Many times I have told my clients to view their situations in the following light: the law supersedes logic. With that said, let us examine an uncomfortable situation that brings a very hot topic into one’s household. Guns.
As a staunch defender of the Second Amendment, I believe that everyone has the right to possess a firearm. But this issue has become so highly politicized that it often clouds people’s judgment when it comes to practical discussions about carrying, possession and how far one’s rights extend. I bring this up because I am often asked by husbands, in particular, who own firearms whether or not they should surrender them in the case of a pending separation or divorce.
The answer is, absolutely.
Don’t even hesitate. If you are living in an acrimonious situation your firearms become an entirely different type of weapon. A gun can’t tell its side of the story when there are two people living in a house and one claims the other used a weapon in a threatening manner.
Remember my original premise that law supersedes logic. Even though logic dictates that one’s Constitutional right to bear arms should be protected in all cases and supersedes any local law, you will have a difficult time presenting this case in front of a New York court. My advice is to contact someone you know who is extremely reputable, preferably an officer of the law, and have him or her accompany you to a safe deposit box. Deposit your weapons there for safe keeping then provide your friend with the key. This way, should a situation arise when your spouse falsely claims you acted in a threatening manner with a weapon and the police arrive at your doorstep, you can calmly explain to them that you were not in possession of firearms but that your (police officer) friend has them in safe keeping. This approach also provides solid legal coverage in the event of a trial. A false accusation of having been menaced with a weapon you can prove was safely locked away will demonstrate a lack of credibility to the courts throughout the case.
I hate playing games just as much as the next person, but this is real life and you need to protect yourself from the games that other attorneys play when advising their clients. Stay one step ahead of them and stay vigilant. Temporarily, but willfully, suspending your Constitutional rights might feel wrong and be wrong but there’s a time to stand on principal and a time to protect your future.