Here is the typical procedure for filing a motion to restore your Washington State firearm rights in Benton County.
Step #1: File Your Motion
You have to file your motion in Benton County Superior Court. Only superior court judges have the authority to hear firearm restoration motions.
Do not file your motion in Benton County District Court. The district court will automatically reject your motion and you'll have to start over in superior court.
You have to file your motion by mail. Electronic filing or filing by fax are not options in Benton County.
Mail a copy of your motion along with a check for the required $240 filing fee to the Benton County Superior Court, 7122 W Okanogan Place, Building A, Kennewick, WA 99336.
Step #2: Get Your Case Number
Once the court receives your motion, the clerk's office will process your paperwork and assign you case a case number. The clerk's office will then mail you a conformed copy of your motion. (A conformed copy means a copy of the motion you filed, now with the assigned case number).
This process takes about 1-2 weeks.
If you make any mistakes in the filing process, the clerk's office will return your documents to you, with instructions.
You must have an assigned case number to schedule your case for a hearing.
Step #3: Serve the Prosecutor's Office
You are required to serve a copy of your motion on the Benton County Prosecutor's Office, which will review your file and determine whether you're eligible.
You will need to provide the following documents for the prosecutor's review:
- Copy of your Motion
- Signed declaration: This document certifies that you meet the requirements for restoring under firearm rights under RCW 9.41.040(4). You must sign this document under penalty of perjury.
- Proposed Order: This is the most important document—the document that you're hoping the Court will sign, restoring your firearm rights. If you prepare it correctly—and it meets the prosecutors' approval—the Court will likely sign the document as is.
- WATCH Report: You have to provide prosecutors with a copy of your Washington criminal record, which can be accessed online through the Washington State Patrol (WSP). Keep in mind, however, that WSP only maintains your Washington criminal record. If you have a criminal record outside Washington, you will need to contact each state and request a copy of your criminal history.
Without these forms, the prosecutor will not review your motion.
If prosecutors agree that you are eligible, then you are in very good shape. Although a judge is not required to order firearms restoration if both sides agree, it's rare.
If prosecutors object, they will typically file a written objection with the Court. Just because the prosecutors object does not mean that you won't win your motion, but you'll need to address their argument in court.
Step #4: Request a Hearing
Filing your case doesn't automatically get your motion heard in front of judge. To do that, you have to schedule a hearing.
In Benton County, firearms restoration motions are generally heard on the civil motions calendar, which take place every Friday at 1:30 pm.
FAQ: Benton County Firearms Restoration
Can I file my firearms restoration motion in Benton County Superior Court?
You can file your motion in Benton County if one of the following applies:
You are a resident of Benton County
You live outside Benton County but Benton County Superior Court terminated your right to possess firearms as a result of a felony or domestic violence misdemeanor convictions.
Example: You live in Everett but you were convicted of a felony drug offense in Kennewick when you were younger. You can file your motion in Benton County Superior Court because the superior court terminated your firearm rights.
Where is Benton County Superior Court located?
The courthouse address is:
Benton County Superior Court
7122 W Okanogan Place, Building A
Kennewick, WA 99336
How can I contact the Benton County Prosecuting Attorney?
Benton County Prosecuting Attorney's Office
7122 W Okanogan Place #A
Kennewick, WA 99336