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New California Law Prohibits Sale of Guns to Anyone Under the Age of 21

February 13, 2019

New California Law Prohibits Sale of Guns to Anyone Under the Age of 21

After the tragic mass shooting in Parkland, Florida, the California Legislature decided to take action. Already home to some of the nation’s most restrictive gun laws, the state made its gun laws even tougher with the passage of Senate Bill 1100 (SB 1100). The goal of SB 1100 is to keep guns away from schools by banning the sale of guns to people under the age of 21.

SB 1100 was signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown in September 2018. It prohibits licensed firearm dealers from selling any firearm to any person under 21 years of age. As an experienced criminal defense lawyer San Bernardino, CA can explain, SB 1100 may seem overly harsh, but it does contain exceptions. For example, a person 18 years or older who holds a valid hunting license is permitted to purchase a firearm. Similarly, an active police officer or federal officer who is 18 years or older can purchase a firearm. In addition, anyone 18 years or older can purchase a firearm if he or she is a reserve police officer, an active member of the military, or if he or she was honorably discharged from the military.

A licensed firearms dealer who violates the law is guilty of a criminal offense. According to a criminal defense lawyer San Bernardino, CA, this crime is a wobbler offense, which means that it can be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the facts of the case and the individual’s criminal history. If it is charged as a misdemeanor, it is punishable by incarceration in county jail for up to six (6) months. If charged as a felony, it is punishable by a sentence of between two and four years in county jail.

SB 1100 is not the first law in California that regulated the sale of weapons to persons under the age of 21. Prior to the passage of SB 1100, it was (and still is) against the law to sell or transfer a handgun to any person under 21 years of age. It was (and is) also illegal to sell or transfer any firearm, other than a handgun, to any person under 18 years of age, with some exceptions.

The laws surrounding the sale, transfer, ownership and possession of firearms in California are complex. They are also constantly evolving as both popular opinion and political will changes on the subject of gun ownership. That is why it is important to consult with an experienced criminal defense lawyer San Bernardino, CA if you have questions about the legality of a gun sale or whether possession of a firearm is legal. When in doubt, it is better to make sure that your proposed course of action is legal than to be charged with a crime.

If you are facing criminal charges in California, the Chambers Law Firm can help. As a former prosecutor, attorney Dan E. Chambers understands how the criminal justice system works from both sides of the courtroom — and he’ll put that knowledge to work for you. Contact our office today at 855-397-0210 or dchambers@clfca.com to schedule a free initial consultation with an experienced criminal defense lawyer San Bernardino, CA.

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