Florida’s New Gun Law Changes the Age to Purchase All Firearms to 21

SB 7026 became law in Florida on March 9, 2018 when Governor Scott signed the bill.  Since then we have received numerous questions regarding the effects of the new laws.   Section 12 of the bill amends Florida Statute §790.065 to ban the sale of any firearm to a person under 21 years of age.  The text of the new law creates a conflict with §790.17 and leaves unclear whether or not a person between 18 – 21 may purchase a firearm in a private sale.

Florida Statute §790.065 Sale and Delivery of firearms relates to the steps that a licensed importer, licensed manufacturer or licensed dealer must take prior to selling or delivering a firearm to a purchaser.  Nothing in this section has previously dealt with the private sale of firearms.  However, under the recently adopted amendment to the law, §790.065(13) now begins with the sentence, “A person younger than 21 years of age may not purchase a firearm.”  The rest of this amended section deals with the same group of licensed importers, manufacturers, and dealers as before and no penalties are listed that apply to a private sale to a person under 21 years of age. However, the first sentence as noted above does not include language stating that it applies only to those purchases made from a licensed importer, manufacturer, or dealer and seems to be a blanket prohibition against any sale to a person under 21 years of age.  This section does not make it illegal for a person under 21 to possess a firearm, but they cannot purchase one.

On the other hand, Florida Statute §790.17(2)(a) was not amended by SB 7026.  It still reads, “a person may not knowingly or willfully sell or transfer a firearm to a minor under 18 years of age, except that a person may transfer ownership of a firearm to a minor with permission of the parent or guardian.” Because this section was not amended and §790.065 deals with licensed manufacturers, importers, or dealers, it is unlikely the new law was intended to be a blanket prohibition against all sales of firearms to those under 21 and was likely intended to apply to only licensed manufacturers, dealers, and importers.  Until there is clarification, we strongly caution that the actual wording of the 790.065(13), “A person younger than 21 years of age may not purchase a firearm” be heeded.  We are reaching out to the office of the Attorney General for guidance and will update this blog should guidance be provided.

—David Katz, U.S. LawShield Independent Program Attorney for Florida

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Comment section

15 comments on “Florida’s New Gun Law Changes the Age to Purchase All Firearms to 21

  1. what if your in military

    • Florida Statute 790.065 (13) makes it illegal for a person under 21 to purchase a firearm. However, it also states, “the prohibition of this subsection do not apply to the purchase of a rifle or shotgun by a … servicemember as defined in s. 250.01.

    • Florida Statute 790.065 (13) makes it illegal for a person under 21 to purchase a firearm. However, it also states, “the prohibition of this
      subsection do not apply to the purchase of a rifle or shotgun by a … service member as defined in s. 250.01.

  2. What about bump stocks? The new law bans bump stocks but does not address the already owned bump stocks that were bought legally for 3 or 4 hundred dollars.

    • Unfortunately, the possession of those bump stocks will become illegal October 1, 2018. You have until that time to get rid of it. You can sell
      it to someone who can lawfully posses it, give it away, throw it away, or turn it into the police. You can call your local police or sheriff’s
      department to see if they have a procedure to surrender such items in place prior to October 1, 2018. After that date, it does not matter how long you have owned the item or items, or what you paid, they are illegal to possess in this state.

  3. Hi im Josue Portillo I live in Florida I am 19 I understand the new laws but I see nothing about ammo can I still buy long ammo I know I can’t buy hand gun ammo you have to be 21 but know with the new gun laws I don’t know if I am still allowed to buy rifel ammo

  4. Its sucks this new law does

  5. Hello i have a question. Im 19 and i own a handgun and i know that i cant conceal carry until im 21 with a ccw, but i can have it in my car. What are the requirements to poses a handgun in my car while im traveling?

  6. 18year can go fight for our freedom but can’t on a riffle that’s bs Rick needs to rethink this crap before he’s next to be replaced

  7. Do you have to be 21 to buy ammunition in Florida? I have been looking for information on it but can’t find any

  8. So being specific, it it illegal for someone to give a gun as a gift ? Like they buy the weapon and then decides to gift it to a sibling, above 18 of course?

  9. To answer the questions pertaining to the purchase of ammunition for those under 21, as far as I can tell. All of the stores I’ve gone to have refused to sell me ANY ammunition of any caliber due to this, as I am 19. So for that I’d say it’s a definite no.

    Also I’m quite sure that carrying a handgun under 21 years of age, in your possession or in a vehicle unless it is unloaded and being transported from the aforementioned events is still illegal, so no you can not have a handgun in your vehicle unless you are 21 years of age and have a concealed carry permit

  10. I’m 19 and have a ccw because I’m a service member but I can’t buy ammo or a gun ( from a licensed dealer) But you can buy it from a family member or a friend or someone simply gives it too. Totally legal. Also as far as ammo just order it, in Florida there’s nothing stopping you from ordering it to your house. At 18 you can own a gun and keep it in your car but it can’t be readily accessible which basically means don’t have it out but if you keep it in your glove box your good

  11. 21 for CCW and owning of all firearms in Florida.
    So no you can’t even be in possession of a hand gun or a long gun. Military members do not get a CCW before the required age. Florida will not give you one until 21. The fire arms purchase age should be 23 and the adult age should be 21 as a better starting point. 21 to join the military 18 and over with your parents consent to join the military earlier. The human mind is not fully developed until
    25 so why any one wants to give a punk under the age of 25 any fire arm is just nuts. Hope they raise the age limits very soon. Once you are really grown buy a 50 cal for all I care.

  12. Hello, would it still be legal to to purchase an antique handgun if I’m 19, the one in question was made in 1943, but is replicating an 1885 model. Since I’m pretty sure it doesn’t actually count as a “firearm” the way Florida law defines one.

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