Scott County, Tennessee
HOMEPAGE INDUSTRY TOURISM COMMERCE
 

Restoration of Voting Rights

The Constitution of the State of Tennessee gives the Tennessee Legislature the right to deny voting rights to persons convicted of felonies.

However, the legislature has also established conditions and procedures through which individuals who have lost their voting rights may regain them. The manner in which a person may restore a lost voting right depends upon the crime committed and the year in which the conviction occurred.

Those conditions, by condition date, include:

Before Jan. 15, 1973

Type of crime that forfeits the right to vote:
• Abusing a female child;
• Arson and felonious burning;
• Bigamy;
• Bribery;
• Burglary; felonious breaking and entering a dwelling house, felonious breaking into a business house, outhouse other than a dwelling house; larceny; horse stealing; robbery; receiving stolen property; stealing bills of exchange or other valuable papers;
• Destroying a will;
• Incest; rape; sodomy; buggery; or
• Perjury; subornation of perjury.

Conditions under which a person may be eligible for restoration of voting rights:
• Proving that, at the time of conviction, the judge did not render person infamous;
• Conviction reversed on appeal;
• Receipt of a full pardon; or
• Circuit court, in either the county where the person resides or in the county where person was convicted, issues judgment that restores full rights of citizenship upon the person. (Person may petition the circuit court for restoration at the expiration of the maximum sentence imposed for the infamous crime conviction). Click Here to Print the Circuit Court Judgment Petition for Restoration.
• Present proof of one of the above-mentioned conditions to the county election commission in the county in which the person resides;
• County Administrator of Elections shall send a copy of the documentation to the Coordinator of Elections for verification; and
• Upon verification, the person may be registered to vote.

Jan. 15, 1973-May 17, 1981

Type of crime that forfeits the right to vote:
• None

Conditions under which a person may be eligible for restoration of voting rights:
• Because a person convicted of an infamous crime during this time period may register to vote, regardless of the nature of the conviction, there are no conditions or procedures that apply.

After May 18, 1981

Type of crime that forfeits the right to vote:
• All felonies

Conditions under which a person may be eligible for restoration of voting rights:
• Receipt of a pardon
• Expiration of the maximum sentence imposed for the crime; or
• Granted final release from incarceration or supervision by the board of paroles, the department of correction, or county correction authority; and
• Any court order restitution paid; and/or
• Current in the payment of any child support obligations

Procedure for restoring voting rights:
• Print the Certificate of Restoration of Voting Rights, or obtain a certificate from the county election commission office;
• Have the Certificate of Restoration of Voting Rights completed by the pardoning authority, an agent or officer of the supervising or incarcerating authority, and/or an agent of the circuit/criminal court clerk;
• Bring the completed Certificate of Restoration of Voting Rights to the office of the county election commission in the county in which person resides;
• County administrator of elections shall send a copy of the Certificate of Restoration of Voting Rights to the Coordinator of Elections for verification; and
• Upon verification that the applicant does not have any outstanding child support obligations due, the person may be registered to vote.

Exceptions: Persons convicted of the following cannot have his or her voting rights restored:
• Between July 1, 1986 and June 30, 1996 – first degree murder, aggravated rape, treason, or voter fraud;
• Between July 1, 1996 and June 30, 2006 – murder, rape, treason or voter fraud;
• On or after July 2, 2006 – Any of the above, or any degree of murder or rape or any felony offense under TCA Title 39, Chapter 16, parts 1, 4, or 5; or any sexual offense under TCA § 40-39-202(17) or any violent sexual offense under TCA § 40-39-202(25) designated as a felony and where the victim of such offense was a minor.



Election Central