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‘Gun-Free Zones’ in Tennessee now liable for harm caused to firearm permit holders


Owners of “gun-free” businesses in Tennessee beware- you’re now responsible for the protection of your patrons.

The Volunteer State passed a new law that amends a state code, making business owners who post “no guns allowed” signs responsible -and legally liable- for their patrons’ safety, opening up the potential for lawsuits if a violent act occurs.

According to Bearing Arms, the new law goes into effect July 1st, and allows handgun carry permit holders to sue the entity or individual who sued them of their right to carry in a “gun-free zone” if aforementioned permit holder is injured, killed or incurs loss due to property damages in the aftermath of a violent crime.

The law enacts a “duty to care” on any person who designates their property a “gun-free zone,” as well as the travel to and from the location where the firearm must be stowed. The statute of limitations is within two years of the event and requires the defendant be authorized to carry at time of incident, was prohibited to carry in the establishment and that the property owner posted the “no guns” sign at their own discretion (i.e, the property owner is not bound by law to ban guns from the premises).

“It only makes sense that when a property owner creates a gun free zone, the be responsible for protecting individuals within that zone,” Tennessee State Senator Mark Green (R) told LEO Affairs. Green is also one of the founders of the state’s “Blue Lives Matter” initiative, which would increase the penalties for offenders convicted of assaults on officers.

Tennessee’s “no guns allowed” signs carry the full weight of the law, with hefty legal issues sure to arise if the law is disobeyed. In addition, Tennessee allows carry in bars, so long as the carrier does not consume any alcohol.

In addition to making “gun-free zone” proprietors liable for the safety of disarmed patrons, Tennessee also passed a law that allows veterans with proof of service to get their concealed carry permits without taking the required class.
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  1. Not even close. According to John Harris of the Tennessee Firearms Association:


    There are posts all over FB tonight about SB1736 going into effect this week. That bill, as introduced, would have made a business owner liable if they banned permit holders from carrying on their property. That bill was gutted and rewritten to remove the provisions making the property owners liable for disarming lawful gun owners.

    The “crap” that was substituted (with Sen. Brian Kelsey’s name on it) is in the following language that did pass:

    SECTION 1.
    Tennessee Code Annotated, Title 39, Chapter 17, Part 13, is amended by adding the following as a new section:

    (a) A person, business, or other entity that owns, controls, or manages property and has the authority to prohibit weapons on that property by posting, pursuant to§ 39-17-1359, shall be immune from civil liability with respect to any claim based on such person’s, business’s, or other entity’s failure to adopt a policy that prohibits weapons on the property by posting pursuant to§ 39-17-1359.

    (b) Immunity under this subsection (a) does not apply to a person, business, or other entity whose conduct or failure to act is the result of gross negligence or willful or wanton misconduct.


    Once again, Tennesseans have been deceived and cheated by Establishment Republicans in public office… starting with Brian Kelsey and aided by Sen. Dolores Gresham who apparently accepted the amendment and let it be carried in her name.

    • Well, my legalese is not fluent but SECTION 1.Tennessee Code A, Title 39, Chapter 17, Part 13, amendments a.) and b.) seems to reflect what the article is saying. If a person permitted to carry does not carry due to the “no gun zone” and gets hurt, immunity from (lawsuit) does not apply to (the) business or entity whose conduct (banning guns on property) results in gross negligence or misconduct (of the alleged perpetrator, or criminal).

      It’s actually quite clear what it says, so why all the hysterical and pointless ranting?

  2. And does this include schools and colleges, libraries and ballparks?
    I like the part about veterans being able to hold a carry permit without taking RTC classes.
    Tennessee is about to be a feast State for lawyers, not so much for insurance companies.


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