As New York gun rights attorneys we are starting to see cases involving New York Extreme Risk Protections Orders (ERPOS) sometimes referred to as Red Flag Laws. New York’s Civil Practice Law and Rules was amended to add a new Article 63-A which gives a Supreme Court Justice, sitting in the County where a person resides, the authority to take away firearms, rifles and shotguns from an individual without that person having been convicted of, arrested for charged with or even having committed any crime. As a result, these laws, which seem to be sweeping the Country, and are now law in approximately 17 states are extremely controversial since a person can lose their constitutional right without committing a crime.
New York’s Extreme Risk Protection law gives the authority to file Petitions to remove guns to three different classes of people. A police Officer, a family or household member and a school administrator are all eligible to file Petitions seeking an Extreme Risk Protection Order.
The procedure that is laid out by New York Law, CPLR sec 6341 permits one of the lawful Petitioners to file a Petition. Once a Petition is filed, if the Court finds that there is “Probable Cause” to believe the person is a danger to others or themselves, the Court can grant a temporary extreme risk protection order, ex-parte. Meaning that the Court can grant the order without the accused knowing about it or without the accused being able to defend themselves. Probable Cause is a very low standard just meaning that something is more like than not as opposed to proof beyond a reasonable doubt or proof by clear and convincing evidence.