New FOID Law Makes ISP Report Firearms Disqualification to Local Law Enforcement to Encourage FOID Seizure

On January 1, 2017, the ISP will be required to forward notice of FOID prohibitions and revocations to local law enforcement agencies.

Public Act 099-0787 requires the Illinois State Police to give such notice “to all law enforcement agencies with jurisdiction to assist with the seizure of the [prohibited] person’s Firearm Owner’s Identification Card.”

On its face, the bill is calculated to prevent retention of FOID cards by people who have been rendered ineligible by a prohibition and/or revocation. However, my fear is that this will lead overzealous local law enforcement to conduct warrantless searches and/or seizures of firearms. Prohibited persons could then be prosecuted for possession of the firearms. The situation becomes even more complicated where a prohibited person lives with other gun owners who remain eligible to possess firearms.

A solution would be to build a safe harbor into the FOID Act so that a prohibited person is given a reasonable time to sell or otherwise transfer their firearms after their FOID card has been revoked. A 30-day “grace period” which allows continued possession of firearms for purposes of sale or transfer only would accomplish this. At this time, Section 9.5 of the FOID Act requires any person whose FOID is revoked to surrender his or her FOID to local law enforcement and transfer all firearms in his or her possession within 48 hours of receiving notice of the revocation. Failure to do so is a Class A Misdemeanor and grounds for issuance of a warrant for that person’s arrest and seizure of the person’s FOID and firearms. 430 ILCS 65/9.5 et. seq.

The new law means that local law enforcement agencies will be notified of all prohibited persons and revoked FOIDs. Consequently, people who have had their FOID revoked or have been rendered ineligible must take extra care to comply with the law.

If your FOID has been revoked, contact an attorney for advice on how to avoid criminal liability. If you would like to schedule a consultation with an experienced attorney, call Daniel J. Reynolds at (217)428-0948.

Sources: Public Act 099-0787; guns.com

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