See our Disarming Prohibited People policy summary for a comprehensive discussion of this issue.
Wisconsin state courts that order a person committed for mental health-related treatment must order the person not to possess firearms and order the seizure of any firearm owned by the individual, if the court determines that the person is prohibited by federal law from possessing a firearm.1 In lieu of gun seizure, the court may designate a person to store the firearm until the order has ended.2
In addition, if a state court: 1) appoints a guardian for an individual; 2) orders protective services for or protective placement of an individual; or 3) orders treatment and services, including involuntary commitment, for an individual incapacitated by alcohol or suffering from alcoholism, the court must determine if that person is prohibited from possessing a firearm because he or she has been adjudicated as a mental defective or committed to a mental institution under federal law.3 If the person is deemed prohibited, the court must order the person not to possess firearms, and order the seizure of any firearm owned by the individual.4 As an alternative to seizing the firearms, the court may designate a person to store the firearms until the order expires or is canceled by the court.5
Wisconsin law allows individuals in any of these categories to petition a court for an order restoring the person’s eligibility to possess firearms and providing for the return of the seized firearms.
For information about removing firearms from domestic violence protective order defendants, see Domestic Violence and Firearms in Wisconsin.