Red Flag Laws

What is an RPO (Risk Protection Order)?

By David S. Katz

Risk Protection Orders are also known as Red Flag Laws.  Under Florida law, a “Risk Protection Order” or “RPO” is either a temporary or final order prohibiting the possession or purchase of a firearm or ammunition, issued against a person who poses a significant danger of causing personal injury to himself/herself or others by having a firearm or any ammunition in his or her custody or control or by purchasing the same. Florida Statute §790.401.  Under this law, a law enforcement agency can get a temporary RPO by showing a court that a person presents a danger to themselves or others.  Within 14 days of the temporary RPO being served the respondent (person whose guns have been seized) has a right to a full hearing and if the RPO is dismissed, their right to own and purchase firearms is restored.  A court can issue an RPO for up to 12 months and can extend the RPO in increments up to 12 months upon proof of continuing danger.

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