What Disqualifies You From Owning A Gun In Canada?

Those who wish to obtain their firearm licence must pass background checks which assess the applicant’s criminal record, mental health, addiction issues, and any history of domestic violence. The applicant will also need to obtain character references.

Pursuant to the Firearms Act, an individuals is not eligible to hold a firearms licence if it is desirable, in the interests of the safety of that or any other person, that the person not possess a firearm.

In assessing a person’s eligibility, the following factors are considered:

  • Whether the applicant has been convicted or discharged under section 730 of the Criminal Code of an offence:
    • Where violence was used, threatened or attempted;
    • Under the Firearms Act or Part III of the Criminal Code;
    • Under section 264 of the Criminal Code (criminal harassment);
    •  Related to specific offences under the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act;
    • Related to specific offences under the Cannabis Act
  • Whether the applicant has been treated for a mental illness, whether in a hospital, mental institute, psychiatric clinic or otherwise and whether or not the person was confined to such a hospital, institute or clinic, that was associated with violence or threatened or attempted violence on the part of the person against any person;
  • Whether the applicant has a history of behaviour that includes violence or threatened or attempted violence or threatening conduct on the part of the person against any person;
  • Whether the applicant is or was previously prohibited by an order — made in the interests of the safety and security of any person — from communicating with an identified person or from being at a specified place or within a specified distance of that place, and presently poses a threat or risk to the safety and security of any person;
  • Whether the applicant, in respect of an offence in the commission of which violence was used, threatened or attempted against the person’s intimate partner or former intimate partner, was previously prohibited by a prohibition order from possessing any firearm, cross-bow, prohibited weapon, restricted weapon, prohibited device or prohibited ammunition; or
  • Whether the applicant, for any other reason, poses a risk of harm to any person.


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