IIt has been reported
that Attorney General Brian Frosh informed Governor Larry Hogan on June 30th that the "good and substantial reason" requirement for permit issuance is unconstitutional and cannot be enforced. On July 5th, the Governor directed the State Police
to no longer enforce the requirement. On July 6th, the Office of the Attorney General released an unofficial opinion
, advising the State Police that "Maryland's 'good and substantial reason' requirement is now clearly unconstitutional" and that it "may not" be enforced. In that letter, the Attorney General's Office references an unreported opinion
of the Maryland Court of Special Appeals (Maryland's intermediate appellate court) which likewise found that the "good and substantial reason" requirement was unconstitutional in light of Bruen.
The Court remanded the case with instructions to order MSP to issue an unrestricted permit to the applicant. The State Police will implement these new directions in every pending case and for every pending application. Folks who have previously applied but were denied a permit for lack of a "good and substantial reason," but who do not have a challenge to the denial pending before the Office of Administrative Hearing or in court, will have to reapply under the new standard. However, any required training used in a previous application is still good for two years from the date the training was completed.
The challenge to the "good and substantial reason" requirement in Call v. Jones,
is still on a briefing schedule, which was established promptly after the Supreme Court's decision in Bruen.
Currently, briefing is scheduled
to run into September. We expect the Attorney General's Office to likewise concede in Call
that the good and substantial reason requirement is unconstitutional.
Stay tuned for more.