Judiciary – All-Bill Summary 2017

All crime, courts & corrections-related bills passed by the Legislature & signed into law for 2017. #ialegis #iagov #crime #courts #corrections

The following bills were passed by the Legislature and signed into law by the Governor.

SF 260 – Premises liability – trespassers
SF 275 – Change of venue in termination of parental rights proceedings
SF 332 – Changes to controlled substances schedules
SF 333 – Fiduciary access to digital assets
SF 358 – Authorizing electronic application for search warrants

SF 374 – State Public Defender policy bill
SF 376 – Claims for asbestos exposure
SF 401 – Sexual abuse civil protective orders
SF 403 – Theft of equipment rental property
SF 405 – Substantive Code Editor’s bill
SF 413 – Statute of Repose
SF 433 – Relating to adoption and adoption fraud
SF 444 – Using handheld devices and establishing a 24/7 program

SF 445 – Law enforcement officer privileges and sentencing reform
SF 446 – Civil asset forfeiture
SF 465 – Medical malpractice, caps on damages, expert witness requirements

SF 466 – Juror master list and shorthand reporters
SF 467 – Felons and life insurance proceeds
HF 52 – Criminal offense of interference with judicial acts- bailiffs
HF 69 – Modifying penalties for trespassing

HF 133 – Guardians ad litem, attorneys for minor children, child custody investigators
HF 134 – Regulating the occupancy of rental property based on familial status
HF 146 – Notice requirements for forcible entry and detainers
HF 183 – Service of copies of court documents relating to dependent adults
HF 184 – Petitions for administration of small estates
HF 195 – Requests for notice of probate proceedings
HF 253 – Relating to paternity and the obligation for support
HF 263 – Domestic abuse, harassment, and stalking
HF 296 – Definition of imitation drugs moved to Chapter 124, increasing penalties
HF 371 – Att. fees and court costs in action pursuant to request for quitclaim deed
HF 488 – Non-substantive Code Editor’s bill
HF 517 – Firearms omnibus bill
HF 523 – Medical examiners access to drug prescribing and dispensing information
HF 524 – Medical cannabis (originally related to the drug prescribing and dispensing)
HF 526 – Criminal offense of harassment and nonconsensual pornography

SF 260 establishes that a possessor of real property is not liable for injury to a trespasser, except to use reasonable care to avoid injuring them once their presence is known. They may be liable if a child trespasser is injured by a dangerous condition that should have been known to the possessor. This codifies case law relating to premises liability, and is an effort to preempt courts from adopting a different liability standard that would potentially impose greater liability.
[3/3: 48-1 (Bisignano “no”; C. Johnson absent)]


SF 275 allows a petition terminating parental rights to be filed in a county other than the county where the children, guardian, mother or pregnant woman live, if there are valid safety concerns. The petition must be made within the judicial district that includes the home county. The court must keep the residence of child and petitioner confidential.
[3/8: 49-0 (Chelgren absent)]


SF 332 makes changes to controlled substance schedules to conform to actions taken by the U.S. Department of Justice, Drug Enforcement Administration.
[3/13: 49-0 (Bertrand absent)]


SF 333 creates a new Code Chapter, “Iowa Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act,” to address technology changes that allow people to store property and communications online. A digital asset is “an electronic record in which an individual has a right or interest.” Electronic relates “to technology having electrical, digital magnetic, wireless, optical, electromagnetic, or similar capabilities.” Examples of digital assets include a Facebook, e-mail, Google or electronic banking accounts. “Custodians” are the companies that provide the accounts.

When a person dies or becomes incapacitated, heirs and fiduciaries may be prohibited from accessing their digital assets. This Act provides a uniform and consistent framework for individuals and their fiduciaries to plan for digital assets. Internet users will have control over their digital assets by specifying if they should be preserved, distributed to heirs or destroyed. Default rules will govern access to digital assets for executors and administrators of an estate, agents under a power of attorney, guardians, conservators and trustees.

Highlights of the Act include:

  • An account user may use an online tool (e.g., Facebook) to direct a custodian to disclose their digital assets.
  • The user may allow or prohibit disclosure in a will, trust, power of attorney or other record.
  • A fiduciary does not possess any new or expanded rights beyond that of the user.
  • There is no requirement to disclose a digital asset that was deleted by the user.
  • If disclosure of some digital assets imposes an undue burden, the custodian or fiduciary may seek a court order regarding disclosure.
  • Disclosure of electronic communications requires a fiduciary to provide proof that they have a right to the digital assets.
  • Disclosure of non-content digital assets also requires specific documentation.
  • If the request for disclosure is made by a guardian or conservator, there must be an opportunity for a hearing, after which a court may grant access to digital assets other than electronic communications. A guardian or conservator may request suspension or termination of an account.
    [3/13: 49-0 (Bertrand absent)]


SF 358 – Search warrants may be applied for and issued electronically. Pursuant to an electronic application, magistrates can communicate electronically with the applicant, and the magistrate may administer the person’s oath or affirmation by electronic means. In addition, an inventory of property seized pursuant to the warrant may be filed with the magistrate or clerk of court. Current law requires the inventory to be filed with the magistrate. The Judicial Branch will establish processes and procedures, which will likely be done through the Electronic Document Management System (EDMS). The Act takes effect when rules prescribed by the Supreme Court are in place and submitted to the Legislative Council.
[3/9: 48-0 (Anderson, Bertrand absent)]


SF 374 relates to the office of the State Public Defender. The bill:

  • Conform to the Iowa Supreme Court decision in State v. Young, clarifying that an indigent person is entitled to counsel when the crime they are charged with carries a possibility of jail time.
  • Updates language allowing the State Public Defender to contract with nonprofit organizations for legal services. Some nonprofits, such as the Innocence Project, use volunteer attorneys, so language requiring an organization to “employ” attorneys is deleted.
  • Allows the State Public Defender’s field offices to maintain conflict separation in a virtualized cloud environment, rather than through separate servers in 20 field offices.
  • Allows State Public Defenders to report case expenses within a reasonable time after a case is closed rather than the 10 days.
  • Requires a political subdivision to reimburse the State Public Defender’s Office for attorney’s fees and expenses for the defense of a person charged with violating a local ordinance that requires an attorney be appointed, effective January 1, 2018.
    [4/11: 49-0 (Allen absent)]


SF 376 sets requirements for filing claims for asbestos exposure with asbestos bankruptcy trust claims and civil suits, including what a plaintiff must file, time limits for filings, and what is required to prove damages due to asbestos exposure. A plaintiff who files a civil asbestos action must disclose documents and information related to claims against any asbestos trust within 90 days of filing an action or 90 days of the effective date of this legislation, whichever is later. Trust claim materials and governance documents are presumed to be relevant, authentic and admissible as evidence in an asbestos action. This legislation limits recovery for damages that caused serious health problems and/or death.
[3/8: 27-22, party-line, except Bertrand, D. Johnson voting “no” with Democrats; Chelgren absent)]


SF 401 allows victims of sexual abuse to get a civil protective order that requires the perpetrator to stay away from them and their home, school and workplace. Previously, civil protective orders were available for victims of domestic abuse and elder abuse. Victims of sexual abuse can only get a no-contact order if there is a criminal prosecution, which does not always happen. Those protected by a domestic abuse civil protective order or a sexual abuse civil protective order can sign up for notifications from a victim notification system. The protected person and others who register will receive notification when the protective order is served, as well as notification at least 30 days prior to expiration of the order.
[3/8: 49-0 (Chelgren absent)]


SF 403 adds theft of equipment rental property to the definition of theft and adds a new element to what constitutes theft of equipment rental property. The aggregate value of the equipment rental property must be the original retail value of the property. Evidence of theft includes using a false name, address or identification, or deception to obtain the equipment rental property. It is also evidence of theft if a person lawfully obtains the property but fails to return the property or pay the fair market value of the property within 48 hours of receiving a written notice from the owner.
[3/13: 49-0 (Bertrand absent)]


SF 405 is the Substantive Code Editor’s bill that adjusts language to reflect current practices, inserts earlier omissions, deletes redundancies and inaccuracies, and removes temporary language.
[3/15: 49-0 (Horn absent)]


SF 413 relates to a statute of repose for improvements to real property. The bill:

  • Maintains the statute of repose relating to nuclear power plants and interstate pipelines at 15 years.
  • Sets the statute of repose for residential construction at 10 years.
  • Maintains a statute of repose at 15 years when there is intentional misconduct or fraudulent concealment of an unsafe or defective condition.
  • Sets a statute of repose for all other improvements to real property at eight years.
    [3/8: 32-16, party-line except Allen, Bowman, Kinney, McCoy voting “yes” with Republicans; Bertrand, Chelgren absent)]


SF 433 addresses adoption fraud. The bill:

  • Limits adoption services to state licensed adoption agencies and attorneys. Both are strictly regulated for ethical practices and competency.
  • Toughens penalties for scamming prospective adoptive parents.
  • Caps allowable expenses payable to expectant parents who are making an adoption plan.
  • Requires that all expenses paid to expectant parents be documented and reported to the court in the termination proceeding and adoption proceeding to catch abuses earlier in the process.
  • Requires adoption agencies to use separate escrow accounts for adoptive parents’ funds for birthparent expenses, rather than commingling them with agency funds, and requires a detailed accounting of expenditures to adoptive parents.
    [3/21: 49-0 (Shipley absent)]


SF 444 is a traffic safety bill with two distinct parts.

Division I – The charge of reckless driving applies when a driver causes an accident that seriously injures or kills someone while texting. Public safety officers performing official duties, healthcare professionals in an emergency and drivers receiving safety-related information (emergency, traffic or weather alerts) are excluded from potential charges of reckless driving. A handheld electronic communication device is “a mobile telephone or other portable electronic communication device capable of being used to write, send, or view an electronic message.” Reckless driving is a Class “C” felony.

Division II requires the Department of Public Safety to create a statewide sobriety and drug monitoring program for jurisdictions (e.g., counties) that want to participate. If a person charged with an offense involving abuse of alcohol or a controlled substance, they may be required to participate in the program.

A defendant may be ordered to:

  • Abstain from alcohol and controlled substances.
  • Submit to twice-per-day testing to determine if alcohol or drugs are being used.
  • Use an alternative method to twice-per-day testing if it creates a hardship or is geographically impractical.

Participants who fail to show up for testing or test positive may be jailed for up to 24 hours, pending a hearing. If a participant fails to show up, the magistrate can issue an arrest warrant. The program is repealed July 1, 2022.
[4/12: 49-0 (Bertrand absent)]


SF 445 prohibits requiring a law enforcement officer to give evidence in a criminal proceeding or to be questioned regarding:

  • Personal identifying information about themselves or their immediate family, or information unrelated to the officer’s duties that could be used to threaten, harm or intimidate the officer or family.
  • Identification documents necessary to conduct a lawful undercover criminal investigation.

The name, photograph, compensation and benefit records, time records, residential address or any other personal identifying information of an undercover law enforcement officer must be confidential while the officer is actively involved in an investigation. An undercover officer is “…a law enforcement officer actively engaged in undercover law enforcement work whose assignment requires the law enforcement officer to work incognito, or in a situation in which the true identity of the law enforcement officer is intentionally hidden from others.”


Other Divisions – Sentencing reform & attempted murder of a peace officer

  1. Penalties for Crack Cocaine – Increases the amounts of crack cocaine to be charged with various levels of felonies. The increased amounts bring more parity to the penalties for the possession of crack and powder cocaine.
    1. To be charged with a super “B” felony (up to 50 years), a person must manufacture, possess with intent to distribute, etc. at least 200 grams of crack cocaine. Previous law required 50 grams or above.
    2. To be charged with a “B” felony (up to 25 years), the amount of crack cocaine must be 40 to 200 grams. Previous law was 10 to 50 grams.
    3. Forty grams or less of crack cocaine is a “C” felony” (up to 10 years).
  2. Attempted murder of a peace officer – A new crime of attempted murder of a peace officer is punishable by 25 years with no opportunity for parole or work release and no earned time. If convicted of multiple offenses, the attempted murder of a peace officer is served first.
  3. No mandatory minimums for “C” felony drug offenses – Removes mandatory minimums (previously 20 months) for “C” felony drug offenses. This provision is retroactive, so it may impact the sentences of approximately 175 offenders.
  4. Reconsideration of a felon’s sentence – Amends Code section 902.4 to prohibit reconsideration of class “B” felonies, which is already the case for class “A” felony sentences. The bill removes the prohibition on reconsidering mandatory minimum sentences.
  5. Repeals Section 152C.6 of the Code, which says that “no city, township, or county governmental body, agency, or department will enact or enforce restrictions or requirements regarding massage therapists which are not equally enacted or enforced regarding all licensed health care practitioners, including but not limited to zoning, building code, health and sanitation regulations.”
    [4/19: 50-0]


SF 446 is a Forfeiture Reform Act, which makes changes to Chapter 809A. Changes are in response to complaints from those who’ve had property seized by law enforcement. Highlights of the bill include:

  • Minimum civil forfeiture amount: No civil asset forfeiture without a criminal conviction when the seized property is valued at less than the minimum civil forfeiture amount of $5,000.
    • If the seized property is less than the minimum, there must be a criminal conviction for forfeiture.
    • If there is a criminal conviction when the property is valued at less than the minimum, judicial forfeiture proceedings must commence within 90 days of the criminal proceeding but can be extended if with a timely petition.
    • If the property is less than the minimum, forfeiture proceedings can still be brought if:
      • The property owner is deceased
      • Charges have been brought against the owner and a warrant has been issued for the owner’s arrest, but the owner is outside the state and can’t be extradited or cannot be located.
    • Standard of proof: The standard of proof for asset forfeiture is increased to “clear and convincing evidence.” The standard had been a “preponderance of evidence that the property is subject to forfeiture.”
    • Proportionality review: Property cannot be forfeited if the value is grossly disproportionate to the severity of the crime. The court must consider certain factors in determining proportionality.
    • Law enforcement must have written internal control policies that include:
      • Detailed records of property acquired and the date it was acquired.
      • The manner in which the property was disposed, including the date of disposition and financial records regarding property sold. Records must include an itemized list of specific expenditures made with money from the sale.
      • These records will be public.
[3/28: 49-0 (Rozenboom absent)]


SF 465 sets a $250,000 cap on noneconomic damages that can be recovered by a plaintiff in a medical malpractice case; creates overly strict requirements for qualifying as an expert witness; and requires certificate of merit affidavits for expert witnesses. A jury may exceed the $250,000 cap on economic damages if there is substantial or permanent loss or impairment of a bodily function, substantial disfigurement or death. These changes went into effect with the Governor signed the bill into law and impact causes of action that occur on or after that date.
[4/17: 37-12 (Bisignano, Bolkcom, Boulton, Dotzler, Dvorsky, Hogg, Jochum, D. Johnson, Mathis, Petersen, Quirmbach, Taylor voting “no”; McCoy absent)]


SF 466 addresses Iowa’s Jury Management System and governance of Iowa’s shorthand reporters. The bill:

  • Modernizes Iowa’s Jury Management System by eliminating the drawing of juror lists by a jury commission; clarifies the role and responsibilities of local jury managers; requires the master jury list to be updated electronically each year; and specifies that non-operator identification lists will be used in compiling the master jury list.
  • Requires the Iowa Supreme Court to supervise the Board of Examiners of Shorthand Reporters and have authority to review and modify any Board action. The Supreme Court may establish rules for supervision of the Board. If a shorthand reporter’s certification is placed in exempt status, the reporter may transcribe and certify a proceeding that was reported while the reporter was in active status, and the reporter will be subject to the jurisdiction of the Board if circumstances require.
    [3/16: 48-0 (Bertrand, Zumbach absent)]


SF 467 prohibits receipt of life insurance proceeds by a person who commits a violent felony against the insured, but the felony does not cause death. A beneficiary convicted of felonious assault, felonious sex abuse, attempted murder or kidnapping, or human trafficking against the insured within the six months prior to the death of the insured is not entitled to the proceeds. The felony does not need to be related to the death. The insured may affirm in a notarized writing that the beneficiary should receive benefits under the life insurance policy despite the felony conviction.
[4/19: 50-0]


HF 52 adds county bailiffs to the list of professions in the Code section relating to interference with official acts. If a person knowingly resists or obstructs a bailiff in the performance of their duties, they can be charged with interference with official acts. Previously, this applied only to peace officers, jailers, emergency medical providers and firefighters.
[4/3: 49-0 (Bertrand absent)]


HF 69 amends penalties for simple trespass. It will continue to be a simple misdemeanor but will be punishable as a scheduled violation: a fine of $200 for a first offense, $500 for a second offense and $1000 for a third or subsequent violation. These penalties also apply to those who trespass while hunting deer other than farm deer or preserve whitetail. A peace officer may arrest an individual who has trespassed and has already received a citation, but refuses to leave the property or immediately returns to the property. A property owner can post a no trespassing notice at the entrance to the property or the forbidden part of the property.

[4/19: 49-1 (McCoy voting “no”)]


HF 133 prevents a person from acting as both a guardian ad litem and a child’s attorney. An attorney’s job is to advocate for the child’s wishes, while a guardian ad litem advocates for the child’s best interests. The bill details and expands the duties of the children’s attorneys and guardians ad litem, and clarifies that lawyers should not testify as witnesses or reporters in family law cases.
[4/3: 49-0 (Bertrand absent)]


HF 134 prohibits a city from limiting the occupancy of residential rental property based upon familial or non-familial relationships among occupants.
[4/11: 43-6 (Bolkcom, Hogg, Mathis, Dvorsky, Kinney, Quirmbach “no”; Allen absent)]


HF 146 – Notice requirements for a forcible entry and detainer will be deemed satisfied if the defendant or the defendant’s attorney appear at the hearing. However, if the hearing is held fewer than three days after service of the original notice or if the notice is deemed satisfied, the court must inform the defendant or their right to a continuance and will grant a continuance if the defendant wants one to prepare for the hearing or to retain an attorney.
[4/5: 50-0]


HF 183 expands the categories of those who could be served with a petition for protective services relating to a dependent adult. Previously, Iowa law set out an order of priority for those to be served. Once the Department of Human Services has served a person in one of the categories, it is not required to serve anyone else in the other categories. The bill adds a dependent adult’s spouse (only if they are not legally separated), the dependent adult’s parents and the dependent adult’s grandparents.
[4/3: 49-0 (Bertrand absent)]


HF 184 conforms the information required in a petition to commence a probate proceeding involving a small estate to that required for a large estate (more than $100,000). The bill removes the requirement that the name and relationship of each beneficiary in a testate estate (there is a will) or known heirs in an intestate estate (no will) be included in a petition to probate a small estate.
[4/13: 49-0 (Bertrand absent)]


HF 195 updates the Probate Code to allow electronic notices. Any person interested in receiving notices regarding a probate proceeding must provide an e-mail address so that notices can be sent electronically. Previously, the Code required notice to be sent by ordinary mail.
[[4/13: 49-0 (Bertrand absent)]


HF 253 modifies Code Chapter 600B relating to paternity and obligation for support when parents are not married. The modifications are intended to provide consistency between Chapter 600B and Chapter 598, which deals with custody actions between married parents. The bill provides that any party found in contempt for failing to pay child support under Chapter 600B can be ordered to pay attorney’s fees of the complaining party.  In addition, the bill requires unmarried parents involved in custody actions to complete a court-approved Children in the Middle course.
[4/10: 48-0 (Allen, Taylor absent)]


HF 263 relates to domestic abuse. The bill:

  • Requires the court to set a mandatory minimum sentence for a third or subsequent domestic abuse assault between one-fifth and the maximum sentence. A third or subsequent domestic abuse assault is a Class “D” felony with a sentence of up to five years, so the court must establish a mandatory minimum of at least one year and up to five years.
  • Expands the definition of stalking.
  • Establishes the crime of unauthorized placement of a GPS device.
  • Reduces earned time for a person sentenced to prison for a third or subsequent domestic abuse assault.
  • Prohibits the accumulation of earned time until an offender participates and completes domestic abuse programming.
  • Requires the Board of Parole in conjunction with the Department of Corrections to develop a domestic abuse risk assessment tool.
  • Authorizes electronic monitoring for those convicted of domestic abuse a third time when placed on parole or work release.
  • Prohibits a deferred judgement, a deferred sentence or a suspended sentence for those convicted of domestic abuse a third time.
    [4/10: 48-0 (Allen, Taylor absent)]


HF 296 relates primarily to imitation controlled substances. Key provisions include:

  • A temporarily designated (by the Board of Pharmacy) controlled substance will remain as such for two years. If the Legislature does not act to make it permanent within that time, the temporary designation is repealed.
  • All imitation controlled substances are placed on the controlled substances schedules, thus making the penalties for possession, manufacture, distribution, etc. comparable to the penalties for controlled substances.
  • Placing synthetic opioids on the list of Schedule I controlled substances.


Division I: Temporary designations of controlled substances

Previously, if the federal government designated a new controlled substance, the Board of Pharmacy would similarly designate it a controlled substance, unless the Board objected. The designation by the Board was considered a temporary designation. For permanent designation as controlled substances, the Legislature had to designate them as such within the first 60 days of the next session. If the Legislature did not act, the temporary designation was nullified.

This bill changes the time required for the Legislature to act to make the designations permanent. The temporary designation as a controlled substance by the Board of Pharmacy will remain in effect for two years from the time the temporary designation went into effect. If the Legislature does not act in that time, the temporary designation is repealed.


Division II: Imitation Controlled Substances

Previously, an imitation controlled substance is “not a controlled substance but which by color, shape, size, markings, and other aspects of dosage unit appearance, and packaging or other factors, appears to be or resembles a controlled substance.” Imitation controlled substances were covered in Code Chapter 124A and the unlawful manufacture, possession, distribution of an imitation controlled substance was an aggravated misdemeanor. If an adult delivers an imitation controlled substance to a minor who is at least three years younger than the adult, the penalty is a “D” felony.

Chapter 124A is repealed. Imitation controlled substances are now covered in Chapter 124 (scheduling of controlled substances). The definition of imitation controlled substance does not change.

  • The Board of Pharmacy may designate an imitation controlled substance pursuant to rulemaking authority.
  • A substance does not have to have been designated by the Board to be considered an imitation controlled substance. Factors that help determine an imitation controlled substance include:
    • Person in control indicates the substance has the effect of a controlled substance
    • Person in control indicates the substance can be sold or delivered as a controlled substance or as a substitute.
    • Person in control receives consideration for delivery of the substance.


Division III: Penalties for manufacture, delivery or possession with the intent to manufacture or deliver

More than 10 kilograms of an imitation controlled substance “Super B” felony Up to 50 years and fine up to $1 million
5 to 10 kilograms of an imitation controlled substance “B” felony Up to 25 years and a fine of $5000 to $100,000
5 kilograms or less “C” felony Up to 10 years and a fine of $1000 to $50,000.

Note: 1 kilogram equals 2.2 pounds


Division IV: Additional Controlled Substances – Adds a group of synthetic opioids to the list of Schedule I controlled substances.

The bill eliminates the requirement for an electronic signature for prescriptions for drugs that are not controlled substances if transmitted by an authorized agent, and strikes the 10-year mandatory minimum for a “B” felony conviction for selling and distributing Schedule I and II controlled substances near a school, park and other public places.
[4/19: 48-2 (Bolkcom, Taylor “no”)]


HF 371 allows a judge to assess reasonable attorney fees against defendants in quiet title actions. It also increases the fee provided to a party holding an apparent adverse interest in property when the party holding the adverse interest executes a quitclaim deed. The party requesting the quitclaim deed must make the request in writing and provide a draft of the quitclaim deed to the adverse party.
[4/13:  49-0 (Bertrand absent)]


HF 488 is the non-substantive Code Editor’s bill, which is submitted each year to make Code changes that generally exceed the Code Editor’s authority to make editorially but are considered to be non-substantive and non-controversial.
[3/23: 47-0 (Anderson, Bertrand, Shipley absent)]


HF 517 makes changes to Iowa’s firearms laws.

Division I – Offensive Weapons: Sections 1 and 2 – Legalizes possession of short-barreled rifles and short-barreled shotguns as defined by federal law, if the person is in compliance with federal law. A violation is a “D” felony.

Division II – Carrying and Possession of Weapons

  • Section 3 – Removes redundant language.
  • Section 4 – Going armed with intent” – “Intent cannot be inferred from mere carrying or concealment of any dangerous weapon, including carrying a loaded firearm in a vehicle or about a person’s body.”
  • Section 5 – Allows private investigators and private security officers to carry firearms on school grounds while performing their job if they have a permit to carry.
  • Section 6 – Makes it a serious misdemeanor to possess a dangerous weapon while intoxicated (previously an aggravated misdemeanor). Conviction of an aggravated misdemeanor involving a firearm prohibits a person from possessing a firearm under Iowa law. It will not be a crime to possess a dangerous weapon on your own property while intoxicated. Also, it will not be a crime to temporarily possess a dangerous weapon while intoxicated to use the weapon in self-defense or defense of another.
  • Section 7 – If carrying a revolver, pistol or pocket billy concealed, a person must have their permit to carry with them. A violation is a simple misdemeanor. However, if the person presents evidence to the clerk of court of a permit to carry that was valid at the time of the offense, the charge is dismissed. The person still pays court costs.

Division III- Permit to Carry Weapons and Firearm Safety Training

  • Section 8 – Changes “firearms training program” to “firearm safety training.”
  • Sections 9 & 10 – A person only needs to show evidence of training one time within 24 months prior to applying for an initial permit to carry and must demonstrate knowledge of firearm safety through any of the following:
  • Handgun safety training course available to the public offered through a law enforcement agency, community college, college, private or public institution or organization, or a firearms training school, using instructors certified by the NRA or DPS or other state’s police department.
  • Any handgun safety training course for security guards, investigators, special deputies, etc. approved by the Department of Public Safety.
  • Completion of small arms training while in the military at any time prior to the application.
  • Completion of law enforcement agency training course that qualifies a peace officer to carry a firearm.
  • Completion of hunter safety course that covers handgun safety training approved by the Natural Resource Commission.
    • No training is required for renewal of permits issued after December 31, 2010.
    • Training may be conducted over the Internet if verified by the instructor or provider of the course.
    • If an applicant’s permit expires, firearms safety training is not be required for renewal.
    • Renewals of permits may be made 30 days before or 30 days after expiration. The cost for an initial permit is $50; renewal is $25. The Department of Public Safety gets a portion of the fees to implement the law.
  • Section 11 – Permits will be uniform throughout the state as implemented by the Department of Public Safety.
  • Section 12 – The loser pays the cost of an appeal of permit denial. If the applicant withdraws his appeal, he must pay the sheriff’s costs. Previous law required the sheriff to pay for all appeals.
  • The Department of Public Safety will promulgate rules to ensure permits issued in one county are transferable if the permit holder moves to another county.

Division IV – Permit to Acquire Pistols or Revolvers: Sections 13 through 22 – Permits to acquire are valid for five years and will have a uniform appearance as prescribed by the Department of Public Safety. Sheriffs may conduct annual criminal history checks of those who have permits to acquire. The sheriffs set the fees for permits to acquire.

Division V – Possession of Pistols or Revolvers by Persons Under 21: Sections 23 and 24 – Parents, guardians and spouses who are 21 or older may allow their child or spouse who is under 21 to possess a pistol, revolver or ammunition under direct supervision, which means maintaining a physical presence conducive to hands-on instruction, and visual and verbal contact. It is child endangerment to be intoxicated while supervising or instructing a person under 21 handling of a pistol or revolver. If a parent or guardian allows a minor to possess a pistol or revolver, they are liable for damages.

Division VI- Confidentiality of Permit Holder Information: Section 25 – All permits to carry and permits to acquire will be confidential except for:

  • Statistical purposes, if no identifying information of permit holders is revealed
  • Release of information to law enforcement when necessary to perform any lawfully authorized duty
  • Employers who require an employee to carry a professional permit
  • Court order requires or the permit holder has consented to the release

Division VII – State Preemption : Section 26 – If any city, county or township adopts an ordinance, rule, policy, etc. regulating firearms when the ownership, possession, transfer, transportation, etc. is otherwise lawful under state law, a person adversely affected may file suit for injunctive relief.

Division VIII – Pistols or Revolvers in the Capitol Building and on the Capitol Grounds: Section 27 – Those with permits to carry may carry pistols and revolvers concealed in the Capitol and on its grounds upon showing a valid permit to carry. DAS may write rules prohibiting carrying weapons in other Capitol Complex buildings.

Division IX – Emergency Powers

  • Section 28. In a declaration of a state of public disorder, the Governor may no longer prohibit the possession of firearms or other deadly weapons.
  • Section 29. In a disaster emergency, the Governor may no longer suspend or limit the sale, dispensing or transportation of firearms. The Governor does have such authority regarding alcohol, explosives and combustibles.
  • Section 30. Specifies that Chapter 29C does not authorize the Governor to prohibit, regulate or curtail possession, carrying, transportation or defensive use of firearms or ammunition, or to suspend or revoke carry permits, or to seize or confiscate firearms or ammunition during a declared emergency. The Governor may authorize the transfer of firearms and ammunition only. Emergency powers applied to firearms dealers are permissible if such restrictions are applied to all businesses in an affected area.

Division X – Use of Force and Deadly Force:

  • Section 31. A person may be wrong in their estimation of danger or the force necessary to repel danger, as long as there is a reasonable basis for the belief, and the person acts reasonably in response to that belief.
  • Section 32. Deadly force does not include a threat to cause serious injury or death, by the production, display or brandishing of a deadly weapon, as long as the actions of the person are limited to creating an expectation that the person may use deadly force.
  • Section 33. Establishes a presumption that deadly force is necessary if a person unlawfully enters a dwelling, place of business or employment, or occupied vehicle, or unlawfully attempts to remove another person from a dwelling, place of business or employment, or occupied vehicle. Establishes exceptions to presumption.
  • Section 34. Use of reasonable force is permissible to defend oneself from actual or imminent use of force.
  • Section 35. A person who reasonably believes (instead of “knows”) that a forcible felony is being perpetrated may use reasonable force to prevent it.
  • Section 36. A person justified in using reasonable force against an aggressor in defense on oneself, another person or property is immune from criminal or civil liability.
  • Section 37. Civil liability immunity extends not only to a person who causes injury, but also to a person who causes the death of an aggressor through reasonable force.
  • If a person uses deadly force, they must notify law enforcement. The person using deadly force must not tamper with any physical evidence at the scene.

Division XI – Fraudulent Purchase of Firearms or Ammunition (Straw Purchases): Section 38 – It is a “D” felony to knowingly induce a firearms dealer or private seller to transfer a firearm or ammunition in violation of state or federal law, or to provide false information to a dealer or seller with the intent to deceive regarding the legality of the transfer of a firearm or ammunition.

Division XII – Snowmobiles and All-Terrain Vehicles: Sections 39 and 40 – Allows the open carry of loaded pistols and revolvers by those on snowmobiles or all-terrain vehicles on another’s property, if the person is otherwise complying with the law. Previous law required firearms to be secured in a retention holster when on snowmobiles or all-terrain vehicles on another’s property.

Division XIII – Target Shooting: Section 41 – A person who owns or rents private premises in an unincorporated area may discharge a firearm for target shooting on the premises. This is not a violation of a noise ordinance or a public or private nuisance or otherwise prohibited by state or local law. Target shooting is discharging a firearm at an inanimate object for amusement or a test of skill (481A.123 (1) prohibits shooting within 200 yards of another home).

Division XIV – Effective Date and Applicability Provisions: The sections addressing underage possession of firearms and pistols and confidentiality of permits are effective upon enactment. Confidentiality of permits applies to all holders of permits to carry and acquire and to applicants for nonprofessional permits to carry and acquire.
[4/4: 33-17 (Bisignano, Bolkcom, Boulton, Danielson, Dotzler, Dvorsky, Hart, Hogg, Jochum, D. Johnson, Kinney, Lykam, Mathis, McCoy, Petersen, Quirmbach, Ragan “no”)]


HF 523 gives the state medical examiner, county medical examiners and their investigators access to the Drug Prescribing and Dispensing Information Program when the information relates to an investigation.
[4/13: 49-0 (Bertrand absent)]


HF 526 creates a new form of criminal harassment for “revenge porn,” though the term is misleading because dissemination is not always done for revenge. A better term might be “nonconsensual pornography.” It is illegal to disseminate pictures of another person nude, partially nude or engaged in a sex act without their consent. An offense is harassment in the first degree, an aggravated misdemeanor. The bill sets out exceptions.

The bill also amends language in the “invasion of privacy” criminal code section to ensure companies (e.g., Google, Facebook) cannot be charged with harassment under the new law. The bill also prohibits juveniles adjudicated delinquent for a violation from being placed on the sex offender registry.
[4/11: 48-1 (Taylor “no”; Allen absent)]