Have you been charged with an offense of domestic violence?

A conviction of a domestic violence offense can have an impact on you beyond the penalty handed down in the courtroom. Did you know that if convicted of domestic violence offense you will not be able to obtain a gun permit in NC or under federal law?

gun rights restorationThat’s right.

Even if your conviction was for a misdemeanor offense, any domestic violence conviction precludes your ability to obtain a firearm. If you have been charged with a domestic violence offense, it is important to hire an experienced domestic violence offense attorney.

What about Domestic Violence Restraining Orders or Violations of Those Orders?

If a domestic violence restraining order is entered against you, the law requires you to surrender any and all firearms that you own until the restraining order expires and/or is lifted. However, if you violate conditions of that order and are convicted of those violations, then such convictions will also preclude you from legally owning or possessing a firearm under federal law.

What Happens if I’m Caught with a Firearm After Being Convicted of a Domestic Violence Crime?

Under federal law, this is a crime.

However, under state law, the answer is it depends. While there is no state law that prohibits you from possessing a firearm after a conviction of a misdemeanor domestic violence offense, there may be other conditions or orders of the court that would prohibit such possession.

For instance, if you are placed on probation as part of your judgment, you are prohibited from possessing a firearm as a condition of probation. Furthermore, if you have an active restraining order against you, you are also prohibited from possessing a firearm.

How Do I Know if My Offense is Domestic?

Our state law defines the offense as domestic in nature if the act was committed against a party with whom they had or have had a personal relationship with. The term “personal relationship” includes:

  • Current or former spouses
  • Persons of opposite sex who live together or have lived together
  • Are related as parents and children, including those acting in loco parentis to a minor or as grandparents and grandchildren
  • Persons who have a child in common
  • Are current or former household members
  • Are persons of the opposite sex who are in a dating relationship or have been in a dating relationship (more than a casual acquaintance)

What Options Do I Have If I’ve Been Charged with a Crime of Domestic Violence?

Depending on the circumstances of your case, there may be a variety of options in resolving your case in a way that preserves your gun rights. It is important to discuss your options with a skilled attorney.

Domestic violence cases are ones in which emotions run high and we at Kirk, Kirk, Howell, Cutler & Thomas understand the difficult nature of these crimes and their impact. Contact us today at (919) 365-6000 or request a free case review.

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Candace is an experienced criminal law attorney in Raleigh. She also has had extensive experience as a paralegal with Kirk, Kirk, Howell, Cutler and Thomas before becoming an associate attorney with the firm.