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Firearms Restraining Order Can Accompany Order of Protection

Posted on in Order of Protection

Firearms Restraining Order Can Accompany Order of ProtectionIllinois recently signed the Firearms Restraining Order Act into law, which allows someone to petition for the temporary removal of firearms from the possession of a family member who is deemed to be a threat to him or herself or others. With recent mass shootings in mind, lawmakers created the bill as a legal means for law enforcement to act on credible warnings of potential gun violence. Victims in domestic violence cases could petition for a firearms restraining order if they fear that their abuser may use a gun against them. However, the petitioner must prove that there is a need for the restraining order.

Order Details

Illinois already has a law that revokes a person’s Firearm Owner’s Identification card if he or she is convicted for domestic violence. However, an alleged offender may be a threat to use gun violence before a conviction can occur. An order of protection can immediately make it illegal for the domestic violence suspect to contact the alleged victim. A firearms restraining order addresses the specific threat of gun violence by:

  • Prohibiting the respondent from possessing or purchasing firearms;
  • Requiring the respondent to turn over any firearms in his or her possession; and
  • Authorizing law enforcement to obtain a warrant to search for firearms.

As with orders of protection, a firearms restraining order starts with the petitioner requesting an emergency order, followed by a hearing to determine whether a six-month order is necessary. The petitioner can later request a renewal of the order.

Petition Requirements

A person petitioning for a firearms restraining order must show that the respondent poses a reasonable threat of armed violence. The respondent has a right to due process before his or her lawful firearms ownership is revoked. The court will consider evidence that includes:

  • A violation of an order of protection;
  • An unlawful use or display of a firearm;
  • A recent history of acts or threats of violence against others;
  • Previous arrests for felony offenses; and
  • Proof of substance abuse by the respondent.

The court may penalize a petitioner who makes false claims against the respondent in an attempt to unlawfully deny the respondent his or her right to possess firearms.

Your Protection

Firearms can add a deadly element to cases involving domestic violence and orders of protection. A firearms restraining order can supplement your order of protection if you fear that your significant other may use armed violence against you. A Kane County family law attorney at Goostree Law Group can help you use legal means to protect yourself in a domestic violence case. Schedule a free consultation by calling 630-584-4800.


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