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Relief from Disabilities Board

Pursuant to its authority under 11 Del. C. Section 1448A(k), the State of Delaware, Department of Safety and Homeland Security proposed regulations that were adopted May 15th, 2012. These regulations relate to the creation and operations of the Relief from Disabilities Board and the transmission of health information to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). The United States Department of Justice authorized the transmission of this information on February 5th, 2013.

What is the Relief from Disabilities Board?

  1. The Relief from Disabilities Board was created to carry out the functions and duties pursuant to 11 Del. C. Section 1448A(j) and the State of Delaware Regulations adopted May 15th, 2012.
  2. The Board is authorized to consider petitions for relief pursuant to 11 Del. C. Section 1448A(j) and the regulations arising from mental health adjudications or commitments which occur in the State of Delaware. Those that are considered as a "person prohibited" from owning a firearm due to mental health adjudications or commitments are eligible to submit a petition for relief if they can meet the below listed requirements.
  3. The Board is not a designated agency pursuant to the Administrative Procedures Act and therefore, shall be subject only to 29 Del. C. Section 10161(b).
  4. The Board is comprised of three members, with the Chairperson appointed by and serving at the pleasure of the Secretary of Safety and Homeland Security. The remaining two members are appointed by and serve at the pleasure of the Secretary of the Department of Health and Social Services, one of whom shall be a licensed psychiatrist.

How and where will the Hearing be conducted?

  1. The Hearing will be held in the 3rd floor hearing room located in the Carvel State Office Building, 820 North French Street (suite 325), Wilmington, DE 19801.
  2. The Board shall schedule a hearing on a petition for relief within 60 days from the date of receipt of a petition.
  3. The petition shall be heard by the board in a closed and confidential hearing on the record.
  4. The decision of the Board shall be issued in writing as soon as practicable following the hearing explaining its reasons for denial or grant of relief.

What am I required to do and have?

  1. The Petitioner must submit the required information in person or by Certified First Class Mail to the Administrator of the Relief from Disabilities Board at the Delaware Department of Safety and Homeland Security located in the Highway Administration Building, Suite 2, 800 S. Bay Road , Dover, DE 19901.
  2. The Petition must contain at a minimum, the following: (Must have prior to requesting a hearing)
    1. The Petitioner's name, address and telephone number;
    2. The Petitioner's complete mental health record;
    3. A current certificate (letter on letterhead) from a medical doctor or psychiatrist licensed in Delaware that states the following: The petitioner (you) is no longer suffering from a mental disorder which interferes with or handicaps the petitioner from handling deadly weapons and/or firearms;
    4. A notarized affidavit (letter) signed by the petitioner stating that the facts and statements contained in the petition are true and correct;
    5. Any and all documents the petitioner wishes to introduce or submit to the board in support of his or her case such as: letters from family members, professional associates, friends, etc.
    6. A copy of a driver's license or government issued I.D.
  3. The petitioner must appear in person at the scheduled hearing.
  4. The Board may request that the petitioner undergo a clinical evaluation and risk assessment upon the recommendation of the Board psychiatrist. The petitioner shall bear the costs of his or her clinical evaluation and/or risk assessment.

When can petitions be submitted?

Petitions for relief from disabilities will be accepted Monday through Friday, except state designated holidays or state ordered closures, at the Delaware Department of Safety and Homeland Security located:

Department of Safety and Homeland Security
Office of the Secretary
800 S Bay Road, Suite 2
Dover, Delaware 19901

I still have a question.

Contact the Delaware Department of Safety and Homeland Security via email at or call us at (302) 744-2680.