Certificate of Relief Pertaining to Firearm Possession Application Requirements
If you have been or may be disqualified from possessing a firearm pursuant to the federal Brady Act as a result of being involuntarily committed to a facility serving individuals with developmental disabilities in New York State, and your records were submitted to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System by the Office For People With Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD), you may apply to the Commissioner of OPWDD for a Certificate of Relief from Disabilities, pursuant to New York State Mental Hygiene Law Section 13.09(g) and 14 NYCRR Part 643. A determination regarding whether or not to grant a Certificate of Relief is based on whether or not a person's record and reputation are such that he/she will not be likely to act in a manner dangerous to public safety, and that granting the relief would not be contrary to the public interest.
1. To apply for the Certificate of Relief, you must complete the application (OPWDD NICS-01) and submit it to NICS Appeals Office, Counsels Office, New York State Office For People With Developmental Disabilities, 44 Holland Ave., Albany, NY 12229, together with the required information specified below.
2. In addition to the completed form, you must submit the following information:
a. True and certified copies of medical/clinical records detailing your psychiatric and/or intellectual or developmental disability history, which shall include the records pertaining to the involuntary commitment to an OPWDD facility, which is the subject of the request for relief;
b. True and certified copies of medical/clinical records from all of your current treatment and service providers, if you are receiving treatment or services;
c. True and certified records from any previous alcohol/substance abuse providers over the past 20 years;
d. A true and certified copy of all criminal history information maintained on file at the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) pertaining to you, or a copy of a response from DCJS or the FBI indicating that there is no criminal history information on file. To obtain a certified copy of your New York State criminal history information, you must call the DCJS Record Review Unit or write to the address listed below to request the necessary forms:
New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services
Criminal History Bureau
Record Review Unit 5th Floor
4 Tower Place
Albany, New York 12203-3764
To obtain a certified copy of your criminal history information from the Federal Bureau of Investigation please visit the following website: www.fbi.gov/hq/cjisd/fprequest.htm.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation will require a signed cover letter, provided by the FBI, along with proof of identity (set of fingerprints) and payment to be sent to:
FBI CJIS Division Record Request
1000 Custer Hollow Road
Clarksburg, West Virginia 26306.
You must allow approximately 16-18 weeks for processing your request, upon receipt by the FBI. Either a no record response or an FBI Identification Record will be mailed to you.
e. Evidence of your reputation, which may include notarized letters of reference from current and past employers, family members or personal friends, affidavits from character witnesses or you, or other character evidence;
f. Any further information specifically requested by the Office For People With Developmental Disabilities. If documents are requested, certified copies of original documents must be provided. After you submit your completed application, we will notify you if additional information will be requested.
3. You must provide a psychiatric evaluation performed no earlier than 90 calendar days from the date that you are submitting the request for this certificate of relief, conducted by a qualified psychiatrist. A qualified psychiatrist is a physician licensed to practice medicine in New York State who is a diplomate of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology or is eligible to be certified by that board, or is certified by the American Osteopathic Board of Neurology and Psychiatry or is eligible to be certified by that board. Please inform the qualified psychiatrist that this evaluation must include an opinion, and basis for that opinion, as to whether or not your record and reputation are such that you will or will not be likely to act in a manner dangerous to public safety and whether or not the granting of the relief would be contrary to the public interest.
4. You must provide an evaluation by a licensed psychologist which includes current IQ and adaptive behavior assessment.
5. We may also request that you undergo a clinical evaluation and risk assessment. If we make this request, the evaluation must be performed 45 calendar days from the date we request the evaluation, unless we allow an extension of time.
It is Your responsibility to ensure that all required information accompanies this request when you submit it to OPWDD. Information provided after our receipt of the initial request for relief will not be considered (except for information we have requested). If we request additional information, it is Your responsibility to provide it in accordance with our request. Information specifically requested by us must be received within 60 days of the date requested in order for it to be considered. Failure to meet these time frames will result in a denial of the certificate of relief.