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Possession of Firearm by Convicted Felon

Florida Statute 790.23 – Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon

Florida Statute 790.23 prohibits anyone who has been convicted of a felony in either state or federal courts from knowingly having a firearm in their possession, custody, care, or control.


Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon is a second-degree felony and is punishable by up to fifteen years in prison.  The “actual possession” of a firearm by a convicted felon carries a potential mandatory-minimum three-year prison sentence pursuant to Florida Statute 775.087(2)(a)1. A person serving a mandatory minimum sentence is not eligible for gain-time or any other form of early release from prison.

Actual vs. Constructive Possession

“Actual Possession” means the firearm is in a person’s hand, or on their body. It is also defined as being so close to a person as to be within ready reach and under the person’s control.

It’s important to know that mere proximity to a firearm is not sufficient to establish control over a firearm when it is not in a place over which the person has control.

“Constructive Possession” means the firearm is in a place over which the person has control, or in which the person has concealed it.


An antique firearm is a firearm made prior to the year 1919 and is not considered a firearm for purposes of this statute.

Some things to consider in defending a charge of Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon are:

Did the police discover the firearm in a lawful manner? For instance, if the firearm was found in your vehicle, did the police have the legal authority to search your vehicle?

  • Where was the firearm discovered? On your person, or in a place that you have no control over?
  • Did you have knowledge of the firearm’s presence in the location or place where it was discovered?

Consult with an Experienced Gun Lawyer in West Palm Beach & Palm City

​Possession of a Firearm is a serious charge that requires a serious defense. Wayne Richter is an experienced criminal defense lawyer that works tirelessly to defend his clients. Schedule a free initial consultation with our gun lawyer in West Palm Beach & Palm City. We will obtain a copy of your police report and evaluate the potential defenses to your case.

The Law Offices of R. Wayne Richter will remain open and offering free case evaluations to all potential clients in need.  During this difficult time it is preferred you practice “Social Distancing” and call into the office as we are answering calls 24/7.  We continue to pray for the health and safety of all residents.

Call anytime for answers to your questions and legal assistance.

R. Wayne Richter