With nearly 225,000 registered weapons in 2019, Arizona ranks within the top percentage of gun ownership in the United States. People in Arizona own guns for many reasons including, but not limited to:

  • Target practice and skeet shooting;
  • Personal and family protection; and 
  • Hunting large and small game.

It is no surprise that drivers facing charges for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (DUI) want to know how a DUI conviction could affect their right to buy and carry a firearm in Arizona.

Prohibited Possessors in Arizona

Each state, including Arizona, designates classes of “prohibited possessors.” These are individuals who may not own, possess, or otherwise control ammunition or firearms. Arizona defines prohibited possessors in ARS 13-3102. The following classes of individuals are prohibited possessors in Arizona:

  • Defendants convicted of a felony offense whose rights are not restored.  This includes any felony DUI;
  • Individuals currently on probation, parole, or performing community service;
  • Individuals on probation for felony domestic violence;
  • Individuals the court finds a danger to themselves or others; and
  • Individuals currently serving a prison sentence at a correctional or detention facility in Arizona.

According to Arizona law, a defendant facing or convicted of a misdemeanor charge for DUI is not a prohibited possessor.

When Is an Arizona DUI a Felony?

A defendant convicted of a felony DUI does fall under a class of prohibited possessors in Arizona. Therefore, it is helpful to know when a DUI is a felony in Arizona. Arizona considers the following felony DUIs:

  • A third DUI within seven years;
  • A DUI crash resulting in serious bodily injuries;
  • A fatality DUI;
  • A DUI while driving on a suspended or revoked license; and
  • A DUI with a child under fifteen in the vehicle.

No felon may buy or carry a firearm in Arizona or anywhere in the United States without having their rights restored.  

Restoration of Gun Rights in Arizona

In Arizona, there is an application process to restore the rights to buy and carry a firearm. Anyone wishing to restore these gun rights must follow this process.

The restoration process is a series of forms submitted to the original convicting court. An individual can fill out and turn in these forms themselves, or a criminal defense attorney can create and submit a custom motion on an individual’s behalf for a speedier resolution.

Anyone convicted of a non-violent felony can apply for restoration of gun rights two years after their probation release. A conviction for a serious felony requires a ten year waiting period for restoration of gun rights. Those individuals convicted of a dangerous felony will likely never regain any gun rights.  

Ultimately it is the court’s decision whether or not to restore gun rights. The court reviews each application on a case by case basis using criteria such as:

  • Criminal history;
  • Performance during probation;
  • History of violence;
  • The severity of any victim injuries; and
  • Rehabilitation attempts and progress.

If you or someone you know is facing a DUI or needs their gun rights restored after a DUI, call the Rosenstein Law Group. Our experienced DUI attorneys in Scottsdale will provide you with a free initial consultation and discuss how we can help protect your current rights and secure your future prospects for the restoration of gun rights.

DUIs are severe and can impact not only your gun rights but also your future employment and educational opportunities. Let the Rosenstein Law Group give you an accurate assessment of where you stand and navigate you through your legal options. Call us anytime, day or night.

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