In most states in the US, owning a weapon is legal as long as you obtain the firearm through legal routes and you are qualified to do so as an adult. However, there are some restrictions when it comes to carrying a gun and when purchasing a gun, depending on the type of weapon you own. Additionally, some individuals are prohibited from owning a gun based on previous criminal charges.
If you have recently received weapons charges, you may be wondering how to approach the situation appropriately from a legal standpoint. Anytime you receive weapons charges, there are a few tips to keep in mind to ensure you choose the legal route that has the best chance for a good outcome in your favor.
Understanding Your Charges
Whether you have been charged with a misdemeanor or you’ve been hit with felony charges, understanding different types of legal charges can help you to better navigate any weapons charges you receive. If you are unsure of the weapons charges you are being charged with, you can find out more information by visiting your local police station to inquire about more details regarding your case number. Depending on the state you reside in and the location in which you received your weapons charges, you may have the ability to look up your charges right from home, online.
If you are still not sure of the charges you are facing, it may be time to consider seeking legal counsel and representation. The right lawyer can help to guide you through the process regardless of your criminal history and whether or not you have ever received weapons charges in the past.
Whenever you are hit with a serious charge involving a weapon, it is highly advisable to seek legal representation as quickly as possible. Retaining a criminal defense lawyer is highly recommended before choosing which legal route is best for you and your case. The right criminal defense attorney will not only provide you with numerous options and routes regarding your case, but they will also help you to present any evidence you have available to build your character and present your side of the case in the right light in a court of law.
Why a Criminal Attorney is Necessary
Retaining a criminal defense attorney is typically necessary in any serious case that involves weapons charges. Even if you do not have a criminal record, the right attorney will ensure that all paperwork and legal documents are filed on time and properly. Additionally, they will also help you to review potential legal rulings and potential outcomes of your particular case. This can allow you to focus on remaining as clear-headed as possible from start to finish when it comes to your case.
How to Find the Right Lawyer
Hiring the right lawyer for a criminal defense case is not always an easy or straightforward decision. This is especially true for those who are being charged with handling or using weapons unlawfully while simultaneously holding a criminal record. Locating the right legal representation is possible by asking those you trust for recommendations and by conducting a bit of your own research locally as well as by browsing online.
When searching online for legal representation, be sure to do so using local search engines and geo-specific keywords. This will help to streamline the process of finding a lawyer who is nearby and also qualified to take on your case. When you use the internet to search for a defense attorney, it is highly advisable to take the time to read testimonials from clients who are satisfied with the representation they received in their own cases in the past.
Understanding the Weapon
In all weapons cases, it’s important for the defendant to understand why they are being charged and what weapon was unlawfully presented in public, used, or brandished (depending on the crime you are being charged with personally). Learning about your specific weapon and the legalities of owning the weapon in the current city, state, and country you reside in is imperative if you want to ensure a judge or a jury that you are committed to abiding by the law in the future.
If you do not know about your weapon and the legalities surrounding it, you can learn more by researching the specific gun model and type you own along with the laws that are relevant to the weapon in your state. Asking your criminal defense lawyer for more information regarding the type of gun laws that are currently in place can provide you with valuable insight into why you are receiving weapons charges, even if you do not believe you are guilty of any crime.
Regardless of whether you are the owner of a glock, a traditional firearm, or a semi-automatic rifle, there are different laws, rules, and regulations in place for each in most states today. While some states may be more relaxed when it comes to their gun laws and laws regarding open carry, it is essential to abide by the laws in each city and state you visit if you intend to do so while carrying a gun or having a gun on your person.
If you typically open carry in your home state, it is also recommended to spend time researching your rights and the laws regarding open carrying in any state outside of your own that you intend to visit in the future.
Securing Your Bond
If you have been arrested and placed in jail after receiving weapons charges, contact your lawyer immediately. Working with a criminal defense attorney will help you to determine who you should call next based on your current charges, your existing criminal record, and what your bail has been set to by a judge. If you cannot afford to pay your bail on your own, it is possible to seek out a bail bond service that is available in your local area.
Working With a Bail Bond Company
Working with a local bail bond company is highly recommended for individuals who have received weapons charges but are unable to afford the bail that has been set by a judge. Bail bond professionals will work with those who have been charged with crimes to cover their bail amount in exchange for collateral, such as a vehicle, deed to a property, or another item, such as a piece of expensive jewelry. Bail bond companies will work with clients on an individual basis to find a solution that works for you based on the case at-hand.
Finding a Bail Bond Service Provider
Depending on your location, you may be able to seek out bail bond service providers directly from the courthouse that involves your case. You may also want to use local resources or confide in your attorney regarding the type of bail bond companies that are readily available near you. When selecting a bail bond company, it’s important to do so only once you have verified its legitimacy and professional reputation. This will ensure you are not being scammed and that you will, in fact, receive the bail money necessary for you to get out of jail prior to your court hearing or trial date.
Build a Defense
Regardless of your criminal history and the weapons charges you have received, you will need to build your defense. Building a defense, while possible on your own, is not recommended. Even if you feel as if you can best represent yourself independently and on your own, hiring a criminal defense lawyer is optimal. A criminal defense attorney will provide you with a thorough guide on how to best defend yourself based on numerous factors and the charges that are relevant to your individual case.
When you find your defense team, you can begin to ask questions about your case and how your case will be presented. Consider whether or not your case will be presented in front of a judge, on camera, or even in front of an entire jury. This will play a pivotal role in determining the best course of action to take in order to increase the odds of the case being ruled in your favor. You should also consider the advice your defense teams offer before finalizing any decision regarding your case.
Finding the Right Defense Team
When it comes to building the right defense, you will want to do so with the right legal team by your side. Finding local criminal lawyers is possible by asking those you trust for referrals to legal teams and counsel that are highly esteemed, reputable, and well-known for taking on weapons charge cases in your area. You can also use local directories to learn more about existing law firms.
Requesting meetings with local law firms is a way to ask about the cost of retaining a legal team or an individual criminal lawyer. You can also learn more about potential strategies that a defense team you have in mind is thinking of deploying based on the surrounding circumstances of your own case.
If you want to expand your search even wider, you can do so by seeking legal counsel online. Searching for lawyers to represent your case based on a weapons charge you received is possible by using popular search engines such as Google. Google provides location-based results, making it easier than ever to pinpoint criminal law offices that are not only located near you, but that are also well-seasoned in the type of case you are dealing with regarding your gun charges.
Regain Your Freedom
Once you have found the ideal defense team for your case, you can then begin working towards regaining your freedom. This may include discussing what options you have when it comes to your case as well as the best route to take when submitting your plea. You should spend time weighing the options that are presented to you based on the actual charges you’ve received, your criminal history, as well as the severity of the crime you have committed. This can help you to reflect on the potential routes that may work out best in your favor.
Working with a professional lawyer is also a great opportunity to learn more about the law as it pertains to your case. Feel free to ask questions openly to discover more about the law regarding weapons charges and how the laws have impacted you directly. You can also ask to learn more about similar cases to your own to better understand how the law has been governed in the past when it comes to carrying weapons in your current state.
Safe Weapon Storage
Regardless of the charge you have received and whether or not you are sentenced to any jail time, it is important to make the necessary changes in your own life regarding gun safety and weapon storage. Investing in a gun safety or a storage kit is highly recommended whether you are interested in collecting smaller handguns or if you prefer large rifles and semi-automatic weapons.
Whether you prefer to collect weapons for hunting or if you enjoy shooting them for fun, knowing how to care for them and protect them from others at all times is key. Investing in a gun safe or a storage safe is possible by seeking out reputable gun safe companies and gun shops, both locally and online.
If you are already the owner of a gun safe or another storage component that is designed for storing weapons, you may be able to provide proof to a court or a judge that you are a responsible gun owner. While this option will depend on the charge you are facing and your criminal history, it may help you to plead your case if you are being charged with a non-violent crime and if you do not have an extensive criminal history to your name.
Dealing with gun charges is never easy, even if you are convinced you did not act illegally or that you were acting in compliance at all times. Whether you have received these charges in the past or if you are experiencing them in your name for the first time, retaining the proper legal counsel is essential to protect yourself legally as best as possible.