In most cases, the citizens of California can confidently own a firearm with the correct licensing and permits. However, if you do not have the proper permits to carry a firearm, or if you are a convicted felon, convicted of certain misdemeanors, convicted with a narcotic drug, and a few other scenarios (see California Penal Code 29800) you can face severe penalties including without limitation jail or prison time and/or expensive fines.
If you or someone you love recently received a charge for illegally owning a firearm and are not sure the next steps to take, continue reading below. This brief California firearm guide will cover all you need to know about owning a firearm in California and who you can contact for more information.
California Charges for Possession of a Firearm
Those who illegally own or possess a firearm in California may be subject to misdemeanor charges. This means they can face up to one year in county jail and fines up to $1,000.
In California, if someone is charged with a felony there can be sentencing enhancements on crimes committed with a firearm. This means the state can add additional years to the sentence if a firearm was involved while committing a serious felony.
Although it is not illegal to own a firearm, there are situations where if you are found to be improperly in possession of the firearm, you could face time in jail or prison.
Who Is Allowed to Own a Gun in California?
Most citizens of California have the right to own a gun, but there are a few exceptions. For example, if you are a minor or someone who is mentally ill, you are restricted from owning a firearm.
Other members of California who cannot own a firearm include:
- People with narcotic addictions
- People with two or more convictions for Penal Code section 417(a)(2)
- People with certain misdemeanor convictions
In addition to the state laws that govern who can and cannot own a firearm, federal gun possession laws also apply.
There are some gun charges that go to federal court instead of being tried in state court. If your case goes up to the federal court, there are severe fines, custody time, and other penalties that you may face.
Can a Felon Own a Gun in California?
As mentioned earlier, a felon cannot own a firearm in California. If they are caught possessing a firearm, they can face severe fines and a significant amount of time in jail or prison.
Are There Any Penalties for Carrying a Concealed Firearm?
California allows its citizens to carry concealed firearms as long as they have the correct permit to do so. Those who do not carry the permit can face criminal charges with severe consequences.
Defenses for Possessing a Firearm
There are several different defenses a reputable attorney can use to fight your case, but it depends. California’s firearm laws are pretty complicated. If you are facing a criminal charge that involves a firearm, it is best that you reach out to a defense attorney for more guidance.
Fight Your Firearm Possession Case
California laws surrounding possession of a firearm can be complicated, especially if you are not sure what you are being charged with. If you find yourself in a situation where you were caught with a firearm, make sure you reach out to an attorney as soon as possible.
Your reputable attorney will look over the facts of your case and will build the best defense for your situation. Contact us now for a no-obligation case evaluation. Our legal team is here to answer any questions or concerns you may have.