Citation(s) from the GunPolicy.org literature library
Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. 2021 ‘Domestic Violence & Firearms in Washington DC.’ Who Can Have a Gun. San Francisco, CA: Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. 23 June
[Editor's note: The Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence regularly updates its webpages with new data as US gun regulation evolves state by state. For the most up-to-date information on US gun laws, please refer to the Giffords URL below]
Domestic Violence and Firearms in the District of Columbia
Federal law prohibits the purchase and possession of firearms and ammunition by certain domestic abusers. Similarly, the District law also prohibits the purchase and possession of guns by persons convicted of domestic violence offenses and by those persons subject to civil protection orders.
the District law does not:
1) require courts to notify domestic abusers when they become prohibited from possessing firearms or ammunition under federal law; or
2) explicitly authorize or require the removal of firearms or ammunition: a) at the scene of a domestic violence incident; or b) from the subject of a civil protection order.
Firearm Prohibitions for Domestic Violence Misdemeanants
To obtain a registration certificate, which is required to purchase or possess a firearm or ammunition in the the District, an applicant must pass a background check. The applicant will not pass the background check if he or she:
- Has been convicted within the previous five years of any intrafamily offense punishable as a misdemeanor, including any similar offense in another jurisdiction; or
- Is otherwise ineligible to possess a firearm under D.C. Code Ann. § 22-4503 (including convictions within the previous five years for an intrafamily offense in the the District, punishable as a misdemeanor, or any similar offense in another jurisdiction).
Firearm Prohibitions for Persons Subject to Domestic Violence Protective Orders
The the District also will not issue a registration certificate to any person if he or she:
- Is or has been the respondent in an intrafamily proceeding in which a civil protection order was issued against her or him, or in a proceeding in which a foreign protection order was issued against her or him (an applicant who has been the subject of such an order shall be eligible for registration if the applicant has submitted to the Chief of Police a certified court record establishing that the order has expired or has been rescinded for a period of five years or more); or
- Is ineligible to possess a firearm under D.C. Code Ann. § 22-4503 (including any person subject to a final court order restraining him or her from assaulting, harassing, stalking, or threatening a petitioner or any other person named in the order and that requires the person restrained to relinquish possession of any firearms)…