The Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO) provides a judicial pathway for the temporary removal of firearms and prohibits future gun purchases for the duration of the order.
An extreme risk protection order is a civil legal process that can be filed by a “family or household member”
Find out if you qualify as a family or household member under Massachusetts’s broad definition by selecting the link on the right
If the judge issues an ERPO, the judge will instruct law enforcement officers to serve the order on the subject of the petition.
Attend the hearing scheduled by the court. The hearing will be scheduled within 10 days from the date the judge issues the order. (A hearing will also be scheduled if the order is denied).
THREE TYPES OF EXTREME RISK PROTECTION ORDERS (ERPOs)
If at the hearing the Court finds that it’s more likely than not that the respondent’s possession of a gun license and/or guns “causes a risk of bodily harm to self or others” the Court will issue an ERPO. That ERPO order is then transmitted by the Court to the licensing authority where the respondent lives, and law enforcement will then go to the respondent’s house, inform them of the order and that they must surrender their weapons. The Court will also inform the national background check system of the ERPO, so that the respondent cannot buy weapons out of state.
Although the “Extreme Risk Protection Order” (ERPO) is a civil procedure, violation of an ERPO order is a criminal offense. An ERPO is effective for up to one year from the date of issuance and can be renewed. The petitioner will receive notice 7 days before an ERPO is to expire so that they may refile if they feel appropriate.