What is LEOSA?
The Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act (LEOSA) is a United States federal law, enacted in 2004, that allows two classes of persons - the "qualified law enforcement officer" and the "qualified retired or separated law enforcement officer" - to carry a concealed firearm in any jurisdiction in the United States or United States Territories, regardless of state or local laws, with certain exceptions. If a person meets the criteria, "notwithstanding any provisions of the law of any state or any political subdivision thereof" he or she may carry a concealed firearm in that state or political subdivision. An individual who qualifies under LEOSA does not require a state-issued permit to carry a concealed firearm.
The privilege specifically does not extend to machine guns, destructive devices, or silencers.
Although LEOSA preempts state and local laws, there are two exceptions:
The laws of that state;
1. Permit private persons or entities to prohibit or restrict the possession of concealed firearms on their property (such as bars, private clubs, amusement parks, etc.)
2. Prohibit or restrict the possession of firearms on any state or local government property, installation, building, base, or park.
This credential does not grant the bearer any authority to act on the agency's DoD's behalf or to exercise any law enforcement authority, when off duty.
Individuals must also obey any federal laws and agency policies that restrict the carrying of concealed firearms in certain federal buildings and lands, as well as federal regulations prohibiting the carriage of firearms on airplanes. In 2013, LEOSA was again amended by the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2013, which clarified that military police officers and civilian police officers employed by the U.S. Government met the definitions in the original Act.
The definitions of "qualified active" and "qualified retired or separated" law enforcement officer include the term "police officers" and expanded the powers of arrest requirement definition to include those who have or had the authority to "apprehend" suspects under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.
The LEOSA Act provides for two different categories of LEOSA credentials, 926B and 926C.
926B - Qualified Actively Serving
- Is authorized by law to engage in or supervise the prevention, detection, investigation, or prosecution of, or the incarceration of any person for, any violation of law.
- Has statutory powers of arrest or authority to apprehend pursuant to section 807(b) of Title 10, United States Code (also known as Article 7(b) of the UCMJ).
- Is authorized by the organization to carry a firearm.
- Is not the subject of any disciplinary action by the organization that could result in suspension or loss of police powers.
- Meets the organization's standards, if any, which require the employee to regularly qualify in the use of a firearm of the same type (e.g., revolver or semiautomatic pistol) as the concealed firearm.
- Is not under the influence of alcohol or another intoxicating or hallucinatory drug or substance.
- Is not prohibited by federal law from receiving a firearm.
926C - Qualified Retired and Separated
- Be separated in good standing from service with the DoD component as a law enforcement officer.
- Before separation, have been authorized to engage in or supervise the prevention, detection, investigation, or prosecution, or the incarceration of any person for any violation of law.
- Before separation had statutory powers of arrest or authority to apprehend pursuant to section 807(b) of Title 10, United States Code (also known as Article 7(b) of the UCMJ).
- Before separation, or retraining into a new career field (without apprehension authority), served as a law enforcement officer, or separated from service with the DoD component after completing any applicable period of service, due to a service-connected disability, as determined by that component
- To carry concealed, during the most recent 12-month period, (1) met the State's standards for training and qualification to carry a firearm for active law enforcement officers in that state for the same type of weapon as the concealed, (2) qualify using the States LEOSA firearms qualification course, or (3) if the State has not established law enforcement officer firearms qualification standard the instructor will certify the officer has completed the DoD Component handgun qualification course conducted by a state certified civilian firearms instructor using the member's privately owned firearm and personally procured ammunition.
NOTE 1: With the exception of DoD Component firearms training, all firearms qualification courses must be taught by certified firearms instructor through the National Rifle Association, American Association of Certified Firearms Instructors, or be qualified to conduct a firearms qualification test for active duty law enforcement officers within that state. Inland Training provides this course.
NOTE 2: When carrying concealed the proof of firearms certification cannot be older than 12 months at all times.
Have not entered into an agreement with the DoD component from which the individual is separated from service acknowledges he or she is not qualified under section 926C for reasons relating to mental health.
NOTE 3: There is no requirement for a mental health examination for separating or separated law enforcement officers seeking a LEOSA identification card.
Have not been officially found by a qualified medical professional employed by the DoD component to be unqualified for reasons of mental health.
Not be prohibited by federal law from receiving a firearm.
Agree that while armed, will not be under the influence of alcohol or another intoxicating or hallucinatory drug or substance.