Pardons in Oklahoma
In a given year, more than one of 30 Americans will be incarcerated. And in Oklahoma, the odds of getting caught up in the penal system are among the highest in the nation.
Even if you’ve been incarcerated or are under parole, the governor can pardon you and excuse you of your prior offense. Is this a possibility in your case?
What does it mean to be pardoned?
After you’ve done your time, it may be in your best interest to ask the Oklahoma Probation and Parole Board to recommend that the governor pardons you. Being pardoned means that someone is excused or forgiven for an offense. In Oklahoma, the governor can only grant a pardon if it is supported by a majority vote from the Pardon and Parole Board.
Obtaining a Pardon
There are many ways that a person might be pardoned, but a few conditions that must be met include:
- No pardon applications filed recently. If you want to petition to be pardoned, you must get it right the first time or be prepared to wait the minimum of one year before trying again.
- Accept responsibility for the prior offense. Claims of innocence will not be considered. The board wants to know that you have accepted responsibility for the offense you were convicted of.
- Must not have any pending charges. If you have any other pending criminal charges, your petition can be dismissed.
- Must not be incarcerated. Pardons will only be granted to those who have completed their sentence or obligation with the state.
- Must report entire criminal history. The board will research your criminal history and if you do not report certain items on your application, it could be thrown out.
- Report credit status and civil litigation. If you have any civil matters that are in dispute of in suspense, they must be listed on your application. This might include delinquent credit obligations, bankruptcy, or unpaid taxes. You may additionally submit explanatory material.
- Submit references. Your application must include at least three character reference statements from non-relatives.
Why should you apply for a pardon?
A pardon will not erase a criminal offense from your record, but it will demonstrate that you are a responsible citizen and will also state that you have adjusted well to society. A pardon will help regain your right to vote, make it easier to find a job, and several other benefits that those without a criminal record get to enjoy.
When you decide you’re ready to live life on your own terms again, call Bruce Edge. Because of the strict guidelines, it’s important that you get the application right the first time around, and working with an experienced attorney is the best way to ensure the most favorable outcome. Contact The Edge Law Firm today.