Were you charged with CCW because of an expired CPL?

An expired concealed pistol permit can result in a felony charge for carrying a concealed weapon (CCW). The government could charge you even if your valid permit expired recently.

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Do not just admit guilt; there may be a way to avoid a conviction.

A person may only carry a concealed pistol in Michigan if they have a CPL or a Concealed Pistol License. Because Michigan is a “shall issue” state, a county clerk must grant an application for a CPL by a qualified person. Once obtained, a CPL holder must renew their license every five (5) years. According to the Michigan State Police, a “CPL is valid until the applicant’s date of birth that falls not less than four years or more than five years after the license is issued or renewed.” The expiration time can be confusing, and an otherwise well-intentioned and responsible person may find their CPL unknowingly expired. A lawfully purchased, registered firearm with an expired CPL can result in carrying concealed weapon charges.

Sometimes, a police officer pulls over a CPL holder with an expired permit for speeding or another traffic infraction. A pistol is “concealed” under Michigan law if it is within the passenger compartment of a car. The law requires that CPL holders immediately advise a police officer if a pistol is in their vehicle during a traffic stop. When a driver tells the officer that a firearm is in the car, the officer will ask to see the CPL to ensure it is valid. When the officer sees that it is expired, this can result in a felony charge for carrying a concealed weapon, also known as CCW. The officer may or may not choose to arrest the driver on the spot. If the officer doesn’t arrest the driver immediately, a warrant will be issued, and the driver will have to turn themselves into the appropriate court for arraignment.

Expiration of a CPL and Notice by the County Clerk

Even though county clerks are supposed to notify CPL holders that their license expires in three to six months, that often does not happen, or the notice gets lost in the mail. Given that the law doesn’t require the renewal of a CPL for several years, it is easy to forget that the license is expiring, and failure to receive notice can cause serious problems.

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Carrying a Concealed Weapon or Pistol with an Expired Permit

The possible penalty for CCW with an expired permit is the same as if the person had never obtained a CPL in the first place. Unfair or not, the maximum penalty is up to 5 years in prison and up to 5 years on probation, with fines and costs. Furthermore, a person with any felony conviction, including CCW, will no longer qualify for a CPL in Michigan.

Defense to a Carrying Concealed Weapons Charge

There may be several defenses to CCW felony charges in Michigan. One defense that is often valid is “lack of knowledge.” For a conviction, the prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant knowingly possessed the concealed firearm. Because the government uses circumstantial evidence to demonstrate a person’s knowledge, successfully raising this defense is complicated. A person’s best hope of avoiding a conviction is with a seasoned, veteran defense lawyer who has a track record of winning in court.

Michigan Criminal Defense Attorney

Attorneys for CPL Holders Charged with CCW Because of Expired Permits

If you face felony Carrying a Concealed Weapon charges and your CPL was expired, we can help you. The Defense Team with LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C. has decades of experience defending CCW charges and negotiating with prosecutors for dismissals and reduced charges. In some cases, an influential defense lawyer can persuade a prosecutor to reduce the offense to a civil infraction under the right circumstances. We understand that your 2nd Amendment rights are critical to you. We will do everything possible to prevent a conviction from interfering with your ability to legally possess a concealed pistol.

Call us today at (248) 263-6800 for a free consultation or complete an online Request for Assistance Form. We will contact you promptly and find a way to help you.

We will find a way to help you and, most importantly,
we are not afraid to win!

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