As of January 1, 2019, Oregon will close the “boyfriend loophole” by recognizing domestic abuse against persons who have been involved in a sexually intimate relationship. Although not covered under domestic violence laws specifically, in 2019, Oregon will also prohibit people convicted of stalking misdemeanors from purchasing or possessing firearms.
Firearm Prohibitions for Domestic Violence Misdemeanants
Oregon explicitly prohibits individuals convicted of qualifying misdemeanors from possessing firearms or ammunition if, at the time of the offense, the defendant was a family or household member of the victim. As of January 1, 2019, the law will define “family and household members” to include persons who have been involved in a sexually intimate relationship in addition to current and former spouses, adults related by blood or marriage, persons presently or formerly cohabiting with each other, and unmarried parents of a minor child. A “qualifying misdemeanor” is a misdemeanor that involves the use, or attempted use, of physical force or the threatened use of a deadly weapon.
The state also prohibits any person from intentionally selling, delivering, or otherwise transferring any firearm when the transferor knows or reasonably should know that the recipient has been convicted of a “misdemeanor involving violence” or found “guilty except for insanity” of a misdemeanor involving violence within the previous four years. A “misdemeanor involving violence” includes an assault in the fourth degree (intentionally, knowingly or recklessly causing physical injury to another or, with criminal negligence, causing physical injury to another by means of a deadly weapon), strangulation, menacing, recklessly endangering another person, or intimidation in the second degree (involving, inter alia, the intentional subjection of another to offensive physical contact because of a perception of the other’s race, color, religion, national origin or sexual orientation. Federal law also applies.
Firearm Prohibitions for Persons Subject to Domestic Violence Protective Orders
Oregon also prohibits individuals subject to domestic violence protective orders from possessing firearms or ammunition. The protective order must restrain the person from stalking, intimidating, molesting or menacing an intimate partner, a child of an intimate partner or a child of the person. As of January 1, 2019, the law will define “intimate partner” to include persons who have been involved in a sexually intimate relationship in addition to current and former spouses, adults related by blood or marriage, persons presently or formerly cohabiting with each other, and unmarried parents of a minor child.
Additionally, in suits for marital annulment, dissolution or separation, prior to a general judgment, a court must include terms in the interim protective order that trigger the federal law prohibiting the possession of firearms by domestic violence protective order defendants, if the party had notice and an opportunity to be heard, and the court is restraining the party from molesting or interfering with the other party or minor children or requiring the party to move out of the family home for the sake of minor children.
Oregon has no laws regarding the removal or surrender of firearms when domestic violence restraining or protective orders are issued or at the scene of a domestic violence incident, or providing notice to domestic abusers when federal law prohibits them from possessing firearms.
See our Domestic Violence & Firearms policy summary for a comprehensive discussion of this issue.