GUN SAFETY

LAWS OF NEW YORK, 2008
CHAPTER 491

AN ACT to amend the mental hygiene law and the judiciary law, in relation to transmission of data relating to the possession and acquisition of a firearm

Became a law August 5, 2008, with the approval of the Governor. Passed
on message of necessity pursuant to Article III, section 14 of the
Constitution by a majority vote, three-fifths being present.

EXPLANATION--Matter in italics is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law
to be omitted.

The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-
bly, do enact as follows:

Section 1. Section 7.09 of the mental hygiene law is amended by adding
a new subdivision (j) to read as follows:
(j) The commissioner, in cooperation with other applicable state agen-
cies, shall be authorized to collect, retain or modify data or records,
or to transmit such data or records to the division of criminal justice
services, or to the criminal justice information services division of
the federal bureau of investigation, for the purposes of responding to
queries to the national instant criminal background check system regard-
ing attempts to purchase or otherwise take possession of firearms, as
defined in 18 USC 921(a)(3), in accordance with applicable federal laws
or regulations. Such records shall include only names and other non-
clinical identifying information of persons who have been involuntarily
committed to a hospital pursuant to article nine of this chapter, or
article seven hundred thirty or section 330.20 of the criminal procedure
law or sections 322.2 or 353.4 of the family court act, or to a secure
treatment facility pursuant to article ten of this chapter. The commis-
sioner shall establish within the office of mental health an administra-
tive process to permit a person who has been or may be disqualified from
possessing such a firearm pursuant to 18 USC 922(4)(d) to petition for
relief from that disability where such person's record and reputation
are such that such person will not be likely to act in a manner danger-
ous to public safety and where the granting of the relief would not be
contrary to public safety. The commissioner shall promulgate regu-
lations to establish the relief from disabilities program, which shall
include, but not be limited to, provisions providing for: (i) an oppor-
tunity for a disqualified person to petition for relief in writing; (ii)
the authority for the agency to require that the petitioner undergo a
clinical evaluation and risk assessment; and (iii) a requirement that
the agency issue a decision in writing explaining the reasons for a
denial or grant of relief. The denial of a petition for relief from
disabilities may be reviewed de novo pursuant to the proceedings under
article seventy-eight of the civil practice law and rules.
§ 2. Section 13.09 of the mental hygiene law is amended by adding a
new subdivision (f) to read as follows:
(f) The commissioner, in cooperation with other applicable state agen-
cies, shall be authorized to collect, retain or modify data or records,
or to transmit such data or records to the division of criminal justice
services, or to the criminal justice information services division of
the federal bureau of investigation, for the purposes of responding to
queries to the national instant criminal background check system regard-
ing attempts to purchase or otherwise take possession of firearms, as
defined in 18 USC 921(a)(3), in accordance with applicable federal laws
or regulations. Such records shall include only names and other non-
clinical identifying information of persons who have had a guardian
appointed for them pursuant to any provision of state law, based on a
determination that as a result of marked subnormal intelligence, mental
illness, incapacity, condition or disease, they lack the mental capacity
to contract or manage their own affairs, and persons who have been
involuntarily committed to a facility pursuant to article fifteen of
this chapter, or article seven hundred thirty or section 330.20 of the
criminal procedure law or sections 322.2 or 353.4 of the family court
act. The commissioner shall establish within the office of mental
retardation and developmental disabilities an administrative process to
permit a person who has been or may be disqualified from possessing such
a firearm pursuant to 18 USC 922(4)(d) to petition for relief from that
disability where such person's record and reputation are such that such
person will not be likely to act in a manner dangerous to public safety
and where the granting of the relief would not be contrary to public
safety. The commissioner shall promulgate regulations to establish the
relief from disabilities program, which shall include, but not be limit-
ed to, provisions providing for: (i) an opportunity for a disqualified
person to petition for relief in writing; (ii) the authority for the
agency to require that the petitioner undergo a clinical evaluation and
risk assessment; and (iii) a requirement that the agency issue a deci-
sion in writing explaining the reasons for a denial or grant of relief.
The denial of a petition for relief from disabilities may be reviewed de
novo pursuant to the proceedings under article seventy-eight of the
civil practice law and rules.
§ 3. Section 31.11 of the mental hygiene law is amended by adding a
new subdivision 5 to read as follows:
5. providing, to the office of mental health, in a form or format
requested by the commissioner, records requested by such office relating
to persons as described in subdivision (j) of section 7.09 of this chap-
ter who may be disqualified from possessing a firearm pursuant to 18 USC
922(4)(d).
§ 4. Subdivision (b) of section 33.13 of the mental hygiene law, as
amended by chapter 912 of the laws of 1984, is amended to read as
follows:
(b) The commissioners may require that statistical information about
patients or clients be reported to the offices. Names of patients treat-
ed at out-patient or non-residential facilities[, at hospitals licensed
by the office of mental health and at general hospitals] shall not be
required as part of any such reports. Hospitals licensed by the office
of mental health and general hospitals shall provide to the office of
mental health, upon request, records relating to persons described in
subdivision (j) of section 7.09 of this chapter who may be disqualified
from possessing a firearm pursuant to 18 USC 422(4)(d).
§ 5. Paragraph 13 of subdivision (c) of section 33.13 of the mental
hygiene law, as added by chapter 181 of the laws of 1995, is amended to
read as follows:
13. to the state division of criminal justice services for the sole
purposes of:
(i) providing, facilitating, evaluating or auditing access by the
commissioner of mental health to criminal history information pursuant
to subdivision [(j)] (i) of section 7.09 of this chapter; or
(ii) providing information to the criminal justice information
services division of the federal bureau of investigation by the commis-
sioner of mental health or the commissioner of mental retardation and
developmental disabilities, for the purposes of responding to queries to
the national instant criminal background check system regarding attempts
to purchase or otherwise take possession of firearms, in accordance with
applicable federal laws or regulations.
§ 6. Subdivision (c) of section 33.13 of the mental hygiene law is
amended by adding a new paragraph 14 to read as follows:
14. to the criminal justice information services division of the
federal bureau of investigation, for the purposes of responding to
queries to the national instant criminal background check system,
regarding attempts to purchase or otherwise take possession of firearms,
in accordance with applicable federal laws or regulations.
§ 7. Subdivision 2 of section 212 of the judiciary law is amended by
adding a new paragraph (q) to read as follows:
(q) Adopt rules to require transmission, to the criminal justice
information services division of the federal bureau of investigation or
to the division of criminal justice services, of the name and other
identifying information of each person who has a guardian appointed for
him or her pursuant to any provision of state law, based on a determi-
nation that as a result of marked subnormal intelligence, mental
illness, incapacity, condition or disease, he or she lacks the mental
capacity to contract or manage his or her own affairs.
§ 8. This act shall take effect November 1, 2008; provided, however
that the amendments to subdivision (b) of section 33.13 of the mental
hygiene law made by section four of this act shall take effect on the
same date as the reversion of such subdivision as provided in section 18
of chapter 408 of the laws of 1999, as amended, takes effect.

The Legislature of the STATE OF NEW YORK ss:
Pursuant to the authority vested in us by section 70-b of the Public
Officers Law, we hereby jointly certify that this slip copy of this
session law was printed under our direction and, in accordance with such
section, is entitled to be read into evidence.

JOSEPH L. BRUNO
Temporary President of the Senate
SHELDON SILVER
Speaker of the Assembly