How to Get a Pardon in Oklahoma - JobsForFelonsHub.com
Civilian Rights Legal Issues

How to Get a Pardon in Oklahoma

How to get a pardon in oklahoma

Felons know how challenging it can be as they move forward in life with a felony on their record.

It seems like the conviction penalties follow them no matter what they do and affects all aspects of their life from finding a job, to obtaining housing, continuing their education, or obtaining a loan.

For felons who believe they deserve forgiveness for the offense, a pardon may offer hope.

This blog post will cover the process of applying for a pardon in Oklahoma.

  • What is a Pardon?
  • Federal vs. State Pardon
  • Application Process in Oklahoma
  • Effects of a Pardon
  • Supporting the Felon after the Pardon Decision

What Is a Pardon?

A pardon is a term for forgiving for a particular crime without actually clearing a felony record.  Felons who have a criminal conviction for which they believe the sentence was too harsh or not deserved given the circumstances can apply for a pardon.

Felons who feel they have paid their debt to society and are entitled to having any further possible punishments for their crime withdrawn may wish to consider petitioning the government for a pardon.

A pardon is a form of clemency.  While a pardon does not erase the conviction, it goes on their criminal record that they have been legally forgiven for the crime and the restrictions imposed on a felon no longer apply.

This will allow them to have their right to vote and hold public office restored.   They will also be allowed to own a firearm.

Nevertheless, their felony conviction will still be part of the public record and able to be viewed.  Their felony conviction must still be reported in any situation inquiring about prior criminal history.

Federal vs. State Pardon

A pardon may be a federal or a state pardon depending on whether it is a federal or state offense.

For a federal pardon, a petition will go to the President of the United States.  For a state crime in Oklahoma, the application will go to the State Board of Pardons for approval.

Application Process in Oklahoma

In Oklahoma, an application for a pardon goes first to the Board of Pardons even though the governor is the one to make the final decision following the recommendation from the Board.

In order to be eligible for a pardon in Oklahoma, these conditions must be met:

  • Convicted of a felony in Oklahoma
  • Have no pending charges
  • Not currently in jail or prison
  • Completed the entire sentence, including supervision, or at least five years of supervision prior to the application unless convicted of first degree murder
  • Have not been considered for a pardon within the past year

For felons living in the state, a probation officer will conduct the pre-pardon investigation.  It is important to be honest as any attempt at deceit can cause the application to be denied.

If there is information which could be seen as negative, it is important to report it as it could show that the felon overcame that issue and could improve the chances of approval.  It is important for the felon to present themselves as a responsible and productive citizen.

For felons living in another state, the General Counsel for the Board of Pardons will conduct the investigation, including a local criminal record check.

When an application is submitted, reports are requested for consideration.  These consist of character affidavits and support letters.

It can take from two weeks to several months for this process.

The application then goes to the Department of Corrections District Office of Probation and Parole.

At that point a pre-pardon investigation will be performed, the time limit for which is 70 days.  This investigation consists of verifying all information submitted on the application.

Then, the application is placed on the docket for a hearing before the Board.

The felon may appear at the hearing and bring one person with them.  Only one person is allowed to speak on the felon’s behalf and will have two minutes to address the Board as to the reasons for seeking a pardon.

The Monday following the hearing, the applicant can contact the Parole Board Office to obtain the recommendation.  If it is approved, the application will be sent to the governor who has 90 days o reach a final decision.

As part of the documentation for the application these items are required:

  • Certified Judgment and Sentence from the county where the conviction was
  • Certified statement from the Court Clerk of the County where the conviction was indicating that all fines, fees, restitution, and court cost have been paid
  • A current credit report
  • Verification of residence (rental receipt, mortgage statement deed, or lease)
  • Verification of employment (current pay stub, benefit statement, tax return)

The application must include all felony and misdemeanor convictions along with any traffic convictions involving drugs or alcohol.

A pardon will not clear the record so that the criminal record can still be considered for employment.

If a person was under 18 at the time of the conviction and receives a pardon, they may seek expungement for the conviction.

For those convicted of a nonviolent felony and who received a pardon, if no additional charges have been filed, they may seek expungement after at least ten years have passed since the conviction.

Before submitting any such application, it will be important to consult with an attorney for legal advice and assistance with the pardon application process.

Even though felons may be pardoned, the original offense can still be used against them if they commit another crime, and they will still be considered a repeat offender.

Effects of a Pardon

If felons are successful in achieving a pardon, some things in their life will change.

While the conviction will remain on their record, they will no longer be subject to the penalties that typically go along with a felony record.

If a pardon is granted, the following rights will be restored:

  • The right to vote
  • The right to serve on a jury
  • The right to hold public office
  • The right to bear arms
  • The right to be admitted to a professional school
  • The right to take the Civil Service Examination
  • The right to have a passport
  • The right to hold certain licenses, such as a liquor license

Obtaining a pardon will make it easier to find a job.  A pardon will make a significant difference in re-establishing their standing in the community.

Also, they will have the satisfaction of knowing they were successful at having the penalties for a felony removed from their record.

Supporting the Felon after the Pardon Decision

If felons are successful in achieving a pardon, some things in their life will change.

While the conviction will remain on their record, they will no longer be subject to the penalties that typically go along with a felony record.

If a pardon is granted, the following rights will be restored:

  • The right to vote
  • The right to serve on a jury
  • The right to hold public office
  • The right to bear arms
  • The right to be admitted to a professional school
  • The right to take the Civil Service Examination
  • The right to have a passport
  • The right to hold certain licenses, such as a liquor license

Obtaining a pardon will make it easier to find a job.  A pardon will make a significant difference in re-establishing their standing in the community.

Also, they will have the satisfaction of knowing they were successful at having the penalties for a felony removed from their record.