Who Is Barred from Owning a Firearm in The State of Alabama?
A criminal conviction can have wide-ranging consequences. Criminal convictions will appear in background checks conducted by potential employers and landlords. They can prevent you from maintaining a professional license that allows you to do your job. They can even prevent you from owning certain firearms. You can read more about when federal and state laws may prevent you from buying or owning a weapon in Alabama, below. Don’t allow your entitlement under the 2nd Amendment to be taken away due to a criminal conviction. After an arrest, contact a skilled Dothan criminal defense attorney to help you preserve your rights and your freedom.
Federal restrictions limit gun ownership among felons
Federal law imposes a broad ban against gun ownership, with certain conditions. Under federal law, a citizen of any state who has been indicted for or convicted of any crime that carries a penalty of a year or more in prison may not possess a gun. In other words, you don’t have to have been convicted of any crime in order to be barred from possessing a gun; you only have to have been indicted. Federal law also bars gun possession among those who:
- are subject to a restraining/protective order
- were dishonorably discharged from the military, or
- were convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence.
However, this restriction only applies to firearms or ammunition that have crossed state lines before you came into possession of them. In order to convict you of illegal possession of a firearm, the prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you knew the gun was in your home, car, or other property, and that it had crossed state lines to get to you.
Alabama state law limits on firearm ownership
The laws of Alabama were updated in 2015 to become broader in who is barred from owning a firearm. Under the current law, you can’t own or possess a firearm if you:
- have been convicted of a crime of violence, such as murder, manslaughter, rape, robbery, burglary, or kidnapping
- have been convicted of a misdemeanor charge of domestic violence or of another “violent offense,” or
- are subject to a restraining/protective order for domestic abuse.
If you have been charged with a crime in Alabama, ensure that your rights are defended by a skilled and knowledgeable attorney by contacting the Dothan criminal defense lawyers at Smith & McGhee as soon as possible after your arrest, at 334-708-3158.