Georgia Passes Law To Protect Firearm Retailers And Privacy For Buyers

GON Staff | April 25, 2024

House Bill 1018 protects the privacy of buyers of firearms and ammo and also protect retailers like Adventure Outdoors from discrimination by credit card companies.

While federal and world entities seem to move toward more intrusion and control over personal liberties, Georgians can take some comfort from the actions of our current state leadership. During the recent legislative session, Georgia lawmakers passed House Bill 1018, which prohibits financial institutions from using a “firearms merchant category code” to identify and distinguish a firearms retailer from other retailers, preventing guns, firearms accessories and ammunition from being specifically singled out during purchases with a credit card. It also prohibits persons or government entities from keeping registries of firearms or owners of firearms.

Governor Brian Kemp signed HB 1018 into law on Monday, April 21, 2024, protecting the credit card purchases of Georgia’s sportsmen.

HB 1018, the Georgia Firearms Industry Nondiscrimination Act, now will “prohibit financial institutions from requiring the use of a firearms code that distinguishes firearms retailers from other retailers; to prohibit discrimination against firearms retailers by financial institutions through the use of a firearms code; to prohibit the disclosure of certain financial records by financial institutions; to provide for petitions to the Attorney General to investigate alleged violations; to prohibit persons or government entities from keeping registries of firearms or owners of firearms; to provide for construction; to provide definitions; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.”

The need for state measures like Georgia’s Firearms Industry Nondiscrimination Act is the result of a global effort that threatens the freedoms of Americans. In September of 2022, the International Organizations for Standardization (ISO) approved the creation of a new merchant category code (MCC) for firearm retailers to use when their customers use a credit card to purchase firearms and ammunition. Previously, credit card codes listed firearms or ammo sales as general merchandise or sporting goods. The new codes are specific to firearms and ammunition. The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is a nongovernmental organization that develops and publishes a wide range of proprietary, industrial and commercial standards and is comprised of representatives from various national standards organizations. The ISO was founded in 1947 and is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, and it functions in 167 countries.

Regarding the ISO merchant code for firearm retailers, the Sportsmen’s Alliance said, “Gun control extremists are using every possible avenue to disarm law-abiding sportsmen and gun owners, including how to uncover personal identifying information on who owns firearms in America. The latest tactic on this front is to track credit card purchases of firearms and ammunition. Gun control fanatics like New York Attorney General Letitia James and California Attorney General Rob Bonta are looking forward to embracing this new ‘tool’ so they can focus their efforts on legal purchasers of firearms and ammunition in their ongoing quest to destroy our firearms freedom.”

The Georgia House of Representatives passed HB 1018 by a vote of 106 to 60. Click here to see how your State Representative voted.

The Georgia Senate passed the measure by a vote of 33 to 19. Click here to see how your State Senator voted.


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