The local Pittsburgh news recently reported that the Greene County DA's wife took out a Protection from Abuse Order (PFA) against him. In arguing for the PFA, the wife accused her husband of abusing his family after becoming intoxicated and further threatening her with his guns. In addition to other PFA restrictions placed on the husband, CBSN reports, “The order requires [the husband] to give up more than a dozen guns that he owns.”
What PFAs Mean for Your Guns and Other Weapons
Pennsylvania PFAs are designed to protect individuals from domestic violence, and as such, those accused often find that their guns and other weapons must be handed over to the sheriff. If ordered by the PFA, not only will you be required to give up your guns, but you will also be prohibited from purchasing new firearms while the order is in effect.
If a PFA is ordered against you in Pennsylvania, the first thing you should do is read it carefully to determine what restrictions have been placed on you. In addition to possibly having to give up your weapons, you may also be subject to a no-contact order or a requirement that you vacate your home.
Do PFAs Violate the Constitution's Second Amendment?
Your right to bear arms, as protected by the U.S. Constitution's Second Amendment, can be restricted by a PFA. Some may be quick to argue their constitutional rights have been violated by the PFA, but the state of Pennsylvania is allowed to restrict your right to bear arms under 18 PA Cons Stat § 6105.2 (2018).
While you may be tempted to avoid disclosing and forfeiting all of the firearms pursuant to the PFA against you, doing so would be a mistake. You could be held criminally liable on a separate weapons charge which may jeopardize your ability to purchase or own a gun later on.
What To Do If a PFA is Ordered Against You
When you're notified of a PFA against you, you need to immediately comply with its terms even if you feel the accusations are unfair or that your actions were taken out of context. PFAs are an emergency response to a quickly developing situation, and you should remember that in most cases, they are temporary until a more thorough investigation can be performed.
The more compliant you are with the terms of your PFA, the easier it will be to prove the PFA is unnecessary.
Call a Pennsylvania PFA Defense Attorney
If you're subject to a PFA, you should contact a PFA defense attorney as soon as possible. A skilled PFA defense lawyer will help you present your side of the story in a manner that demonstrates the true facts of the situation to the judge overseeing the proceedings. Attorney Joseph D. Lento has helped countless individuals navigate and overcome PFA Orders against them. Contact the Lento Law Firm today by calling 888-535-3686 to see how Attorney Lento and his team can help you.