Special Considerations For Veterans With Ptsd
PTSD is one of the most pressing issues that Veterans face when returning from active duty. If a Veteran has PTSD and would like assistance, they are encouraged to seek help from the VA to provide them with proper healthcare. If the VA determines that a Veterans PTSD is service-related, then the Veteran is assigned a disability rating to determine the number of disability benefits due.;
When you receive a disability rating from the VA, this rating directly corresponds with the number of tax-free benefits you will receive each month. Veterans with severely debilitating PTSD symptoms can sometimes qualify for a 100% VA disability rating, which grants the highest levels of monthly compensation. However, the VA does not always grant a high disability rating to Veterans with PTSD. In fact, this condition is one of the service-connected disabilities most often inaccurately assessed and rated by the VA.
If you are a Veteran suffering from severe PTSD symptoms, you deserve to get the compensation that you need to support yourself and your loved ones. PTSDs symptoms can make it extremely difficult to work, and function in everyday life and the VAs accuracy in assessing a Veterans disability claim can have a life-altering impact, for better or for worse. If the VA has approved your disability claim but given you a rating that is too low, you can appeal their decision with the help of an attorney.
Veterans With Ptsd And Gun Ownership: Get Help Now
Specific gun laws differ in each state and often at the county or city level, so it is essential to review local statutes or contact a PTSD attorney to discuss the unique gun laws in the area where you reside. An attorney can ensure that you are given the correct information regarding your PTSD and gun rights.; During your consultation, it is important to bring all of your medical records, disability determination, and relevant paperwork that might assist your attorney in reviewing your case.;
After thorough research has been conducted, you may find that you are eligible to own a weapon, or your local laws may put restrictions on ownership or even forbid it. Either way, it is important to find out so that you can remain in compliance with the law and not risk a criminal charge for illegally possessing a firearm.
To speak with a member of our team about your gun ownership rights, simply call us at 888-682-0786 or fill out our online form now. Your consultation will be free, and it will allow us to get a better sense of how we can serve you if you need to appeal a VA decision.
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The Virginia Law On Gun Rights After Involuntary Commitment
Under Virginia Code §18.2-308.1:3, an individual is prohibited from purchasing, possessing, or transporting a firearm after an involuntary mental health commitment.
Specifically, the prohibition applies to anyone:
- Involuntarily admitted to a facility or ordered to mandatory outpatient treatment pursuant to §19.2-169.2 ;
- Involuntarily admitted to a facility or ordered to mandatory outpatient treatment after a commitment hearing; or
- Subject to a temporary detention order who subsequently agreed to a voluntary admission.
If any of these events occurs, the individual is prohibited from purchasing, possessing, or transporting a firearm.
Importantly, if an individual violates §18.2-308.1:3, it is punishable as a Class 1 misdemeanor. That means up to 12 months in jail and up to a $2,500 fine.
This prohibition is indefinite unless the individuals firearms rights are restored. It does not matter whether the individual successfully completes a treatment program. It does not matter whether the original admission and subsequent commitment were a complete mistake. It does not matter whether the individual has successfully managed their mental health for several decades after the commitment.
Fortunately, Virginia law provides a mechanism for the individual to have their firearms rights restored. Under subsection of §18.2-308.1:3, an individual may petition the local general district court to restore their firearms rights.
At The State Government’s Discretion
Besides the previous reasons, the Texas Department of Public Safety also has;a list of reasons why it;may reject an individual’s handgun license application, but would be decided on the department’s discretion.
Those who are fugitives
The state government can deny a handgun license request if an individual has fled justice for a felony or Class A or Class B misdemeanor offense.
Those who owe money
The state government can deny a handgun license request if an individual has been delinquent in paying child support or;other taxes.
Those who have a restraining order
The state government can deny a handgun license request if an individual is subject to a restraining order in a “spousal relationship.”
Those with a psychiatric disorder
The state government can deny a handgun license request if an individual has been diagnosed with a psychiatric disorder. The diagnosis by a licensed physician can include a condition related to the following:;
- Schizophrenia or delusional disorder
- Chronic dementia
- Dissociative identity disorder
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For The Most Part The Instructor Seemed To Be Less Concerned About Gun Safety Or Etiquette Than He Was In Helping Us To Not Get Arrested
“You have to cover yourself,” he explained. “Remember: Its your gun. No discharging the gun within 150 feet of a home or a highway. So if you see Bambi running across the highway, you do not go over and start shooting at her. Everybody understand?”
He then reminded us that we cannot exercise our right to bear arms while in prison. In general, “exercising our right” did seem to take priority over, erm, anything else about guns.
While the instructor did insist that we do our best to follow all laws and signs that restrict us from carrying a gun with us into certain places, he also made it clear that this was stupid, even though it was the law. “Picture your kids in a classroom right now, some maniac comes through and starts shooting at everyone. Theres no such thing as shelter.”
As if right on cue, he said, “The only thing that stops that guy is a gun. So they need to change that law so that teachers can start carrying guns. Everyone should be carrying a gun. If they havent realized that now, somethings gonna happen and they will. ‘Gun free zones’ do not work. They only bring the maniacs in.”
Then he sighed and conceded, “But if you do see a sign that says ‘no guns allowed,’ its best to just obey the rules, OK?”
When Can A Person Be Potentially Dangerous To Others
Not all mental illness may be a risk of harm to others. In the majority of cases when a patient is involuntarily admitted to a psychiatric inpatient unit, it is not because the person is a risk to others. Rather, it is more often the case that the person is at risk of harming himself, as in the case of a depressed, suicidal patient.
In psychiatric disorders, concerns about harm to others typically arise in acutely psychotic patients with paranoid delusions that convince them to harm others. This may happen in, but is not limited to schizophrenia, dementia, severe psychotic depression or psychotic bipolar illness.
Substance use, which can increase the risk of crime or psychosis, can also lead to intentions to harm others. Other situations, when a person could be a risk of harm to others, are personality disorders with a high level of impulsivity or lack of remorse, such as antisocial personality disorder.
But the reality is that most people with personality disorders do not seek treatment and are not known to mental health providers.
Its important to note that those with diagnosed serious mental illness, who are determined by a psychiatrist to be a serious risk of harm to themselves or others, already get admitted to acute or long-term inpatient care and are kept there until they are deemed not dangerous. Of course this happens only if they are brought in for psychiatric evaluation by others or law enforcement.
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Where The Petition Is Filed:
The petition is filed in the Virginia general district court where the individual resides.
Fortunately, there is no minimum residency requirement. For example, if you recently moved to Virginia Beach, you are not required to wait an arbitrary amount of time before filing the petition in the Virginia Beach General District Court. You can file the petition as soon as you consider yourself residing in Virginia Beach.
Up until recently, this created a very difficult problem for out-of-state residents. The statute did not specify where an out-of-state resident should file a petition, and some judges concluded that an out-of-state resident could not file a petition at all!
Fortunately, the General Assembly fixed this problem in 2017. Now, out-of-state residents are required to file the petition in the Virginia general district court for the city or county where the most recent commitment or admission occurred. For example, if you were committed in Henrico County but you then moved to North Carolina, your petition must be filed in Henrico County.
And to be clear, if you were committed in Virginia, you must be restored by Virginia! It does not matter if you currently live in another state.
Alabama Fails To Stop Many With Mental Illness From Buying Guns
A Ruger Security-9 handgun on sale in Birmingham earlier this year .
A system that’s supposed to keep guns out of the hands of people with dangerous mental illness misses thousands of people reported to local authorities for disturbing behavior in Alabama, despite efforts in recent years to tighten requirements.
According to records from the Alabama Department of Finance, the state paid for 6,713 commitment hearings in 2016 to determine whether people were dangerous to themselves or others due to serious mental illness. The department does not track how many of those hearings led to involuntary commitment in psychiatric hospitals or whether some patients had multiple hearings in a single year. The Alabama Department of Mental Health does not track the total number of people committed in Alabama by county probate judges.
In 2016, the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency entered 1,423 people into the background check system who had been hospitalized involuntarily, less than a quarter of the number of commitment hearings.
A bill passed in 2015 requires probate judges to submit records to the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency whenever an individual is involuntarily committed to psychiatric treatment in a hospital. Before the change, probate judges only had to report mentally ill people with a history of gun-related threats, which rarely happened, according to studies of the state’s reporting system.
But for the most part, the 2015 rules have been easy to follow, he said.
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If Youre Wondering What My Monthly Quest For Adhd Meds Has To Do With Buying A Gun Youre Not The Only One
On Oct. 4, 2015, I was sitting in my parents couch, sipping on a whiskey, while my father watched CNN’s coverage of the Umpqua Community College shooting that had claimed 10 lives just a few days earlier. We had just returned from a suicide awareness walk, and I couldnt help but cringe each time the shooters mental health was brought into question by the news anchors, police chief, and other pundits. At one point, a reporter even questioned the shooters father directly about his sons “mental makeup” despite the fact that the man was clearly in shock and mourning.
Its the argument made famous by Ann Coulter: “Guns dont kill people, the mentally ill do.”
But the truth is far from that. Here are the facts:
I mean, its just kind of hard to draw any useful predictions or conclusions from those kinds of fractions.
So as I sat and listened to yet another dour cable news expert rattle on about how the 20% of Americans who are like me are basically tragic but indisputable monsters because we have psychiatric conditions, I decided I’d just about had enough of this unfounded link between mental health and gun rights. I grabbed my laptop and decided right then that I wanted to investigate this system.
Within five minutes, Id found a listing for a Cobra 380 Derringer Big Bore pistol in Kentucky. It was hot pink and only cost $114.95. I made a burner Google phone number and email address and sent a message to the dealer that I was interested.
He called me 10 minutes later.
Mental Health Reporting In Texas
Federal law generally prohibits possession of firearms and ammunition by people who have been found by a court, board, commission, or other lawful authority to be a danger to themselves or others, or to lack the mental capacity to contract or manage own affairs, as a result of their mental condition or illness.1 Federal law also generally prohibits people from possessing firearms if they have been involuntarily hospitalized or committed to a mental health or substance abuse treatment facility by a court, board, commission, or other lawful authority.2
No federal law, however, requires states to report the identities of these individuals when they become ineligible to possess firearms to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System database, which the FBI uses to perform background checks prior to firearm transfers. As a result, state record reporting laws are critical to ensuring the accuracy and effectiveness of the background check system.
;A law adopted in Texas in 2009 requires the Department of Public Safety to establish a rule for the submission of information to the FBI for use in NICS. The law requires the clerk of a court to prepare and submit information to the Department within 30 days whenever the court:
- Orders a person to receive inpatient mental health services;
- Acquits a person in a criminal case by reason of insanity or lack of mental responsibility;
- Determines a person is incompetent to stand trial; or
The information that must be submitted is:
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I Embarked On This Whole Journey Because I Was Fed Up With The Link Between Guns And Mental Health And Now That I Have A Gun License I’m Still Fed Up With It
Before I got my license to carry, I wasnt a big fan of guns. And to be fair, Im still not.
But I also have a whole new understanding of just how complicated the gun violence issue really is and how hard it is to determine who can or can’t have a gun.
Blaming violence on neurological conditions like ADHD or schizophrenia or bipolar disorder is about as ridiculous as saying, “It’s not guns! It’s Fridays!” Sure, there’s been some overlap, but not enough for us to make any useful conclusions about it. People with mental illnesses are fully capable of leading happy, healthy lives, and their decision-making processes arent necessarily affected by their conditions.
But the question still stands: How do we stop guns from getting in the hands of would-be killers?
After learning how to handle a gun, I am more comfortable with their general existence, and Im glad to have had the chance to speak with normal, rational human gun owners who, like me, were concerned about safety. Perhaps I shouldn’t be so surprised by that last part after all, 74% of NRA members agree on the need for stronger universal background checks.
But to fix this, we can’t punish or restrict innocent people before they’ve ever committed a crime. What we can do instead is the bare minimum due diligence in making sure that those who do have access to guns are of sound physical and mental condition regardless of whether they have a psychiatric condition.
After The Video The Instructor Explained The Basic Local Laws To Us
He was a heavy-set Italian-American man in a matched grey jumpsuit with a thick North Shore accent, and he did not hesitate to add the disclaimer that he was not a legal expert and that if anyone had any real questions about gun laws in the state of Massachusetts , they should consult a lawyer.
He explained that there are three different kinds of gun permits you can get in Massachusetts: the firearm identification card , which limits the user to a rifle or a shotgun; a restricted license to carry , which allows for handguns and semiautomatics as long as theyre kept in the home or in the trunk of your car; or an unrestricted license to carry , which allows you to conceal-carry anywhere youd like.
As for how to get each of these licenses? Thats where things get a little more complicated because it all depends on the laws of the town in which you reside, not the town youre in when youre carrying that gun. And when pressed on the details of what happens when, say, a Kentucky resident with a conceal-carry license shows up in Boston, the instructor just told us to repeat: “Stupid-chusetts.”
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As Much As We Like To Think Of Ourselves As Rational Beings Research Shows That Our Personal Perceptions Color The Way We Look At The World For Better And For Worse
Unfortunately, our public discourse about guns tends to revolve around mass shootings, which only make up a fraction of the overall gun deaths in the country. Often, we ignore the evidence to the contrary and convince ourselves instead that anyone who kills another person has to be mentally ill. But “being a murderer” is not the same as having a mental illness.
They’re why we talk about “criminals” and “bad guys” with guns like they’re a faceless, monolithic evil. They’re why attempted suicide is a felony in some states but killing someone based on a subjective claim of self-defense is legal in others.
And they’re why we keep wrongly equating gun violence with mental illness.
It sounds strange, but these perceptions are a natural part of “healthy” human brain function. However, they also contribute more to our continued gun problem than mental illness ever will because they prevent us from having a productive conversation.
Perhaps the biggest roadblocks in addressing our nation’s problem with gun violence, then, are fear and a lack of empathy on every side of every argument.