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[Question] Looking into getting license question

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Hey everyone, I just stopped in and saw some folks who were having issues with getting a license to carry, and thought I would stop in and ask for some help with understanding some things.


Firstly, where can I find a copy of the carrying by-laws? According to the tn.gov website, it states that anyone having been discharged from the military have to have their DD-214, which I have. However, there's a seperate comment that states that anyone who judicially have been stated they have a mental illness might get denied.


I was discharged under an EPTS (Existing Prior To Service) for a Bi-polar non-disclosure. Does that qualify under the potential denial? I stay on my meds regularly to keep my moods regulated, but starting to wonder about if it will cause a denial in my case.


Secondly, and this goes back to the DD-214, I was discharged on Feb. 4, 2011. With it being under the EPTS status, does that qualify under the Dismissal of a soldier as stated here:




Shall not have been discharged from the Armed Forces under dishonorable conditions (dishonorable discharge, bad conduct discharge or a dismissal; Chapter 1340-2-4-.02 (5); - See more at: https://www.tn.gov/safety/article/hgqualifications#sthash.FoMdjGMR.dpuf



That's pretty much it for the moment. Any information or help in finding the information I need would be greatly appreciated. Thanks everyone!

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Possible problems there, I think.


But wait for some of our resident experts to see your post. Several of them are really sharp o the Tennessee Codes. 

Edited by hipower
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I can’t address the Bi-polar, but unless things have changed there is an AG opinion (2006) on the discharge. Of course an AG opinion isn’t law, but it might help.
Here is a link, but the short version is…

Therefore, only persons who have been discharged from the armed forces by a military tribunal following conviction can be denied handgun permits in Tennessee.

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Not sure how your condition will play out but I am very sure (not 100%, but very) that being discharged for a medical reason (existing or not) is NOT going to be a problem.  Dishonorable discharge is a totally different thing.   Your discharge was honorable if it was medical.   I am not a military guy but I worked with enough of them... from what I understand, to get a dishonorable you need to do something that equates to a felony for civilians more or less (the military is actually a little more strict in some cases but even so, its a major offense).  

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EPTS is not an honorable or dishonorable discharge, it's an administrative separation.  I don't know if that counts as a dismissal or not in the eyes of TDOS.  I suspect it's not a problem, because it's classified under the same rule in the military as an ETS separation, which can happen to lots of non-criminal reasons, including serious injury during the first 180 days of service.


You don't have to show you DD214 when getting a permit unless you received handgun training and want to bypass taking a HCP course.


As for your health issue, unless you've been adjudicated by a judge, that won't be an issue.


I'd go ahead and take the class, and apply...  I don't think they will deny you based on what you've told us.

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Did you get a diagnosis by a doctor prior to joining?  I don't know what mental conditions get reported but it may prevent you from passing a background check if it meets any of the following:





(12) That the applicant has not been adjudicated as a mental defective, has not been judicially committed to or hospitalized in a mental institution pursuant to title 33, has not had a court appoint a conservator for the applicant by reason of a mental defect, has not been judicially determined to be disabled by reason of mental illness, developmental disability or other mental incapacity, and has not, within seven (7) years from the date of application, been found by a court to pose an immediate substantial likelihood of serious harm, as defined in title 33, chapter 6, part 5, because of mental illness;

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A diagnosis by a doctor is not the same as being adjudicated by a court. I really don't think you'll have a problem. The only reason to show your DD-214 is if you have handgun training you can substitute for the safety class
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Kind of off subject but what would happen or how would you act if you do not take your medications?


Not everyone who can own a firearm should own a firearm. I am not saying that is the case with you but you need to take a really hard, and honest, look at yourself to determine that. If YOU think you will be fine, and have not been committed or had a judge weigh in on your case, then buy the firearm. And by fine I mean when you can't or don't take your medications. A lot of people with mental conditions think they can stop taking their medications and that can end with bad results. If that describes what would happen if you quit taking your medications then you might take a really hard look at whether you should really be owning a firearm.


We just do not want anyone to use a firearm to harm themselves or others if it can be helped.


Good luck.

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Regarding a license, I don't think you'll have a problem as you meet the criteria. 


Dolomite also makes a good point.  My experience matches what he said.  My second marriage fell apart when she decided that she didn't need to take her meds any longer.  Of course, you have to decide what is right for you.  


Depression and bi-polar are the two biggies driving suicide.

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You dont need to show the guys your DD-214, as far as your discharge since it was admin/medical it would be considered a General Under Honorable or even Honorable under the characterization.

I hope they gave you the right diagnosis - I got command referred to speak with the shrinks when I left Group and PCSed to Campbell and they tried to say I was bipolar only to have the head psych say I had PTSD.

Either way, whether or not they botched it, worsened it, misdiagnosed it or were right - unless a military judge or civlian judge ruled you are mentally insane (insanity is actually a judicial/legal thing - not medical) then you are fine.

You can feel free to PM me since I am too familiar with BPD - I imagine as long as youre not hypermanic with delusional tendencies (which I doubt) youll be fine.

I hate the stigma that behavioral disorders are given, dont let it get you down.

Remember; you are not your illness. Go ahead and apply if you feel you can handle the responsibility which I wager you can.

Sent from my SPH-L720 using Tapatalk
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While it is true that a judge should have to weigh in, a question on Form 4473 states:


Have you ever been adjudicated mentally defective (which includes a determination by a court, board, commission, or other lawful
authority that you are a danger to yourself or to others or are incompetent to manage your own affairs) OR have you ever been
committed to a mental institution? (See Instructions for Question 11.f.)


So depending on the circumstances of the discharge, i.e. a Med Board findings, this may apply as being adjudication.  If there is any question as to the legal standing;  the best thing to do is to seek out a 2A friendly lawyer to help read all the fine points and make sure you don't "lie" on any of the paperwork.

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The administrative separation code he received, would make it VERY unlikely that he was adjudicated 'mentally defective'.  Another example of the military using this code would be if you had asthma, didn't tell the recruiter about it, went to boot camp and had a asthma attack...  The military would separate you for a pre-existing medical condition, because that medical condition makes you unfit for duty.


Since he likely needs meds to regulate himself, that would make him unfit for military service, it does not mean he was deemed a threat to anybody.  See the difference?


While it is true that a judge should have to weigh in, a question on Form 4473 states:


So depending on the circumstances of the discharge, i.e. a Med Board findings, this may apply as being adjudication.  If there is any question as to the legal standing;  the best thing to do is to seek out a 2A friendly lawyer to help read all the fine points and make sure you don't "lie" on any of the paperwork.

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