In Washington, you can restore your right to possess and own a firearm after a felony conviction if you meet the following fiverequirements: (There are similar requirements if you have a domestic violence conviction).
1. There are no pending criminal charges against you anywhere
You cannot have any pending (i.e. current) charges against you in any court anywhere. This includes Washington, Oregon, California, any other state. This also includes federal court and tribal court.
Only criminal charges are disqualifying—civil judgments, administrative orders, or traffic tickets will not prevent you from filing a motion to restore your firearm rights.
2. You have gone five (5) consecutive years without being convicted of a crime
This usually means but does not necessarily have to mean the 5 most recent five years before you file your conviction.
Example #1: You pleaded guilty to robbery (a felony) in 2012. In 2018, you pleaded guilty to DUI and spent 6 months in jail. You file a petition to restore your firearm rights in 2020. You are eligible for restoration because you spent 6 crime-free years in the community between 2012 and 2018.
Example #2 You pleaded guilty to robbery in 2008. You pleaded guilty to DUI in 2011. You then pleaded guilty to theft in 2017. You file a petition to restore your firearm rights in 2020. You are eligible for restoration based on your crime-free years between 2011 and 2017.
3. You have not been convicted of a Class A felony
Class A felonies are the most serious crimes in Washington. They carry a maximum possible punishment of life in prison.
Here are the most commonly charged Class A felonies in Washington:
- Aggravated murder
- Murder in the first degree
- Murder in the second degree
- Manslaughter in the first degree
- Rape in the first degree
- Rape of a child in the first degree
- Rape of a child in the second degree
- Child molestation in the first degree
- Arson in the first degree
- Burglary in the first degree
- Robbery in the first degree
- Kidnapping in the first degree
- Kidnapping the second degree with sexual motivation
- Vehicular homicide
- Assault in the first degree
- Assault of a child in the first degree
- Indecent liberties by forcible compulsion
You also cannot restore your firearm rights for conspiracy or solicitation to commit a Class A felony.
4. You have not been convicted of any sex offense
In addition to any Class A felony sex offenses, you cannot restore your firearm rights if you have been convicted one of the following sex offenses:
- Child molestation in the second degree
- Sexual exploitation
- Indecent liberties
- Incest when committed against a child under 14
- Any other class B felony with a finding of sexual motivation
5. You have no prior disabling felony convictions
Not every felony conviction on your record is a disqualifying conviction for purpose of firearms restoration. After a certain period of time, your older felonies “wash out”—meaning these conviction no longer stop you from possessing or owning a firearm in Washington.
Under Washington law, your prior felonies “wash out” once you have gone a certain period of time without “committing any crime that subsequently results in a conviction.”
For Class B felonies, the wash out period is 10 years. For Class C felonies, the wash out period is 10 years. Class A felonies and sex offenses never wash out.
Example #1: You are convicted of robbery in the second degree (a class B felony) in 2004. You petition to restore your firearm rights in 2020. Your robbery conviction has washed out and will not preclude you from restoring your firearm rights, assuming you meet the other statutory requirements.
Example #2: You plead guilty to theft in the second degree (a Class C felony) in 2014. In 2018, you are charged with DUI but the State later dismisses the case for insufficient evidence. You petition for restoration in 2020.
You are eligible, assuming you meet the other statutory requirements. Your DUI charge did not interrupt the 5-year wash out period for your theft conviction, because you were never convicted.
FAQ: Firearm Rights and Felony Convictions
Am I still eligible even if I have multiple felony convictions?
Yes. Your eligibility to restore your firearms primarily depends on the nature of your convictions and when you were convicted--not the number of convictions you have.
Does it matter if I have felony convictions in other states?
You may not be able to restore your firearms rights in Washington if you have a certain type of felony outside Washington, such as a felony that would be a class A felony if committed in Washington.
But what matters ultimately is the type of felony conviction and when you committed the felony--not where you committed the felony.
Does it matter if I still owe money on my felony case?
No. You are still eligible to restore your firearm rights in Washington even if you owe money on your felony case.
Interestingly, and somewhat counterintuitively, it is easier to restore your firearms for a felony conviction than a misdemeanor conviction.
Under RCW 9.41.040 (the firearm restoration statute), you have to complete "all conditions" of your domestic violence misdemeanor sentence to be eligible, and this includes paying off all your fines. But there is no such requirement for felony cases.
How much do you charge to restore my gun rights?
We generally charge between $1,250 and $2,000 to restore your firearm rights. When we talk, we'll quote you an exact fee based on the circumstances of your case.