Don't Let Your Past Limit Your Future

Indiana Firearm Rights Restoration

Restoring Firearm Rights And Your Ability To Own A Gun In Indiana

September 2, 2015

Federal Firearm Rights vs. Indiana Firearm Rights

It is important to understand that restoring your firearm rights and ability to purchase and own a gun are governed by both Indiana law and federal law.  Therefore, your ability to restore your firearm rights depends on both Indiana law and federal law, and what type of criminal offense caused you to lose your right to purchase and own a gun. Federal law bans possession of firearms for individuals convicted of a felony or a misdemeanor involving domestic violence. Meaning, even if your firearm rights have been restored under Indiana law, federal law may still prohibit your right to purchase or own a gun.

Restoring Firearm Rights under Indiana Law

Restoring firearm rights under Indiana law depends on several factors, including whether your firearm rights were taken away based on a Class A, B, C, D felony, or because of a domestic violence conviction. In addition, Indiana law only specifically bars possession of handguns, and is therefore less restrictive than federal law. For example, if you have lost your firearm rights due to a felony conviction, your firearm rights are only restricted for handguns at the state level, but you are prohibited from possession of any type of firearm under federal law.

Misdemeanor Domestic Violence Convictions in Indiana and Firearm Rights

Both federal law and Indiana law specifically bar those convicted of domestic battery from possessing a firearm (18 U.S.C. § 922; I.C. 35-47-2-1). An expungement in Indiana for a domestic battery conviction (conviction of I.C. 35-42-2-1.3) will not restore your right to carry a handgun (I.C. 35-38-9-6(f)). However, an individual who has lost their gun rights due to a misdemeanor domestic violence conviction in Indiana may petition the court to restore their rights (I.C. 35-47-4-7). Under Indiana law, a petition to restore your firearm rights may be filed no sooner than five (5) years after the date of conviction, and the court will use its discretion in restoring your firearm rights based upon the following factors:

  • Whether the person has ever been subject any court order that prohibits the person from possessing a firearm, such as a protective order, no contact order, or restraining order;
  • Whether the person still presents a threat to the victim of the crime;
  • Whether the person has successfully completed a substance abuse program (if applicable);
  • Whether the person has successfully completed a parenting class (if applicable); and
  • Whether there is any other reason why the person should not possess a firearm, such as committing a subsequent offense or failing to fulfill a condition that the court specifically set as a requirement for granting relief.

If the courts grant your petition to restore your firearm rights based upon the above factors, your firearm rights under both Indiana law and federal law will be restored. As a result, you will be able to possess, purchase, and transport firearms throughout Indiana. However, not all states agree on this issue, and they are not required to follow the ruling of an Indiana court on these matters—therefore, you should consult with an attorney or perform the necessary research before possessing or transporting a firearm in another state following restoration of your Indiana firearm rights.

Felony Convictions in Indiana and Firearm Rights

In contrast, federal law can make it quite difficult to completely restore your firearm rights following a felony conviction in Indiana, depending upon the type of felony conviction.  If your firearm rights were restricted because of a non-violent Class D felony conviction, both your Indiana and federal rights can be restored following a successful petition to reduce the Class D felony to a Class A  misdemeanor. However, if your firearm rights were taken away due to a violent or more serious felony charge, your options to restore your ability to purchase and own a firearm are more limited.

In 2012, Indiana passed the “Second Chance Law”, which has expanded expungement laws, permitting many offenses to be expunged that were previously ineligible. Indiana expungement law now provides for expungements which seal records relating to both arrests and convictions, and also restore certain civil rights such as firearm rights.  There has been much contention related to Indiana expungements and firearm restoration.  The Indiana statute related to criminal record expungements has been amended each year since its inception.  While previous iterations of the statute did not provide for restoration of firearm rights, the most recent version of the statute related to restoration of rights DOES allow for firearm restoration.  The current version of the statute specifically provides that expungement restores the right to vote, serve on a jury, hold public, and to be a proper person for handgun licensure (I.C. 35-47-1-7(2)).  Under Indiana law, any person convicted of a felony is not eligible for a hand gun license.  After many versions of the statute, the legislature decided to put an end to the firearm questions and issues by specifically stating in the statue that expungement restores the ability to obtain a handgun license.  The language of the Indiana statute is effective for restoration of firearm rights at the federal level.  Once you have obtained an Indiana expungement, your firearm rights are restored under Indiana law and federally, unless of course your firearm rights remain restricted for some other reason (i.e. involuntary commitment, etc.).

Summary

Indiana’s new expungement laws are great in allowing people to put many arrest and conviction records behind them, allowing them to move on with life without the burden of a criminal record.

Comments ( 42 )

  1. Joshua Kelly says:

    I need help restoring my firearm rights, I recently tried to buy a gun and was denied due to the background test, I belive it had to due with a class during felony assault on a police officer that was reduced to a misdermeanor after probation over 10 years ago. Could someone help me get my rights back?

    • admin_WR says:

      Joshua, please call us today at 844-947-3732 to discuss firearm rights restoration and if it is something you may qualify for.

  2. Qubert says:

    Would the Indiana second chance law restore my ability to travel abroad? For instance, would Canada be able to see a my record?

  3. Jeremy McGuire says:

    I had a class b and d felony almost 20 years ago for non violent crime I didn’t do but got charged with his wonderin if I can ever get fun permit and carry in Indiana

  4. Brit says:

    I was arrested for domestic battery class misdemeanor but never convicted. Took a pretrial conversion with no admission of guilt in 2012. What is the likelihood I would be denied?

  5. Matt says:

    I am currently serving a probation term for a level 6 felony strangulation. In my plea I had the felony eligible for a reduction to class A misdemeanor for strangulation after terms of probation are met. Would it be feasible to petition the courts for a restoration of my second amendment? I’m already planning to petition for my right to passport.

    • admin_WR says:

      Matt – thanks for your comment – potentially! Please take our eligibility test to see if you’re eligible in Indiana. Or feel free to call us to discuss your case in a little more detail.

  6. Brandon says:

    I live in indiana and have a felony in illinois. Is there something that can be done in indian to restore gun rights for hunting?

    • admin_WR says:

      Hi Brandon – potentially – did you take our eligibility test to see if you’re eligible to restore your rights in Illinois? Or feel free to call us to explain your situation a little more. 844-947-3732.

  7. Juls says:

    I have 2 Class A Misdemeanors. One is a conversion from a Class D Felony. May I posses a permit for a hand gun? May I own a firearm?

    • admin_WR says:

      Hey Juls – have you taken our eligibility test? I suggest you call us to get a quicker answer 844-947-3732.

  8. tracy jackson says:

    I recently tried to apply to get my gun permit back i was denied because i was labeled as a drug abuser for three marijuana charges one is a misdemeanor the other two where dropped to misdemeanor what will I need to do to get my permit rights back my last conviction was three years ago

    • admin_WR says:

      Tracy – thanks for your comment – we may be able to help. I recommend you call us today to speak with a team member so that we can dig into your situation and give you a clear answer. Thanks! 844-947-3732.

  9. […] Restoring firearm rights in Indiana […]

  10. Gary says:

    I had a misdemeanor domestic in 2001, i have had expungement granted by the court, who do I contact to have carry permit. I have been told to contact IN DOJ

  11. Fredrick says:

    I have a domestic violence misdemeanor, it’s been over 20 years ago. I tried to apply for concealed carry permit and it came up. Don’t know what can do I’m trying to get to my permit

    • Jordan Myres says:

      Hey Fredrick,
      We’d love to help you out! Please give us a call at 844-947-3732

  12. Samuel says:

    I have had 3 felony charges which none are violent crimes and they all got dropped to a misdemeanor after completing probation which was two year since I’ve completed probation and they have all been dropped. I tried to purchase a gun and was denied . What can I do to fix this

  13. Missy says:

    My fiance has a felony do to child support it’s been over five years completed probation can he get a gun permit in Indiana
    ?

    • DanielWR says:

      Missy, please have your fiance call in at 844-947-3732 and speak with one of our representatives for a consultation.

  14. Vernard Butler jr says:

    I have a robbery and got a expungment 1 year ago haven’t been in anytrouble in over 20 years I live in Arizona and want to own a firearm for safety and hunting what is my option if it’s filed under 35-38-9-5 does that still fall under 35-38-9-10

    • DanielWR says:

      Hi Vernard,

      Unfortunately, we do not currently offer services in Arizona, and the answer to your question may depend on a number of factors. Contact our office for a free consultation and to see if we can help.

  15. Bryan says:

    I was convicted of drug dealing. Served 3 years in prison and 2 years parole. Obtained GED while incarcerated and completed a rehabilitation program too. I haven’t had any troubles with the law ever since and it’s been over 6 years since I got sentenced. Is there a possibility I can get a gun permit? I do leave in Indiana bu the way

  16. Wynema Osborne says:

    Me and my husband both are convicted felons in the state of Kentucky but we live in Indiana. We would like to know what firearms we are legally allowed to possess. Such as a muzzle loader or similar firearms. We both love hunting and want to know what we can legally have. Thanks

    • DanielWR says:

      Hey Wynema, the good news is that we do offer legal services in both Kentucky and Indiana. Please contact our staff today to see if you’re eligible to restore your firearm rights.

  17. Ron w says:

    I have two DUI felonies, both over 10 years old. I have not bee in trouble since, have a great job, and do not have a violent record. I took the eligibility test and it says that I am eligible and wanted payment, that seems too easy. What do I do from here?

  18. Sidney beard says:

    I only have a DUI yes is’t a felony can I still hunt with a shotgun I have a gun

    • DanielWR says:

      Hi Sidney, you may be okay under Indiana state law, but it’s important to consider federal law as well. Give us a call to see if we can help.

  19. Bobby Patton says:

    Can a class b misdemeanor for disorderly conduct have a impact on my gun rights to own , buy or apply for a handgun permit

    • DanielWR says:

      Bobby, there are a number of criminal offenses that would prohibit someone from obtaining a handgun permit. Give us a call to see if your offense qualifies for one of our services.

  20. Vernard Butler jr says:

    Well I got my answer with will I receive my firearm rights back and the question is still on but closed do to Arizona required me to have paperwork from Indana that my expungment order fell under 35-38-9-10C and the state didn’t object to me having a weapon or firearm rights just waiting on my order then sending it in to be looked at and I have faith that I will soon have my CCWP card

  21. Wallace says:

    Ive done an expungement and i now have a valid 4 year carry license but when i went to purchace a firearm from gun store i was denied filed for an appeal months ago haven’t heard back can u help

  22. James says:

    I had my gun permit when I turned 21 and caught a receiving stolen property. Felony a non violent feloney would I still have permit since its a non violent felony and its about 10 years old

  23. Moses Campos says:

    I have dui felony convictions and htv felony convictions, i have recently been granted a hardship license. And have always hunted.. but before i purchase a rifle or handgun id like to make sure i can legally do so.

  24. Brandon says:

    I had a misdemeanor battery charge with bodily injury about 8 years ago. I recently had my record expunged. I tried to apply for my carriers permit but was denied for not being a proper person.

  25. Thomas Joseph says:

    I get off of parole December 14th I’ve had alot of run ins with the law but never had anything violent. The last charge I went to prison for dealing cocain. Please let me know if I can ever go hunting again with my father? I took the hunters education courswhen I was a chil. Please can you let me know if I can still hunt?

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