A Guide On “Stand Your Ground” Gun Laws By State – 2022Leave a Comment
Many responsible, law-abiding gun owners purchase a firearm with the intent to use it in self-defense to protect themselves and their families. Self-defense gun laws can widely vary by state. If you’re a gun owner, it’s important to know the self-defense gun laws in the state you live in and how the laws can vary in the states that you travel to. In all instances, it is important to never shoot a firearm unnecessarily if you’re not in immediate danger or if the threat does not require firearm use in order for you to mitigate harm. Below we will discuss the types of gun laws and how they vary by state. Click on a state to see the specific law.
Types Of Gun Laws:
Duty To Retreat
Many states require that gun owners must make an effort to retreat or leave the situation (if possible) before deploying a firearm or using lethal force as a means of self-defense. Depending on your state, the only place you may not have a duty to retreat is inside of your home.
Stand Your Ground
Different from states that have “Duty To Retreat” laws, states with “Stand Your Ground” or “No Duty To Retreat” self-defense gun laws do not require gun owners who are in imminent danger of harm or death to retreat before deploying a firearm as a means of self-defense. These types of laws can extend beyond the home and can give the ability for firearm owners to use a gun in self-defense while on their own property, in a vehicle, or in public places. Some states that have these laws have different interpretations or stipulations on these laws, so it’s always important to check specifics for each state.
The castle doctrine is an exception that allows firearm owners to deploy a firearm as a means of self-defense within their homes without needing to retreat. The castle doctrine originated with the word ‘castle’ and allows individuals to defend their own home, or ‘castle’. While the meaning of ‘castle’ can vary by state to include places like automobiles and workplaces, the doctrine generally can be applied within a home in most states.
States With “Duty To Retreat” Laws:
- New Jersey
- New York – except when being threatened with robbery, burglary, kidnapping, or sexual assault.
- North Dakota
- Rhode Island
States With “Stand Your Ground” Laws:
- New Hampshire
- North Carolina
- South Carolina
- South Dakota
- West Virginia
Stand Your Ground States With a Combination of Statutes, Judicial Decisions, And/Or Jury Instructions:
Each states law’s can change throughout the upcoming years, so it’s important to check with your specific state for specific laws and instructions regarding using a firearm in self-defense. If you are involved in a self-defense gun shooting in Washington, contact The Law Offices of Mark Treyz for a consultation.