Firearms Rights Restoration
Firearms possession laws in the United States differ greatly from state to state (and in federal law), and the manner in which individual states and the federal government address the restoration of firearms rights is no exception. The conflicting myriad of regulations can throw gun owners into confusion. Don’t worry if you are one of them.
Georgia Gun Restrictions
Georgia law begins by restricting convicted felons from being issued a Weapons Carry License. This restriction governs not only convictions by a Georgia court, however, but a court of “any other state; by a court of the United States, including its territories, possessions, and dominions; or by a court of any foreign nation.…” O.C.G.A. § 16-11-129(b)(2)(B). A pardon for the state crime felony by the President of the United States or the State Board of Pardons and Paroles would, according to the statute, seem to place the individual back within the good graces of the state so that he or she may apply for a Weapons Carry License, but in actual practice, a “pardon” is treated separately from a “restoration of rights” in Georgia. A pardon in Georgia does not fully restore the rights a felon loses when suffering a conviction (although the right to vote is immediately restored upon the completion of any felony sentence): the individual affected must apply for a restoration of civil and political rights through the State Board of Pardons and Paroles in order to have his or her civil rights restored. Even then, an additional and separate process for restoring the right to possess and transport a firearm must be completed with the State Board of Pardons and Paroles. Only when this separate restoration is granted will the right to apply for and receive a Weapons Carry License be available. This restoration process is different for convictions for acts that occurred within Georgia, and those that occurred outside Georgia.
Path to Restoration
The path to a restoration of firearms rights can be confusing, particularly for such an important goal. When such situations arise, it’s always beneficial to consult a law firm that has the expertise in dealing with complicated firearm restoration processes