On November 8, 2005, San Francisco voters passed Proposition H, a total ban on the manufacture, sale, transfer, or distribution of firearms or ammunition in San Francisco, and a ban on handgun ownership in the city by San Francisco residents (excluding police officers, security forces, etc.). The ban did not prohibit the possession of weapons other than handguns, nor did residents of other cities prohibit the possession of handguns in San Francisco. While this measure made San Francisco the third major U.S. city after Washington, D.C. and Chicago to adopt a handgun ban, the San Francisco ban was expanded and did not implement a grandfathering clause in the Chicago and Washington DC laws that protected existing gun owners. Proposition H states that handgun owners in San Francisco must surrender their handguns to police, have them confiscated, or leave the city limits by the end of March 2006. In June 2006, Judge James Warren of the San Francisco County Superior Court rejected Proposition H, saying that under California law, local authorities do not have the authority to prohibit the possession of handguns by law-abiding citizens. On January 9, 2008, a California appeals court upheld Judge Warren`s decision.  The National Rifle Association (NRA) opposed the ban from the outset. The centerpiece of the 16 new gun control laws Newsom wants to sign would allow individuals to sue manufacturers of illegal guns, such as unregistered « ghost guns, » which are assembled from parts and sold on the black market.
semi-automatic firearms that the state has classified as assault weapons; .50 BMG rifles; and high-capacity magazines (magazines that can hold more than ten cartridges) cannot be sold in California. The ban on major magazines was declared unconstitutional on 29 March 2019, but the verdict was suspended while the case was being appealed.  On August 14, 2020, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled that the ban was unconstitutional.  However, this decision was overturned by the Ninth District Court on February 25, 2021 until the case could be heard again in a bench.  On June 4, 2021, Roger Benitez, a senior judge for the Southern District of California, declared the assault weapons ban unconstitutional, despite granting a 30-day stay of appeal. The Ninth Court of Appeal then extended the suspension indefinitely.   Possession of automatic firearms and shotguns and short-barrelled rifles is prohibited without a dangerous weapons license obtained from the California Department of Justice if there is a valid reason for their possession, such as manufacture, repair, collection in limited cases (prior to 1990), cinema accessory weapons or trafficking with the police or the army. Section 25850 of the California Penal Code defines what constitutes a loaded weapon.
There are also many other laws, such as the prohibition of possession of tracer ammunition and armor-piercing ammunition. All rifles are generally exempt for the original owner if they are properly registered at the time of the acts they prohibited. The open carrying of firearms in California is governed by a number of laws that sometimes conflict with each other. This has led to considerable confusion about the legality of open port in the state. The open carrying of loaded or unloaded firearms in public is generally prohibited, although open carrying may be permitted in unincorporated rural areas where permitted by local ordinance, and elsewhere in certain circumstances. California is a state « issued in May » for permits to carry hidden weapons. The preparedness of issuing authorities in California ranges from No Issue in most urban areas to Shall Issue in rural counties. In addition, the issuing authority may also impose restrictions on the CCW licence holder, for example: limiting secret transport to the purposes specified in the approved CCAC permit application. However, clandestine transport permits are valid throughout the country, regardless of where they were issued. This creates a situation where residents of supposedly trouble-free places like Los Angeles and San Francisco can`t legally carry a hidden gun, but residents of other counties with more permissive CCW emissions policies can legally carry in the same jurisdictions. California does not recognize permits issued by other states for secret transportation, and non-residents are generally prohibited from obtaining a California secret harbor permit.
Individuals permitted to carry a rifle, shotgun, or handgun under the federal law on law enforcement safety are not subject to certain California laws. Most state gun laws state that if you carry a concealed firearm without a license, a prosecutor can either charge you: a misdemeanor, a felony, nothing if you are exempt from secret carrying under your state`s laws, or nothing if you are a resident of a « constitutional » state. Most state laws. Note that high-capacity ammunition magazines are illegal in California.84 In 2021, the Ninth Circuit ruled that Criminal Code 32310 PC — which prohibits FCLs — does not violate self-defense laws.85 The United States.