There is no three step rule.
Recently, I had a young man in class that had been arrested for violation of 790 of the Florida Statutes for have a firearm under the seat of his car in a holster. Ultimately, this cost him 6000.00 and forfeiture of his Glock 19. So let’s address this in the hopes of preventing another unfortunate incident.
How do I carry in a car if I don’t have a concealed weapons permit, or there is no 3 step rule.
If you don’t have a permit to carry in Florida you may still carry a firearm in your vehicle. The statute which governs this activity is 790.25 of the Florida Statutes:
(5) POSSESSION IN PRIVATE CONVEYANCE.—Notwithstanding subsection (2), it is lawful and is not a violation of s. 790.01 for a person 18 years of age or older to possess a concealed firearm or other weapon for self-defense or other lawful purpose within the interior of a private conveyance, without a license, if the firearm or other weapon is securely encased or is otherwise not readily accessible for immediate use. Nothing herein contained prohibits the carrying of a legal firearm other than a handgun anywhere in a private conveyance when such firearm is being carried for a lawful use. Nothing herein contained shall be construed to authorize the carrying of a concealed firearm or other weapon on the person. This subsection shall be liberally construed in favor of the lawful use, ownership, and possession of firearms and other weapons, including lawful self-defense as provided in s. 776.012.
You can carry your legally owned firearm in your private vehicle as long as it is securely encased, i.e., it is in something that can be closed so that you don’t have immediate access to it. You can keep it in your glove box, your console, your bag (closed), a box, the case it came in. Just in something that closes, not locks necessarily but closes. That’s it. No three steps not two steps just securely encased.
Having it under your seat is not securely encased. Having in an open bag in the passenger seat is not securely encased. Please stop doing this.
Regardless of the case you use if you are going to carry a loaded gun in a vehicle you should have it a holster designed for the weapon that covers the trigger guard completely and has some retention. Car accidents are common and a loose firearm in your console may hit something that will cause the trigger to be pulled.
If you have taken my permit class and purchased the recommended reading, I suggest you review page 89-90 in the Ninth edition of Gutmacher’s book for a more detailed discussion.