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Firearm Rights Restoration In Washington

February 01, 2021

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  • Washington Gun Rights

    One of the most controversial Amendments of the United States Constitution is the Second Amendment. As you may know, this amendment covers the right to keep and bear arms. It is often a topic of conversation in many public debate and town hall meetings. Many American citizens use the right to keep and bear arms to protect and care for their home and family. What some might not realize is that your Second Amendment rights and other civil rights can be lost if an individual is convicted of certain types of crimes. While this can be a discouraging punishment, there is a legal path to have these rights restored, depending on the state of the prior offense(s) and the nature of the crime(s) committed.

    Here at WipeRecord, some of the most frequently asked questions related to Gun Rights Restoration revolve around the qualifications necessary to reinstate these rights, and the process in attempting to do so. The process will vary depending on which state the offense(s) occurred in.

    Here’s some information on how the process typically works in Washington. In this State, a person may lose the right to own or possess a firearm if they are:

    • Convicted of any felony criminal offense
    • Convicted of any misdemeanor criminal offense which involves domestic violence
    • Involuntarily committed for any type of mental health treatment OR found not guilty of a criminal offense by reason of insanity
    • Subject to a restraining order, also referred to as a protective order

    The restoration of firearm rights can be extremely complex and confusing. The level of difficulty will depend on the state where the offense occurred and the nature of the offense. Typically, in the state of Washington, an official court order reinstating firearm rights may be issued to eligible petitioners if the following requirements are met:

    • 3 years has elapsed since the date of the misdemeanor criminal offense; 5 years for a felony conviction
    • Completion of all terms of probation
    • There are no other pending criminal charges or arrest warrants
    • No other prohibition of firearm possession due to any other unrelated factors, such as a mental health commitment, OR any other court order which restricts or limits firearm rights, such as a restraining order

    To start the process of gun rights restoration in Washington state, a petition must be filed at either the court of record which originally issued the prohibition, or at the court in the county in which the individual currently resides.

    There are many types of crimes that, if convicted, an individual will never be able to restore their firearm rights. Instances where firearm rights are not eligible for restoration include any criminal offenses which are deemed to be serious- such as sex offenses and class A felonies. In the state of Washington, the number of convictions a person may have generally does not play a significant role in his or her eligibility, as much as the nature of and time of occurrence of the convictions. Furthermore, firearm rights are never automatically restored in Washington state.

    Restoring one’s firearm rights can be a lengthy and difficult process. The process can be much more effective with the assistance of an experienced law firm or attorney that practices in this particular area and may better assist you. At WipeRecord, the services we provide are unique in that it can save you time and money.

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