5 Legal Advice you Need to Know When Owning a Gun
The statistics on gun homicide in America are overwhelming. Each day gun-related violence is reported.
This sets the question, should guns be legal in the first place?
Storing a gun in your home might cost you a bit of a worry if you have children around. Are there any other alternatives to keep your home safe without you possessing a gun?
Yes, find a safe and secure neighborhood. Tighten the security around your home.
Install proper technological security systems to keep your house even safer. An alarm door, fingerprint sensor, surveillance cameras, gate, window, and garage door alarms.
For those of you proceeding with a gun, let’s see some legal advice to keep you on the right side of the law.
When to use a gun
Yes, you own a gun, but do you know when is the right time to use it? Negligent discharge of a firearm is the reason why most gun owners find themselves brushing shoulders with law enforcement and the judicial system.
For you to discharge a firearm you must ensure that;
- The same level of proportionality between the discharge of your gun and the level of threat.
- You have enough reason to believe that discharging your gun was necessary to protect yourself.
- To a reasonable degree, your attacker is in a position to harm you.
- In the event you failed to discharge your firearm, you are at risk of serious injury or death.
- Your discharging the gun was not intended to take the life of the attacker but to render them defenseless.
Do not aim for the vital organs, and do not rain bullets on your attacker. You might end up taking the life of your attacker and facing a serious manslaughter charge.
Requirements to own a gun
A gun is a dangerous weapon and can only be used when necessary. And control of guns is regulated by the Gun Control Act of 1968.
Some of the restrictions given to ownership of a gun are;
- You must be at least 18 years of age to buy a shotgun.
- The minimum age requirement to own other types of firearms is 21 years and above.
- A person serving a sentence in prison.
- A person guilty of a crime and sentenced to serve more than a year in prison.
- A person who denounces their citizenship
- Any person convicted of a crime of domestic violence.
You may also have to seek the relevant permits or licenses depending on state regulations.
Safety storage requirements
Guns can cause serious damage if left out in the open. Gun should be kept far away from the reach of children, mentally ill people, and any other person who is not the licensed owner.
Preferably store your gun in a safe, lockbox, trigger boxes, gun case, or a gun safe. If you are keeping guns in your office or your home, get a proper lock, a code combination, or a fingerprint lock.
Know the legal and illegal firearms
Although everyone can own a gun, not all firearms are out for legal ownership by citizens.
The illegal firearms are listed below;
- Machine guns
- Automatic weapons
- A gun with no serial number
- Unregistered firearm.
Circumstances that may revoke your gun rights
Not everybody is competent to own a gun, and even a competent person may (under certain circumstances,) have their gun rights revoked.
Different states have different Firearm Rights Restoration laws. However, the following circumstances are salient in most of the states and under federal provisions;
- Any history of a felony conviction.
- Misendevour crime of domestic violence
- Drug-related offenses; (illegal smuggling or trafficking of drugs, e.t.c.)
- Any person diagnosed with mental illness
- If you are prohibited from possession of firearms as one of your probation terms.
- Making threats
- Brandishing your gun in a rude/threatening way
Ownership of guns is a right granted under the second amendment. However, this right is not an absolute right.
Ownership and possession of guns are subject to certain regulations by the state government and the federal government. The regulations are there to protect the well-being of others as well as the owner.
In case you have your gun rights revoked or you are looking to know more about the legality of guns and firearms in the US, speak to your firearms attorney.