Carry Permit Updates - July 8, 2022

Map showing shall-issue jurisdictions in blue. Sourced from Wikipedia

Restricted Carry Permits are No More

The Maryland State Police have issued an Advisory declaring that the restrictions on already issued carry permits are lifted and no longer effective. These restricted permits allowed carry only under certain times and circumstances. This Advisory implements the Supreme Court's decision in NYSRPA v. Bruen (See pp 4-7 of the slip opinion). 

Text on the rear of any cards issued after Bruen will read:
The person identified on the front of this card has the following permit restriction(s):
NONE (MD ONLY) (NOT VALID WHERE FIREARMS ARE PROHIBITED BY LAW)

 
While the restrictions on older permits are no longer effective, MSI nonetheless recommends that persons with restricted permits should request a $10 modification through the State Police's Licensing Portal so as to eliminate any restrictions. Carry permit holders are still exceedingly rare in Maryland, with only 24-27k being active at any given time. Law enforcement officers do not regularly encounter carry permits and an individual officer may not be fully up to speed on the state of the law. Being wrongfully detained is thus still a risk. Permit holders should be aware that law enforcement officers have statutory authority to stop, search and question any person whom the officer "reasonably believes" is carrying a handgun illegally or who "may" pose a danger. See MD Crim. Law § 4-206. Be sure to check out our guide on Wear and Carry Permits for information on where firearms cannot be carried (even with a permit) and how to apply for a permit. That guide will be updated with further developments, as needed.

MSI has also been getting many questions about permit reciprocity, but, at the moment, nothing has changed. No out-of-state permits are recognized in Maryland and, as much as we hate to say it, none are likely to be in near future. Maryland Public Safety Art. § 5-303 and Criminal Law § 4-203(b)(2) make clear that a permit issued by the Maryland State Police is required to wear, carry or transport a loaded handgun in public. However, non-residents of Maryland may freely apply for a Maryland permit under the same standards and application process applicable to Maryland residents. We strongly encourage non-residents who work or regularly travel in Maryland to apply (fingerprinting, however, must be done by a vendor or agency in Maryland and training instruction must be provided by a MSP Qualified Handgun Instructor). Ironically, Maryland's permit is accepted by numerous States, including neighboring Virginia. These States have elected to recognize permits issued by any other State. In our view, Maryland should do the same. The constitutional right of self-defense protected by the Second Amendment does not stop at State borders.  

State Police Licensing Portal Technical Issues

Ever since the opinion in Bruen was released on 6/23, the State Police have been experiencing increased traffic through their Licensing Portal as demand for permits has increased exponentially. This has caused technical difficulties with the State Police infrastructure. Many applicants have experienced various error messages or failure to receive confirmation emails. MSP has informed us that their internet service provider has a cap on outgoing email messages at 10,000 per 24-hour period. That has been exceeded two days in a row now, and while MSP attempted a workaround for the limit, problems persist. MSP is working to correct these technical issues as soon as possible. We credit MSP for trying to correct these issues as quickly as possible.

If you're having trouble with your application, email  for assistance.

Maryland's Attorney General Admits that "Good and Substantial Reason" is Unconstitutional

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.

Contact Info

Mailing Address:

Maryland Shall Issue®, Inc.
9613 Harford Rd
Ste C #1015
Baltimore, MD 21234-2150

Phone:  410-849-9197
Email: 
Web:   www.marylandshallissue.org