As of October 1, 2018, Maryland has added an additional layer to the appeal process for citizens to obtain a permit to carry a weapon concealed. The permitting process has not changed; an applicant still must take a concealed carry course consisting of 16 hours from a Maryland State Police approved licensed firearms instructor, complete the application and go through the administrative process.
Denied & Restricted Permits
If an applicant is either denied or is granted a permit with restrictions, they can appeal to the Maryland Handgun Review Permit Board. This part is unchanged. However, what happens next is where things have changed. The Maryland General Assembly during the 2018 Legislative Session passed a law that allows for an appeal to be taken from the Handgun Review Permit Board to the Maryland Office of Administrative Hearings. This added layer of appeal is what is known as a “de novo” review, meaning that the Office of Administrative Hearings is not bound by any finding of the Handgun Review Permit Board and new evidence can be introduced at this level of appeal.
The Maryland General Assembly introduced this new layer in the appeals process because the legislature was of the belief that during the past several years, the Handgun Review Permit Board was granting more modifications and permits than was necessary and the legislature wanted a review that wasn’t done by a politically appointed Board.
At this time, there have been no appeals noticed to the Office of Administrative Hearings, but it will not be long before the Maryland State Police will begin to appeal decisions of the Handgun Review Permit Board.
In this setting, citizens who desire to obtain their concealed carry permits should be represented by competent counsel as the Maryland State Police will have their attorneys representing them. Rules of Evidence and legal issues will be brought up and discussed and if an applicant is not properly prepared, their likelihood of success will be severely diminished.
Protect Your Second Amendment Rights
If you are interested in protecting your Second Amendment rights and wish to carry a concealed weapon lawfully, contact Edward Hershon at Hershon Legal for more information.