Bayonne, NJ asked in Criminal Law for New Jersey

Q: Can I get out of a subpoena in NJ, due to a legitimate dr appt (that was planned months ago) for my child?

Thank you for the response. I updated this, as I realized my question had too detailed personal information.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Louis A Casadia
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  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Hammonton, NJ
  • Licensed in New Jersey

A: Hello, I will try my best to give you an answer to your question but I would need more information to really understand what exactly you are being subpoenaed for. In New Jersey in order to obtain a Firearm Purchaser ID Card or a Permit to Purchase a Handgun you need two references to speak to your character and fitness to own a Firearm. This used to be done by the mail with the local police department that took the application mailing out a short questionnaire to the references to mail back. Now it is all digital and the reference will receive an email to fill out an online questionnaire. If the application is approved their is no court and you would receive your permits digitally. If you are denied you can appeal your denial to the County Superior Court. At this hearing the County Prosecutor's Office would represent the State's interests in asking the Court to uphold the denial. Both the State and the Defense have a right to call witnesses at this hearing.

Were you asked to be a reference for a Firearm application? If not, does this applicant have a history with you that resulted in some sort of criminal charges against him or a Domestic Dispute including a restraining order? If so, you may have been subpoenaed by the State to testify about those incidents in order to support him not getting a Firearm.

Their are other types of hearings where the other party already has a Firearm permit and the State is seeking to Revoke it that you could similarly have been requested to testify at. Lastly, a Firearm Carry Permit application needs to be approved by a Judge at a Court hearing which is usually nothing more then a formality but I suppose in some counties they could be requesting any references on the application to appear in Court.

To answer your question directly though you can call the party that issued the subpoena and ask them to request a postponement of the hearing. If you were subpoenaed by the applicant or his attorney I would also call the Prosecutor's Office and ask to speak to the Prosecutor handling the matter and request the postponement from him as well. Lastly, you can contact the Judges chambers where the hearing is going to take place and also ask for a postponement. Just explain your hardship to all parties involved. I don't know enough about what you are being called in for but usually for the hearings I explained above it should not be a big deal for them to move it to a new date.

If that does not work you can hire an attorney to file a formal motion to quash the subpoena based on your hardship but having worked at the Prosecutor's Office for seven years I always did my best to accommodate witness needs so I would be surprised if it came to that.

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