Virginia Attorney General Kenneth “Ken” Cuccinelli will announce recommendations for streamlining the rights restoration process for nonviolent felons. Since 1982, according to the AG’s office attempts at a Virginia constitutional amendment has been unsuccessful. Cuccinelli and members of the Restoration of Rights Advisory Committee will discuss alternatives to a constitutional amendment today.
Who qualifies for restoration of rights?
If you have lost the right to vote as a result of a felony conviction in a Virginia court, a U.S. District or a military court, you must have your rights restored in order to qualify for voter registration. The restoration of rights restores the rights to vote, to run for and hold public office, to serve on juries and to serve as a notary public. It does not include the right to possess or transport any firearm or to carry a concealed weapon.
In order to be eligible for restoration of rights by the Governor, an applicant must:
- Must be a resident of Virginia, and/or have been convicted of a felony in a Virginia court, a U.S. District court or a military court
- be free from any sentence served or supervised probation and parole for a minimum of two years for a non-violent offense or five years for a violent felony or drug distribution, drug manufacturing offense, any crimes against a minor, or an election law offense.
- have paid all court costs, fines, penalties and restitution and have no felony or misdemeanor charges pending.
- not have had a DWI in the five years immediately preceding the application.
- Not have any misdemeanor convictions and/or pending criminal charges 2 years preceding the application for non-violent felonies or five years for a violent felony or drug distribution, drug manufacturing offense, any crimes against a minor, or an election law offense.
For information on requesting a copy of your criminal history record and criteria for restoration of rights, please visit the Secretary of the Commonwealth