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I am a convicted felon. Can I get my rights restored under Mississippi Law?

Under current Mississippi Law, a convicted felon losses many of his or her rights, like the right to vote and the right to bear arms. Although there is a push by modern legislatures in the House and the Senate to restore such rights, it has not happened yet. So what is the alternative? Some folks may be able to get some rights restored with an  expungement and/or certificate of rehabilitation?

In MS, these are known as post-conviction and post-arrest relief: 1) Expungement and 2) Certificate of Rehabilitation. #Expungement is available for some #Misdemeanor and #Felony charges AND #CertificatesOfRehabilitation are available to some #Felons who want their right to bear arms restored.

First EXPUNGEMENT: Under Mississippi law, one is eligible for an expungement under the following limited circumstances: 1) First offense misdemeanor arrest where charge was dismissed, remanded, or passed to the file; OR Misdemeanor Charge was non-adjudicated and all terms and conditions set by the Court have been completed. 2) Conviction of DUI-1st offense is eligible for expungement if: Offense was Non-adjudicated and all terms and conditions set by the Court are completed OR Offender did not refuse to submit to a breath or blood test, and blood alcohol concentration (BAC) was below 0.16% if the results are available; and License was not CDL or a commercial learning permit; AND more than 5 years have passed since all court ordered terms and conditions are completed AND offender is not convicted of a prior DUI, nor has a pending #DUI arrest.

3) Felonies: Under Mississippi law, one is eligible for a felony expungement if:

A) Charge dismissed, remanded, or passed to file OR crime was non-adjudicated and all court ordered terms and conditions are met; OR

B) First offender convicted of few non-violent crimes set forth below and more than five (5) years have passed since all court ordered terms and conditions are met AND no future charges or convictions, other than traffic offenses. The following #felony #convictions are eligible:
#Bad check
#Possession of a controlled substance
#False pretense
#Larceny
#Malicious Mischief
#Shoplifting

C) #Expungement is also available for more #felony offenses where offender was under 18 years old at the time of the crime AND crime was NON-VIOLENT.

Second CERTIFICATE OF REHABILITATION: Even if you are a felon that does not qualify for an expungement, the other relief available known as a Certificate of Rehabilitation. Legally, a Certificate of Rehabilitation only restores Firearm Rights. However, it carries great weight when applying for a job, because the crime is disclosed with a have “Certificate of Rehabilitation.” Under MS Law, where a person is a first time felon, they can hire an attorney to Petition a Court for a “Judicial Certificate of Rehabilitation,” which requires an offender to have completed all Court Ordered terms and conditions, including probation and paying all court costs and fines, and no offense for past 5 years. If the Court finds the offender is in fact rehabilitated, which is in the Judges sole discretion, a Cert Of Rehab is issued. Of course, it makes sense that a Court will not likely award a Cert of Rehab unless there is a long period of no criminal activity and no history of violence or the commission of a violent crime, ever.

I would love to further discuss these issues with you, please call my office for a consultation. 228.467.0177.

Regards,

Becky Farrell

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  • Bay St. Louis Office
    125 Main Street
    Suite E
    Bay St. Louis, Mississippi 39520
    Phone: 228-467-0177
    Fax: 228-467-4541
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