Hello, this is my first post here. I have a 1989 felony conviction for possesion of a controlled substance (cocaine) which was a class X felony. I was sentenced to 6 years, served 2 1/2 and parole without incident and have never looked back. It is my one and only time in trouble, I have no issues with drugs or alcohol, I was 20 and stupid, that's it.
It has been over 20 years now and I have a wife of 12 years, 2 children and a very successful business. I think I am getting a fair understanding as to the types of relief that are available in Illinois for pardons and gun ownership through reading online and talking with local attorneys. I have 2 main questions and would greatly appreciate all the advice you can offer.
1) In various online forums and sites, I've seen many people chime in and say that if you have a felony, your SOL even if you have a pardon or have your gun ownership (civil rights) restored, since there is a federal prohibition on felons possessing guns. Then I see others say that is nonsense, since the Feds will recognize the states decision and the following was copied from another thread:
"Federal Form BATF 4473 Question 12c asks whether you have every been convicted of a felony. It the directions for filling out the form (Important Notice 6, Exception 1) The instructions tells the person who has had all his Civil Rights restored ( Firearms, Voting, Public Office, etc.) To write "NO" in that spot.."
My understanding is that the restoration of civil rights happens at the circuit court level. There was a recent post here regarding this process in NY. So, Is it possible to petition the circuit court for reinstatement of civil rights in Illinois? It is Lake County, IL. I'm not talking about a pardon.
2. I do plan on pursuing a pardon and have been in contact with a couple of attorneys that are willing to take it on, unfortunately neither has much experience with this. So can someone assist with a REALLY GOOD resource that I can use to find an attorney to consult and hire for both the restoration of civil rights at the circuit court level and also to do the pardon.