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Barrister
Barrister, Criminal Defense Law
Category: Criminal Law
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Experience:  16 years practicing criminal defense.
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Gun question. Form 4473 Question 11 section I. Asks. Have

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Hi Gun question. Form 4473 Question 11 section I. Asks. Have been convicted of a domestic violence charge? And then says Question 11 section I also says. See for instructions for 11 I. And that reads. If you had a lawyer and you did not go to a jury trial. That you answer No on that question. I had a charge in California. It was battery misdemeanor. But it was in the same house. I understand I know I did not have a jury trial and I got 40 anger management and in California 10 years no gun in the house. So l would answer no to question 11 on form 4473. But does California have some law that would say I cannot buy a firearm? Or if the DOJ of Cal. says green light I can?
Hello and welcome! My name is ***** ***** I will try my level best to help with your situation or get you to someone who can.
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I think that there may be a bit of confusion regarding the wording of that clause under the explanation and instructions under 11.i.
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If you were charged with a misdemeanor domestic violence charge, then you would have been entitled to a jury if you fought it. Since you were entitled to a jury trial, even if you didn't have one and pled it out, then you would have to answer "Yes".
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I hate to say it, but since the ATF is a federal agency, they trump state law when it comes to firearms purchases because everything has to be run through them.
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I am sorry that I don’t have better news, but please understand that I do have an ethical and professional obligation to provide customers with legally correct answers, even when an answer is not favorable to the customer.


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Thanks
Barister
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Mr.Barister. It says in answering Question 11 section i. If if was a misdemeanor. and I did have lawyer or did not waved the right to a lawyer. Or B had a jury trial or did not have a jury trial. I would answer "NO". And I was asking if California had any laws that would say no to buying firearms if th Fed's said yes. Because I would answer no to all the questions on Form 4473. The guide to Question 11 i is at the bottom of the form 4473.

that is what I was referring to...the instructions for Question 11.i which starts out "Definition of a Misdemeanor Crime of Domestic Violence."
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The exact wording is this:
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A person who has been convicted of a misdemeanro crime of domestic violence also is not prohibited unless: (1) the person was represented by a lawyer or gave up the right to a lawyer; or (2) if the person was entitled to a jury, was tried by a jury, or gave up the right to a jury trial. Persons subject to this exception should answer "no" to 11.i
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When someone is charged with a misdemeanor, that can carry up to a year in jail, so they are "entitled to a jury trial". If you accepted a plea deal for 40 hours anger management, then you "gave up the right to a jury trial" in return for the plea deal.
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So you wouldn't be covered under the exception.
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As for CA law, Penal Code 29805 just carries a 10 year ban on misdemeanor domestic violence convictions.
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So technically, if you are past that 10 year ban, CA wouldn't have a problem with you owning a gun. The problem is that the Form 4473 is a federal form that goes through the ATF and under federal law, you would be prohibited from possessing or purchasing a firearm.
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As a gun owner myself, I hate to give bad news to customers about their gun rights, but unfortunately any conviction for domestic violence results in a lifetime ban under federal law.
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Thanks
Barrister
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