Follow us on Twitter Follow us on Facebook RSS


The Oregon Castle Doctrine Act: Protecting Your Family

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

By Kevin Mannix

Just imagine you’re at home relaxing in the living room with your spouse and kids, when an intruder attempts to break down your door. What would you do?

  • Submit, give in to the intruder’s effort to break in and not protect your family
  • Protect yourself and your family  

Clearly, the choice would be to protect yourself and your family, but this can have legal implications, especially under the civil law.

Under these circumstances, there are two parts of Oregon law to be concerned about:

The big issue is possible civil liability.

An attorney for the criminal intruder may seek damages from you on various legal theories including the argument that you should have retreated, with your family, in your own home. There was a case in another state where a burglar shot and wounded a homeowner; the homeowner returned fire and wounded the burglar, who escaped. The burglar was later found, and tried and convicted of burglary and assault. Yet, the burglar then filed a civil suit against the homeowner for injuries suffered by the burglar when the homeowner fought back and shot the burglar.

Realistically, you would probably win a civil case brought against you by a criminal intruder but only after much time, trouble and expense.

Secondly, it is possible you could be prosecuted; the reality is most prosecutors will not bring charges in these types of cases because the juries will not look kindly at criminal intruders, but the possibility is still there.

Common Sense For Oregon is working to clean the air about your rights through a citizen initiative, The Oregon Castle Doctrine Act. Common Sense For Oregon is currently collecting petition signatures (we need 130,000 before July 1st) to get this major citizen initiative on Oregon’s November 2014 Ballot. To date, 35 states have adopted a “Castle Doctrine.” Now let’s make Oregon the 36th state!

The Oregon Castle Doctrine Act would allow homeowners to defend themselves and their loved ones, without having to later defend themselves in court.

If you would like to know more about supporting The Oregon Castle Doctrine Act you can visit the Common Sense For Oregon website , call 503-480-0523, or email

If you want to be able to defend yourself and your loved ones against a criminal trying to break-in, without having to worry about being sued, support The Oregon Castle Doctrine Act.