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What Are the Penalties for a FOID Violation in Illinois?

 Posted on May 26, 2020 in Criminal Defense

Will County criminal defense attorneysThe topic of gun rights is often the cause of heated debates. The Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution guarantees the right to bear arms., but gun laws across the country vary depending on the state. Illinois residents who want to possess firearms or ammunition must have a Firearm Owners Identification (FOID) card, which is issued by the Illinois State Police to qualified applicants. There are certain qualifications that a person must meet to obtain a FOID card, and then he or she must follow the stipulations or face criminal charges for violating the terms of it. 

Typical FOID Violations

There are several ways that someone can violate the terms of a FOID card. This includes unlawful use of a weapon (UUW). When this happens, the card may be revoked. If a person’s FOID is revoked, he or she must surrender it to police. In addition, the gun owner must surrender the card to law enforcement and disclose the make, model, and serial number of each firearm owned by the revoked cardholder.  

Several of the factors that would constitute noncompliance of the rules for a FOID card include: 

  • FOID card is expired
  • Convicted of a felony
  • Mental health issues
  • Domestic violence conviction
  • Subject of an order of protection

Criminal Charges for FOID Violations

The punishments for a FOID infraction can range from a misdemeanor to different degrees of felonies. In certain scenarios, an individual who has a FOID card but carries an unloaded gun in an illegal manner can be charged with a misdemeanor. Depending on the circumstances of the incident, a UUW may be charged as a Class A misdemeanor. This offense can carry a punishment of up to one year in jail and a $2,500 fine. Court supervision or conditional discharge may be an option.  

Under Illinois law, aggravated UUW charges carry stiffer penalties. If someone is in possession of a loaded gun or has one in his or her vehicle without a FOID card and a Concealed Carry Permit, he or she can face an Aggravated UUW charge. It is important to note that even out-of-state visitors must comply with Illinois’ gun laws or risk facing serious charges. Aggravated UUW in Illinois is classified as a Class 4 felony and offenders can face one to three years in prison.

Contact a Joliet Criminal Defense Attorney

Laws are put in place to keep people safe. Gun owners in Illinois must follow certain regulations to legally carry a firearm. This includes obtaining a FOID card. The seasoned legal team of McNamara Phelan McSteen, LLC understand how one mistake or oversight can lead to criminal charges. Our diligent Will County weapons charges defense lawyers are prepared to fight for your constitutional rights. To schedule your free consultation, call our office today at 815-727-0100.




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