Felon in possession of firearm and can felons hunt in michigan

In Michigan, felon in possession of firearm is defined as the, “possession of firearm or distribution of ammunition by person convicted of felony.” 

Because of this, many people wonder if felons can hunt in Michigan.

Below, we outline and explain the complexities of felon in possession of a firearm charges and also what happens when felons hunt in Michigan.

Arrested for felon in possession of firearm? Looking to restore your firearm rights through expungement? Request a free consultation now.

Felon in Possession of Firearm: Michigan vs. Federal Law

Both Michigan and federal law prohibit convicted felons of possessing firearms under any circumstances. 

A firearm includes any weapon, “which will, or is designed to, or may readily be converted to expel a projectile by action of an explosive.” 

Examples of firearms include: 

  • shotguns
  • handguns
  • pistols
  • rifles

Can Felons Hunt in Michigan?

Possession is defined as either “actual physical control of the thing,” or “knowledge of the location of the firearm along with reasonable access to it.”

For example, if you’re out hunting alone and holding a rifle, you possess a firearm. 

However, even if you’re not actually holding the weapon, you might face a felon in possession a firearm charge if you’re with a group of people with “reasonable access” to their firearms.

Conservation officers routinely arrest hunters for violating hunting regulations. 

If it’s discovered the person arrested is a felon, they are often charged with felon in possession of a firearm

This is why even if a felon gets a hunting license from the Department of Natural Resources (DNR), it’s still very much illegal to hunt if you’re a felon. 

Under Michigan law, a conviction for Felon in Possession of a Firearm carries a maximum possible penalty of five (5) years in prison. 

Arrested for felon in possession of firearm? Looking to restore your firearm rights through expungement? Request a free consultation now.

Felony Firearm vs. Felon in Possession: What’s the Difference?

In addition to a felon in possession charge, the prosecutor has the option of charging you with an additional charge called felony firearm. 

Felony Firearm convictions are subject to mandatory minimum sentences.

These mandatory sentences escalate based on the number of prior convictions, as explained below:

  • 1st: Mandatory two (2) years in prison
  • 2nd: Mandatory five (5) years in prison
  • 3rd: Mandatory 10 years in prison

Additionally, you must serve the felony firearm sentence served consecutive to any other sentences for related offenses. 

In addition to prison or probation sentences, the collateral consequences of a felony conviction are steep.

They range from job loss, driver’s license restriction or suspension, higher insurance rates, and much more.

For the purposes of the state and federal firearms laws, a felony is a crime punishable by two (2) or more years of incarceration. 

This definition includes “High Court Misdemeanors,” such as Criminal Sexual Conduct in the 4th Degree or Possession of Analogues of Controlled Substances.

Arrested for felon in possession of firearm? Looking to restore your firearm rights through expungement? Request a free consultation now.

How Can I Restore My Firearm Rights?

Michigan law provides for an “automatic” restoration of a person’s firearm rights after a felony conviction. 

Automatic restoration applies three (3) years after:

  • you have paid all fines and costs
  • served all terms of imprisonment (if any)
  • completed all the conditions of probation or parole. 

For “specified felonies,” the waiting period is five (5) years. 

Specified felonies include (but aren’t limited to) the following:

In this case, restoring your firearm rights requires a petition, hearing, and a court order.

It’s important to note that under federal law, neither the “automatic” rights restoration nor the petition to restore your gun rights enables a felon to possess a firearm.

Therefore, expungement is your best route to restoring firearm rights on both the state and federal level.

Arrested for felon in possession of firearm? Looking to restore your firearm rights through expungement? Request a free consultation now.

Federal Firearm Possession Laws

Under the doctrine of “Dual Sovereignty,” you can be prosecuted for the same conduct under both state and federal law. 

That means the county prosecutor and the United States Attorney’s Office could file separate charges in separate cases against you for the same conduct. 

Under federal law, possession of a firearm or ammunition is punishable by up to 10 years in prison. 

If you’re facing any felony charges, it’s important to find a lawyer willing and able to fight for your future. 

Furthermore, felony convictions carry serious prison sentences and life-long collateral consequences. 

Arrested for felon in possession of firearm? Looking to restore your firearm rights through expungement? Request a free consultation now.

Facing a Firearm Charge? You Need an Attorney Now

If you already have a felony conviction, it’s important to stay away from firearms until your gun rights are restored or your conviction is expunged.

This means that you can’t hunt if you’re a felon without expungement.

An experienced attorney can help you restore your gun rights by guiding you through the process of setting aside your conviction. 

If you’re charged with a felon in possession and/or felony firearm offense, it’s vital that you speak to an expert criminal defense attorney before you talk to the police or prosecutor. 

Additionally, if you’re looking to restore your gun rights, consult an experienced and proven expungement attorney.

They can then evaluate the firearm restoration route that’s right for you.

Arrested for felon in possession of firearm? Looking to restore your firearm rights through expungement? Request a free consultation now.

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