In Florida, you do not have to have a permit to purchase a gun, but you must pass a background check and meet several federal and state requirements. If you are shopping for a new gun, it can be helpful to know the requirements before trying to make a purchase.
Not all convictions will prevent you from buying a gun, but all felony convictions will, according to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. If you are under indictment or information for a felony or you are a fugitive from justice, you will not be able to purchase a gun. You will also lose that right if you have been recently arrested for something that could potentially be a felony offense, or any other offense that would prohibit you from owning a gun.
Misdemeanor domestic violence convictions are another kind of conviction that will disqualify you from buying a gun. You will also be disqualified if you have received “Adjudication Withheld” on any felony or misdemeanor domestic violence crime, unless it has been three years since all of the conditions set by the court have been fulfilled or you have had an expunction. If you are the subject of an injunction for protection against you, which could be related to domestic violence, stalking or cyberstalking, you also cannot buy a gun.
The same is true if you are an adjudicated delinquent of a crime that would have been a felony if you had been adult. However, if this is your situation, you will likely be able to purchase a gun when you are at least 24 years old or when your record is expunged.
You also will not be able to buy a gun, if you:
- Use illegal drugs
- Have been determined by a court to be mentally defective or have been involuntarily committed to treatment
- Are in the United States illegally
- Have been dishonorably discharged from the military
- Have renounced U.S. citizenship
It is disappointing when you try to purchase a gun and the transaction is not approved, and the repercussions for having a gun when you shouldn’t can include hefty fines and jail time. This is why it is a good idea to know what the requirements are before you begin shopping for a gun.