[APP REVIEW] The Legal Heat Smartphone App
Keeping up with the ever-constant changes of firearms laws and regulations can be a tiring process. Federal Law and State Law alike are constantly in a state of ebb and flow when it comes to firearms and concealed carry. With the never-ending cry for gun control every time a criminal uses a firearm for malicious purposes; or even when the lawful citizen uses their firearm to protect their own life there seems to be a demand for stricter gun policies right around the corner.
The internet and local gun shops and dealers may offer the latest in gun law information; but even that information can be outdated within a matter of months. As an everyday carrier, it is your sole responsibility to keep up to date with these changes, as tedious as it may be.
In all my searches to find a reliable source of information for concealed carry reciprocity along with Federal and State gun laws, I happened to stumble across a beautiful little tool called Legal Heat. I first found them on Facebook, and after a little investigating I decided that if I were to ever need a reliable and up to date source for firearms laws, this was where I’d find it.
After browsing their Facebook page and visiting their personal website, I sent a few inquiring emails about their Legal Heat App and published firearm guide, which comes out every year with a new version. They were quick to respond and extremely helpful in answering my questions. I purchased the published book the same day. Of course updates and changes happen constantly as I said before, even a month after receiving the books I found a change in Ohio’s State firearms laws that occurred after the book was published. After pointing the change out to them via email, they were once again quick to respond and agree with the change; as well as inform me that the Legal Heat App was constantly updated with changes daily to provide the most accurate and up to date information. So, naturally I purchased the App soon after. I still enjoy having the book as a reference, as it’s filled with vast amounts of usual information; but you can’t deny the usefulness and accessibility of having an App there on your phone at the touch of a button.
To get into the heart of the matter, the App itself is easily negotiated and self-explanatory. From the main page you can access a wide variety of information; from Concealed and Open Carry laws by State, to transportation laws and advice on how to travel State to State with your firearms. It also includes detailed information on traveling by air as well as other helpful tools of the trade.
Say for example you’re traveling by car through several states and you wish to bring your everyday carry firearm along; because let’s be honest, who wouldn’t? You have a concealed carry permit for your resident State and wish to find out if the State’s you’ll be traveling through honors the permit. Using your newly purchased Legal Heat App, all you need do is find your resident State, highlight it, make sure you’re on the concealed carry option and press the State Firearm Laws button. The Legal Heat App will ask you if you wish to download an updated version, which you should always do, and you’re on your way to every possible law your own State has. You’ll also be shown a map that allows you to view the Reciprocity your State has with other States. The map doesn’t give you State names, so you’ll have to brush up on your geography if you’re unfamiliar. As a precaution, you should also look up the individual State’s you’ll be traveling through, to understand their own requirements such as Duty to Inform Laws in case you’re pulled over for a traffic stop.
The State by State option offers you all the information you could possibly need when visiting an unfamiliar State with your firearm if they honor your permit. You can view Federal Law, State Law, as well as any city specific Laws. Beyond that you’ll find if a Duty to Retreat Law exists for that State as well as any Special Notes; which will include any existing State specific laws for transportation, Duty to Inform, or additional useful information. Further beyond the maps you’ll find a section devoted to updated information. This is where you’ll find any updates to that State’s Laws such as newly acquired or lost Reciprocity.
In my opinion, you can’t argue the accessibility of the App offers as well as the detailed amount of useful information you’ll find on it. The members of the Legal Heat team are also vastly knowledgeable in the inner workings of the law. A majority of the staff are NRA certified instructors as well as several licensed attorneys. They also travel within the United States, offering classes in various locations that will qualify you for whatever permits they happen to be offering in that particular class. You can visit their main site for more information on the classes and locations and register accordingly. They also offer private classes should you desire to get a group together for a class within the States they offer.
The combination of the Legal Heat App, the knowledgeable staff, and the variety of classes they offer isn’t something you’ll find often. I would recommend the app alone to any everyday carrier, especially one that travels a lot. However, even if you don’t travel and simply stay within your State of Residence, it’s still a useful tool to keep up with the constant changes of concealed carry and other firearms laws and regulations. If you’re in the business of carrying and keeping informed, the Legal Heat App is an excellent device to do just that.