If you are a reformed felon, you may want to have your firearm rights restored. Doing so is possible, but it is also highly dependent on your circumstances. For some, the process will be difficult and time-consuming. For others, it could be quick and easy.
Here is a list of facts that may be able to help you restore your gun rights in Virginia.
The Process of Having Your Firearms Rights Restored
The state used its authority to repeal your rights, so you must appeal to that same power to have them revived. You can appeal through either the circuit court or the general district court.
Within your request, you must prove several different claims.
You Deserve to Have Your Gun Rights Restored
There is no single, direct path to prove this claim to the courts. Perhaps your argument reveals that you have been totally rehabilitated, and you are therefore a responsible citizen who should be allowed to own a gun. Work closely with your attorney. They can help you craft the best strategy for this argument.
You Must Prove Your Civil Rights Have Been Restored
Before having your gun rights renewed, you must have all other civil rights reinstated. To do this, you must appeal to the Governor’s office. This process alone can be long and wearisome, and it is highly recommended that you seek legal counsel before trying.
Once your civil rights have been restored, you can gather your proof and use it to appeal to the courts for your gun rights.
You Have Remained Law-Abiding
Before the court will consider restoring your gun rights, it must see that you haven’t committed any other felonies since your release, particularly any gun crimes. You must also be able to prove that you have not had a violent history since your release.
You Have a Valid Reason for Owning a Firearm
Perhaps your family has a long tradition of being hunters. Maybe some nefarious characters from your past have threatened you, and you believe you need extra protection. Whatever the case, you must convince the court that your need for a firearm goes beyond simply wanting to own a gun again.
For this claim, your attorney’s help will be invaluable. They can help you craft a sound, reasoned argument that demonstrates your need to own a gun.
Here are some examples of reasons you should be allowed to own and use a firearm:
- Personal Security
- It is required by your job
Your Gun Rights Should Be Fully Restored
Once your firearms rights are restored, you should be allowed the same freedoms as any citizen who’s never been convicted of a crime. Your only restrictions are the same ones anyone else must follow.
If it appears as though you have not regained all your rights, talk to an attorney. They may be able to look over the court’s ruling and challenge its decisions.
Reasons Your Gun Rights May Not Be Restored
Of course, the court can deny anyone it deems unworthy of having their gun rights restored.
- As mentioned previously, a new criminal history (new allegations since your release) will probably disqualify you from owning a gun.
- Also, the state wants to be sure you are mentally sound enough to own a gun. If you fail its mental health standards, you may be denied.
- Many protective orders restrict gun rights, regardless of whether someone already has a criminal history. If you currently have a restraining order against you, it is unlikely that you will be allowed to own a firearm.
- Illegal aliens aren’t allowed to have firearms in the state, regardless of their criminal history. You must be in the States legally to own a firearm.
Getting Help from an Attorney
We don’t encourage you to attempt restoring your gun rights on your own. There are so many moving parts in the process that it’s easy to miss a critical step. A qualified attorney can help you collect all the necessary documentation and make sure it goes to the right people.
Furthermore, lawyers are trained to make legal arguments on your behalf. You must convince a court that restoring your firearm rights is the correct thing to do. A good attorney knows the legal language that can lean a judge in your favor. They can also collect evidence for you and challenge any denials.
For help with firearms restoration in Virginia, reach out to our firm today. You can call us at (540) 827-4446 or contact us online.