At Williams & Nickl, LLC, our attorneys believe that is important for Illinois residents to protect the right to bear arms as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution. We also recognize that the U.S. Supreme Court has allowed state and federal lawmakers to place certain restrictions on gun ownership in the interests of public safety and reducing violent crime. To that end, Illinois law requires you to obtain a Firearm Owner Identification (FOID) card before you can legally own a gun or ammunition in the state.
The process of applying for a FOID card is easy, as you simply need to submit an application, a recent picture, a copy of your driver’s license or state-issued identification, and a $10 fee to the Illinois State Police Firearms Services Bureau. Qualifying for a FOID card, on the other hand, is often more complicated, as is maintaining your eligibility. If your FOID card application has been denied or revoked for any reason, our experienced attorneys are ready to and willing to help you.
In order to qualify for a FOID card, you must be a resident of Illinois (with some exceptions) who is at least 21 years old. If you are under 21, you must have a parent or guardian sponsor who is eligible for a FOID card. The other requirements generally pertain to any history of mental health problems you may have and any criminal convictions in your past. Substance abuse concerns could also disqualify you from being issued a FOID card.
Once your FOID card has been issued, it is valid for 10 years, presuming that you continue to meet the requirements set forth in the Illinois Firearms Identification Card Act (430 ILCS 65). If you no longer meet the requirements, your FOID card could be revoked. Similarly, your FOID card renewal could be denied if you do not still meet all of the requirements.
If you have received a denial or revocation notice from the Illinois State Police, the attorneys at Williams & Nickl, LLC are equipped to help. We will carefully review your application and the circumstances of your situation to determine why your application was denied or why your FOID card is being revoked. From there, we will work with you in exploring your available options in appealing the decision. In most cases, an initial appeal must be made to the Director of the State Police. If the Director denies your appeal, you may have the option of filing an appeal in the circuit court of your county of residence. Our lawyers have the legal knowledge and experience to help at every stage of the appeals process.
Under Illinois law, if you are convicted of any felony offense, you will automatically lose your eligibility for obtaining or keeping a FOID card. Depending on the circumstances, however, it may be possible to have your eligibility restored after a felony conviction. With the help of a FOID card appeals lawyer at Williams & Nickl, LLC, you will need to demonstrate to the Director of the State Police or a county court judge that:
In many cases, proving the first four criteria is fairly straightforward, but the last element may present a significant challenge. Federal law, for example, prohibits anyone who has been convicted of a domestic violence offense or any crime punishable by more than one year in jail from owning a firearm. With this in mind, it is important to work closely with an attorney who can help you restore your rights if possible.
For more information about appealing a FOID card denial or revocation notice, contact our office. Call 312-335-9470 for a confidential consultation with one of our attorneys today. Our firm serves clients in Greater Chicago and throughout Illinois.