Bill Details - HB687 (2019)

HB 687-FN - AS INTRODUCED

 

 

2019 SESSION

19-0007

04/05

 

HOUSE BILL 687-FN

 

AN ACT relative to extreme risk protection orders.

 

SPONSORS: Rep. Altschiller, Rock. 19; Rep. Fenton, Ches. 8; Rep. Knirk, Carr. 3; Rep. Backus, Hills. 19; Rep. Espitia, Hills. 31; Rep. Mulligan, Graf. 12; Sen. Watters, Dist 4; Sen. Sherman, Dist 24; Sen. Hennessey, Dist 5; Sen. Dietsch, Dist 9; Sen. Kahn, Dist 10

 

COMMITTEE: Criminal Justice and Public Safety

 

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ANALYSIS

 

This bill establishes a procedure for issuing extreme risk protection orders to protect against persons who pose an immediate risk of harm to themselves or others.

 

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Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.

Matter removed from current law appears [in brackets and struckthrough.]

Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.

19-0007

04/05

 

STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE

 

In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Nineteen

 

AN ACT relative to extreme risk protection orders.

 

Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:

 

1  Statement of Purpose.  The general court finds that allowing family or household members or law enforcement officers to petition for a court order to temporarily restrict access to firearms by individuals who are found to pose an immediate risk to themselves or others would advance public safety.  This act shall not apply in cases of domestic abuse or stalking where the petitioner is eligible to petition for relief under RSA 173-B or RSA 633:3-a.

2  New Chapter; Extreme Risk Protection Orders.  Amend RSA by inserting after chapter 159-D the following new chapter:

CHAPTER 159-E

EXTREME RISK PROTECTION ORDERS

159-E:1  Definitions.  In this chapter:

I.  “Extreme risk protection order” means a temporary, ex parte, or final order issued pursuant to this chapter.

II.  “Family or household member” means:

(a)  A spouse, ex-spouse, person cohabiting with another person, and a person who cohabited with another person but who no longer shares the same residence.

(b)  A parent or other person related by consanguinity or affinity, other than a minor child who resides with the respondent.

III.  “Firearm” means any weapon, including a starter gun, which will, is designed to, or may be readily converted to expel a projectile by the action of an explosive.

IV.  “Intimate partner” means a person currently or formerly involved in a romantic relationship with another, whether or not such relationship was ever sexually consummated.

V.  “Law enforcement officer” means a sheriff or deputy sheriff of any county, a state police officer, a constable or police officer of any city or town, or a conservation officer.

VI.  “Petitioner” means a law enforcement officer, family or household member, or intimate partner of the respondent who files a petition for an extreme risk protection order under this chapter.

VII.  “Respondent” means an individual who is identified as the respondent in a petition filed under this chapter.

159-E:2   Jurisdiction and Venue.

I.  The district division of the circuit court shall have jurisdiction over all proceedings under this chapter.

II.  The petitioner may commence proceedings pursuant to RSA 159-E:3 in the county or district where either the petitioner or the respondent resides.

III.  Proceedings under this chapter may be transferred to another court upon the motion of any party or of the court as the interests of justice or the convenience of the parties may require.

159-E:3  Commencement of Proceedings; Hearing.

I.  A petitioner may seek relief under this chapter by filing a petition, in the county or district where the petitioner or respondent resides, alleging that the respondent poses a significant risk of causing bodily injury to himself or herself or others by having a firearm or any ammunition in his or her custody or control or by purchasing, possessing, or receiving a firearm or any ammunition.

II.  A petition for an extreme risk protection order shall:

(a)  Be accompanied by a written affidavit, signed by the petitioner under oath.  The affidavit shall contain specific factual allegations regarding the factors that give rise to petitioner’s belief that respondent poses a significant risk of causing bodily injury to himself or herself or others by having a firearm or any ammunition in his or her custody or control or by purchasing, possessing, or receiving a firearm or any ammunition.

(b)  Identify the quantities, types, and locations of all firearms and ammunition the petitioner believes to be in the respondent’s current ownership, possession, custody, or control.

(c)  Identify if there is a known existing protection order in effect against the respondent under RSA 173-B or any other applicable statute.

III.  Any person who files a petition under this chapter containing allegations the petitioner knows to be false, or who files a petition with intent to harass the respondent, shall be subject to criminal penalties, as set forth in RSA 159-E:11.

IV.  Notice of the pendency of the action and of the facts alleged against the respondent shall be given to the respondent, either personally or as provided in paragraph V.  The petitioner shall be permitted to supplement or amend the petition only if the respondent is provided an opportunity prior to the hearing to respond to the supplemental or amended petition.  All petitions filed under this chapter shall include the home and work telephone numbers of the respondent, if known.  Notice of the whereabouts of the petitioner shall not be revealed except by order of the court for good cause shown.  Any answer by the respondent shall be filed with the court and a copy shall be provided to the petitioner by the court.

V.  No filing fee or fee for service of process shall be charged for a petition or response under this section, and the petitioner or respondent may proceed without legal counsel.  A law enforcement officer shall serve process under this section.  Any proceeding under this chapter shall not preclude any other available civil or criminal remedy.

VI.  The clerk of the circuit court shall supply forms for petitions and for relief under this chapter designed to facilitate pro se proceedings.  All such petitions shall contain the following statement: “I swear that the foregoing information is true and correct to the best of my knowledge.  I understand that making a false statement on this petition will subject me to criminal penalties.”

VII.  The findings of facts shall be final, but questions of law may be transferred from the circuit court to the supreme court.

VIII.(a)  The court shall hold a hearing within 14 days of the filing of a petition under this section or within 7 days of service of process upon the respondent, whichever occurs later.

(b)  The time frame established in this paragraph may be extended for an additional 7 days upon motion by either party for good cause shown.  A recusal by the judge or any act of God or closing of the court that interferes with the originally scheduled hearing shall not be cause for the dismissal of the petition.  The court shall reschedule any hearing under this section in an expeditious manner.

IX.  In any proceeding under this chapter, the court shall not be bound by the technical rules of evidence and may admit evidence which it considers relevant and material.

159-E:4  Temporary Relief.

I.  A petitioner may request, and court may enter, a temporary extreme risk protection order with or without actual notice to respondent.  Upon a showing by the petitioner that there is reasonable cause to believe that the respondent poses an immediate risk of causing bodily injury to himself or herself or others by having a firearm or any ammunition in his or her custody or control or by purchasing, possessing, or receiving a firearm or ammunition, the court shall issue a temporary extreme risk protection order.

II.  If a temporary extreme risk protection order is requested, the court shall hold a temporary ex parte risk protection order hearing in person or by telephone on the day the petition is filed or on the business day immediately following the day the petition is filed.

III.  In determining whether the grounds for a temporary extreme risk protection order exist, the court shall consider any relevant evidence, including but not limited to the evidence described in RSA 159-E:5, III.

IV.  Temporary orders issued under this section shall prohibit the respondent from purchasing, possessing, or receiving any firearms and ammunition for the duration of the order and shall further direct the respondent to relinquish to a law enforcement officer all firearms and ammunition in the control, ownership, or possession of the respondent or any other person on behalf of the respondent, and any license to carry a loaded pistol or revolver issued to the respondent under RSA 159:6, for the duration of the protective order.

V.  The court may issue such temporary orders by telephone or facsimile.  Such telephonically issued orders shall be made by a circuit court judge to a law enforcement officer and shall be valid in any jurisdiction in the state.  Such orders shall be returnable to the circuit court where the petitioner resides, unless otherwise ordered by the issuing judge.  If non-telephonic temporary orders are made ex parte, the party against whom such relief is issued may file a written request with the clerk of the court and request an expedited hearing on such orders.  Such hearing shall be held no less than 3 business days and no more than 5 business days after the request is received by the clerk.  Such hearing may constitute the final hearing under RSA 159-E:3, VIII.

VI.  A temporary extreme risk protection order shall expire upon the hearing on a final extreme risk protection order under RSA 159-E:3, VIII.

VII.  The court may subsequently issue a search warrant authorizing a law enforcement officer to search for and seize any and all firearms and ammunition in the respondent’s possession, custody or control, if there is probable cause to believe respondent has firearms or ammunition and if the court has reason to believe that such firearms or ammunition have not been relinquished by the respondent.

VIII.  If the court denies the petitioner’s request for a temporary extreme risk protection order, the court shall state the particular reasons for the denial.

159-E:5  Relief.

I.  After notice to respondent and a hearing, and upon a showing by the petitioner that there is clear and convincing evidence that the respondent poses a significant risk of causing bodily injury to himself or herself or others by having a firearm or any ammunition in his or her custody or control or by purchasing, possessing, or receiving a firearm or ammunition, the court shall issue an extreme risk protection order for a period not to exceed 12 months.

II.  An extreme risk protection order issued under this section shall prohibit the respondent from purchasing, possessing, or receiving any firearms and ammunition for the duration of the order and shall further direct the respondent to relinquish to a law enforcement officer all firearms and ammunition in the control, ownership, or possession of the respondent or any other person on behalf of the respondent, and any license to carry a loaded pistol or revolver issued to the respondent under RSA 159:6 for the duration of the order

III.  In determining whether the grounds for an extreme risk protection order exist, the court shall consider any relevant evidence, including but not limited to any of the following:

(a)  An act or threat of violence within the past 24 months by the respondent against himself or herself or others, whether or not such violence or threat of violence involves a firearm.

(b)  Evidence of the respondent having a serious mental illness or recurring mental health condition.

(c) A violation by the respondent of a domestic violence protection order issued under RSA 173-B.

(d)  A previous or existing risk protection order issued against the respondent.

(e)  A violation of a previous or existing risk protection order issued against the respondent.

(f)  Whether the respondent, in this state or any other state, has been convicted of,

had adjudication withheld on, or pled nolo contendere to a crime that constitutes domestic violence as defined in RSA 173-B:1.

(g)  Whether the respondent has used, or has threatened to use, against himself or herself or others any weapons.

(h)  The unlawful or reckless use, display, or brandishing of a firearm by the respondent.

(i)  The recurring use of, or threat to use, physical force by the respondent against another person or the respondent stalking another person.

(j)  Whether the respondent, in this state or any other state, has been arrested for, convicted of, had adjudication withheld on, or pled nolo contendere to a crime involving violence or a threat of violence.

(k)  Corroborated evidence of the abuse of controlled substances or alcohol by the respondent.

(l)  Evidence of recent acquisition of firearms or ammunition by the respondent.

(m)  Witness testimony, taken while the witness is under oath, relating to the matter before the court.

IV.  A person, including an officer of the court, who offers evidence or recommendations relating to a petition filed under this chapter either shall present the evidence or recommendations in to the court in a sworn written affidavit, with copies to each party and his or her attorney, if one is retained, or shall present the evidence under oath at a hearing at which all parties are present.

V.  During the hearing, the court shall consider whether a mental health evaluation or chemical dependency evaluation is appropriate and, if such determination is made, may order such evaluations, if appropriate.

VI.  The court may subsequently issue a search warrant authorizing a law enforcement officer to search for and seize all firearms and ammunition in the respondent’s possession, custody or control, if there is probable cause to believe respondent has firearms or ammunition and if the court has reason to believe that such firearms or ammunition have not been relinquished by the respondent.

159-E:6  Contents of Extreme Risk Protection Orders.

I.  An extreme risk protection order issued under this chapter shall include all of the following:

(a)  A statement of the grounds supporting the issuance of the order.

(b)  The date the order was issued.

(c)  The date the order expires.

(d) Whether a mental health evaluation or chemical dependency evaluation of the respondent is required and, if so, when the results of said evaluation must be provided to the court.

(e)  The address of the court in which any responsive pleading should be filed.

(f)  A description of the requirements for the surrender of all firearms and ammunition in the control, ownership, or possession of the respondent under RSA 159-E:8.

(g)  The following statement:

“To the subject of this extreme risk protection order:  This order will remain in effect until the date noted above.  If you have not done so already, you shall surrender immediately to the (insert name of local law enforcement agency) all firearms and ammunition that you own or that are in your custody, control, or possession and any license to carry a loaded pistol or revolver issued to you under RSA 159:6.  You may seek the advice of an attorney as to any matter connected with this order."

II.  If the court issues a temporary extreme risk protection order under RSA 159-E:4, the court shall inform the respondent, in writing, that he or she is entitled to request an expedited hearing as provided in RSA 159-E:4, V.  The court shall provide the respondent with a form to request such a hearing.

III.  If the court issues an extreme risk protection order under RSA 159-E:5, the court shall inform the respondent, in writing, that he or she is entitled to request a hearing to vacate the order in the manner provided in RSA 159-E:10.  The court shall provide the respondent with a form to request a hearing to vacate.

IV.  If the court denies the petitioner’s request for an extreme risk protection order, the court shall state the particular reasons for the denial.

159-E:7  Notification; Reporting of Orders.

I.  A copy of any order made under this chapter shall be promptly transmitted to the local law enforcement agency having jurisdiction to enforce such order and, if such person has been issued a license to carry a loaded pistol or revolver under RSA 159:6, notice shall also be promptly made to the issuing authority of the license.

II.  Extreme risk protection orders, including temporary extreme risk protection orders, shall be promptly served on the respondent by the law enforcement officer.  Modifications, extensions, and any order vacating an extreme risk protection order shall be sent to the respondent’s last address of record.  The respondent shall be responsible for informing the court of any changes of address.  Law enforcement agencies shall establish procedures whereby a law enforcement officer at the scene of an alleged violation of such an order may be informed of the existence and terms of such order.

III.  The clerk of the court shall enter any order issued under this chapter into a statewide judicial information system on the same day such order is issued.  The order shall remain in the information system as long as the order remains in effect.

IV.  The clerk of the court shall forward a copy of any order issued under this section the same day such order is issued to the department of safety, which in turn shall forward a copy to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, or its successor agency, for inclusion in the National Instant Criminal Background Check database.

V.  Any court-ordered changes, extensions, or modifications to the order shall be effective upon issuance of such changes, extensions, or modifications and shall be mailed or otherwise provided to the appropriate law enforcement agency, issuing authority, and transmitted to the department of safety within 24 hours of the entry of such changes, extensions, or modifications.

159-E:8  Surrender of Firearms and Ammunition.

I.  Upon issuance of any extreme risk protection under this chapter, including a temporary ex parte extreme risk protection order, the court shall order the respondent to surrender to the local law enforcement agency all firearms and ammunition owned by the respondent or in his or her custody, control, or possession and any license to carry a loaded pistol or revolver issued to the respondent under RSA 159:6.

II.  The law enforcement officer serving an extreme risk protection order under this section, including a temporary extreme risk protection order, shall request that the respondent immediately surrender all firearms and ammunition owned by the respondent or in his or her custody, control, or possession and any license to carry a loaded pistol or revolver issued to the respondent under RSA 159:6.  The law enforcement officer shall take possession of all firearms and ammunition and any license to carry a loaded pistol or revolver issued to them under RSA 159:6, which are surrendered.  Alternatively, if personal service by a law enforcement officer is not possible or is not required because the respondent was present at the extreme risk protection order hearing, the respondent shall surrender any firearms and ammunition owned by the respondent or in his or her custody, control, or possession and any license to carry a loaded pistol or revolver issued to them under RSA 159:6, held by the respondent, in a safe manner to the control of the local law enforcement agency immediately after being served with the order by service or immediately after the hearing at which the respondent was present.

III.  A law enforcement officer may, pursuant to RSA 159-E:4 and 159-E:5, seek a search warrant from a court of competent jurisdiction to search for and seize any and all firearms and ammunition owned by the respondent or in his or her possession, custody or control if the officer has probable cause to believe that said firearms or ammunition have not been surrendered.

IV.  At the time of surrender, a law enforcement officer taking possession of any firearm or ammunition owned by the respondent or in his or her custody, control, or possession, or any license to carry a loaded pistol or revolver issued to respondent under RSA 159:6, shall issue a receipt identifying all firearms and the quantity and type of ammunition that have been surrendered, and any license surrendered and shall provide a copy of the receipt to the respondent.  Within 72 hours after service of the order, the law enforcement officer serving the order shall file the original receipt with the court and shall ensure that his or her law enforcement agency retains a copy of the receipt.

V.  Notwithstanding RSA 595-A, upon the sworn statement or testimony of any person alleging that the respondent has failed to comply with the surrender required by any order issued under this chapter, the court shall determine whether probable cause exists to believe that the respondent has failed to surrender any firearms or ammunition owned by the respondent in his or her custody, control, or possession.  If the court finds that probable cause exists, the court shall issue a warrant describing the firearms or ammunition owned by the respondent or in his her custody, control or possession and authorizing a search of the locations where any such firearms or ammunition are reasonably believed to be found and the seizure of any such firearms or ammunition discovered pursuant to such search.

VI.  If a person other than the respondent claims title to any firearms or ammunition surrendered or seized pursuant to this section and he or she is determined by the law enforcement agency to be the lawful owner of the firearm or ammunition, the firearm or ammunition shall be returned to him or her, if:

(a)  The lawful owner agrees to store the firearm or ammunition in a manner such that the respondent does not have access to or control of the firearm or ammunition; and

(b)  The law enforcement agency conducts a background check to determine that the lawful owner is not prohibited under state or federal law from possessing the firearm or ammunition.

VII.  Upon the issuance of any extreme risk protection order, the court shall order a new hearing date and require the respondent to appear no later than 3 business days after the issuance of the order.  The court shall require proof that the respondent has surrendered any firearms or ammunition owned by the respondent or in his or her custody, control, or possession.  The court may cancel the hearing upon a satisfactory showing that the respondent is in compliance with the surrender order.

VIII.  All law enforcement agencies shall develop policies and procedures regarding the acceptance, storage, and return of firearms, ammunition, or licenses required to be surrendered under this section.

159-E:9  Return and Disposal of Firearms and Ammunition.

I.  If an extreme risk protection order is vacated or ends without extension, a respondent may request, by motion to the court, the return of any and all firearms and ammunition that has been surrendered to or seized by the law enforcement pursuant to this chapter.  Upon receipt of such a motion, the court shall schedule a hearing no later than 15 days after the expiration of the order.  The court shall provide written notice to the petitioner who shall have the right to appear and be heard, and to the law enforcement agency which has control of the firearms and ammunition.  The scope of the hearing shall be limited to:

(a)  Establishing whether the respondent is subject to any state or federal law or

court order that prohibits the respondent from owning or possessing a firearm or ammunition; and

(b)  Under circumstances where the petitioner has requested an extension of the extreme risk protection order, pursuant to subsection 10 of this chapter, whether the petitioner has established by clear and convincing evidence that the respondent continues to pose a significant risk of causing bodily injury to himself or herself or others by having a firearm or any ammunition in his or her custody or control or by purchasing, possessing, or receiving a firearm or ammunition.

II.  If the court finds that the respondent is not subject to any state or federal law or court order prohibiting the ownership or possession of firearms, and, if applicable, the court denies the petitioner’s request to extend the extreme risk protection order, the court shall issue a written order directing the law enforcement agency to return the requested firearms and ammunition to the respondent.

III.  Law enforcement agencies shall not release firearms and ammunition without a court order granting such release.  The law enforcement agency may charge the respondent a reasonable fee for the storage of any firearms and ammunition taken surrendered or seized to an extreme risk protection order.  The fee shall not exceed the actual cost incurred by the law enforcement agency for the storage of the firearms and ammunition.  The petitioner may make alternative arrangements with a federally licensed firearms dealer for the storage of firearms, at the respondent’s own expense, upon approval of the court.  Such firearms shall be turned over to the appropriate law enforcement agency for transfer to the storage facility.  Retrieval of such firearms shall be through the law enforcement agency responsible for their transfer to the storage facility pursuant to a court order as prescribed in this paragraph.

IV.  No law enforcement agency shall be held liable for alleged damage or deterioration due to storage or transportation to any firearms and ammunition and specified deadly weapons held by a law enforcement agency, so long as due care is used.

V.  If an extreme risk protection order is vacated or ends without extension, the licensing authority, if it has suspended a license to carry a loaded pistol or revolver issued to respondent under RSA 159:6 pursuant to this section, shall reinstate such license only after confirming that the respondent is currently eligible to have such license.

VI.  A law enforcement agency shall provide written notice, sent via the United States Postal Service to the last known address of the petitioner and to any family or household members of the respondent before the return of any firearm and ammunition surrendered or seized pursuant to this chapter.

VII.  If a respondent does not file a motion seeking the return of firearms and ammunition within one year after an extreme risk protection order is vacated or expires and is not renewed, any firearms and ammunition surrendered by or seized from the respondent under this chapter shall be deemed abandoned and may be disposed of in accordance with the law enforcement agency’s policies and procedures for the disposal of firearms in police custody.

159-E:10  Termination and Extension of Orders.

I.  The respondent may submit one written request for a hearing to vacate an extreme risk protection order issued under RSA 159-E:5, starting after the date of the issuance of the order, and may request one additional hearing after every extension of the order, if any.

(a)  Upon receipt of the request for a hearing to vacate an extreme risk protection order, the court shall set a date for a hearing.  Notice of the request shall be served on the petitioner as provided in RSA 159-E:7.  The hearing shall occur no sooner than 14 days and no later than 30 days after the date of service of the request upon the petitioner.

(b)  The respondent shall have the burden of proving by clear and convincing evidence that the respondent no longer poses a significant risk of causing  bodily injury to himself or herself or others by having a firearm or any ammunition in his or her custody or control or by purchasing, possessing, or receiving a firearm or ammunition.  The court shall consider any relevant evidence, including evidence of the considerations listed in RSA 159-E:5, III.

(c)  If the court finds after the hearing that the respondent has met his or her burden of proof, the court shall vacate the order.

(d)  The law enforcement agency holding any firearm or ammunition or license to carry a loaded pistol or revolver that has been surrendered or seized pursuant to this section shall be notified of the court order to vacate the extreme risk protection order.  The court shall also provide notice as required by RSA 159-E:7, V.

II.  The court shall notify the petitioner of the impending expiration of an extreme risk protection order.  Notice shall be received by the petitioner at least 30 days before the date the order is set to expire.

III.  The petitioner may, by motion, request an extension of an extreme risk protection order at any time within 30 days before the end of the order.

(a)  Upon receipt of the motion to extend, the court shall order that a hearing be held no later than 14 days after the date the order is issued and shall schedule such hearing.  The respondent shall be personally served with notice of the motion to extend as provided in RSA 159-E:7.

(b)  In determining whether to extend an extreme risk protection order issued under this section, the court shall consider any relevant evidence, including evidence of the considerations listed in RSA 159-E:5, III.

(c)  If the court finds by clear and convincing evidence that the requirements for issuance of an extreme risk protection order as provided in RSA 159-E:5 continue to be met, the court shall extend the order.  However, if, after notice and hearing, the motion for extension is uncontested and no modification of the order is sought, the order may be extended on the basis of a motion or affidavit stating that there has been no material change in relevant circumstances since entry of the order and stating the reason for the requested extension.

(d)  The court may extend an extreme risk protection order for a period that it deems appropriate, up to and including but not exceeding 12 months, subject to an order to vacate as provided in paragraph I or to another extension order by the court.

(e)  The court shall also provide notice of the extension of the order as required in RSA 159-E:7, V.

159-E:11  Violation of Extreme Risk Protection Order; Penalties.

I.  In addition to other applicable charges and penalties, a person shall be guilty of a class A misdemeanor if such person knowingly files a petition under this chapter containing false allegations, or if such person files a petition with intent to harass the respondent.

II.  In addition to other applicable charges and penalties, a person shall be guilty of a class B felony if he or she knowingly violates an extreme risk protection order issued under this chapter by having in his or her possession, custody, or control any firearm or ammunition while the order is in effect.

III.  A person who completes and signs an application for purchase of a firearm and who knows that such purchase is illegal because he or she is subject to an extreme risk protection order shall be guilty of a class A misdemeanor for a first offense and a class B felony for a second or subsequent offense.

159-E:12  Orders Enforceable.

I.  Any extreme risk protection order issued under this chapter shall be effective throughout the state.

II.  Any comparable extreme risk protection order issued by any other state, tribal, or territorial court, including an ex parte order, shall be deemed valid if the issuing court had jurisdiction over the parties and matter under the law of the state, tribe, or territory, and the person against whom the order was made was given reasonable notice and opportunity to be heard.  There shall be a presumption of validity where an order appears facially valid.

III.  Any valid extreme risk protection order, as defined in paragraph II, shall be accorded full faith and credit throughout the state.

159-E:13  Standard Forms.

I.  The administrative office of the courts shall develop instructions and informational brochures, standard petition forms, and extreme risk protection order forms.  The standard petition and order forms shall be used after January 1, 2020, for all petitions filed and orders issued under this chapter.  The instructions, brochures, forms, and handbook shall be prepared in consultation with interested persons, including representatives of gun violence prevention groups, judges, and law enforcement personnel.  Materials shall be based on best practices and available electronically online to the public.

(a)  The instructions shall be designed to assist petitioners in completing the petition and shall include a sample of a standard petition and order for protection forms.

(b)  The instructions and standard petition shall include a means for the petitioner to identify, with only lay knowledge, the firearms the respondent may own, possess, receive, or have in his or her custody or control.  The instructions shall provide pictures of types of firearms that the petitioner may choose from to identify the relevant firearms, or an equivalent means to allow petitioners to identify firearms without requiring specific or technical knowledge regarding the firearms.

(c)  The informational brochure shall describe the use of and the process for obtaining, modifying, and terminating an extreme risk protection order under this chapter, and provide relevant forms.

(d)  The extreme risk protection order form shall include, in a conspicuous location, notice of criminal penalties resulting from violation of the order, and the following statement:  "You have the sole responsibility to avoid or refrain from violating this order's provisions.  Only the court can change the order and only upon written application."

(e)  The court staff handbook shall allow for the addition of a community resource list by the court clerk.

II.  The clerk of the circuit court may create a community resource list of crisis intervention, mental health, substance abuse, interpreter, counseling, and other relevant resources serving the county in which the court is located.  The court may make the community resource list available as part of or in addition to the informational brochures described in paragraph I.

III.  The administrative office of the courts shall distribute a master copy of the petition and order forms, instructions, and informational brochures to all court clerks and shall distribute a master copy of the petition and order forms to all clerks of the circuit courts.  Distribution of all documents shall, at a minimum, be in an electronic format or formats accessible to all courts and court clerks in the state.

IV.  The administrative office of the courts shall determine the significant non- English-speaking or limited-English-speaking populations in the state.  The administrator shall then arrange for translation of the instructions and informational brochures required by this section, which shall contain a sample of the standard petition and order for protection forms, into the languages spoken by those significant non-English-speaking populations and shall distribute a master copy of the translated instructions and informational brochures to all clerks of the circuit court by January 1, 2020.

V.  The administrative office of the courts shall update the instructions, brochures, standard petition, and extreme risk protection order forms, and court staff handbook as necessary, including when changes in the law make an update necessary.

159-E:14  Reporting.

I.  No later than January 31 of each year, clerks of the circuit courts shall report to the administrative office of the courts the following information:

(a)  The total number of petitions for an extreme risk protection order, and the total number of those petitions that requested the order be issued ex parte during the previous year.

(b)  The total number of temporary extreme risk protection orders issued and the total number denied during the previous year.

(c)  The total number of extreme risk protection orders issued and the total number denied during the previous year.

(d)  The total number of extreme risk protection orders vacated upon petition by the respondent during the previous year.

(e)  The total number of extreme risk protection orders extended during the previous year.

II.  No later than April 1 of each year the administrative office of the courts shall compile and publish on its website a report which aggregates the information received pursuant to paragraph I and lists each category by county and type of court.

3  Effective Date.  This act shall take effect January 1, 2020.

 

LBAO

19-0007

Redraft 1/16/19

 

HB 687-FN- FISCAL NOTE

AS INTRODUCED

 

AN ACT relative to extreme risk protection orders.

 

FISCAL IMPACT:      [ X ] State              [ X ] County               [    ] Local              [    ] None

 

 

 

Estimated Increase / (Decrease)

STATE:

FY 2020

FY 2021

FY 2022

FY 2023

   Appropriation

$0

$0

$0

$0

   Revenue

$0

$0

$0

$0

   Expenditures

Indeterminable Increase

Indeterminable Increase

Indeterminable Increase

Indeterminable Increase

Funding Source:

  [ X ] General            [    ] Education            [    ] Highway           [    ] Other

 

 

 

 

 

COUNTY:

 

 

 

 

   Revenue

$0

$0

$0

$0

   Expenditures

Indeterminable Increase

Indeterminable Increase

Indeterminable Increase

Indeterminable Increase

 

 

 

 

 

METHODOLOGY:

This bill contains penalties that may have an impact on the New Hampshire judicial and correctional systems.  There is no method to determine how many charges would be brought as a result of the changes contained in this bill to determine the fiscal impact on expenditures.  However, the entities impacted have provided the potential costs associated with these penalties below.

 

Judicial Branch

FY 2020

FY 2021

Class A Misdemeanor

$76

$77

Routine Criminal Felony Case

$481

$486

Protective Orders

$166

$167

Issuance of Search Warrants

$76

$77

Appeals

Varies

Varies

It should be noted that average case cost estimates for FY 2020 and FY 2021 are based on data that is more than ten years old and does not reflect changes to the courts over that same period of time or the impact these changes may have on processing the various case types.  An unspecified misdemeanor can be either class A or class B, with the presumption being a class B misdemeanor.

Judicial Council

 

 

Public Defender Program

Has contract with State to provide services.

Has contract with State to provide services.

Contract Attorney – Felony

$825/Case

$825/Case

Contract Attorney – Misdemeanor

$300/Case

$300/Case

Assigned Counsel – Felony

$60/Hour up to $4,100

$60/Hour up to $4,100

Assigned Counsel – Misdemeanor

$60/Hour up to $1,400

$60/Hour up to $1,400

It should be noted that a person needs to be found indigent and have the potential of being incarcerated to be eligible for indigent defense services. The majority of indigent cases (approximately 85%) are handled by the public defender program, with the remaining cases going to contract attorneys (14%) or assigned counsel (1%).

Department of Corrections

 

 

FY 2018 Average Cost of Incarcerating an Individual

$40,615

$40,615

FY 2018 Annual Marginal Cost of a General Population Inmate

$4,620

$4,620

FY 2018 Average Cost of Supervising an Individual on Parole/Probation

$571

$571

NH Association of Counties

 

 

County Prosecution Costs

Indeterminable

Indeterminable

Estimated Average Daily Cost of Incarcerating an Individual

$105 to $120

$105 to $120

 

In addition, the Judicial Branch indicates the requirement in proposed RSA 173-D:2, VIII that protective orders issued be transmitted to the Administrative Office of the Courts which shall enter the information in a state database that is made available to state, county and local law enforcement departments.  The Administrative Office of the Courts currently maintains databases of domestic violence orders, stalking orders and criminal bail protective orders.  Two full-time and four part-time employees currently maintain these registries.  The Branch states the infrastructure is in place for the database required in this bill; however, the extent to which the volume of "threat of violence" protective orders causes additional expenses resulting in the need for new employees and/ or new computer equipment is unknown.  

 

Many offenses are prosecuted by local and county prosecutors.  When the Department of Justice has investigative and prosecutorial responsibility or is involved in an appeal, the Department would likely absorb the cost within its existing budget.  If the Department needs to prosecute significantly more cases or handle more appeals, then costs may increase by an indeterminable amount.  

 

AGENCIES CONTACTED:

Judicial Branch, Judicial Council and Departments of Justice and Corrections and New Hampshire Association of Counties

 

Docket

Date Status
Jan. 3, 2019 Introduced 01/03/2019 and referred to Criminal Justice and Public Safety HJ 3 P. 26
March 5, 2019 ==ROOM CHANGE== Public Hearing: 03/05/2019 10:00 am Reps Hall
March 13, 2019 Executive Session: 03/13/2019 10:00 am LOB 204
Retained in Committee

Action Dates

Date Body Type
March 5, 2019 House Hearing
March 13, 2019 House Exec Session

Bill Text Revisions

HB687 Revision: 4973 Date: Jan. 17, 2019, 2:28 p.m.