Restoration of rights

General post-incarceration information

The Washington Appleseed Center for Law in the Public Interest has a Washington Reentry Guide that is a tool to help you get back on your feet after a period of incarceration. The Guide has information on many topics including family law concerns, employment, housing, rights restoration, legal financial obligations, debts, identification documents, healthcare, transportation, outstanding warrants, and work release.

Vacating convictions and clearing criminal records

Many people with a criminal record want to “expunge” or “clear” their criminal histories. While Washington law does not permit the destruction of adult conviction records, some people may be eligible to “vacate” a conviction record.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Washington's guide, Is My Client Eligible to Vacate an Adult Criminal Conviction?, provides general information about the requirements to vacate.

If you have a misdemeanor or gross misdemeanor, a new tool will determine your eligibility to vacate your conviction, provide information about vacating convictions, and offer forms.

Some additional sources of information are:

State v. Blake

The Washington State Supreme Court issued an opinion in the State v. Blake case in February, 2021, declaring the strict liability drug possession statute unconstitutional. 

Gun rights restoration

self-help form kits

The law library sells a Gun Rights Restoration self-help kit with forms and instructions to ask the court to restore firearms rights that were lost due to Washington State convictions. Kits can be purchased at the library or online and mailed out.

The Clark County Sheriff's Office has provided additional information about factors that impact eligibility to restore gun rights.

Voting rights restoration

A new law took effect on January 1, 2022 that automatically restores voting rights to citizens immediately upon their release from prison. It also restored the right to vote to approximately 20,000 residents who are currently on community supervision following release from prison.

Certificate of Restoration of Opportunity (CROP)

A Certificate of Restoration of Opportunity is used after you have served your criminal sentence. It can make it easier to get a job or housing, and can help restore certain occupational licenses.

Legal Financial Obligations (LFOs)

Legal financial obligations, or LFOs, are the fines, fees, costs and restitution imposed by the court on top of a criminal sentence. More information about LFOs can be found at:

Driver's License suspension

If your driver's license was suspended, Washington LawHelp has information that you can use: