Batinick Files Legislation to Hold Consenting Parents Criminally Liable for Firearm Damages Perpetrated by Their Children with FOID Cards

PLAINFIELD – In response to mass shootings that occurred in New York, Texas, and most recently in Highland Park, State Representative Mark Batinick (R-Plainfield) filed legislation to hold parents consenting to FOID applicants under 21 years old criminally liable for any damages resulting from their use of firearms. Rep. Batinick filed House Bill 5769 on Friday to ensure parents are also held criminally liable in the events of these tragedies.

“The mass shootings that plague our nation and state regularly are stealing the lives of our loved ones, neighbors, and children,” said Rep. Batinick. “House Bill 5769 will help us hold parents criminally liable in Illinois for any damages resulting from the firearm, firearms, or ammunition in which they consented for their child under the age of 21 to have the FOID card to purchase. We need to take gun safety seriously and ensure that our younger adults are prepared, trained, and fit to own a firearm by adding this layer of accountability for parents consenting.”

The Firearm Owners Identification Card Act states that individuals must be 21 years old to apply for a FOID card. Individuals under 21 years old must meet certain requirements and have the written consent of their parents or legal guardians who are eligible to also possess a FOID card. Currently, parents of children under 21 who give consent are civilly liable for damages resulting from the children’s use of firearms or ammunition. HB 5769 will also hold parents criminally liable in these events.

According to a February article from the National Institute of Justice, from 2010 to 2019, the average lives mass shootings claimed increased to 51 deaths per year and of known mass shooting cases, 77% engaged in mass shootings had “purchased at least some of their guns legally, while illegal purchases were made by 13% of those committing mass shootings.”

“This is practical legislation we can apply to increase firearm safety awareness and awareness of the consequences of firearm damages,” said Rep. Batinick. “This is a way to help make our communities safer and ensure kids under 21 and their parents fully consent to the great responsibility of owning firearms.”