What’s the Law: TRO & Firearms

WHAT’S THE LAW?

BY DARRYL CHOY

TOPIC: TRO & Firearms 

Question: If a person gets hit with a TRO, what happens to the guns?

Answer: A TRO is a Temporary Restraining Order that keeps a defendant away from the requesting party. It goes into effect almost immediately. The defendant has the right to contest the TRO in court in 14 days. If the judge rules against the defendant, the requesting party can ask for an Order of Protection that could last for decades. The defendant gun owner will be in a world of hurt. All handguns and long guns plus ammunition must be turned over to HPD when the TRO is granted; it will be stored at HPD for the duration of the TRO and the subsequent Order of Protection. The firearms can only be released to an FFL dealer. Here’s the process:

1. Dealer gets a permit to acquire the handguns from HPD, but no 14-day wait for the dealer.

2. Dealer takes handgun permit to owner for signature and also to obtain a signed authorization to take possession of the long guns as well.

3. Dealer goes back to HPD. Both long guns and handguns are released by HPD and registered to the dealer. The dealer must record all firearms in the FFL book.

4. The dealer can now sell the firearms for the owner or hold them until the TRO/Order of Protection is over.

5. The defendant can not possess any firearms or ammunition during the TRO or Order of Protection.

When the TRO/Order of Protection ends, the unsold guns can be returned to the owner provided:

1. Owner applies for a HPD permit to acquire the handguns and a permit to acquire long guns. He or she will need the Hunter Education or Handgun Training Proof of Completion and wait 14 days.

2. Owner goes back to HPD to pick up the permits.

3. Owner takes the permits to the dealer and has dealer sign off. The firearms are turned over to owner upon completion of an ATF 4473 “yellow” form. If more than two handguns are involved, the dealer must complete and report a multiple sale to the ATF.

4. Owner must take handguns and long guns back to HPD for registration. This will apply even if the long guns are pre-1994 mandatory registration.

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