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Military & Veteran Lawyer > Blog > Weapons Possession Advocacy > Who Qualifies to Carry a Firearm Under LEOSA in New Jersey?

Who Qualifies to Carry a Firearm Under LEOSA in New Jersey?


LEOSA stands for the Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act. This federal law was enacted in 2004 and sets forth guidelines that would allow a current or former law enforcement officers to carry a concealed firearm in any jurisdiction, regardless of local laws. However, this is not an absolute right and there are certain exceptions. If you feel your rights to carry a weapon have been violated, it’s important to contact an experienced New Jersey weapons advocacy lawyer to learn more. 

Qualified Law Enforcement Officers (QLEO) 

LEOSA applies to two different types of officers. The first is a Qualified Law Enforcement Officer (QLEO) and extends to employees of governmental agencies who meet the following criteria:

  • Meet any agency standards that require them to regularly qualify to use a firearm;
  • Authorized by their agency to carry a firearm;
  • No federal law prohibiting them from receiving a firearm;
  • Law authorizes them to engage in and/or supervise certain activities like preventing, detecting, investigating, prosecuting, or incarcerating someone who violates any law. This officer needs to have statutory powers of arrest under the Uniform Code of Military Justice, 10 U.S. Code Section 807 (article 7(b));
  • Are not under the influence of a drug or other substance that is considered intoxicating or hallucinatory;
  • Not under the influence of alcohol; and
  • Are not currently the subject of a pending disciplinary action with a potential outcome to lose their police powers.

Qualified Retired Law Enforcement Officers (QRLEO)

The second type of officer that could potentially qualify under LEOSA is a Qualified Retired Law Enforcement Officer (QRLEO). Criteria for QRLEO include:

  • Employee must have separated from their public agency with good standing as a law enforcement officer (LEO);
  • Served as a LEO for at least ten years or more (aggregate) or was separated from service as a LEO due to a disability that is related to LEO service;
  • Ineligible under this section due to issues related to mental health as determined by medical professional hired by the agency;
  • Has not entered into an agreement with the agency he or she is separating from that acknowledges there are qualification issues in this section due to mental health reasons; and
  • During the most recent 12 months, has completed standards for firearms qualifications — which can be standards established by the former LEO agency or standards used by a certified firearms instructor who has the authority to conduct firearms certifications for active law enforcement officers in that state.

What Agencies Qualify

There are a number of agencies that may qualify under LEOSA, which is why you need to speak with an experienced New Jersey weapons advocacy lawyer who can confirm your individual situation. Some agencies that could qualify include:

  • Military police officers;
  • Public agency law enforcement officers;
  • Federal Reserve law enforcement officers;
  • S. government civilian police officers;
  • Federal government officers of the executive branch; and
  • Amtrak police.

Contact a New Jersey Weapons Advocacy Attorney Today

If you feel your constitutional or statutory rights to carry, purchase, or own a firearm have been violated by government action, you need to contact Citizen Soldier Law to discuss your claim with one of our experienced New Jersey weapons possession advocacy lawyers.

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