General Information on Pardons

A pardon is an act of forgiveness. In order to receive a pardon, by statute, an individual must first make application for a pardon. After an application is submitted, reviewed, and deemed complete by the administrative staff of the Pardon and Parole Board, the application is referred for a Pre-Pardon investigation. After the investigation is completed, the pardon request is placed on a docket. The Pardon and Parole Board will review the application and provide an optional personal appearance. The Board will then decide to favorably recommend or deny the request for a pardon. The application and recommendation are then forwarded to the Governor for review. Only the Governor can grant a pardon. For more information on the process, refer to the Frequently Asked Questions on the Board’s website. 

‌An application for a pardon does not guarantee that a favorable recommendation by the Pardon and Parole Board will be made or that the Governor will grant a pardon. 

‌A pardon is not a parole or commutation and does not clear or erase a criminal record, but does acknowledge that someone has worked hard to become a productive, law-abiding citizen after making mistakes in the past. There is no fee to apply for a pardon. Under Oklahoma law, a pardon will not clear the conviction from a person's record. Those who are currently incarcerated are not eligible for a pardon. 

‌A pardon granted in Oklahoma may restore some of an individual’s civil rights. A pardon does not remove the conviction from a person's record, and it does not prevent a criminal record from being considered when decisions are made concerning employment or other matters. Even if a pardon is granted, the record may continue to have an effect. Individuals who receive a pardon must still answer “Yes” if asked about a felony or misdemeanor convictions on an employment application. However, information about the pardon may be included.

‌Many professions require licenses. The licensing agency for each profession operates under its own laws and policies. Some agencies will not issue a license even after a pardon is granted. Others will consider licensure only if a pardon is granted. It is up to the applicant to check with the employer or licensing entity.

‌Liquor Licenses 
‌A person who has been convicted of a felony is not eligible for a liquor license. For more information, the applicant should contact the ABLE Commission at (405)521-3484.

‌A convicted felon may not register to vote for a period equal to the time of the original sentence. A convicted felon who has been pardoned may register to vote. For more information, contact the State Election Board at (405)521-2391.

Property Rights
‌A felony conviction does not prevent property ownership, with one exception. A person convicted of Murder First Degree, Murder Second Degree, or Manslaughter First Degree cannot inherit property from the victim, nor receive proceeds from the victim’s insurance. A pardon will not change this.

‌According to Oklahoma Statutes, Title 21 § 1283 (B), the only way to restore a person's firearm rights is through a pardon granted by the Governor of Oklahoma. The statute states that any person who has previously been convicted of a nonviolent felony in any court of this state or of another state or of the United States, and who has received a full and complete pardon from the proper authority and has not been convicted of any other felony offense which has not been pardoned, shall have restored the right to possess any firearm or other weapon prohibited by subsection A of this section, the right to apply for and carry a handgun, concealed or unconcealed, pursuant to the Oklahoma Self-Defense Act and the right to perform the duties of a peace officer, gunsmith, or for firearms repair. Federal firearm laws that also apply. For more information, contact the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Oklahoma Field Office, at 901 N.E. 122nd, Suite 200, Oklahoma City, OK 73114 or (405)748-8294

‌Sex Offender Registration 
‌A pardon does not remove the responsibilities for sex offender registration which were created under Title 57 O.S. § 584. Even if a pardon is granted, registration requirements will continue according to state law.

Future Felony Conviction(s)
‌A pardon will not prevent prior convictions from being considered if a person is later convicted of a felony. A previous record may be used in the sentencing process even if the offense has been pardoned.

Federal or Other State Pardons

The Governor of the State of Oklahoma may only pardon Oklahoma convictions. The Governor cannot pardon convictions from other states or federal convictions. If you are seeking a pardon for a conviction in another state, contact that state. If you are seeking a pardon for a federal conviction, contact the Office of the Pardon Attorney, U.S. Department of Justice, 1425 New York Ave. N.W., Suite 1100, Washington, D.C., 20530, or call (202) 616-6070.


The eligibility criteria below must be met for all convictions for which a pardon is being requested. Failure to meet the eligibility criteria will result in the application being returned.

In order to be eligible for a pardon, a person must meet the following criteria:

• Must have been convicted of a violation of Oklahoma law, either a felony or misdemeanor, or in an Oklahoma Municipal Court involving a misdemeanor alcohol or illegal drug offense. Traffic misdemeanor convictions are NOT eligible for a pardon. 
‌• Must either have discharged all sentences, including supervision, or successfully completed five consecutive years of parole or probation immediately prior to application. 
‌• Must have paid all fines, fees, restitution, court costs, etc. in full. 
‌• Must not have any new or pending charges. 
‌• Must not currently be in jail or prison. 
‌• Must not have been considered for a pardon within the past three years. 
‌• Must have discharged all other sentences, including post-imprisonment supervision. Any cases from other jurisdictions must also meet these criteria, even though not eligible for an Oklahoma pardon.

The Board members consider factors such as nature of the crime, the length of time since the crime was committed, and what you have done with your life since the crime, among other elements. From the point of discharge of a sentence, there is no minimum amount of time that a person must wait to apply for a pardon. It should be noted that the law allows some past crimes to be used to enhance future crimes up to ten (10) years following the completion of the sentence or court imposed probation. A pardon remains a privilege and not a right. A Board member can vote for or against the granting of a pardon regardless of the time that has passed.

Completing the Application

Prior to completing the application, it is important to determine eligibility. In addition, if considering a pardon, the applicant should also refer to the Frequently Asked Questions on the Pardon and Parole Board's website at https://www.ok.gov/ppb/.

Once eligibility is established, the applicant should take the following steps in completing the application.

•Type or print the answers in ink. Do not staple or bind the application in any way. 
‌• It is the applicant’s responsibility to attach to the application the required documentation. If there are cases, which have been pardoned before, these do not need to be included in the application. 
‌• The application will not be processed until it is complete. If the application is not complete, the applicant will be notified. 
‌• If the application is illegible, it will be returned and will not be processed. 
‌• Each question must be answered fully, truthfully, and accurately. 
‌• If the space for any answer is insufficient, the answer must be completed on the Optional Continuation page included with the application. Additional documentation that is relevant to the application may also be attached. 
‌• Application forms must be filled out completely, signed, dated, and notarized where required. Completed applications must include the Release of Information and the Certification and Personal Oath. 
‌• The submission of any false information is grounds for immediate denial of the application. 
‌• If delivery notification of the application to the Pardon and Parole Board is desired, the applicant must send the application via certified mail.

‌In addition to the application, the applicant must include the following documents in order for the application to be considered complete:

1. Authorization of Release of Information 
‌2. Certified Judgment and Sentence (J&S) 
‌     • On each conviction for which a pardon is requested, a certified J&S may be obtained from the Court Clerk in the county of conviction. Documents must bear an original County seal or stamp. 
‌3. Certified Statement from the Court Clerk 
‌     • On each conviction, a Certified Statement from the Court Clerk must be included that all fines, fees, and court costs (including restitution and probation fees) have been paid in full. Documents must bear an original County seal or stamp. 
‌4. Current Credit Report 
‌    • The report must be dated within 30-60 days of the date of the application. 
‌5. Current Proof or Verification of Employment or Income
 ‌    • An example of proof would be a current pay stub, benefit statement, tax return, unemployment, or SSI. 
‌6. Current Proof or Verification of Residence 
 ‌    • The report must be dated within 30-60 days of the date of the application. An example of proof would be a certified rental receipt, mortgage statement, deed, or lease agreement. Utility or cable bills are NOT considered a proof of residence. 
‌7. Current Drivers License 
‌     • If applicant does not have a Driver’s License, please provide a copy of a valid State ID

Character Affidavits Applicants may submit Character Affidavits with the application. For more information on Character Affidavits, review the Frequently Asked Questions on Pardons which can be found at https://www.ok.gov/ppb/. Click on the Pardons and Commutations Tab. Applicants must list the name, address, and home and work telephone numbers of those submitting character affidavits and support letters for the pardon. Each letter must also be signed, recently dated, notarized, and attached to the application.


Submitting the Application

 Applications must be submitted through the online application portal.

After the application is reviewed for completeness, it is sent for a pre-pardon investigation and the applicant will receive a letter from the Pardon and Parole Board.

‌If there is an address change at any point after the application is submitted, contact the Pardon and Parole Board by calling (405)521-6600.


All of the information submitted in the pardon application, including the character affidavits, must be verified. The pardon application process is lengthy. It can take up to one (1) year to complete once a completed application has been received.

Upon having a complete application, state and federal background checks are ordered. Once, received applicants that have an Oklahoma conviction and reside within the State of Oklahoma will be assigned a pre-pardon investigation conducted by the Oklahoma Department of Corrections, District Office of Probation and Parole. For applicants that have an Oklahoma conviction but reside outside of the State of Oklahoma, the Pardon and Parole Board will conduct the pre-pardon investigation.

By law, the investigating authority is allowed up to 70 days to complete the pre-pardon investigation. The investigator will verify all information submitted in the application and compile a report. The report will then be submitted to the Pardon and Parole Board. The application is then placed on the next available docket for the Board to consider the request for a pardon

An applicant may choose to appear before the Board and speak on his/her behalf. Applicants may bring a representative with them. Only one person will be allowed to speak to the Board regarding the reasons for requesting the pardon. The speaker will be given five (5) minutes to speak to the Board. The Board Members may or may not have questions for the applicant. The Board will vote immediately after the presentation; however, votes are not final until the conclusion of the final day of the monthly meeting. The applicant may contact the Pardon and Parole Board Administrative Office on the Monday following the Board meeting after 2:00 p.m. to obtain the results. The Board may choose to deny the application or to recommend the pardon to the Governor.

If the Board recommends a pardon, the entire application, along with a Pardon Certificate, will be submitted to the Governor for consideration. The Governor may choose to deny or grant a pardon. The Governor has ninety (90) days to make a final determination regarding Pardon requests.

The Oklahoma Pardon and Parole Board will receive notification of the Governor’s actions (both approval and denial). If the Governor grants the pardon request, the Governor will sign a Pardon Certificate and file it with the Oklahoma Secretary of State. This information will be sent to the Pardon and Parole Board. The Pardon and Parole Board will notify the applicant via a letter regarding the approval. The Pardon and Parole Board will also notify the following agencies of the granted pardon: 1) Department of Corrections; 2) Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation; and, 3) each county clerk in which a charge was pardoned.

If the Governor denies a request for a pardon, a denied Pardon Certificate will be filed with the Oklahoma Secretary of State. This information will be also sent to the Pardon and Parole Board. The Pardon and Parole Board will then notify the applicant via a letter regarding denial.

If an applicant is denied at either stage of the process, he/she may re-apply in three years from the date of denial. The applicant will need to submit an updated credit report, proof of residence, proof of employment, and character affidavits, and an Authorization to Release Information at the time of re-application.

For More Information

For more information, contact the Pardon and Parole Board at (405) 521-6600.