Gun Rights and Domestic Violence in Los Angeles

Gun Rights and Domestic Violence

A conviction for a domestic violence offense often carries many unanticipated consequences. In California, when a person is convicted of a domestic violence crime he or she is precluded from owning or possessing firearms. While the California firearm restriction may only last for 10 years, Federal law may prohibit firearm possession or ownership for life. Anyone who is facing domestic violence charges should understand how a conviction may affect their right to own or possess firearms.

Effect of a California Conviction on Gun Ownership Rights

Domestic violence in California is defined as abuse against a current or former spouse, a cohabitant, a co-parent, someone in a current or previous dating relationship or a current or former fiancée. Depending on whether or not there were injuries, domestic violence can be charged as a felony level offense. For example, a defendant can be charged with corporal injury to a spouse as a felony in violation of California Penal Code Section 273.5 PC. Anyone convicted of a felony in California loses their right to possess a firearm for the rest of their lives. Under California Penal Code Section 29800 PC, someone with a prior felony on their record who is found in possession of a firearm can be charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm and can face up to three years in prison.

Under California Penal Code Section 29805 PC, several misdemeanor convictions trigger an automatic 10 year firearms ban. This includes domestic violence misdemeanors such as domestic battery under California Penal Code Section 243(e)(1), stalking under California Penal Code Section 646.9 PC and criminal threats pursuant to California Penal Code Section 422 PC. Anyone convicted of one of these misdemeanor offenses would have their gun ownership rights in California suspended for a period of ten years.

Federal Firearms Restrictions and Domestic Violence Convictions

Even if a person’s gun rights in California are restored, they may still be subject to a Federal ban on owning or possessing firearms. Under Federal law, anyone convicted of a felony or anyone convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence will permanently lose their right to own or possess firearms. In addition, those who were subject to a domestic violence restraining order would also be prohibited from ever owning a firearm.

Federal firearm rights are only surrendered due to a restraining or protective order when the protected person is an “intimate partner.” Federal law defines an intimate partner as a current or former spouse, a co-parent or a current or former cohabitant. This means that there likely would not be a Federal firearm ban when dealing with a civil harassment restraining order or an elder abuse restraining order. Also, the Federal lifetime ban only applies when there has been a hearing or where the respondent was lawfully served and had an opportunity to contest the protective order. A lifetime ban is not triggered by the issuance of an ex parte, emergency or temporary restraining order issued without notice to the other party.

Those who violate the Federal firearm ban can be charged with a Federal felony and can be sentenced to serve up to ten years in prison with fines of up to $250,000.

If you or a loved one have been arrested for a domestic violence offense and have questions about firearm rights, it is imperative that you consult with an attorney experienced in handling domestic violence cases as soon as possible. Michael Kraut is a former Deputy District Attorney with over 14 years of prosecutorial experience who understands that a conviction can trigger unforeseen consequences, including a potential lifetime firearm ban. In many cases, Mr. Kraut’s early involvement in a case has resulted in charges being rejected completely or significantly reduced.

For more information about domestic violence and gun rights and to schedule your free consultation, contact Michael Kraut at the Kraut Law Group located at 6255 Sunset Boulevard, Suite 1480, Los Angeles, CA 90028. Mr. Kraut can be reached 24/7 at 888-334-6344 or 323-464-6453.

Share |
Client Reviews
He gave me the peace of mind that my DUI case was going to be resolved. He fought for what it was needed and helped me by answering all my questions. Mike is not an average attorney. He’s a very experienced, honest and straightforward person that is there for you!
I hired Attorney Mike Kraut and I'm am so happy and grateful that I did! I was arrested for a DUI because my BAC level was over the .08 limit. I ended up getting a wet and reckless instead of a DUI. I still have to do some classes and I'm on probation, but I do not have a DUI on my record. If you have a DUI hire Attorney Kraut, he definitely knows his stuff!
Avvo User
There aren't enough positive words to write about Mike, but let me be clear that this is the only lawyer worth hiring in Los Angeles. Mike is professional, caring, and an absolute champion at winning in court.
Kyle, Avvo User
Mike Kraut is not a typical lawyer. He is a straightforward person with a true heart and a sympathetic ear. He is also smart and connected and he cares about the people who seek out his help. He got my son out of a jam. He did it quickly and painlessly. I recommend Mike Kraut to anyone that needs his services.
Thank you Mike for helping my son.
Mark, Avvo User
Michael Kraut is a rock star lawyer. I was really happy and satisfied with the results I received from Michael and his team. A few months back I was being accused of a serious felony. Mike gave me sound legal advice and worked diligently to clear my name. Mike was great at always keeping me updated and returning calls. Great, great lawyer I cant say enough about this man!
Eric, Google User
How can I express how relieved and pleased I am with Michael's professional abilities to have my Felony brought down to a misdameanor to a possible dismissal with deferment. With his care my life has been turned around and cannot say how helpful he's been not only in my case but life. He, himself has changed how I view criminal lawyers. Thank you so much Michael!
Owen, Google User