2C:58-23. Petition for temporary extreme risk protective order; affidavit or examination under oath of petitioner and witnesses; fees; notice
a. Except as provided in subsection l. of this section, a petitioner may file a petition, as prescribed by the Administrative Director of the Courts, for a temporary extreme risk protective order in the court in accordance with the Rules of Court alleging that the respondent poses a significant danger of bodily injury to self or others by having custody or control of, owning, possessing, purchasing, or receiving a firearm. The petition shall be heard by the court in an expedited manner.
Petition forms shall be readily available at the courts, and at State, county, and municipal law enforcement agencies.
Prior to filing a petition with the court, a family or household member may request assistance from a State, county, or municipal law enforcement agency which shall advise the petitioner of the procedure for completing and signing a petition for a temporary extreme risk protective order. A law enforcement officer from the agency may assist the family or household member in preparing or filing the petition. This assistance may include, but not be limited to, providing information related to the factors set forth in subsection f. of this section, joining in the petition, referring the matter to another law enforcement agency for additional assistance, or filing the officer’s own petition with the court.
Filing a petition pursuant to this section shall not prevent a petitioner from filing a criminal complaint or applying for a restraining order pursuant to the “Prevention of Domestic Violence Act of 1991,” P.L. 1991, c. 261 (C.2C:25-17 et seq.) or prevent any person from taking any action authorized pursuant to P.L.1987, c. 116 (C.30:4-27.1 et seq.) based on the circumstances forming the basis of the petition.
A petitioner may apply for relief under this section in accordance with the Rules of Court.
b. A petition for a temporary extreme risk protective order shall include an affidavit setting forth the facts tending to establish the grounds of the petition, or the reason for believing that they exist, and, to the extent available, the number, types, physical description, and locations of any firearms and ammunition currently believed by the petitioner to be controlled or possessed by the respondent.
c. The court shall not charge a fee to file the petition.
d. The court, before issuing a temporary extreme risk protective order, shall examine under oath the petitioner and any witness the petitioner may produce. The court, in lieu of examining the petitioner and any witness, may rely on an affidavit submitted in support of the petition.
e. A judge shall issue the order if the court finds good cause to believe that the respondent poses an immediate and present danger of causing bodily injury to the respondent or others by having custody or control of, owning, possessing, purchasing, or receiving a firearm.
f. The county prosecutor or a designee of the county prosecutor shall produce in an expedited manner any available evidence including, but not limited to, available evidence related to the factors set forth in this section, and the court shall consider whether the respondent:
(1) has any history of threats or acts of violence by the respondent directed toward self or others;
(2) has any history of use, attempted use, or threatened use of physical force by the respondent against another person;
(3) is the subject of a temporary or final restraining order or has violated a temporary or final restraining order issued pursuant to the “Prevention of Domestic Violence Act of 1991,” P.L.1991, c. 261 (C.2C:25-17 et seq.);
(4) is the subject of a temporary or final protective order or has violated a temporary or final protective order issued pursuant to the “Sexual Assault Survivor Protection Act of 2015,” P.L.2015, c. 147 (C.2C:14-13 et al.);
(5) has any prior arrests, pending charges, or convictions for a violent indictable crime or disorderly persons offense, stalking offense pursuant to section 1 of P.L.1992, c. 209 (C.2C:12-10), or domestic violence offense enumerated in section 3 of P.L.1991, c. 261 (C.2C:25-19);
(6) has any prior arrests, pending charges, or convictions for any offense involving cruelty to animals or any history of acts involving cruelty to animals;
(7) has any history of drug or alcohol abuse and recovery from this abuse; or
(8) has recently acquired a firearm, ammunition, or other deadly weapon.
g. The temporary extreme risk protective order shall prohibit the respondent from having custody or control of, owning, purchasing, possessing, or receiving firearms or ammunition, and from securing or holding a firearms purchaser identification card or permit to purchase a handgun pursuant to N.J.S.2C:58-3, or a permit to carry a handgun pursuant to N.J.S.2C:58-4 during the period the protective order is in effect and shall order the respondent to surrender firearms and ammunition in the respondent’s custody or control, or which the respondent possesses or owns, and any firearms purchaser identification card, permit to purchase a handgun, or permit to carry a handgun held by the respondent in accordance with section 7 of P.L.2018, c. 35 (C.2C:58-26). Any card or permit issued to the respondent shall be immediately revoked pursuant to subsection f. of N.J.S.2C:58-3.
h. A temporary extreme risk protective order issued under this section shall remain in effect until a court issues a further order.
i. The court that issues the temporary extreme risk protective order shall immediately forward:
(1) a copy of the order to the petitioner and county prosecutor in the county in which the respondent resides; and
(2) a copy of the order and the petition to the appropriate law enforcement agency in the municipality in which the respondent resides, which shall immediately, or as soon as practicable, serve it on the respondent.
If personal service cannot be effected upon the respondent, the court may order other appropriate substituted service. At no time shall a petitioner who is a family or household member be asked or required to serve any order on the respondent. The law enforcement agency serving the order shall not charge a fee or seek reimbursement from the petitioner for service of the order.
j. Notice of temporary extreme risk protective orders issued pursuant to this section shall be sent by the county prosecutor to the appropriate chiefs of police, members of the State Police, and any other appropriate law enforcement agency or court.
k. Any temporary extreme risk protective order issued pursuant to this section shall be in effect throughout the State, and shall be enforced by all law enforcement officers.
l. (1) A petition for a temporary extreme risk protective order filed against a law enforcement officer shall be filed in the law enforcement agency in which the officer is employed. The law enforcement officer or employee receiving the petition shall advise the petitioner of the procedure for completing and signing a petition.
(2) Upon receipt of the petition, the law enforcement officer’s employer shall immediately initiate an internal affairs investigation.
(3) The disposition of the internal affairs investigation shall immediately be served upon the county prosecutor who shall make a determination whether to refer the matter to the courts.
(4) The law enforcement officer’s employer shall take appropriate steps to implement any findings set forth in the disposition of the internal affairs investigation.
The law enforcement officer shall not be terminated during the pendency of the internal affairs investigation.