Michigan Lt. Governor signs bill that protects felons

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LANSING — Today marked a milestone for Lieutenant Governor Gilchrist.

Lt. Gov. Gilchrist signed his first bill as acting governor. He is also the first black lieutenant governor to sign a bill into the Michigan State Legislature.

That’s House Bill 4044, which will allow felons to submit applications for insurance producer licenses as long as they have not been convicted of a felony in the last 10 years.

“As the first black lieutenant governor to sign a bill into law, today’s historic action symbolizes the opportunity that exists when we create a space for more participation from a more diverse set of voices and experiences,” Gilchrist said.

Even though applicants with prior felonies will be granted an insurance producer license, the new law gives exemptions for people with violent-, fiduciary-, or financial-related crimes.   

According to a press release, “under the current law, Michigan does not grant insurance licenses to individuals with felony convictions.” Because of this restriction, the State denied 61 applications due to prior felony convictions in 2018. 

House Bill 4044, sponsored by Rep. Michele Hoitenga, will take immediate effect.  

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