AN ACT TO PROTECT THE PROPERTY RIGHTS OF PERSONS SUBJECT TO A DOMESTIC VIOLENCE PROTECTIVE ORDER BY ALLOWING THEM TO STORE THEIR FIREARMS WITH OR SELL THEIR FIREARMS THROUGH A QUALIFIED LICENSED FIREARMS DEALER.
House committee substitute makes the following changes to the 1st edition.
Deletes the previously proposed changes to GS 50B-3.1 regarding the surrender and disposal of firearms of defendants subject to a domestic violence protective order. Instead amends the statute as follows. Allows a defendant to enter into an agreement with a qualified licensed firearms dealer, after the defendant surrenders possession of all firearms, machine guns, ammunition, and permits to the sheriff pursuant to existing subsection (d). Defines qualified licensed firearms dealer as a federally licensed firearms dealer that operates a business in a commercial building located in the State that is open to the public, who regularly engages in the purchase and sale of firearms with members of the public.
Provides for the qualified licensed firearms dealer to take possession of the surrendered items from the custody of the sheriff if the defendant is the owner of the items and the items have been in the custody of the sheriff for at least 15 days. Requires that the defendant authorize the qualified licensed firearm dealer to submit a form created by the Administrative Office of the Courts requesting the transfer with notarized signatures of the defendant and the qualified licensed firearms dealer, and authorizing the storage or immediate sale of the firearms, machine guns, and ammunition by the qualified licensed firearms dealer. Requires the qualified licensed firearms dealer to submit the form and a copy of the dealer's valid federal firearms license to the sheriff, who must facilitate the transfer within 24 hours. Specifies that sale proceeds are property of the defendant. Specifies that the defendant's permits remain with the sheriff. Requires the qualified licensed firearms dealer to provide a copy of the record required to be maintained under federal law upon the receipt or disposition of the firearm, machine gun, or ammunition, to the sheriff and the owner, upon taking possession. Makes it a Class 2 misdemeanor for a qualified licensed firearms dealer that accepts possession to (1) release the transferred items to the defendant unless the motion for a protective order is dismissed or any order of surrender expires, or (2) transfer possession to any person the dealer knows or reasonably should know will allow the defendant to exercise case, custody, possession, ownership, or control of the items. Prohibits a sheriff from charging storage fees for the first 15 days for items transferred to a qualified licensed firearms dealers.
Makes conforming changes throughout regarding retrieval, motions to return by third-party owners, and disposal, making the provisions applicable to qualified licensed firearms dealers.
Revises the procedure for a defendant's surrendered items to be returned. Now requires the defendant to submit a written request with the sheriff or the qualified licensed firearms dealers who has control of the firearms, ammunition, or permits (was file a motion with the court) at the expiration of the current order or final disposition of any pending criminal charges committed against the person that is subject to the current protective order, no later than 30 days (was, 90 days) after the expiration of the current order or final disposition of any pending criminal charge committed against the person that is subject to the current protective order. Upon receipt of the request, requires the sheriff or the qualified licensed firearms dealer to conduct a check through the NICS, and file a motion with the court on a form created by AOC if the check provides grounds for the defendant's preclusion from owning or possessing a firearm under State or federal law, during which time the items cannot be returned to the defendant until a court rules on the motion. Requires the court to hold a hearing and rule on the motion as previously provided for motions by the defendant for return of the items, with notice required for the qualified licensed firearms dealers, as applicable.
Adds that a judge can order firearms and ammunition surrendered to a qualified licensed firearms dealer to be disposed of by sale by the dealer. Specifies that proceeds from the sale after deducting any costs associated with the sale and any storage fees owed to the sheriff or the qualified licensed firearms dealer must be provided to the defendant (previously, did not include deductions for storage fees from sale proceeds under this subsection). No longer requires the defendant to request proceeds from the sale by motion before or at the hearing.
Makes conforming, organizational, and clarifying changes. Maintains that the act applies to orders issued on or after the date the act becomes law.
Changes the act's long title.
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