Unpacking New Changes in Firearm Restorations in Washington

The right to bear arms is a fundamental right in the United States of America, bearing its importance from the second amendment. While it a great right to have, there are a number of ways this right can be taken away or barred for a certain period of time. These rules are regulated state to state through statutory code written by our legislature. In Washington state the current code enforcing the loss of firearm rights is RCW 9.41.041. Due to House Bill 1562 going into effect July 2023, there have been some significant changes to the rules narrowing eligibility and expanding the list of crimes resulting in gun prohibition.

While some are aware of the potential for the restoration of gun rights following a specified period, the process is nuanced, contingent upon the nature of charges, jurisdictional considerations, and the thorough assessment of eligibility. In addition to that, as the rules are evolving and changing, it is important to have a thorough understanding of the proceedings, rules, and process to be successful in obtaining your gun rights back. Law Office of Erin Bradley McAleer stays up to date on all the newest rules, regulations, and code to ensure your gun restoration process goes as smoothly and quickly as possible.

As Washington State approaches the one-year mark since the implementation of new firearm restoration laws, it’s important to examine their effects. The changes that have been introduced are as follows, outlining their impact over the past year:

Key Points from RCW 9.41.040:

RCW 9.41.040 controls the loss of firearm rights in Washington State. It historically prohibited firearm possession after convictions for specific felonies and domestic violence misdemeanors.

Misdemeanors such as assault 4, criminal trespass 1, coercion, stalking, reckless endangerment, violation of a protection order, and harassment were included in the list.

Expanded Prohibitions Under House Bill 1562:

Since the enactment of House Bill 1562, which expanded the list of misdemeanors prohibiting firearm possession, individuals convicted of offenses like stalking, cyber stalking, cyber harassment, and animal cruelty 2 face restrictions. These additions have significantly broadened the scope of offenses leading to the loss of firearm rights, potentially affecting a larger group of people.

New Eligibility Requirements for Restoration:

Under the updated legislation, individuals seeking the restoration of firearm rights must meet stringent new eligibility criteria. Some requirements include demonstrating compliance with all sentence conditions and settling any outstanding restitution balances. These added hurdles may pose challenges for individuals navigating the restoration process. Despite these challenges, Law Office of Erin Bradley McAleer is here to help you every step of the way!

Changes in Waiting Periods and Filing Procedures:

The extension of the waiting period for misdemeanor convictions from three to five years out of confinement has altered the timeline for restoration. Additionally, the limitation on filing restoration paperwork to the superior court in the county where the prohibiting conviction occurred has streamlined the process but may present logistical challenges for some petitioners. While firearm paperwork is provided on the Washington Courts website, filing paperwork and paying a filing fee is not enough to ensure your rights will be restored. At the Law Office of Erin Bradley McAleer, our attorneys and staff work with the judges, judicial assistants, and prosecutors to ensure all necessary documentation is provided and scheduled to provide the most efficient processing. 

Consultation and Adaptation:

Navigating the complexities of Washington State’s firearm restoration laws requires careful consideration and consultation with legal experts. Individuals affected by the changes should seek guidance to assess their options and adapt their strategies accordingly.

In summary, the first year under Washington State’s new firearm restoration laws has brought about significant changes and challenges for individuals seeking to regain their firearm rights. By examining the impact of these regulations and seeking appropriate guidance, affected individuals can better understand their options and navigate the restoration process effectively. The firearm restoration process involves a number of entities regulated by Court, jurisdiction, Washington State Patrol, working with the prosecutor, and a number of other agencies.

At the Law Office of Erin Bradley McAleer, we understand the importance of regaining your firearm rights, and we’re here to help. Our goal is to make the process as seamless as possible for you, so you can focus on moving forward with peace of mind.

Here’s how we can assist you:

  1. Assessing Your Eligibility: We start by conducting a thorough Washington State Patrol background check to determine your eligibility for firearm rights restoration. This step is quick and hassle-free, and if you’re eligible, we can proceed to the next steps.
  2. Handling the Paperwork: Once we’ve confirmed your eligibility, we’ll take care of all the necessary paperwork for you. From drafting the petition to filing it with the appropriate authorities, we’ll ensure that everything is handled with precision and attention to detail.
  3. Guiding You Through the Process: We’ll schedule a convenient time for you to come in and sign your petition. From there, we’ll take charge of scheduling hearings and managing all aspects of your case. You can trust us to handle everything from start to finish, allowing you to relax and let us do the heavy lifting.
  4. Assisting with Your Next Steps: Once your firearm rights are officially restored by the judge, we’ll be there to guide you through the process of applying for a concealed pistol license. Our experienced team will provide you with the support and assistance you need to navigate this next phase successfully.

Ready to Get Started? Contact us today to assess your eligibility and get a free review of your record by an experienced attorney. And remember, the only cost involved is a $12 background check fee through the Washington State Patrol, which you can also handle on your own if you prefer. Just follow this link https://www.wsp.wa.gov/firearms-background-division/ to get started.

At the Law Office of Erin Bradley McAleer, we’re committed to helping you regain your firearm rights with minimal stress and maximum efficiency. Let us be your trusted partner in this important journey.