New Michigan Gun Control Laws Go Into Effect

On Feb 13th, 2023 a shooting on the campus of Michigan State University resulted in the deaths of three students and serious injuries for 5 others. In response to this tragedy Michigan lawmakers can certainly say they have “done something.” It took all of 3 days after the shooting for the first MI lawmaker to propose the laws you will read about below. They must have had this gun control package ready to go…

Four new gun laws have been passed. They were signed by Gov Whitmer on Nov 20th, 2023, and went into effect earlier this week on the anniversary of the shooting. Sadly, and I do feel it is sad, I don't expect any of these new laws to have any impact on preventing similar future shootings.

Pic courtesy of the Michigan Governor Website

Universal Background Checks

While all firearm sales from a licensed dealer already require a background check nationally, private sales and transactions do not. Previous to this new law the Great Lake state already required a background check for all handgun sales, even in a private transfer.

This new change extends that requirement to all firearms, not just handguns.

Universal Background Check laws have no track record of preventing criminals from getting firearms or keeping those who can pass background checks for doing criminal things eventually or from having their guns stolen from them by criminals. Yeah, I'm not a fan and you can read my comprehensive analysis of these laws here.

Safe Storage

The number of states passing safe storage laws is increasing and Michigan is the latest to have this type of law go into effect.

In Michigan gun owners are now required to store “unattended weapons” in a gun safe or case, IF the gun owner reasonably knows the firearm could become accessible to a minor.

The law provides 2 options in those circumstances. Either:

1: Store the firearm in a locked box or container

OR

2: Keep the firearm unloaded and lock the firearm with a locking device that is properly engaged to render the firearm inoperable by any individual other than the owner or authorized user

This is probably the most gentle version of a safe storage law I've seen so far in America which is good news for those in Michigan relatively. I think that guns not in the immediate possession and control of a responsible person should be locked up in something but I don't love the government forcing that upon every gun owner regardless of their circumstances and needs.

Red Flag Law

This new law in Michigan allows judges to issue an “extreme risk protection order” (ERPO) to confiscate firearms from any individual who poses a threat to themselves or others. Only specific individuals can file the request for the ERPO but that list is fairly exhaustive and includes any family member, former spouse, someone in a dating relationship now or in the past, someone currently or previously residing in the same household, someone with whom the individual has a child, LEO, and a mental health professional.

So yeah, your college roommate from 20 years ago would qualify.

There are now over 20 states with similar laws and the results haven't been positive from my research. In the rare instance they seem to help the red flag law wasn't necessary for law enforcement to take action.

More often the issuing of a red flag order at best removes a constitutional right without any due process and at worst escalates someone to commit the violent act the ERPO was intended to prevent.

Increased Restrictions for Domestic Violence

Previous to this new law going into effect, only those convicted of domestic violence-related felonies faced temporary restrictions of their gun rights. Those convicted of misdemeanor offenses however did not lose any gun rights.

Now, the new law will enforce an eight-year ban on possessing, purchasing, and distributing firearms on any misdemeanor domestic violence offense. Domestic violence issues are a sensitive issue since on the surface it would seem reasonable that someone guilty of committing such crimes should lose some rights however I've seen several instances where charges weren't warranted or were blown out of context and someone's record is marred by something wasn't a violent issue at all.

So either way you may lean on this one, it is now the law in Michigan.

About Jacob Paulsen

Jacob S. Paulsen is the President of ConcealedCarry.com. ConcealedCarry.com provides in-person and online firearm training for American gun owners. The Company is currently teaching in-person classes in 25+ states with a team of more than 55 instructors. Jacob is a NRA certified instructor & Range Safety Officer, USCCA certified instructor and training counselor, Utah BCI instructor, Affiliate instructor for Next Level Training, Graduate and certified instructor for The Law of Self Defense, and a Glock and Sig Sauer Certified Armorer. He resides in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado with his wife and children.

8 Comments

  1. Tino Sanchez on February 14, 2024 at 2:07 pm

    Quite a few Sheriff’s in Michigan will not enforce these unlawful laws thanks to them ! This is how you fight these Dems and their Globalist funders!

  2. D S on February 14, 2024 at 7:56 pm

    This is what you get when you elect liberal fools! No one had accountability for their actions! Enforce the laws on the books and things will fall into place!

  3. Notta Chance on February 15, 2024 at 7:11 am

    “Gun Control” has and will NEVER stop gun violence.
    It’s like banning knives because someone was stabbed.
    It’s not the tool that’s the problem. It’s the USER. Therefore, I will continue to Carry.

    • C. Hagberg on February 28, 2024 at 9:02 pm

      I STRONGLY agree!!! My idea of gun control is ” Both hands on the gun”.

  4. Philip Tocco on February 15, 2024 at 10:48 am

    Common sense would dictate that no gun owner would vote Democrat. Sadly, this is not the case. There are still millions out there foolish enough to believe that the Democrats real aim is not to disarm every gun owner, but to somehow make people safer, even though they continue to do so with restrictive laws that do nothing to accomplish that goal. The real way that we fight these attempts to restrict our freedoms is to vote these people out of office.

    • Clark Kent on February 18, 2024 at 12:29 pm

      Nope; the REAL way we fight these attempts to restrict our freedoms is to IGNORE UNCONSTITUTIONAL LAWS. Rights DO NOT hinge on voting. WAKE UP!

  5. Freedog on February 16, 2024 at 6:18 am

    Gun Control is being able to hit your target!

  6. JohnD on February 18, 2024 at 7:23 am

    I’m glad I live in a Constitutional carry state. I won’t travel to Michigan, or any state that won’t recognize my CCW I obtained for travel purposes. Any state that is hostile to my 2nd amendment rights doesn’t need my tourist dollars. If I ever have to travel though one of these red states where I’m forced to lock up my firearm, I won’t stop or spend a dime there.

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