Although most people can agree that seriously mentally ill individuals should not possess a firearm, translating this into policy is easier said than done. For example, who decides an individual’s mental status—a physician or government bureaucrats? What type or degree of “mental illness” will prohibit an individual from ever possessing a firearm? A case of situational depression? A few sessions of therapy? The Blaze is reporting that one man in California had three of his guns confiscated by the government because his wife was voluntarily admitted to a hospital for mental illness because of an adjustment to her medication.

Lynette Phillips of Upland, Calif., told TheBlaze in a phone interview Monday she had purchased a gun years ago for her husband, David, as a present. That gun, as well as two others registered to her law-abiding husband (who does not have a history of felonies or mental illness), were seized last Tuesday.

“My husband is upset that they took the right from us that should never have been taken, Phillips told TheBlaze.

But according to the state of California, that doesn’t matter.

“The prohibited person can’t have access to a firearm” regardless of who the registered owner is, Michelle Gregory, a spokeswoman for the attorney general’s office, told to Bloomberg News.

According to the Los Angeles Times last week, budget cuts created a backlog of 19,000 people in the state with more than 40,000 guns that they are no longer legally allowed to own. […]

Bloomberg reported that nine police with the state’s Department of Justice wearing bulletproof vests and carrying Glocks went to homes on March 5 to retrieve the guns from people who, under this law, were no longer allowed to own. The Phillips family was one of them.

The California Senate last week approved a bill that dedicates $24 million in funding to expedite the process of confiscating guns from individuals who are now disqualified due to mental illness or felony convictions.