Written by Richard Dockery, April 5, 2020
The question, “can my guns be confiscated during an emergency” is a real concern that people are expressing lately with everything that is happening during COVID-19. We have a State of Emergency being declared at every level and in just about every state. The potential consequences of these declarations are causing concern, particularly in the current political environment with the many assaults on the 2nd Amendment.
During this state of emergency we are seeing lock downs, stay at home orders, travel bans, forced business closures, restrictions on gatherings, dwindling supplies, hoarding, even fights in supermarkets over toilet paper. It’s nation-wide. We even saw a Minister arrested for allowing too many people in his church. The possibility of the environment getting worse before it gets better is very real, particularly with the task force claiming we have not hit the “surge” yet. Remember, there are elements in our society that will see your pantry as their source of supplies as soon as they cannot find what they want at the supermarket. This is Not a time to be without a means of defending yourself and your loved ones.
So the question is, can an emergency be declared and used as a political tool to confiscate your weapons and leave you defenseless in a time of crisis?
There are few laws and guidelines in respect to the answer. There is a federal law, however, that directly addresses this issue. Basically, from a Federal Government perspective, your firearms cannot be confiscated if you own them legally and are not committing a crime. The Link and wording on the law is as follows:
US Code Title 42, Chapter 68, SubChapter V, Section (A), 5207
“§5207. Firearms policies
(a) Prohibition on confiscation of firearms
No officer or employee of the United States (including any member of the uniformed services), or person operating pursuant to or under color of Federal law, or receiving Federal funds, or under control of any Federal official, or providing services to such an officer, employee, or other person, while acting in support of relief from a major disaster or emergency, may—
(1) temporarily or permanently seize, or authorize seizure of, any firearm the possession of which is not prohibited under Federal, State, or local law, other than for forfeiture in compliance with Federal law or as evidence in a criminal investigation;
(2) require registration of any firearm for which registration is not required by Federal, State, or local law;
(3) prohibit possession of any firearm, or promulgate any rule, regulation, or order prohibiting possession of any firearm, in any place or by any person where such possession is not otherwise prohibited by Federal, State, or local law; or
(4) prohibit the carrying of firearms by any person otherwise authorized to carry firearms under Federal, State, or local law, solely because such person is operating under the direction, control, or supervision of a Federal agency in support of relief from the major disaster or emergency.”
I am sure there are state level authorities throughout the country that feel differently, and even though State Laws are not permitted to be contradictory to Federal laws, we have all seen how that sometimes plays out…political games are being played everywhere. Be cautious, stay aware of what is happening, know your rights, and speak out whenever there is an attempt to violate them. You have not only the Constitution, but Federal law on your side in this situation. Spread the word, and stay safe!
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Ok so I was a convicted felon at age 18,I am now 38 so 20 years ago. I have had no other felonies or violent charges. My question is I am wanting to get this off of my record. Not just my concern of protecting my girls exspecialy during this covid 19 we are not in a huge city but we are in a decent size town. There are many other reasons I need these rights back as well. I want my kids to know they can protect theirs in certain situations.But with no court houses being done how can I accomplishe this.
Thanks,Trina. God Bless
Hi Trina. Your best bet is to contact the clerk of courts in the town where you had a problem, and find out if it is going to be an issue, and what you can do to get your rights back. There is a procedure.
Hope that helps!