Can I Still Own a Gun After a Florida Domestic Violence Conviction?

Man holding firearm near a hospital building.

Domestic violence charges allege that you or a loved one committed harm against another member of your home. Convictions can see you face considerable fines, jail time, and at-home restrictions. Specifically, Florida residents cannot own a gun after a domestic violence conviction within the state.

Florida outlines its reasons for these restrictions in a variety of state-wide statements. If you feel you’ve been falsely accused and convicted of domestic violence, however, these restrictions can be devastating. Fortunately, you can collaborate with our gun charge attorney to explore your possible legal responses.

Gun Control Throughout Florida

The nature of Floridian residents’ ability to own guns after domestic violence charges have been changing on both a state and federal level. Previously, a loophole known as the boyfriend loophole allowed individuals with these convictions on their records to continue purchasing firearms. 

More specifically, individuals who had allegedly taken action against a person who they were not married to, parenting, or living with, had the right to retain their arms in Florida. However, the Senate gun bill passed on a federal level in June 2022. These days, it is significantly more difficult for individuals who have been convicted of domestic violence to obtain weapons, even in a state as gun-forward as Florida.

It does not matter whether the conviction on which you were brought up was a misdemeanor or a felony. No matter what, this new law states that the existence of a domestic violence charge on your record bars you from legally purchasing weapons both within the State of Florida and in any of the other 49 states.

Federal Consequences for Gun Possession After a Domestic Violence Conviction

There are additional policies that bar a person convicted of domestic violence from their right to possess arms. As of 1968, the United States Gun Control Act limited a person with a criminal record’s right to bring firearms into their home. The Violence Against Women Act of 1994 furthers these restrictions.

What’s more, the Lautenberg Amendment to the 1968 Gun Control Act added that any individual convicted of domestic violence found with a firearm after their conviction could face additional criminal charges. More specifically, these individuals may face additional felony consequences for their continued possession of unwarranted firearms.

Exceptions to Gun Control Restrictions in Florida

That said, one exception remains to these increasingly-tight rules. If you have only been convicted of domestic violence one time, you have the opportunity to regain possession of applicable firearms five years after your initial conviction. You must not add to your criminal record during this five-year period if you want to retain your firearms. 

Challenging Domestic Violence Charges in Florida

If you believe you were wrongly convicted of domestic violence in Florida, there are options for you to defend your right to firearm ownership. You can collaborate with a criminal defense attorney in Naples, FL to challenge the charges brought against you in criminal court. 

Our firm can work with you to reassess the facts of your case and see the charges brought against you reduced, if not dropped. You can collaborate with our team upon the approach of your five-year conviction anniversary to contend with Floridian courts. In turn, you can better re-secure the firearms removed from your possession at the time of your original conviction. 

Contending With Changing Gun Control Laws in Florida

Gun ownership is and will likely remain a contentious topic in the United States. Parties accused and charged with domestic violence in Florida, however, may not possess firearms of any kind. Should you face a domestic violence conviction, you can work with our attorneys to determine how a court expects you to get rid of any weapons you may already have in your home.

If you want to avoid the forced removal of your firearms, reach out to the Law Office of Robert H. Hanaford. We can work with you to challenge domestic violence charges and defend your right to legal gun ownership. You can reach out to us by calling (239) 315-9750 or filling out our contact form

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