Gun Ownership for MMJ Patients in Missouri?

Can You Own a Gun with a Medical Card in Missouri?

Yes. Medical marijuana cardholders in Missouri can purchase and own firearms. Under state laws, open carry and concealed carry are permitted. Missouri enacted the Second Amendment Preservation Act (SAPA), which bars state law enforcement from enforcing the federal law that limits the gun ownership rights of state-registered medical marijuana patients.

Can Missouri Medical Cannabis Patients Legally Carry Firearms Without Permits?

Yes. Missouri is a permitless concealed carry state. This means that residents, including medical marijuana patients, who legally own firearms can carry them publicly without permits. The Second Amendment Preservation Act provides medical marijuana patients with all the rights granted to Missouri residents by its gun laws, including SB 656. Furthermore, Missouri medical marijuana patients may obtain permits for reciprocity purposes with other states.

Does Missouri Require Background Checks for MMJ Patients Seeking Gun Licenses?

Missouri is a permitless concealed carry state. Hence, medical marijuana patients in the state do not have to undergo background checks to obtain gun licenses.

Can You Get a Missouri Medical Marijuana Card After Getting a Gun License?

Yes, it is possible to get a Missouri medical cannabis card after obtaining a gun license. Missouri law permits residents to continue to own firearms even after they become medical marijuana patients. Spouses and family members of medical marijuana patients in the state can also own firearms.

Legal History of Gun Ownership for MMJ Patients in Missouri

To protect the Second Amendment rights of medical marijuana patients in the state, the Missouri House of Representatives proposed the Second Amendment Preservation Act (SAPA) in 2021. The Act, comprising Missouri House Bill 85 and House Bill 310, stipulated that as law-abiding citizens, Missouri medical marijuana cardholders should be allowed to buy and own firearms legally. It also limits the enforcement of the federal Second Amendment rights within the state. The bill was signed into law by the Governor on June 12, 2021. Despite this bill, federally licensed firearms dealers in the state have the right to refuse gun purchase requests from Missouri medical marijuana cardholders.

What Federal Law Says About the Firearm Rights of Medical Marijuana Users

The Gun Control Act of 1968 bars users of controlled substances, including marijuana, from buying or owning firearms. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) was established to regulate the firearms industry and enforce federal gun laws. In 2011, the ATF published a bulletin following the legalization of medical cannabis by several states. It prohibited federal firearms dealers from selling guns to medical marijuana cardholders. Marijuana is a Schedule I controlled substance under federal law, and selling firearms to its users is considered a felony.

When purchasing a firearm from any Federal Firearms Licensee (FFL), the ATF requires the buyer to complete the ATF Form 4473. The form contains various questions, including one about medical marijuana use, which must be answered. Providing false information about marijuana use on the form is considered perjury and a felony under federal law. It is punishable by up to 10 years in federal prison and/or up to $250,000 in fines. Any weapon purchased will also be seized.

In 2016, a medical cannabis patient in Nevada was refused a gun purchase because the patient had an active Nevada medical marijuana card. The patient, Rowan Wilson, proceeded to sue the ATF and the Attorney General. In the Wilson v. Lynch case, the plaintiff challenged the federal statute 18 USC § 922, which bans medical marijuana users from buying and owning firearms. However, the court ruled in favor of the defendants. The court dismissed the suit, stating that the federal statutes did not violate the plaintiff’s Second Amendment rights. An appeal panel also upheld the dismissal of the suit after an appeal hearing.

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