Scales of Justice with blue lines behind it

Extreme Risk Protection Order:

A Tool To Save Lives

Extreme Risk Protection Order laws (ERPO) help prevent gun deaths and protect communities. They provide a civil process allowing law enforcement and, depending on the state, family members, medical professionals, and other groups to petition a court to temporarily prohibit someone at risk of harming themselves or others from purchasing and possessing firearms.

Twenty-one states and the District of Columbia have ERPO laws and their successful implementation requires the collaboration of a variety of stakeholders, including law enforcement, prosecutors, attorneys, judicial officers, clinicians, educators, and more. A new training and technical assistance program through the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Violence Solutions will support this implementation. As of March 2024, the content on this website is not being updated to reflect changes in the law. 

For the most up to date information, please visit the Johns Hopkins ERPO Resource Center at

ERPO and Domestic Violence

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New Report on ERPO Policy and Implementation

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About This Project

A Focus on Implementation

Effective gun violence prevention strategies are one of our nation’s most pressing needs in the 21st century. While many questions remain about the causes and consequences of gun violence and how to prevent it, evidence-informed policies with the potential to save lives do exist.

State laws that provide for Extreme Risk Protection Orders (also known as Gun Violence Restraining Orders and Risk Warrants) are one example of a promising, evidence-informed gun violence prevention policy.

In 2013, the Consortium for Risk-Based Firearm Policy responded to the Sandy Hook massacre by reviewing the evidence on risk factors for gun violence and developing a set of recommendations for action that would impact all forms of gun violence. Included in those recommendations was a call for states to pass a new type of policy to allow law enforcement and family members to petition civil courts for an Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO) when someone is behaving dangerously and at risk of self-harm (suicide) or harming others.

As detailed in a widely disseminated report, the Consortium developed the ERPO recommendation based on the Domestic Violence Restraining Order policies in place in all 50 states, and laws in Connecticut and Indiana that provide law enforcement with a mechanism to temporarily remove guns when an individual is responding dangerously. Through our work with the Consortium, we have met with stakeholders and policymakers in states across the country to discuss ERPO. As of April 16, 2020, seven years since the Consortium released its report, 19 states and the District of Columbia have passed new ERPO laws. Dozens more states have introduced ERPO bills.

With many laws in place, and several additional states poised to enact ERPO laws, there is a need for information, technical assistance, and support for implementing ERPO laws. We created this project to address that need. This website is designed as a central resource for ERPO implementers. Information about different state ERPO laws can be found here, along with ERPO research, media coverage, training resources, and advice from law enforcement professionals who are leading the nation’s ERPO implementation efforts. We even have space for implementers to blog about their experiences. We will be updating this site often as new information and developments in ERPO implementation evolve. Thank you for your interest in this exciting new gun violence prevention strategy.

The Researchers

ERPO Researcher Shannon Frattaroli
Shannon Frattaroli

Associate Professor,

Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

ERPO Researcher Josh Horwitz
Josh Horwitz


Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Center for Gun Violence Solutions