felony conviction

What Rights Do I Lose if I Am Convicted of a Felony in Texas?

By Peek & Toland on November 8, 2019

If you have been convicted of a felony criminal offense in the state of Texas, you lose some civil rights. The loss of civil rights is one of the many collateral consequences of a felony conviction under state law. First, individuals lose the right to vote while they are incarcerated following a felony conviction. This prohibition remains in effect until individuals have completed all requirements of probation and parole. After completion of these requirements, however, individuals automatically receive the right to vote again.

Individuals also cannot hold public office after they have been convicted of a felony crime. A felony conviction bars them both from running for public office in an election and from government authorities appointing them to public office. The only way to regain this civil right is to obtain a full pardon, either from the Texas governor or the U.S. President.

What Rights Do I Lose if I Am Convicted of a Felony in Texas?

Furthermore, individuals with a felony conviction may not possess or own any firearms. Nonetheless, once five years have passed from the completion of any term of incarceration, probation, and parole, you can petition for the restoration of limited rights to firearms. If you are successful in partially restoring these rights, you still only will be able to possess firearms in your home. The firearms ban also extends to the possession or ownership of body armor under Texas law.

You also cannot serve on a jury in any court proceedings in Texas after a felony conviction. You lose the right to be on a jury in both civil and criminal cases. There is no mechanism for restoring this right. This rule applies in many states and essentially excludes a significant portion of the population from serving on a jury.

If you or a family member is facing any criminal charges, we may be able to help. As experienced Texas criminal defense attorneys, we have the knowledge needed to help you navigate through often-complex criminal proceedings. Call us today at (512) 474-4445 and schedule an appointment with one of our criminal defense lawyers and learn how we can assist you.

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Can I Vote if I Have a Felony Conviction?

By Peek & Toland on March 30, 2019

In the state of Texas, individuals who have a felony conviction cannot vote. However, after these individuals have completed their sentences, whether it involves incarceration, probation, parole, or some combination thereof, they can regain the ability to vote. Although they cannot just show up at the polls at the next election and vote, they can re-register to vote. Once they have properly re-registered in a timely manner, these individuals are free to vote in the next election. Texas is one of several states that restores voting right to those with felony convictions following the completion of their sentences.

Can I Vote if I Have a Felony Conviction?

A felony conviction must be final before an individual becomes ineligible to vote. If criminal charges are pending against an individual, he or she still has the right to vote. If an individual is convicted of a felony offense following a trial, but the case is currently on appeal, the individual still can vote. If the individual completes deferred adjudication, meaning that that after he or she completes a form of probation, the charges are dismissed, then he or she still can vote.

Those who vote, but who are ineligible to do so because of a felony conviction can face prosecution for voter fraud. In 2018, a Texas woman made news after illegally voting in the 2016 election, while she was still on supervised release for tax fraud. She not only violated her probation in doing so, but a judge also sentenced her to return to prison for five years due to voter fraud.

If you find yourself charged with any type of criminal offense, you need legal advice that only experienced Texas criminal defense attorneys can offer you. As the consequences of any criminal conviction may be severe, you should immediately contact a skilled defense lawyer for help if you have been accused of a criminal offense. Peek & Toland provides strong legal representation on a regular basis for individuals who are charged with various crimes. It is our priority is to represent your interests and protect your rights.  Call us at (512) 474-4445 and schedule an appointment to speak with us today.

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