Rights Lost Upon Felony Conviction in Ohio

When a person is found or pleads guilty to a felony crime in the state of Ohio, they will lose certain rights under the law. The Ohio Revised Code states that anyone convicted of a felony will automatically not be allowed to sign or be involved in the gathering of signatures for petitions, applications or declarations related to public candidacy or voting. In addition, the person loses the ability to hold public office or serve on a jury. However, the right to vote and serve on a jury are restored upon completion of the sentence, which includes release from incarceration, and parole or probation.

The Ohio Bar Association details many of the other rights that are affected by a felony conviction. Anyone holding a state license as a solicitor of goods door to door, from a location on the street, a vendor booth, a pawn shop, secondhand shop or junk store will lose that license upon conviction of a felony theft offense. The law also bans felons from being able to use, purchase or have in their possession any explosives, ammunition or guns, but this right may be restored by a petition to the court.

Federal law also places restrictions upon a person. Felons are not able to serve in law enforcement or the military, but special permission can be granted from the secretary of defense to allow military service. A conviction may prevent a person from being eligible for a visa to travel to some countries. A person may not be able to enter into some federal contracts, and any drug or violence conviction can prevent a person from being eligible for federal housing. Drug convictions also may prevent a person from being able to receive federal financial aid or government monetary benefits, or apply for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. Lastly, nonresidents of the U.S. may face deportation upon a felony conviction, and they must be warned of this by the judge before entering a plea in court.

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