LICENSE REVOCATION ISSUES

Issues Concerning Denial of A LTC

Massachusetts Firearm License Appeals

Persons aggrieved by a denial, revocation, or suspension of a Firearms Identification (FID) card, License to Carry (LTC), or Machine Gun License (also known as a “Class 3” or “Green Card”) are entitled to a court hearing in the local District Court. An appeal of the District Court’s action is available in the local Superior Court. Further appeal is available of the Superior Court decision is available in the Massachusetts Appeals Court and the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court.

In addition, persons aggrieved by a denial, revocation, or suspension only because of misdemeanor convictions may appeal to the Massachusetts Firearms Licensing Review Board (the “FLRB”).

Firearms Identification (FID) Card Appeals

Under Massachusetts law, M.G.L. c. 140, § 129B(5), unless a hearing pursuant to Chapter 209A has previously been held, you have ninety (90) days from the date of receipt of notice of denial, revocation, or suspension to file a petition to obtain judicial review. If you do not receive notice within forty (40) days of your application for a Firearms Identification (FID) card then you should presume that you have been denied.

The Firearms Identification (FID) Card is a “must issue” right. Unless prohibited by statute, the licensing authority must issue the FID Card.

In the District Court the only issue is whether your application for a Firearms Identification (FID) card was prohibited by law from possessing such card. A licensing authority, usually the Chief of Police, cannot prescribe any other conditions for issuance of a Firearms Identification (FID) Card beyond those listed by statute, M.G.L. c. 140, § 129B. A revoked or suspended Firearms Identification (FID) Card may be reinstated only upon the termination of all disqualifying condition

At the District Court hearing you are entitled to an evidentiary hearing to re-examine the decision of the licensing authority’s decision for the purpose of preventing a result that appears not to be based upon the exercise of an unbiased and reasonable judgment. In other words, this is not a de novo proceeding! The District Court is not permitted to substitute its opinion for that of the licensing authority. Rather, it is charged with reviewing the decision based on the exclusionary conditions only. Either party to the hearing may appeal the decision of the District Court to the Superior Court. All appeals beyond the District Court are confined to the record on appeal to determine whether there are substantial errors of law apparent on that record adversely affecting material rights.

If your Firearms Identification (FID) Card was denied, revoked, or suspended due only to misdemeanor convictions, which ended five (5) or more years earlier, then you may appeal to the Firearms Licensing Review Board (FLRB). All misdemeanors reviewed must arise from a single incident. At the hearing your application for appeal will be evaluated along with all documentary evidence provided. You bear the burden of proof, by clear and convincing evidence, that you are a suitable person to receive a Firearms Identification (FID) Card. Successful petitioners must then apply to the licensing authority.

License to Carry (LTC) Appeals

Most of the cases I have handled come under this statute. Under Massachusetts law, M.G.L. c. 140, § 131(f), unless a hearing pursuant to Chapter 209A has previously been held, you have ninety (90) days from the date of receipt of notice of denial, revocation, or suspension to file a petition in the court which has jurisdiction to obtain judicial review. For instance if the chief of police in Auburn denies our application, the Court would be Worcester District Court. If you do not receive notice within forty (40) days of your application for a License to Carry (LTC) then you should presume that you have been denied.

The License to Carry is a “may issue” right. In addition to statutory exclusion, the licensing authority may deny, revoke, or suspend a LTC upon a finding of “unsuitability.

“At the District Court hearing you are entitled to an evidentiary hearing to re-examine the decision of the licensing authority’s decision. In other words, this is not a de novo proceeding! A License to Carry (LTC) appeal in District Court rests the burden of proof on you to produce substantial evidence that establishes that the denial, revocation, or suspension was “arbitrary, capricious or an abuse of discretion.” The court must review the legal and factual basis for the action taken by the licensing authority. However, the court will not defer to the licensing authority with regard to questions of law. Either party to the hearing may appeal the decision of the District Court to the Superior Court. All appeals beyond the District Court are confined to the record on appeal to determine whether there are substantial errors of law apparent on that record adversely affecting material rights.

If your License to Carry (LTC) was denied, revoked, or suspended due only to misdemeanor convictions that ended five (5) or more years earlier then you may appeal to the Firearms Licensing Review Board (FLRB). All misdemeanors reviewed must arise from a single incident. At the hearing your application for appeal will be evaluated along with all documentary evidence provided. You bear the burden of proof, by clear and convincing evidence, that you are a suitable person to receive a License to Carry (LTC). Successful petitioners must then apply to the licensing authority.

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I have had tremendous success in the area of my practice and understand what needs to be done in order to increase your chances of obtaining a successful result.  If you have questions, please contact me at my office at (508) 791-9001 or by cell phone at (508) 769-7995.   You may also e-mail me Michael@criminaldefenseworcester.com or text me.  I take great pride is a very quick response time and will promptly schedule a free initial consultation at your convenience.  I have also begun to conduct quite a few meetings via FACETIME or SKYPE for those clients who are either out of state or have license issues.