Gun Crimes in New Jersey

The state of New Jersey is known for having some of the strictest gun laws in the country. It is because of this that law enforcement and courts work hard to penalize those who they feel violated the state’s gun statutes. Regardless of whether maximum penalties are sought, offenders will likely be sentenced to prison time and a period of parole ineligibility. Those who possess an unlicensed firearm in the state of New Jersey may be subject to severe penalties. If you have been charged with a gun crime, it is crucial that you retain the services of an experienced attorney.

Types of Gun Crimes

As the state has strict gun laws, anyone who wants to purchase a handgun is required to obtain a permit to do so. In addition to this, those who want to carry their guns need to have a separate permit. This is regardless of whether or not the firearm is concealed. There is a mandatory 30-day waiting period for handguns for residents. The waiting period is 45 days for non-residents. If a person unlawfully possesses a handgun, it is classified as a second-degree criminal offense. This can subject an offender to the possibility of a prison sentence between five and 10 years in New Jersey State Prison. This crime also violates the Graves Act, which requires an offender to serve a minimum period of imprisonment before they are eligible for parole. 

In the event that a person is in possession of a rifle, Airsoft gun, shotgun, paintball gun, or BB gun, they can face between three and five years in state prison. Unlawful possession of any other weapon is classified as a fourth-degree crime. This can result in up to 18 months in prison.

Who Cannot Own a Gun?

While the Constitution allows the right to bear arms under the Second Amendment, states have the right to make their own regulations. This includes who can purchase and own a firearm. Certain individuals are unable to do so due to the fear that they may be a danger to themselves or others. The following people are prohibited from obtaining a firearm in New Jersey:

  • Those convicted of any crime;
  • Those convicted of a disorderly persons offense involving domestic violence;
  • Those committed for mental disorder unless there is satisfactory proof they no longer suffer from a disorder that handicaps them from handling a firearm;
  • Minors under the age of 18;
  • Those who are alcohol or drug dependent;
  • Those who have physical defects that make it unsafe for them to handle a firearm;
  • Those who are subject to a domestic violence restraining order;
  • Those who had a firearm seized and not returned for domestic violence;
  • Those who have a juvenile adjudication that would be considered a crime if committed by an adult and involved a weapon, explosive or destructive device;
  • Any person who in the eyes of law enforcement would present a danger to public health, safety and welfare by possessing a firearm.


If you or a loved one has been charged with a gun crime or wishes to obtain a permit to purchase a firearm or firearms identification card, having an experienced criminal defense team available to advocate on your behalf is crucial. The Rem Katcher Law Group, P.C. is here to help. Contact our firm today.