how do i apply for my rights back after being convicted of a felony?

UPDATED: May 28, 2009

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how do i apply for my rights back after being convicted of a felony?

Asked on May 28, 2009 under Criminal Law, Georgia


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 13 years ago | Contributor

This is a heavily regulated area of the law.  You will need to go to a competent criminal defense attorney in your area and ask him/her what the procedure is to have your civil rights reinstated.  Each state has its own procedures and the specific rights that can be reinstated varies from state-to-state.  Your best bet is to arrange a legal consultation and see how much it will cost to petition the court of common pleas where you were charged for a possible "expungement" of your record and restoration of your rights.

At least with respect to your voting rights, Georgia automatically restores voting rights to people who have completed the terms of their sentence – including any terms of incarceration and/or conditions of probation or parole.  If the court imposed a fine as a condition of probation but you have not finished paying that fine, you can register as long as you are off probation.  On the other hand, if a fine was imposed as part of your original sentence – meaning, the fine itself was authorized by law – and you have not finished paying it, you should not register to vote.

Note:  If you were convicted of a federal charge, by law if certain felonies are committed with a firearm the right to firearms ownership will never be reinstated.

Good luck.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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