Restoring Your Gun Rights
A.R.S. § 13-905; A.R.S. § 13-706
In this day and age, it is more relevant than ever to own a gun. Between the riots, looting, and decreased trust in the police, people are eager to arm themselves in order to protect themselves, their homes and their families. In fact, you have a federal right to own and carry a gun pursuant to the Second Amendment of the Constitution.When are my Gun Rights Taken Away?
Under Arizona law, A.R.S. § 13-3101, a criminal court such as the Maricopa County Superior Court in Phoenix can take your gun rights away by either:
- Convicting you of a felony;
- Placing you on probation for a domestic violence offense, felony offense, home arrest, release, community supervision, and work furlough.
Therefore, all felons will have their gun rights taken away as soon as they are sentenced. Additionally, all people who are convicted of a misdemeanor in which a domestic violence allegation is attached will also be banned from owning or carrying firearms. Fortunately, this firearm ban is not a lifetime ban for everyone and your rights may in fact be restored.How can my Gun Rights be Restored?
If you were convicted of a felony, then Lavy Law can restore your rights anywhere in Arizona, whether you are from Phoenix, Scottsdale or Mesa, by filing what is known as a Motion to Set Aside Judgment. We can file this motion in the court where you were convicted as soon as two (2) years have passed since you were discharged from probation or parole. This process to restore your rights requires your attorney to fill out certain forms, write a legal memorandum, and appear before the Judge to prove that you merit having your conviction sent aside and your gun rights restored. Your Phoenix, Scottsdale or Mesa attorney will build a strong case in your favor based upon certain factors that the Court cares about.What Elements Must be Proven to Restore my Rights?
Under A.R.S. § 13-905, the Judge will make his or her decision based upon the following factors:
- Nature and circumstances of your offense;
- Compliance with the conditions of probation, your sentence, and any rules by the department of corrections;
- Prior record;
- Victim’s input and status of restitution, if any;
- Time that has passed since completing your sentence;
- Age at time of conviction;
- Any other relevant factor.
Unfortunately, not all felons are eligible to file a Motion to Set Aside Judgment and get their gun rights back. If you were convicted of dangerous offense, then you can never apply to get your gun rights restored. A dangerous offense is defined under A.R.S. § 13-105(13) as “an offense involving the discharge, use or threatening exhibition of a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument or the intentional or knowing infliction of serious physical injury on another person.”
If you were convicted of a serious offense on the other hand, you are eligible to restore your gun rights, but you must wait at least ten (10) years since the date that you were discharged from prison or probation. A serious offense is defined under A.R.S. § 13-706 as: first degree murder, second degree murder, manslaughter, aggravated assault, sexual assault, any dangerous crime against children, arson of an occupied structure, armed robbery, burglary in the first degree, kidnapping, sexual conduct with a minor under fifteen, and child sex trafficking.What if my Conviction Was in Arizona but now I Live in a Different State?
You must apply for relief in the county of the state in which you were convicted. Therefore, even if you no longer live in Phoenix, Scottsdale, or Mesa, you will need to hire a local Arizona law firm like Lavy Law to obtain relief. But, the process does not necessarily end there. Each state has different laws and forms of relief relating to restoration of rights after a conviction. Therefore, it is possible and likely that you may get an order from an Arizona Judge that grants your Motion to Set Aside Judgment, but when you apply for a gun permit or try to purchase a gun in another state, you are denied.
Don’t feel discouraged because Lavy Law can help you get your order recognized in another state. Your order from an Arizona Judge is an asset, and just step one to getting your rights restored. The next (and hopefully) final step is enforcement – helping you get the judicial order enforced in your home state under Article IV, Section 1 of the U.S. Constitution. Under the Full Faith and Credit Clause, other states are required to recognize Arizona’s judicial proceeding in which your gun rights were restored.Can You Give Me an Example?
Alex was convicted of a non-violent felony in 2001 in Mesa, Arizona. Since then, he has served in the U.S. Armed Forces and been honorably discharged with a myriad of medals. He has obtained a Master’s Degree and applied this degree to his present career. Now, due to the current political upheaval, he wants to own a gun, as well as use it for hunting. Alex hires Lavy Law, which assists him to restore his gun rights by filing a strong and successful Motion to Set Aside Judgment in Maricopa Superior Court in Pheonix.What are the Consequences of Owning and Carrying a Firearm Without Having Rights Restored?
If you choose to own or carry a gun without going through the legal process described above, then you will face serious consequences. You will be charged under A.R.S. § 13-3102 as a prohibited possessor. A prohibited possessor charge is a Class 4 Felony in Arizona that is punishable by at least two (2) years in state prison.