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North Dakota laws prohibiting firearm possession

North Dakota has laws in place that specifically prohibit certain people from possessing firearms due to age, mental health issues and previous felony convictions. The prohibitions vary in duration, depending on the reason constituting the prohibition.

People who have been convicted of felonies such as homicide, assaults and sex crimes, whether in North Dakota or another state, may not possess a firearm by law. This prohibition extends for 10 years from the date their punitive sentence is fully discharged. For example, an individual sentenced to 10 years in prison for a felony assault conviction, may not own a gun in North Dakota until 10 years after the individual's prison sentence has been completed.

Individuals who have been convicted of a felony or a class-A misdemeanor in which violence or intimidation was used are prohibited from owning or possessing firearms for five years following sentence completion. Juveniles are banned from possessing handguns unless they are under the supervision of adults. Furthermore, people who have been diagnosed and confined for mental health treatment are prohibited from owning or possessing firearms. They may only regain the right to have a firearm by petitioning the court to lift the restriction or by demonstrating that they have not needed treatment for their condition for at least three consecutive years.

People who violate weapon laws on account of having prior felony convictions may receive a new felony conviction. However, the laws pertaining to who may not own or possess a firearm in the state of North Dakota can, at times, be difficult to interpret. That is why it is important for people accused of violating weapon laws to seek the counsel of a criminal defense attorney. The lawyer may review the case in an assiduous way and challenge unwarranted charges.

Source: North Dakota Legislative Branch, "62.1-02-01. Persons who are not to possess firearms - Penalty", October 21, 2014

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