.
      2. No wild animal killed shall be removed from the site, repositioned, retained, sold, or transferred without authorization from the agency.
    1. A violation of subdivision (d)(1) is a Class C misdemeanor.
  4. A person is not legally justified in killing or seriously injuring a threatening wild animal in self-defense or in defense of property if the person:
    1. Has the ability to safely retreat from the threatening animal and fails to do so, except when the animal enters a home, tent, camper, or other permanent or temporary living structure occupied at the time by the person or any other individual; or
    2. Intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly provokes or attracts the wild animal into a situation in which it is probable the wild animal will threaten the person, the person's property, or another individual.

HISTORY: Acts 2015, Ch. 173, §1, eff. July 1, 2015