29 May Can I Own A Gun After A DUI Conviction?
One of the common questions with regard to DUI arrests and convictions in Nevada is if you lose your rights as a result. We are not talking about losing your right to drive or operate a motor vehicle, which will be determined by the sentencing after your DUI conviction. If you are sentenced with a revocation or suspension of your driver’s license, then you have lost your right to operate a motor vehicle until which time it is reinstated. For the purposes of this discussion we are addressing other rights that you may or may not lose depending on the circumstances of your DUI conviction. Many people in Nevada own firearms and believe that the right to bear arms is critical. Because of the specifics of this right, certain individuals are not allowed to own or possess a firearm in Nevada. Those restricted from firearm ownership are felons, among other people like fugitives, mentally ill or addicted individuals or illegal aliens. The sensitive nature of this right brings into question the ability to own a firearm if you have been convicted of a DUI. The answer to the question lies in the specifics of your DUI punishment.
In Nevada NRS 202.360 (Nevada “Ex-Felon in Possession of a Firearm” Laws) state that it is illegal for someone convicted of a felony to possess a firearm. This is not limited to felonies committed in Nevada and instead means that anyone at all convicted of a felony is not allowed to own or possess a firearm of any kind. There are no previsions in these rules that would allow you to own one if it is not loaded or if it is not functional, they simply state that you cannot have a gun unless you are pardoned of your felony conviction.
Different DUI convictions are treated as different kinds of crimes in Nevada. If you are convicted of a “DUI First” it means that in the last seven years you have not been convicted of another DUI. This is a misdemeanor and as such does not carry the felony rules. If you are convicted of a DUI First, you are allowed to own and possess a firearm unless you have also been ruled mentally unstable or addicted to alcohol or drugs. A DUI Second is the same, while a more serious charge it is still a misdemeanor and will allow you to own a firearm unless any of the other aspects also apply. A DUI Third is a felony, and as such you will not be allowed to own or possess a firearm any more. If you own legal firearms at the time of your conviction, you must liquidate your ownership of the firearms or face potential additional charges if you are caught. There are defenses against conviction of possession of a firearm by a felon including illegal search, lack of evidence or “no possession” which is essentially that you were “near” it but were not “possessing” it. All cases are unique and must be addressed individually, but essentially the best advice is to not be convicted of the DUIs that could restrict your firearms ownership in the future, if you take the ownership of firearms seriously. Hire a DUI lawyer from Las Vegas on any DUI arrest.