Protection Orders Issued Against Domestic Abusers
Upon the issuance of a protection order, the court shall:
- Require the person to state in court or complete an affidavit in court stating the number of firearms in the person's immediate possession or control and the location of all firearms in the person's immediate possession or control;
- Require the person to complete a firearm information form that states the number of firearms in the person's immediate possession or control or subject to the person's immediate possession or control, the type of each firearm, and the location of each firearm; and
- Transmit a copy of the protection order and the firearm information form to the sheriff of the county of the person's residence.
The bill prohibits any full and truthful statements made to the court regarding the number of firearms in the person's immediate possession or control or subject to the person's immediate possession or control and the location of the firearms from being used against the person in any other civil or criminal proceedings.
The bill excludes legal holidays and weekends from the current time frame a person has to relinquish a firearm. The bill allows a court to grant a person an additional 24 hours to relinquish a firearm if the person is unable to comply with the required time frame of relinquishment.
Current law requires a person to either sell or transfer possession of the firearm, arrange for the storage of the firearm by a law enforcement agency, or sell or transfer the firearm to a private party who may legally possess the firearm. The bill requires a private party to complete a firearms acknowledgment form that informs the private party of the relevant state and federal laws, lists the consequences of noncompliance, and asks if the private party is able to legally possess a firearm. The bill prohibits the person from transferring the firearm to a private party living in the same residence as the person at the time of transfer.
The bill requires the court to conduct a hearing to ensure the person has complied with the relinquishment requirements. Failure to appear at the hearing constitutes a violation of the protection order, and the court may issue a warrant for the person's arrest or a search warrant of the person's residence.
The bill requires a person who does not possess a firearm at the time the order is issued to complete a declaration of nonpossession form in court. If the person possessed a firearm at the time of the qualifying incident giving rise to the duty to relinquish the firearm but sold or transferred the firearm to a private party prior to the issuance of the protection order, the person shall disclose the sale or transfer in court.
The bill requires a federally licensed firearms dealer, law enforcement agency, or private party to issue a signed affidavit memorializing the sale or transfer of the firearm.
The bill allows a law enforcement agency to enter into an agreement with any other law enforcement agency to assume the duties of the sheriff. If a law enforcement agency elects to store a firearm, the bill allows the law enforcement agency to seek a matching incentive fee from the department of public safety on an annual basis in an amount equal to the total amount charged by the agency for providing storage of a firearm. The matching fee must be used to maintain or increase firearm storage capacity. The bill requires a sheriff who elects to store a firearm to obtain a search warrant prior to testing or examining the firearm to facilitate any criminal investigation or prosecution.
The bill prohibits a private party from returning a firearm to the person until the private party receives a written statement of the results of the background check conducted by the bureau authorizing the return of the firearm to the person.
Current law requires a copy of the written receipt and the written statement of the background check to be filed with the court as proof of relinquishment. The bill requires the signed affidavit to be filed with the court instead of the receipt. Both the signed affidavit and written statement are only available for inspection by the court and the parties to the proceeding.
A federally licensed firearms dealer, law enforcement agency, or private party that elects to store a firearm is not civilly liable for any resulting damages to the firearm, as long as such damage did not result from the willful and wrongful act or gross negligence of the person or agency storing the firearm.
(Note: This summary applies to this bill as introduced.)