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SECTION 265.20
Exemptions
Penal (PEN) CHAPTER 40, PART 3, TITLE P, ARTICLE 265
§ 265.20 Exemptions.

a. Paragraph (h) of subdivision twenty-two of section 265.00 and
sections 265.01, 265.01-a, 265.01-b, 265.01-c, 265.02, 265.03, 265.04,
265.05, 265.10, 265.11, 265.12, 265.13, 265.15, 265.36, 265.37, 265.50,
265.55 and 270.05 shall not apply to:

1. Possession of any of the weapons, instruments, appliances or
substances specified in sections 265.01, 265.01-c, 265.02, 265.03,
265.04, 265.05, 265.50, 265.55 and 270.05 by the following:

(a) Persons in the military service of the state of New York when duly
authorized by regulations issued by the adjutant general to possess the
same.

(b) Police officers as defined in subdivision thirty-four of section
1.20 of the criminal procedure law.

(c) Peace officers as defined by section 2.10 of the criminal
procedure law.

(d) Persons in the military or other service of the United States, in
pursuit of official duty or when duly authorized by federal law,
regulation or order to possess the same.

(e) Persons employed in fulfilling defense contracts with the
government of the United States or agencies thereof when possession of
the same is necessary for manufacture, transport, installation and
testing under the requirements of such contract.

(f) A person voluntarily surrendering such weapon, instrument,
appliance or substance, provided that such surrender shall be made to
the superintendent of the division of state police or a member thereof
designated by such superintendent, or to the sheriff of the county in
which such person resides, or in the county of Nassau or in the towns of
Babylon, Brookhaven, Huntington, Islip and Smithtown in the county of
Suffolk to the commissioner of police or a member of the police
department thereof designated by such commissioner, or if such person
resides in a city, town other than one named in this subparagraph, or
village to the police commissioner or head of the police force or
department thereof or to a member of the force or department designated
by such commissioner or head; and provided, further, that the same shall
be surrendered by such person in accordance with such terms and
conditions as may be established by such superintendent, sheriff, police
force or department. Nothing in this paragraph shall be construed as
granting immunity from prosecution for any crime or offense except that
of unlawful possession of such weapons, instruments, appliances or
substances surrendered as herein provided. A person who possesses any
such weapon, instrument, appliance or substance as an executor or
administrator or any other lawful possessor of such property of a
decedent may continue to possess such property for a period not over
fifteen days. If such property is not lawfully disposed of within such
period the possessor shall deliver it to an appropriate official
described in this paragraph or such property may be delivered to the
superintendent of state police. Such officer shall hold it and shall
thereafter deliver it on the written request of such executor,
administrator or other lawful possessor of such property to a named
person, provided such named person is licensed to or is otherwise
lawfully permitted to possess the same. If no request to deliver the
property is received by such official within one year of the delivery of
such property, such official shall dispose of it in accordance with the
provisions of section 400.05 of this chapter.

2. Possession of a machine-gun, large capacity ammunition feeding
device, rapid-fire modification device, firearm, switchblade knife,
pilum ballistic knife, billy or blackjack by a warden, superintendent,
headkeeper or deputy of a state prison, penitentiary, workhouse, county
jail or other institution for the detention of persons convicted or
accused of crime or detained as witnesses in criminal cases, in pursuit
of official duty or when duly authorized by regulation or order to
possess the same.

3. Possession of a pistol or revolver by a person to whom a license
therefor has been issued as provided under section 400.00 or 400.01 of
this chapter or possession of a weapon as defined in paragraph (e) or
(f) of subdivision twenty-two of section 265.00 of this article which is
registered pursuant to paragraph (a) of subdivision sixteen-a of section
400.00 of this chapter or is included on an amended license issued
pursuant to section 400.00 of this chapter. In the event such license is
revoked, other than because such licensee is no longer permitted to
possess a firearm, rifle or shotgun under federal or state law,
information sufficient to satisfy the requirements of subdivision
sixteen-a of section 400.00 of this chapter, shall be transmitted by the
licensing officer to the state police, in a form as determined by the
superintendent of state police. Such transmission shall constitute a
valid registration under such section. Further provided, notwithstanding
any other section of this title, a failure to register such weapon by an
individual who possesses such weapon before the enactment of the chapter
of the laws of two thousand thirteen which amended this paragraph and
may so lawfully possess it thereafter upon registration, shall only be
subject to punishment pursuant to paragraph (c) of subdivision sixteen-a
of section 400.00 of this chapter; provided, that such a license or
registration shall not preclude a conviction for the offense defined in
subdivision three of section 265.01 of this article or section 265.01-a
of this article.

4. Possession of a rifle, shotgun, crossbow or longbow for use while
hunting, trapping or fishing, by a person, not a citizen of the United
States, carrying a valid license issued pursuant to section 11-0713 of
the environmental conservation law.

5. Possession of a rifle or shotgun by a person other than a person
who has been convicted of a class A-I felony or a violent felony
offense, as defined in subdivision one of section 70.02 of this chapter,
who has been convicted as specified in subdivision four of section
265.01 to whom a certificate of good conduct has been issued pursuant to
section seven hundred three-b of the correction law.

6. Possession of a switchblade for use while hunting, trapping or
fishing by a person carrying a valid license issued to him pursuant to
section 11-0713 of the environmental conservation law.

7. Possession, at an indoor or outdoor shooting range for the purpose
of loading and firing, of a rifle or shotgun, the propelling force of
which is gunpowder by a person under sixteen years of age but not under
twelve, under the immediate supervision, guidance and instruction of (a)
a duly commissioned officer of the United States army, navy, air force,
marine corps or coast guard, or of the national guard of the state of
New York; or (b) a duly qualified adult citizen of the United States who
has been granted a certificate as an instructor in small arms practice
issued by the United States army, navy, air force or marine corps, or by
the adjutant general of this state, by the national rifle association of
America, a not-for-profit corporation duly organized under the laws of
this state, or by a New York state 4-H certified shooting sports
instructor; or (c) a parent, guardian, or a person over the age of
eighteen designated in writing by such parent or guardian who shall have
a certificate of qualification in responsible hunting, including safety,
ethics, and landowner relations-hunter relations, issued or honored by
the department of environmental conservation; or (d) an agent of the
department of environmental conservation appointed to conduct courses in
responsible hunting practices pursuant to article eleven of the
environmental conservation law.

7-a. Possession and use, at an indoor or outdoor pistol range located
in or on premises owned or occupied by a duly incorporated organization
organized for conservation purposes or to foster proficiency in small
arms or at a target pistol shooting competition under the auspices of or
approved by the national rifle association for the purpose of loading
and firing the same, by a person duly licensed to possess a pistol or
revolver pursuant to section 400.00 or 400.01 of this chapter of a
pistol or revolver duly so licensed to another person who is present at
the time.

7-b. Possession and use, at an indoor or outdoor pistol range located
in or on premises owned or occupied by a duly incorporated organization
organized for conservation purposes or to foster proficiency in small
arms or at a target pistol shooting competition under the auspices of or
approved by the national rifle association for the purpose of loading
and firing the same, by a person who has applied for a license to
possess a pistol or revolver and pre-license possession of same pursuant
to section 400.00 or 400.01 of this chapter, who has not been previously
denied a license, been previously convicted of a felony or serious
offense, and who does not appear to be, or pose a threat to be, a danger
to himself or to others, and who has been approved for possession and
use herein in accordance with section 400.00 or 400.01 of this chapter;
provided however, that such possession shall be of a pistol or revolver
duly licensed to and shall be used under the supervision, guidance and
instruction of, a person specified in paragraph seven of this
subdivision and provided further that such possession and use be within
the jurisdiction of the licensing officer with whom the person has made
application therefor or within the jurisdiction of the superintendent of
state police in the case of a retired sworn member of the division of
state police who has opted to make an application pursuant to section
400.01 of this chapter.

7-c. Possession for the purpose of loading and firing, of a rifle,
pistol or shotgun, the propelling force of which may be either air,
compressed gas or springs, by a person under sixteen years of age but
not under twelve, under the immediate supervision, guidance and
instruction of (a) a duly commissioned officer of the United States
army, navy, marine corps or coast guard, or of the national guard of the
state of New York; or (b) a duly qualified adult citizen of the United
States who has been granted a certificate as an instructor in small arms
practice issued by the United States army, navy or marine corps, or by
the adjutant general of this state, by the national rifle association of
America, a not-for-profit corporation duly organized under the laws of
this state, or by a New York state 4-H certified shooting sports
instructor; or (c) a parent, guardian, or a person over the age of
eighteen designated in writing by such parent or guardian who shall have
a certificate of qualification in responsible hunting, including safety,
ethics, and landowner relations-hunter relations, issued or honored by
the department of environmental conservation.

7-d. Possession, at an indoor or outdoor shooting range for the
purpose of loading and firing, of a rifle, pistol or shotgun, the
propelling force of which may be either air, compressed gas or springs,
by a person under twelve years of age, under the immediate supervision,
guidance and instruction of (a) a duly commissioned officer of the
United States army, navy, marine corps or coast guard, or of the
national guard of the state of New York; or (b) a duly qualified adult
citizen of the United States who has been granted a certificate as an
instructor in small arms practice issued by the United States army, navy
or marine corps, or by the adjutant general of this state, by the
national rifle association of America, a not-for-profit corporation duly
organized under the laws of this state, or by a New York state 4-H
certified shooting sports instructor; or (c) a parent, guardian, or a
person over the age of eighteen designated in writing by such parent or
guardian who shall have a certificate of qualification in responsible
hunting, including safety, ethics, and landowner relations-hunter
relations, issued or honored by the department of environmental
conservation.

7-e. Possession and use of a pistol or revolver, at an indoor or
outdoor pistol range located in or on premises owned or occupied by a
duly incorporated organization organized for conservation purposes or to
foster proficiency in small arms or at a target pistol shooting
competition under the auspices of or approved by an association or
organization described in paragraph 7-a of this subdivision for the
purpose of loading and firing the same by a person at least fourteen
years of age but under the age of twenty-one who has not been previously
convicted of a felony or serious offense, and who does not appear to be,
or pose a threat to be, a danger to himself or to others; provided
however, that such possession shall be of a pistol or revolver duly
licensed to and shall be used under the immediate supervision, guidance
and instruction of, a person specified in paragraph seven of this
subdivision.

7-f. Possession and use of a magazine, belt, feed strip or similar
device, that contains more than seven rounds of ammunition, but that
does not have a capacity of or can readily be restored or converted to
accept more than ten rounds of ammunition, at an indoor or outdoor
firing range located in or on premises owned or occupied by a duly
incorporated organization organized for conservation purposes or to
foster proficiency in arms; at an indoor or outdoor firing range for the
purpose of firing a rifle or shotgun; at a collegiate, olympic or target
shooting competition under the auspices of or approved by the national
rifle association; or at an organized match sanctioned by the
International Handgun Metallic Silhouette Association.

8. The manufacturer of machine-guns, firearm silencers, assault
weapons, large capacity ammunition feeding devices, rapid-fire
modification devices, disguised guns, pilum ballistic knives,
switchblade or gravity knives, billies or blackjacks as merchandise, or
as a transferee recipient of the same for repair, lawful distribution or
research and development, and the disposal and shipment thereof direct
to a regularly constituted or appointed state or municipal police
department, sheriff, police officer or other peace officer, or to a
state prison, penitentiary, workhouse, county jail or other institution
for the detention of persons convicted or accused of crime or held as
witnesses in criminal cases, or to the military service of this state or
of the United States; or for the repair and return of the same to the
lawful possessor or for research and development.

9. The regular and ordinary transport of firearms as merchandise,
provided that the person transporting such firearms, where he knows or
has reasonable means of ascertaining what he is transporting, notifies
in writing the police commissioner, police chief or other law
enforcement officer performing such functions at the place of delivery,
of the name and address of the consignee and the place of delivery, and
withholds delivery to the consignee for such reasonable period of time
designated in writing by such police commissioner, police chief or other
law enforcement officer as such official may deem necessary for
investigation as to whether the consignee may lawfully receive and
possess such firearms.

9-a. a. Except as provided in subdivision b hereof, the regular and
ordinary transport of pistols or revolvers by a manufacturer of firearms
to whom a license as a dealer in firearms has been issued pursuant to
section 400.00 of this chapter, or by an agent or employee of such
manufacturer of firearms who is otherwise duly licensed to carry a
pistol or revolver and who is duly authorized in writing by such
manufacturer of firearms to transport pistols or revolvers on the date
or dates specified, directly between places where the manufacturer of
firearms regularly conducts business provided such pistols or revolvers
are transported unloaded, in a locked opaque container. For purposes of
this subdivision, places where the manufacturer of firearms regularly
conducts business includes, but is not limited to places where the
manufacturer of firearms regularly or customarily conducts development
or design of pistols or revolvers, or regularly or customarily conducts
tests on pistols or revolvers, or regularly or customarily participates
in the exposition of firearms to the public.

b. The transportation of such pistols or revolvers into, out of or
within the city of New York may be done only with the consent of the
police commissioner of the city of New York. To obtain such consent, the
manufacturer must notify the police commissioner in writing of the name
and address of the transporting manufacturer, or agent or employee of
the manufacturer who is authorized in writing by such manufacturer to
transport pistols or revolvers, the number, make and model number of the
firearms to be transported and the place where the manufacturer
regularly conducts business within the city of New York and such other
information as the commissioner may deem necessary. The manufacturer
must not transport such pistols and revolvers between the designated
places of business for such reasonable period of time designated in
writing by the police commissioner as such official may deem necessary
for investigation and to give consent. The police commissioner may not
unreasonably withhold his consent.

10. Engaging in the business of gunsmith or dealer in firearms by a
person to whom a valid license therefor has been issued pursuant to
section 400.00.

11. Possession of a firearm or large capacity ammunition feeding
device by a police officer or sworn peace officer of another state while
conducting official business within the state of New York.

12. Possession of a pistol or revolver by a person who is a member or
coach of an accredited college or university target pistol team while
transporting the pistol or revolver into or through New York state to
participate in a collegiate, olympic or target pistol shooting
competition under the auspices of or approved by the national rifle
association, provided such pistol or revolver is unloaded and carried in
a locked carrying case and the ammunition therefor is carried in a
separate locked container.

12-a. Possession and use of a pistol or revolver, at an indoor or
outdoor shooting range, by a registered student of a higher education
institution chartered by the state of New York, who is participating in
a course in gun safety and proficiency offered by such institution,
under the immediate supervision, guidance, and instruction of a person
specified in paragraph seven of this subdivision.

13. Possession of pistols and revolvers by a person who is a
nonresident of this state while attending or traveling to or from, an
organized competitive pistol match or league competition under auspices
of, or approved by, the National Rifle Association and in which he is a
competitor, within forty-eight hours of such event or by a person who is
a non-resident of the state while attending or traveling to or from an
organized match sanctioned by the International Handgun Metallic
Silhouette Association and in which he is a competitor, within
forty-eight hours of such event, provided that he has not been
previously convicted of a felony or a crime which, if committed in New
York, would constitute a felony, and further provided that the pistols
or revolvers are transported unloaded in a locked opaque container
together with a copy of the match program, match schedule or match
registration card. Such documentation shall constitute prima facie
evidence of exemption, providing that such person also has in his
possession a pistol license or firearms registration card issued in
accordance with the laws of his place of residence. For purposes of this
subdivision, a person licensed in a jurisdiction which does not
authorize such license by a person who has been previously convicted of
a felony shall be presumed to have no prior conviction. The
superintendent of state police shall annually review the laws of
jurisdictions within the United States and Canada with respect to the
applicable requirements for licensing or registration of firearms and
shall publish a list of those jurisdictions which prohibit possession of
a firearm by a person previously convicted of a felony or crimes which
if committed in New York state would constitute a felony.

13-a. Except in cities not wholly contained within a single county of
the state, possession of pistols and revolvers by a person who is a
nonresident of this state while attending or traveling to or from, an
organized convention or exhibition for the display of or education about
firearms, which is conducted under auspices of, or approved by, the
National Rifle Association and in which he is a registered participant,
within forty-eight hours of such event, provided that he has not been
previously convicted of a felony or a crime which, if committed in New
York, would constitute a felony, and further provided that the pistols
or revolvers are transported unloaded in a locked opaque container
together with a copy of the convention or exhibition program, convention
or exhibition schedule or convention or exhibition registration card.
Such documentation shall constitute prima facie evidence of exemption,
providing that such person also has in his possession a pistol license
or firearms registration card issued in accordance with the laws of his
place of residence. For purposes of this paragraph, a person licensed in
a jurisdiction which does not authorize such license by a person who has
been previously convicted of a felony shall be presumed to have no prior
conviction. The superintendent of state police shall annually review the
laws of jurisdictions within the United States and Canada with respect
to the applicable requirements for licensing or registration of firearms
and shall publish a list of those jurisdictions which prohibit
possession of a firearm by a person previously convicted of a felony or
crimes which if committed in New York state would constitute a felony.

14. Possession in accordance with the provisions of this paragraph of
a self-defense spray device as defined herein for the protection of a
person or property and use of such self-defense spray device under
circumstances which would justify the use of physical force pursuant to
article thirty-five of this chapter.

(a) As used in this section "self-defense spray device" shall mean a
pocket sized spray device which contains and releases a chemical or
organic substance which is intended to produce temporary physical
discomfort or disability through being vaporized or otherwise dispensed
in the air or any like device containing tear gas, pepper or similar
disabling agent.

(b) The exemption under this paragraph shall not apply to a person
who:

(i) is less than eighteen years of age; or

(ii) has been previously convicted in this state of a felony or any
assault; or

(iii) has been convicted of a crime outside the state of New York
which if committed in New York would constitute a felony or any assault
crime.

(c) The department of health, with the cooperation of the division of
criminal justice services and the superintendent of state police, shall
develop standards and promulgate regulations regarding the type of
self-defense spray device which may lawfully be purchased, possessed and
used pursuant to this paragraph. The regulations shall include a
requirement that every self-defense spray device which may be lawfully
purchased, possessed or used pursuant to this paragraph have a label
which states: "WARNING: The use of this substance or device for any
purpose other than self-defense is a criminal offense under the law. The
contents are dangerous - use with care. This device shall not be sold by
anyone other than a licensed or authorized dealer. Possession of this
device by any person under the age of eighteen or by anyone who has been
convicted of a felony or assault is illegal. Violators may be prosecuted
under the law."

15. Possession and sale of a self-defense spray device as defined in
paragraph fourteen of this subdivision by a dealer in firearms licensed
pursuant to section 400.00 of this chapter, a pharmacist licensed
pursuant to article one hundred thirty-seven of the education law or by
such other vendor as may be authorized and approved by the
superintendent of state police.

(a) Every self-defense spray device shall be accompanied by an insert
or inserts which include directions for use, first aid information,
safety and storage information and which shall also contain a toll free
telephone number for the purpose of allowing any purchaser to call and
receive additional information regarding the availability of local
courses in self-defense training and safety in the use of a self-defense
spray device.

(b) Before delivering a self-defense spray device to any person, the
licensed or authorized dealer shall require proof of age and a sworn
statement on a form approved by the superintendent of state police that
such person has not been convicted of a felony or any crime involving an
assault. Such forms shall be forwarded to the division of state police
at such intervals as directed by the superintendent of state police.
Absent any such direction the forms shall be maintained on the premises
of the vendor and shall be open at all reasonable hours for inspection
by any peace officer or police officer, acting pursuant to his or her
special duties. No more than two self-defense spray devices may be sold
at any one time to a single purchaser.

16. The terms "rifle," "shotgun," "pistol," "revolver," and "firearm"
as used in paragraphs three, four, five, seven, seven-a, seven-b, nine,
nine-a, ten, twelve, thirteen and thirteen-a of this subdivision shall
not include a disguised gun or an assault weapon.

b. Section 265.01 shall not apply to possession of that type of billy
commonly known as a "police baton" which is twenty-four to twenty-six
inches in length and no more than one and one-quarter inches in
thickness by members of an auxiliary police force of a city with a
population in excess of one million persons or the county of Suffolk
when duly authorized by regulation or order issued by the police
commissioner of such city or such county respectively. Such regulations
shall require training in the use of the police baton including but not
limited to the defensive use of the baton and instruction in the legal
use of deadly physical force pursuant to article thirty-five of this
chapter. Notwithstanding the provisions of this section or any other
provision of law, possession of such baton shall not be authorized when
used intentionally to strike another person except in those situations
when the use of deadly physical force is authorized by such article
thirty-five.

c. Sections 265.01, 265.10 and 265.15 shall not apply to possession of
billies or blackjacks by persons:

1. while employed in fulfilling contracts with New York state, its
agencies or political subdivisions for the purchase of billies or
blackjacks; or

2. while employed in fulfilling contracts with sister states, their
agencies or political subdivisions for the purchase of billies or
blackjacks; or

3. while employed in fulfilling contracts with foreign countries,
their agencies or political subdivisions for the purchase of billies or
blackjacks as permitted under federal law.

d. Subdivision one of section 265.01 and subdivision four of section
265.15 of this article shall not apply to possession or ownership of
automatic knives by any cutlery and knife museum established pursuant to
section two hundred sixteen-c of the education law or by any director,
officer, employee, or agent thereof when he or she is in possession of
an automatic knife and acting in furtherance of the business of such
museum.

e. Subdivision eight of section 265.02 and sections 265.36 and 265.37
of this chapter shall not apply to a qualified retired New York or
federal law enforcement officer as defined in subdivision twenty-five of
section 265.00 of this article, with respect to large capacity
ammunition feeding devices issued to such officer or purchased by such
officer in the course of his or her official duties and owned by such
officer at the time of his or her retirement or comparable replacements
for such devices, if: (i) the agency that employed the officer qualified
such officer in the use of the weapon which accepts such device in
accordance with applicable state or federal standards for active duty
law enforcement officers within twelve months prior to his or her
retirement; and (ii) such retired officer meets, at his or her own
expense, such applicable standards for such weapon at least once within
three years after his or her retirement date and at least once every
three years thereafter, provided, however, that any such qualified
officer who has been retired for eighteen months or more on the
effective date of this subdivision shall have eighteen months from such
effective date to qualify in the use of the weapon which accepts such
large capacity ammunition feeding device according to the provisions of
this subdivision, notwithstanding that such officer did not qualify
within three years after his or her retirement date, provided that such
officer is otherwise qualified and maintains compliance with the
provisions of this subdivision.