Declaring a Weapon at a Fort Worth Airport
Traveling with a weapon might sometimes be a necessity for certain people. Those employed in gun sales, law enforcement, or the security industries may need to transport weapons from one place to another as part of their professional duties. Still, others might wish to do so simply for the sake of protection.
Regardless of the reason, anyone traveling with a weapon must legally declare said weapon in accordance with United States federal and Texas state regulations. Should you plan to travel with a firearm, consultation with an experienced defense attorney about the proper procedures for declaring a weapon at a Fort Worth airport might be advisable.
Why Speak with an Attorney?
An airport weapon attorney’s counsel may prove beneficial on several counts. Among other services, they may be able to explain national and state laws governing the possession of firearms inside an airport, clarify the specific process involved with declaring a weapon at a Fort Worth airport and help individuals navigate through the legal procedures involved with purchasing, registering and owning a firearm.
However, if appropriate procedures are not followed, someone who is otherwise a legal gun owner might be found in violation of the law. Under such circumstances, a defense lawyer could work to formulate a defense strategy designed to minimize legal ramifications.
The Process of Declaring a Weapon at an Airport in Fort Worth
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA), a federal government agency that oversees the safety of all American airports, has established a specific set of guidelines mandating how firearm owners may travel with such items. To declare a firearm, the weapon must be:
- Locked inside an impenetrable container
- Placed solely inside checked baggage and may not be carried on board an aircraft
- Legal to possess in accordance with Texas law
- Owned by an individual displaying whatever permits and licenses are required by Texas State law to possess said firearm
These regulations also apply to firearm ammunition. Assuming their weapon is properly packaged and accompanied by the appropriate paperwork, gun owners must verbally declare their firearm to the airline being traveled. The company employee must also declare the luggage in which the item will be transported at a ticket counter when checking in for their flight. If an airline passenger fails to abide by these regulations, TSA personnel could levy a heavy fine on the individual in question and refer their case to local law enforcement.
Consequences of Failing to Follow Procedure
Texas law dictates that firearms, even when properly declared, are not permitted past security checkpoints. While many people—particularly those who legally carry weapons or travel with them often—may innocently forget they have a firearm contained in a particular piece of luggage, a moment of absentmindedness may not excuse them from the associated legal ramifications.
Failing to follow the procedures associated with declaring a weapon at a Fort Worth airport may have significant consequences. Punishments may range from misdemeanor charges that carry low to moderate monetary fines and a potential jail sentence of no more than one year, to felony accusations that might result in heavier fines and anywhere from two to ten years in prison.
Speaking to a Fort Worth Attorney
We understand that some people are either employed in professions that necessitate the use of firearms or need said items for protection. Our team of attorneys also realizes that, in certain instances, such individuals must travel with firearms.
While there is an established federal process in place for declaring a weapon at a Fort Worth airport, plenty of people are not aware of these regulations or just make an honest mistake. If you need clarification of federal or state laws or fear you might be facing an airport gun charge, please contact us to find out how we could help.