See our Disarming Prohibited People policy summary for a comprehensive discussion of this issue.
For information on Florida’s extreme risk law, see Extreme Risk Protection Orders in Florida.
Seizing Firearms Before Involuntary Mental Health Examination
In 2018, Florida adopted a law authorizing law enforcement officers to seize firearms and ammunition from people being taken into custody for an involuntary mental health examination.1 Law enforcement officers may request voluntary surrender of firearms or ammunition from people meeting the criteria for an examination, or they “may seize and hold a firearm or any ammunition the person possesses at the time of taking him or her into custody if the person poses a potential danger to himself or herself or others and has made a credible threat of violence against another person.”2
Firearms or ammunition seized pursuant to this law must generally be made available for return no later than 24 hours after the person taken into custody can document that he or she is no longer subject to involuntary examination and has been released or discharged, unless a risk protection order (see above) directs the law enforcement agency to hold the firearms or ammunition for a longer period, or unless the person has become prohibited from purchasing, possessing, or owning firearms.3
Disarming Other Prohibited People
Florida has no other law requiring the removal of firearms from, or the surrender of firearms by, persons who have become prohibited from possessing firearms, including domestic abusers. Florida does, however, consider it a violation of a protective order to refuse to surrender firearms if the court that issued the protective order ordered the abuser to do so.4