Firearm-free zones designated by the Commonwealth or a locality; waiver of sovereign immunity. (HB162)

Introduced By

Del. John McGuire (R-Glen Allen) with support from co-patron Del. Mark Cole (R-Fredericksburg)


Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law


Firearm-free zones designated by the Commonwealth or a locality; waiver of sovereign immunity. Provides that (i) if the Commonwealth designates any property owned by it or (ii) if any locality designates such locality or any part of such locality as a firearm-free zone, the Commonwealth or such locality waives its sovereign immunity as it relates to any injuries sustained by persons lawfully present in such firearm-free zone. Read the Bill »


Bill Has Failed


12/23/2019Prefiled and ordered printed; offered 01/08/20 20103493D
12/23/2019Referred to Committee on Public Safety
01/16/2020Impact statement from DPB (HB162)
01/20/2020Assigned PS sub: Firearms
01/21/2020Subcommittee recommends laying on the table (6-Y 2-N)
02/11/2020Left in Public Safety


Mike writes:

Yes, a municipality should be held accountable if they have policies in place that deny an individuals right to self-defense. Gun-free zones are the opposite of common sense safety.

Randy Bubb writes:

Senate Bill 16 proposes to take away our right to defend ourselves, and this takes away the Commonwealths responsibility if someone gets hurt..... You can't have it both ways. Either you let us protect ourselves, or your responsible for your own mistakes. Gun free zones = soft target = increase in injury/death should an attack ever happen.

Randy Can't Read writes:

@Randy Bubb, you can't read. This bill does just the opposite. It removes sovereign immunity for any state of local government facility/property that is declared a gun-free zone. That means they would have liability and would NOT be immune from lawsuits.

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