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Legal Information: Virginia

State Gun Laws

December 4, 2020

If the abuser's gun is taken away, what will happen to it?

If the abuser has been convicted of a crime that involved the use of a firearm, or if s/he has concealed, possessed, transported or carried a weapon in violation of the law, it will be forfeited to the state of Virginia and destroyed or possibly sold to a licensed firearms dealer.1

If you get a protective order for family abuse or if a substantial risk protection order is issued, the judge will order the abuser to do any of the following within 24 hours after being served with the order:

  • surrender the firearms to a local law-enforcement agency; or
  • sell or transfer the firearms a licensed firearm dealer or to someone who is lawfully able to possess firearms.2

If the abuser surrenders the firearms to law enforcement, s/he can get the guns back once the protective order expires. However, the abuser must make a written request for the return of the guns within 120 days after the expiration of the order or else the guns will become the property of law enforcement.3

1 Va. Code §§ 19.2-386.29; 19.2-386.28
2 Va. Code § 18.2-308.1:4(C)
3 Va. Code § 18.2-308.1:4(E)