Do you have the right to bear arms as a felon?

On Behalf of | Jan 2, 2020 | Weapons Crimes |

If you have a felony charge on your criminal background in Arkansas, then you need to make sure you fully understand your rights concerning firearm ownership and use. Failing to understand the law could land you in more legal trouble. The Restoration of Rights Project explains you lose your rights to own or have in your possession any type of firearm upon your felony conviction. 

There are exceptions to this law, but they require action on your part. You cannot get back your rights to own or possess a firearm without seeking relief under the law. One option is for get a pardon from the governor. You may do this through a direct request to the governor for a pardon of your conviction. Do note that in the pardon, the governor must specifically restore your rights. You may also get a recommendation through the Chief law enforcement officer to the governor to restore your rights, which the governor must, again, approve. Another option is to seek expungement or sealing of your criminal records. 

Restoration of your rights to buy, own and have on your person a firearm may not extend to your right to carry a concealed weapon. With a pardon from the governor that specifically restores your gun rights, you do get the right to concealed carry. You also may get this right if you have an expungement or sealing of your records. Do note, though, for convictions after 1995, the expungement or sealing must comply with the proper Arkansas Code (5-73-309(5)). This information is for education and is not legal advice.