Pennsylvania Uniform Firearms Act

Title 18, 505. Use of Force in Self-Protection.

(a)            Use of force justifiable for protection of the person.—The use of force upon or toward another person is justifiable when the actor believes that such force is immediately necessary for the purpose of protecting himself against the use of unlawful force by such other person on the present occasion.

(b)            Limitations on justifying necessity for use of force. —

  • (1)            The use of force is not justifiable under this section:
    • (i)            to resist an arrest which the actor knows is being made by a peace officer, although the arrest is unlawful; or
    • (ii)            to resist force used by the occupier or possessor of property or by another person on his behalf, where the actor knows that the person using the force is doing so under a claim of right to protect the property, except that this limitation shall not apply if:
      • (A)            the actor is a public officer acting in the performance of his duties or a person lawfully assisting him therein or a person making or assisting in a lawful arrest;
      • (B)            the actor has been unlawfully dispossessed of the property and is making a reentry or recaption justified by section 507 of this title (relating to use of force for the protection of property); or
      • (C)            the actor believes that such force is necessary to protect himself against death or serious bodily injury.
  • (2)            The use of deadly force is not justifiable under this section unless the actor believes that such force is necessary to protect himself against death, serious bodily injury, kidnapping or sexual intercourse compelled by force or threat; nor is it justifiable if:
    • (i)            the actor, with the intent of causing death or serious bodily injury, provoked the use of force against himself in the same encounter; or
    • (ii)            the actor knows that he can avoid the necessity of using such force with complete safety by retreating or by surrendering possession of a thing to a person asserting a claim of right thereto or by complying with a demand that he abstain from any action which he has no duty to take, except that:
      • (A)            the actor is not obliged to retreat from his dwelling or place of work, unless he was the initial aggressor or is assailed in his place of work by another person whose place of work the actor knows it to be; and
      • (B)            a public officer justified in using force in the performance of his duties or a person justified in using force in his assistance or a person justified in using force in making an arrest or preventing an escape is not obliged to desist from efforts to perform such duty, effect such arrest or prevent such escape because of resistance or threatened resistance by or on behalf of the person against whom such action is directed.
  • (3)            Except as required by paragraphs (1) and (2) of this subsection, a person employing protective force may estimate the necessity thereof under the circumstances as he believes them to be when the force is used, without retreating, surrendering possession, doing any other act which he has no legal duty to do or abstaining from any lawful action.
  • (c)            Use of confinement as protective force. — The justification afforded by this section extends to the use of confinement as protective force only if the actor takes all reasonable measures to terminate the confinement as soon as he knows that he safely can, unless the person confined has been arrested on a charge of crime.

 

Title 18, 506. Use of Force for the Protection of Other Persons.

(a)            General rule. — The use of force upon or toward the person of another is justifiable to protect a third person when:

  • (1)            the actor would be justified under section 505 of this title (relating to use of force in self-protection) in using such force to protect himself against the injury he believes to be threatened to the person whom he seeks to protect;
  • (2)            under the circumstances as the actor believes them to be, the person whom he seeks to protect would be justified in using such protective force; and
  • (3)            the actor believes that his intervention is necessary for the protection of such other person.
  • (b)            Exceptions.—Notwithstanding subsection (a) of this section:
  • (1)            When the actor would be obliged under section 505 of this title to retreat, to surrender the possession of a thing or to comply with a demand before using force in self-protection, he is not obliged to do so before using force for the protection of another person, unless he knows that he can thereby secure the complete safety of such other person.
  • (2)            When the person whom the actor seeks to protect would be obliged under section 505 of this title to retreat, to surrender the possession of a thing or to comply with a demand if he knew that he could obtain complete safety by so doing, the actor is obliged to try to cause him to do so before using force in his protection if the actor knows that he can obtain complete safety in that way.
  • (3)            Neither the actor nor the person whom he seeks to protect is obliged to retreat when in the dwelling, or place of work of the other to any greater extent than in his own.
  •  

Title 18, 507. Use of Force for the Protection of Property.

(a)            Use of force justifiable for protection of property. —The use of force upon or toward the person of another is justifiable when the actor believes that such force is immediately necessary:

  • (1)            to prevent or terminate an unlawful entry or other trespass upon land or a trespass against or the unlawful carrying away of tangible movable property, if such land or movable property is, or is believed by the actor to be, in his possession or in the possession of another person for whose protection he acts; or
  • (2)            to effect an entry or reentry upon land or to retake tangible movable property, if:
    • (i)            the actor believes that he or the person by whose authority he acts or a person from whom he or such other person derives title was unlawfully dispossessed of such land or movable property and is entitled to possession; and
    • (ii)—
      • (A)            the force is used immediately or on fresh pursuit after such dispossession; or
      • (B)            the actor believes that the person against whom he uses force has no claim of right to the possession of the property and, in the case of land, the circumstances, as the actor believes them to be, are of such urgency that it would be an exceptional hardship to postpone the entry or reentry until a court order is obtained.
  • (b)            Meaning of possession. — For the purpose of subsection (a) of this section:
  • (1)            A person who has parted with the custody of property to another who refuses to restore it to him is no longer in possession, unless the property is movable and was and still is located on land in his possession.
  • (2)            A person who has been dispossessed of land does not regain possession thereof merely by setting foot thereon.
  • (3)            A person who has a license to use or occupy real property is deemed to be in possession thereof except against the licensor acting under claim of right.
  • (c)            Limitations on justifiable use of force. —
  • (1)            The use of force is justifiable under this section only if the actor first requests the person against whom such force is used to desist from his interference with the property, unless the actor believes that:
    • (i)            such request would be useless;
    • (ii)            it would be dangerous to himself or another person to make the request; or
    • (iii) substantial harm will be done to the physical condition of the property which is sought to be protected before the request can effectively be made.
  • (2)            The use of force to prevent or terminate a trespass is not justifiable under this section if the actor knows that the exclusion of the trespasser will expose him to substantial danger of serious bodily injury.
  • (3)            The use of force to prevent an entry or reentry upon land or the recaption of movable property is not justifiable under this section, although the actor believes that such reentry or caption is unlawful, if:
    • (i)            the reentry or recaption is made by or on behalf of a person who was actually dispossessed of the property; and
    • (ii)            it is otherwise justifiable under subsection (a)(2).
  • *(4)(i) The use of deadly force is justifiable under this section if:
    • (A)            there has been an entry into the actor’s dwelling;
    • (B)            the actor neither believes nor has reason to believe that the entry is lawful; and
    • (C)            the actor neither believes nor has reason to believe that force less than deadly force would be adequate to terminate the entry.
  • (ii)            If the conditions of justification provided in subparagraph (i) have not been met, the use of deadly force is not justifiable under this section unless the actor believes that:
    • (A)            the person against whom the force is used is attempting to dispossess him of his dwelling otherwise than under a claim of right to its possession; or
    • (B)            such force is necessary to prevent the commission of a felony in the dwelling.
  • (d)            Use of confinement as protective force. — The justification afforded by this section extends to the use of confinement as protective force only if the actor takes all reasonable measures to terminate the confinement as soon as he knows that he can do so with safety to the property, unless the person confined has been arrested on a charge of crime.

(e)            Use of device to protect property. —The justification afforded by this section extends to the use of a device for the purpose of protecting property only if:

  • (1)            the device is not designed to cause or known to create a substantial risk of causing death or serious bodily injury;
  • (2)            the use of the particular device to protect the property from entry or trespass is reasonable under the circumstances, as the actor believes them to be; and
  • (3)            the device is one customarily used for such a purpose or reasonable care is taken to make known to probable intruders the fact that it is used.
  • (f)            Use of force to pass wrongful obstructor. — The use of force to pass a person whom the actor believes to be intentionally or knowingly and unjustifiably obstructing the actor from going to a place to which he may lawfully go is justifiable, if:
  • (1)            the actor believes that the person against whom he uses force has no claim of right to obstruct the actor;
  • (2)            the actor is not being obstructed from entry or movement on land which he knows to be in the possession or custody of the person obstructing him, or in the possession or custody of another person by whose authority the obstructor acts, unless the circumstances, as the actor believes them to be, are of such urgency that it would not be reasonable to postpone the entry or movement on such land until a court order is obtained; and
  • (3)            the force used is not greater than it would be justifiable if the person obstructing the actor were using force against him to prevent his passage.
  • *(Chgd. by L.1980, Act 1980-235; eff. 12/19/80.)

21                        Inchoate Crimes                        908

907.          Possessing instruments of crime.

(a)     Criminal instruments generally.-A person commits a misdemeanor of the first degree if he possesses any instrument of crime with intent to employ it criminally.

(b)          Possession of weapon.-A person commits a misdemeanor of the first degree if he possesses a firearm or other weapon concealed upon his person with intent to employ it criminally.

(c)     Unlawful body armor.-A person commits a felony of the third degree if in the course of the commission of a felony, or in the attempt to commit a felony, he uses or wears body armor or has in his control, custody or possession any body armor.

(d)          Definitions.-As used in this section, the following words and phrases shall have the meanings given to them in this subsection:

"Body armor." Any protective covering for the body, or parts thereof, made of any polyaramid fiber or any resin-treated glass fiber cloth or any material, or combination of materials, made or designed to prevent, resist, deflect or deter the penetration thereof by ammunition, knife, cutting or piercing instrument, or any other weapon.

"Instrument of crime." Any of the following:

(1)   Anything specially made or specially adapted for criminal use.

(2)     Anything used for criminal purposes and possessed by the actor under circumstances not manifestly appropriate for lawful uses it may have.

"Weapon." Anything readily capable of lethal use and possessed under circumstances not manifestly appropriate for lawful uses which it may have. The term includes a firearm which is not loaded or lacks a clip or other component to render it immediately operable, and components which can readily be assembled into a weapon.

 

21            Inchoate Crimes

 

908.            Prohibited offensive weapons.

(a)        Offense defined.-A person commits a misdemeanor of the first degree if, except as authorized by law, he makes repairs, sells, or otherwise deals in, uses, or possesses any offensive weapon.

(b) Exceptions.

(1)        It is a defense under this section for the defendant to prove by a preponderance of evidence that he possessed or dealt with the weapon solely as a curio or in a dramatic performance, or that, with the exception of a bomb, grenade or incendiary device, he complied with the National Firearms Act (26 U.S.C. 5801 et seq.), or that he possessed it briefly in consequence of having found it or taken it from an aggressor, or under circumstances similarly negativing any intent or likelihood that the weapon would be used unlawfully.

(2) This section does not apply to police forensic firearms experts or police forensic firearms laboratories. Also exempt from this section are forensic firearms experts or forensic firearms laboratories operating in the ordinary course of business and engaged in lawful operation who notify in writing, on an annual basis, the chief or head of any police force or police department of a city, and, elsewhere, the sheriff of a county in which they are located, of the possession, type and use of offensive weapons.

 (3) This section shall not apply to any person who makes, repairs, sells or otherwise deals in, uses or possesses any firearm for purposes not prohibited by the laws of this Commonwealth.

(c)            Definitions.-As used in this section, the following words and phrases shall have the meanings given to them in this subsection:

"Firearm." Any weapon which is designed to or may readily be converted to expel any projectile by the action of an explosive, or the frame or receiver of any such weapon. "Offensive weapons" Any bomb, grenade, machine gun, sawed-off shotgun with a barrel less than 18 inches, firearm specially made or specially adapted for concealment or silent discharge, any blackjack, sandbag, metal knuckles, dagger, knife, razor or cutting instrument, the blade of which is exposed in an automatic way by switch, push-button, spring mechanism, or otherwise, any stun gun, stun baton, taser or other electronic or electric weapon or other implement for the infliction of serious bodily injury which serves no common lawful purpose.

(d)            Exemptions.-The use and possession of blackjacks by the following persons in the course of their duties are exempt from this section:

(1)        Police officers, as defined by and who meet the requirements of the act of June 18, 1974 (PL. 359, No. 120), referred to as the Municipal Police Education and Training Law.

(2)        Police officers of first class cities who have successfully completed training which is substantially equivalent to the program under the Municipal Police Education and Training Law.

(3)            Pennsylvania State Police officers.

(4)        Sheriffs and deputy sheriffs of the various counties who have satisfactorily met the requirements of the Municipal Police Education and Training Law.

(5) Police officers employed by the Commonwealth who have satisfactorily met the requirements of the Municipal Police Education and Training Law.

(6)        Deputy sheriffs with adequate training as determined by the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency.

(7)        Liquor Control Board agents who have satisfactorily met the requirements of the Municipal Police Education and Training Law.

(Chgd. by L.2002, Act 132(1), eff. 1/5/2003.)

908.1. Use or possession of electric or electronic incapacitation device.

(a)     Offense defined.-Except as set forth in subsection (b), a person commits an offense if the person does any of the following:

(1)        Uses an electric or electronic incapacitation device on another person for an unlawful purpose.

(2)            Possesses, with intent to violate paragraph (1), an electric or electronic incapacitation device.

(b)     Self defense.-A person may possess and use an electric or electronic incapacitation device in the exercise of reasonable force in defense of the person or the person's property, pursuant to Chapter 5 (relating to general principles of justification), if the electric or electronic incapacitation device is labeled with or accompanied by clearly written instructions as to its use and the damages involved in its use.

(c)          Prohibited possession.-No person prohibited from possessing a firearm pursuant to section 6105 (relating to persons not to possess, use, manufacture, control, sell or transfer firearms) may possess or use an electric or electronic incapacitation device.

(d)     Grading.-An offense under subsection (a) shall constitute a felony of the second degree if the actor acted with the intent to commit a felony. Otherwise any offense under this section is graded as a misdemeanor of the first degree.

(e)          Exceptions.-Nothing in this section shall prohibit the possession or use by, or the sale or furnishing of any electric or electronic incapacitation device to, a law enforcement agency, peace officer, employee of a correctional institution, county jail or prison, or detention center, the National Guard or reserves or a member of the National Guard or reserves for use in their official duties.

(f)          Definition.-As used in this section, the term "electric or electronic incapacitation device" means a portable device which is designed or intended by the manufacturer to be

23                        Inchoate Crimes                        910

used, offensively or defensively, to temporarily immobilize or incapacitate persons by means of electric pulse or current, including devices operating by means of carbon dioxide propellant. The term does not include cattle prods, electric fences or other electric devices when used in agricultural, animal husbandry or food production activities.

(Added by L.2002, Act 132(2), eff. 1/5/2003.) 

 

912. Possession of Weapon on School Property.

(a)            Definition.—Notwithstanding the definition of “weapon” in section 907 (relating to possessing instruments of crime), “weapon” for purposes of this section shall include but not be limited to any knife, cutting instrument, cutting tool, nun-chuck stick, firearm, shotgun, rifle and any other tool, instrument or implement capable of inflicting serious bodily injury.

(b)            Offense defined.—A person commits a misdemeanor of the first degree if he possesses a weapon in the buildings of, on the grounds of, or in any conveyance providing transportation to or from any elementary or secondary publicly-funded educational institution, any elementary or secondary private school licensed by the Department of Education or any elementary or secondary parochial school.

(c)            Defense—It shall be a defense that the weapon is possessed and used in conjunction with a lawful supervised school activity or course or is possessed for other lawful purpose. (Added by L.1980, Act 167(1), eff. 12/15/80.)

 

 

913. Possession of Firearm or Other Dangerous Weapon in Court Facility.

(a)            Offense defined.—A person commits an offense if he:

(1)            knowingly possesses a firearm or other dangerous weapon in a court facility or knowingly causes a firearm or other dangerous weapon to be present in a court facility; or

(2)            knowingly possesses a firearm or other dangerous weapon in a court facility with the intent that the firearm or other dangerous weapon be used in the commission of a crime or knowingly causes a firearm or other dangerous weapon to be present in a court facility with the intent that the firearm or other dangerous weapon be used in the commission of a crime.

(b)            Grading.—

(1)            Except as otherwise provided in paragraph (3), an offense under subsection (a)(1) is a misdemeanor of the third degree.

(2)            An offense under subsection (a)(2) is a misdemeanor of the first degree.

(3)            An offense under subsection (a)(1) is a summary offense if the person was carrying a firearm under section 6106(b) (relating to firearms not to be carried without a license) or 6109 (relating to licenses) and failed to check the firearm under subsection (e) prior to entering the court facility.

(c)            Exceptions.—Subsection (a) shall not apply to:

(1)            The lawful performance of official duties by an officer, agent or employee of the United States, the Commonwealth or a political subdivision who is authorized by law to engage in or supervise the prevention, detection, investigation or prosecution of any violation of law.

(2)            The lawful performance of official duties by a court official.

(3)            The carrying of rifles and shotguns by instructors and participants in a course of instruction provided by the Pennsylvania Game Commission under 34 Pa. C.S. 2704 (relating to eligibility for license).

(4)            Associations of veteran soldiers and their auxiliaries or members of organized armed forces of the United States or the Commonwealth, including reserve components, when engaged in the performance of ceremonial duties with county approval.

(5)            The carrying of a dangerous weapon or firearm unloaded and in a secure wrapper by an attorney who seeks to employ the dangerous weapon or firearm as an exhibit or as a demonstration and who possesses written authorization from the court to bring the dangerous weapon or firearm into the court facility. (Added by L.1995, Act 66(2), eff. 11/22/95.)

(d)            Posting of notice.—Notice of the provisions of subsections (a) and (e) shall be posted conspicuously at each public entrance to each courthouse or other building containing a court facility and each court facility, and no person shall be convicted of an offense under subsection (a)(1) with respect to a court facility if the notice was not so posted at each public entrance to the courthouse or other building containing a court facility anti at the court facility unless the person had actual notice of the provisions of subsection (a).

(e)            Facilities for checking firearms or other dangerous weapons.—Each county shall make available at or within the building containing a court facility by July 1, 2002, lockers or similar facilities at no charge or cost for the temporary checking of firearms by persons carrying firearms under section 6106(b) or 6109 or for the checking of other dangerous weapons that are not otherwise prohibited by law. Any individual checking a firearm, dangerous weapon or an item deemed to be a dangerous weapon at a court facility must be issued a receipt. Notice of the location of the facility shall be posted as required under subsection (d). (Chgd. by L.1999, Act 59, eff 2/15/00.)

(f)            Definitions.—As used in this section, the following words and phrases shall have the meanings given to them in this subsection:

“Court facility.” The courtroom of a court of record; a courtroom of a community court; the courtroom of a district justice; a courtroom of the Philadelphia Municipal Court; a courtroom of the Pittsburgh Magistrates Court; a courtroom of the Traffic Court of Philadelphia; judge’s chambers; witness rooms; jury deliberation rooms; attorney conference rooms; prisoner holding cells; offices of court clerks, the district attorney, the sheriff and probation and parole officers; and any adjoining corridors.

“Dangerous weapon.” A bomb, grenade, blackjack, sandbag, metal knuckles, dagger, knife (the blade of which is exposed in an automatic way by switch, push-button, spring mechanism or otherwise) or other implement for the infliction of serious bodily injury which serves no common lawful purpose.

“Firearm.” Any weapon, including a starter gun, which will or is designed to expel a projectile or projectiles by the action of an explosion, expansion of gas or escape of gas. The term does not include any device designed or used exclusively for the firing of stud cartridges, explosive rivets or similar industrial ammunition.

(Added by L. 1995, Spec. Sess. 1, Act 17(1), eff 10/11/95.)

Chapter 55

Riot, Disorderly Conduct and

Related Offenses

 

5515. Prohibiting of Paramilitary Training.

(a)            Definitions.—As used in this section the following words and phrases shall have the meanings given to them in this subsection:

“Civil disorder.” Any public disturbance involving acts of violence by assemblages of three or more persons, which causes an immediate danger of or results in damage or injury to the property or person of any other individual.

“Explosive or incendiary device.” Includes:

(1)            dynamite and all other forms of high explosives;

(2)            any explosive bomb, grenade, missile or similar device; and

(3)            any incendiary bomb or grenade, fire bomb or similar device, including any device which:

(i)            consists of or includes a breakable container including a flammable liquid or compound and a wick composed of any material which, when ignited, is capable of igniting such flammable liquid or compound; and

(ii)            can be carried or thrown by one individual acting alone.

“Firearm.” Any weapon which is designed to or may readily be converted to expel any projectile by the action of an explosive; or the frame or receiver of any such weapon.

“Law enforcement officer.” Any officer or employee of the United States, any state, any political subdivision of a state or the District of Columbia and such term shall specifically include, but shall not be limited to, members of the National Guard, as defined in 10 U.S.C. 101(9), members of the organized militia of any state or territory of the United States, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico or the District of Columbia, not included within the definition of National Guard as defined by 10 U.S.C. 101(9) and members of the armed forces of the United States.

(b)            Prohibited training.—

(1)            Whoever teaches or demonstrates to any other person the use, application or making of any firearm, explosive or incendiary device or technique capable of causing injury or death to persons, knowing or having reason to know or intending that same will be unlawfully employed for use in, or in furtherance of, a civil disorder commits a misdemeanor of the first degree.

(2)            Whoever assembles with one or more persons for the purpose of training with, practicing with or being instructed in the use of any firearm, explosive or incendiary device or technique capable of causing injury or death to persons, said person intending to employ unlawfully the same for use in or in furtherance of a civil disorder commits a misdemeanor of the first degree.

(c)            Exemptions.—Nothing contained in this section shall make unlawful any act of any law enforcement officer which is performed in the lawful performance of his official duties.

(d)            Excluded activities.—Nothing contained in this section shall make unlawful any activity of the Game Commission, Fish and Boat Commission, or any law enforcement agency, or any hunting club, rifle club, rifle range, pistol range, shooting range or other program or individual instruction intended to teach the safe handling or use of firearms, archery equipment or other weapons or techniques employed in connection with lawful sports or other lawful activities. (Chgd. by L.1992, Act 7(2), eff 3/19/92.)

(Added by L.1982, Act 138(2), eff 12/8/82.)

TITLE 18

PA CRIMES CODES

 

6102. Definitions.

 

Subject to additional definitions contained in subsequent provisions of this subchapter which are applicable to specific provisions of this subchapter, the following words and phrases, when used in this subchapter shall have, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise, the meanings given to them in this section:

 

"Commissioner." The Commissioner of the Pennsylvania State Police.

 

"Commonwealth Photo Imaging Network." The computer network administered by the Commonwealth and used to record and store digital photographs of an individual's face and any scars, marks, tattoos or other unique features of the individual.

 

"Conviction." A conviction, a finding of guilty or the entering of a plea of guilty or nolo contendere, whether or not judgment of sentence has been imposed, as determined by the law of the jurisdiction in which the prosecution was held. The term does not include a conviction which has been expunged or overturned or for which an individual has been pardoned unless the pardon expressly provides that the individual may not possess or transport firearms.

 

"County treasurer." The county treasurer or, in home rule or optional plan counties, the person whose duties encompass those of a county treasurer.

 

"Crime punishable by imprisonment exceeding one year."

 

The term does not include any of the following:

 

(1) Federal or State offenses pertaining to antitrust, unfair trade practices, restraints on trade or regulation of business.

 

(2) State offenses classified as misdemeanors and punishable by a term of imprisonment not to exceed two years.

 

"Firearm." Any pistol or revolver with a barrel length less than 15 inches, any shotgun with a barrel length less than 18 inches or any rifle with a barrel length less than 16 inches, or any pistol, revolver, rifle or shotgun with an overall length of less than 26 inches. The barrel length of a firearm shall be determined by measuring from the muzzle of the barrel to the face of the closed action, bolt or cylinder, whichever is applicable.

 

"Fund." The Firearm Ownership Fund established in section 6111.3 (relating to Firearm Ownership Fund).

 

"Law enforcement officer." Any person employed by any police department or organization of the Commonwealth or political subdivision thereof who is empowered to effect an arrest with or without warrant and who is authorized to carry a firearm in the performance of that person's duties.

 

"Loaded." A firearm is loaded if the firing chamber, the nondetachable magazine or in the case of a revolver, any of the chambers of the cylinder contain ammunition capable of being fired. In the case of a firearm which utilizes a detachable magazine, the term shall mean a magazine suitable for use in said firearm which magazine contains such ammunition and has been inserted in the firearm or is in the same container or, where the container has multiple compartments, the same compartment thereof as the firearm.

 

"Pennsylvania Sheriffs' Association." The State association of sheriffs authorized by the act of June 14, 1923 (P.L. 774, No. 305), [FN1] entitled "An act authorizing the sheriffs of the several counties of this Commonwealth to organize themselves into a State Association, for the purpose of holding annual meetings, to secure more uniformity and cooperation in the conduct of their offices, and providing for the payment of certain expenses in connection with such meetings by the various counties."

 

"Safekeeping permit." As defined in 23 Pa.C.S. 6102 (relating to definitions).

 

"Sheriff."

 

(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), the sheriff of the county.

 

(2) In a city of the first class, the chief or head of the police department.

 

"State." When used in reference to different parts of the United States, includes the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and territories and possessions of the United States.

 

CREDIT(S)

 

1972, Dec. 6, P.L. 1482, No. 334, 1, effective June 6, 1973. Amended 1988, Dec. 19, P.L. 1275, No. 158, 1, effective in 180 days; 1995, June 13, P.L. 1024, No. 17 (Spec. Sess. No. 1), 2, effective in 120 days; 1995, Nov. 22, P.L. 621, No. 66, 3, imd. effective; 2005, Nov. 10, P.L. 335, No. 66, 1, effective in 180 days [May 9, 2006].

 

[FN1] 16 P.S. 7241 et seq.

 

HISTORICAL AND STATUTORY NOTES

 

Act 1995-17 legislation

Act 1995, June 13, No. 17 (Spec. Sess. No. 1) in the definition of "conviction", in the first sentence following "A conviction", inserted ", a finding of guilty or the entering of a plea of guilty or nolo contendere, whether or not judgment of sentence has been imposed,"; deleted a definition of "crime of violence"; in the definition of "firearm", first sentence, in three places following "barrel", inserted "length"; and added the definition of "fund".

 

Act 1995-66 legislation

Act 1995, Nov. 22, P.L. 621, No. 66, 3, added the definitions of "law enforcement officer" and "loaded".

 

Act 2005-66 legislation

Act 2005-66, 1, added definitions of "Commonwealth Photo Imaging Network", "Pennsylvania Sheriffs' Association", "safekeeping permit" and "State".

 

Prior Laws:

 

1968, July 31, P.L. 802, 1.

1968, July 30, P.L. 690, No. 228, 1.

1961, Aug. 4, P.L. 921, 1.

1953, July 27, P.L. 627, 1.

1943, May 21, P.L. 485, 1.

1943, May 21, P.L. 306, 1.

1939, June 24, P.L. 872, 628 (18 P.S. 4628).

1931, June 11, P.L. 497, 1 to 21.

18 Pa.C.S.A. 6102, PA ST 18 Pa.C.S.A. 6102

 

Current through Act 2009-10

 

TITLE 18

PA CRIMES CODES

 

 

6103. Crimes Committed with Firearms.

If any person commits or attempts to commit a crime enumerated in section 6105 (relating to persons not to possess, use, manufacture, control, sell or transfer firearms) when armed with a firearm contrary to the provisions of this subchapter, that person may, in addition to the punishment provided for the crime, also be punished as provided by this subchapter. (Chgd. by L.1995, Spec. Sess. 1, Act 17(2), eff 10/11/95.)

 

 

TITLE 18

PA CRIMES CODES

 

6104. Evidence of Intent.

In the trial of a person for committing or attempting to commit a crime enumerated in section 6105 (relating to persons not to possess, use, manufacture, control, sell or transfer firearms), the fact that that person was armed with a firearm, used or attempted to be used, and had no license to carry the same, shall be evidence of that person’s intention to commit the offense. (Chgd. by L. 1995, Spec. Sess. 1, Act 17(2), eff 10/11/95.)

 

Title 18

 

6105. Persons Not to Possess, Use, Manufacture, Control, Sell or Transfer Firearms.

(a) Offense defined.—

  • (1) A person who has been convicted of an offense enumerated in subsection (b), within or without this Commonwealth, regardless of the length of sentence or whose conduct meets the criteria in subsection (c) shall not possess, use, control, sell, transfer or manufacture or obtain a license to possess, use, control, sell, transfer or manufacture a firearm in this Commonwealth.
  • (2)(i) A person who is prohibited from possessing, using, controlling, selling, transferring or manufacturing a firearm under paragraph (1) or subsection (b) or (c) shall have a reasonable period of time, not to exceed 60 days from the date of the imposition of the disability under this subsection, in which to sell or transfer that person's firearms to another eligible person who is not a member of the prohibited person's household.
  • (ii) This paragraph shall not apply to any person whose disability is imposed pursuant to subsection (c)(6).
  •  
  • (a.1) Penalty.—
  • (1) A person convicted of a felony enumerated under subsection (b) or a felony under the act of April 14, 1972 (P.L. 233, No. 64), [FN1] known as The Controlled Substance, Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act, or any equivalent Federal statute or equivalent statute of any other state, who violates subsection (a) commits a felony of the second degree.
  • (2) A person who is the subject of an active protection from abuse order issued pursuant to 23 Pa.C.S. 6108 (relating to relief), which order provided for the relinquishment of firearms, other weapons or ammunition during the period of time the order is in effect, commits a misdemeanor of the first degree if he intentionally or knowingly fails to relinquish a firearm, other weapon or ammunition to the sheriff as required by the order unless, in lieu of relinquishment, he provides an affidavit which lists the firearms, other weapons or ammunition to the sheriff in accordance with either 23 Pa.C.S. 6108(a)(7)(i)(B), 6108.2 (relating to relinquishment for consignment sale, lawful transfer or safekeeping) or 6108.3 (relating to relinquishment to third party for safekeeping).
  • (3)(i) A person commits a misdemeanor of the third degree if he intentionally or knowingly accepts possession of a firearm, other weapon or ammunition from a person he knows is the subject of an active protection from abuse order issued pursuant to 23 Pa.C.S. 6108, which order provided for the relinquishment of the firearm, other weapon or ammunition during the period of time the order is in effect.
  • (ii) This paragraph shall not apply to:
    • (A) a third party who accepts possession of a firearm, other weapon or ammunition relinquished pursuant to 23 Pa.C.S. 6108.3; or
    • (B) a dealer licensed pursuant to section 6113 (relating to licensing of dealers) or subsequent purchaser from a dealer licensed pursuant to section 6113, who accepts possession of a firearm, other weapon or ammunition relinquished pursuant to 23 Pa.C.S. 6108.2.
  • (4) It shall be an affirmative defense to any prosecution under paragraph (3) that the person accepting possession of a firearm, other weapon or ammunition in violation of paragraph (3):
  • (i) notified the sheriff as soon as practicable that he has taken possession; and
  • (ii) relinquished possession of any firearm, other weapon or ammunition possessed in violation of paragraph (3) as directed by the sheriff.
  • (5) A person who has accepted possession of a firearm, other weapon or ammunition pursuant to 23 Pa.C.S. 6108.3 commits a misdemeanor of the first degree if he intentionally or knowingly returns a firearm, other weapon or ammunition to a defendant or intentionally or knowingly allows a defendant to have access to the firearm, other weapon or ammunition prior to either of the following:
  • (i) The sheriff accepts return of the safekeeping permit issued to the party pursuant to 23 Pa.C.S. 6108.3(d)(1)(i).
  • (ii) The issuance of a court order pursuant to subsection (f)(2) or 23 Pa.C.S. 6108.1(b) (relating to return of relinquished firearms, other weapons and ammunition and additional relief) which modifies a valid protection from abuse order issued pursuant to 23 Pa.C.S. 6108, which order provided for the relinquishment of the firearm, other weapon or ammunition by allowing the defendant to take possession of the firearm, other weapon or ammunition that had previously been ordered relinquished.
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  • (b) Enumerated offenses.--The following offenses shall apply to subsection (a):
  •  
  • Section 908 (relating to prohibited offensive weapons).
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  • Section 911 (relating to corrupt organizations).
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  • Section 912 (relating to possession of weapon on school property).
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  • Section 2502 (relating to murder).
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  • Section 2503 (relating to voluntary manslaughter).
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  • Section 2504 (relating to involuntary manslaughter) if the offense is based on the reckless use of a firearm.
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  • Section 2702 (relating to aggravated assault).
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  • Section 2703 (relating to assault by prisoner).
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  • Section 2704 (relating to assault by life prisoner).
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  • Section 2709.1 (relating to stalking).
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  • Section 2716 (relating to weapons of mass destruction).
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  • Section 2901 (relating to kidnapping).
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  • Section 2902 (relating to unlawful restraint).
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  • Section 2910 (relating to luring a child into a motor vehicle or structure).
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  • Section 3121 (relating to rape).
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  • Section 3123 (relating to involuntary deviate sexual intercourse).
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  • Section 3125 (relating to aggravated indecent assault).
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  • Section 3301 (relating to arson and related offenses).
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  • Section 3302 (relating to causing or risking catastrophe).
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  • Section 3502 (relating to burglary).
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  • Section 3503 (relating to criminal trespass) if the offense is graded a felony of the second degree or higher.
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  • Section 3701 (relating to robbery).
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  • Section 3702 (relating to robbery of motor vehicle).
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  • Section 3921 (relating to theft by unlawful taking or disposition) upon conviction of the second felony offense.
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  • Section 3923 (relating to theft by extortion) when the offense is accompanied by threats of violence.
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  • Section 3925 (relating to receiving stolen property) upon conviction of the second felony offense.
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  • Section 4906 (relating to false reports to law enforcement authorities) if the fictitious report involved the theft of a firearm as provided in section 4906(c)(2).
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  • Section 4912 (relating to impersonating a public servant) if the person is impersonating a law enforcement officer.
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  • Section 4952 (relating to intimidation of witnesses or victims).
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  • Section 4953 (relating to retaliation against witness , victim or party).
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  • Section 5121 (relating to escape).
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  • Section 5122 (relating to weapons or implements for escape).
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  • Section 5501(3) (relating to riot).
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  • Section 5515 (relating to prohibiting of paramilitary training).
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  • Section 5516 (relating to facsimile weapons of mass destruction).
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  • Section 6110.1 (relating to possession of firearm by minor).
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  • Section 6301 (relating to corruption of minors).
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  • Section 6302 (relating to sale or lease of weapons and explosives).
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  • Any offense equivalent to any of the above-enumerated offenses under the prior laws of this Commonwealth or any offense equivalent to any of the above-enumerated offenses under the statutes of any other state or of the United States.
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  • (c) Other persons.--In addition to any person who has been convicted of any offense listed under subsection (b), the following persons shall be subject to the prohibition of subsection (a):
  • (1) A person who is a fugitive from justice. This paragraph does not apply to an individual whose fugitive status is based upon a nonmoving or moving summary offense under Title 75 (relating to vehicles).
  • (2) A person who has been convicted of an offense under the act of April 14, 1972 (P.L. 233, No. 64), known as The Controlled Substance, Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act, or any equivalent Federal statute or equivalent statute of any other state, that may be punishable by a term of imprisonment exceeding two years.
  • (3) A person who has been convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol or controlled substance as provided in 75 Pa.C.S. 3802 (relating to driving under influence of alcohol or controlled substance) or the former 75 Pa.C.S. 3731, on three or more separate occasions within a five-year period. For the purposes of this paragraph only, the prohibition of subsection (a) shall only apply to transfers or purchases of firearms after the third conviction
  • (4) A person who has been adjudicated as an incompetent or who has been involuntarily committed to a mental institution for inpatient care and treatment under section 302, 303 or 304 of the provisions of the act of July 9, 1976 (P.L. 817, No. 143), [FN2] known as the Mental Health Procedures Act. This paragraph shall not apply to any proceeding under section 302 of the Mental Health Procedures Act unless the examining physician has issued a certification that inpatient care was necessary or that the person was committable.
  • (5) A person who, being an alien, is illegally or unlawfully in the United States.
  • (6) A person who is the subject of an active protection from abuse order issued pursuant to 23
  • Pa.C.S. 6108, which order provided for the relinquishment of firearms during the period of time the order is in effect. This prohibition shall terminate upon the expiration or vacation of an active protection from abuse order or portion thereof relating to the relinquishment of firearms.
  • (7) A person who was adjudicated delinquent by a court pursuant to 42 Pa.C.S. 6341 (relating to adjudication) or under any equivalent Federal statute or statute of any other state as a result of conduct which if committed by an adult would constitute an offense under sections 2502, 2503, 2702, 2703 (relating to assault by prisoner), 2704, 2901, 3121, 3123, 3301, 3502, 3701 and 3923.
  • (8) A person who was adjudicated delinquent by a court pursuant to 42 Pa.C.S. 6341 or under any equivalent Federal statute or statute of any other state as a result of conduct which if committed by an adult would constitute an offense enumerated in subsection (b) with the exception of those crimes set forth in paragraph (7). This prohibition shall terminate 15 years after the last applicable delinquent adjudication or upon the person reaching the age of 30, whichever is earlier.
  • (9) A person who is prohibited from possessing or acquiring a firearm under 18 U.S.C. 922(g)(9) (relating to unlawful acts). If the offense which resulted in the prohibition under 18 U.S.C. 922(g)(9) was committed, as provided in 18 U.S.C. 921(a)(33)(A)(ii) (relating to definitions), by a person in any of the following relationships:
  • (i) the current or former spouse, parent or guardian of the victim;
  • (ii) a person with whom the victim shares a child in common;
  • (iii) a person who cohabits with or has cohabited with the victim as a spouse, parent or guardian; or
  • (iv) a person similarly situated to a spouse, parent or guardian of the victim; then the relationship need not be an element of the offense to meet the requirements of this paragraph.
  •  

(d) Exemption.--A person who has been convicted of a crime specified in subsection (a) or (b) or a person whose conduct meets the criteria in subsection (c)(1), (2), (5), (7) or (9) may make application to the court of common pleas of the county where the principal residence of the applicant is situated for relief from the disability imposed by this section upon the possession, transfer or control of a firearm. The court shall grant such relief if it determines that any of the following apply:

  • (1) The conviction has been vacated under circumstances where all appeals have been exhausted or where the right to appeal has expired.
  • (2) The conviction has been the subject of a full pardon by the Governor.
  • (3) Each of the following conditions is met:
  • (i) The Secretary of the Treasury of the United States has relieved the applicant of an applicable disability imposed by Federal law upon the possession, ownership or control of a firearm as a result of the applicant's prior conviction, except that the court may waive this condition if the court determines that the Congress of the United States has not appropriated sufficient funds to enable the Secretary of the Treasury to grant relief to applicants eligible for the relief.
  • (ii) A period of ten years, not including any time spent in incarceration, has elapsed since the most recent conviction of the applicant of a crime enumerated in subsection (b), a felony violation of The Controlled Substance, Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act or the offense which resulted in the prohibition under 18 U.S.C. 922(g)(9).
  •  
  • (e) Proceedings.—
  • (1) If a person convicted of an offense under subsection (a),(b) or (c) (1), (2), (5), (7) or (9) makes application to the court, a hearing shall be held in open court to determine whether the requirements of this section have been met. The commissioner and the district attorney of the county where the application is filed and any victim or survivor of a victim of the offense upon which the disability is based may be parties to the proceeding.
  • (2) Upon application to the court of common pleas pursuant to paragraph (1) by an applicant who is subject to the prohibition under subsection (c)(3), the court shall grant such relief if a period of ten years, not including any time spent in incarceration, has passed since the applicant's most recent conviction under subsection (c)(3).
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(f) Other exemptions and proceedings.—

  • (1) Upon application to the court of common pleas under this subsection by an applicant subject to the prohibitions under subsection (c)(4), the court may grant such relief as it deems appropriate if the court determines that the applicant may possess a firearm without risk to the applicant or any other person.
  • (2) If application is made under this subsection for relief from the disability imposed under subsection (c)(6), notice of such application shall be given to the person who had petitioned for the protection from abuse order, and such person shall be a party to the proceedings. Notice of any court order or amendment to a court order restoring firearms possession or control shall be given to the person who had petitioned for the protection from abuse order, to the sheriff and to the Pennsylvania State Police. The application and any proceedings on the application shall comply with 23 Pa.C.S. Ch. 61 (relating to protection from abuse).
  • (3) All hearings conducted under this subsection shall be closed unless otherwise requested to be open by the applicant.
  • (4)(i) The owner of any seized or confiscated firearms or of any firearms ordered relinquished under 23 Pa.C.S. 6108 shall be provided with a signed and dated written receipt by the appropriate law enforcement agency. This receipt shall include, but not limited to, a detailed identifying description indicating the serial number and condition of the firearm. In addition, the appropriate law enforcement agency shall be liable to the lawful owner of said confiscated, seized or relinquished firearm for any loss, damage or substantial decrease in value of said firearm that is a direct result of a lack of reasonable care by the appropriate law enforcement agency.
  • (ii) Firearms shall not be engraved or permanently marked in any manner, including, but not limited to, engraving of evidence or other identification numbers. Unless reasonable suspicion exists to believe that a particular firearm has been used in the commission of a crime, no firearm shall be test fired. Any reduction in the value of a firearm due to test firing, engraving or permanently marking in violation of this paragraph shall be considered damage, and the law enforcement agency shall be liable to the lawful owner of the firearm for the reduction in value caused by the test firing, engraving or permanently marking.
  • (iii) For purposes of this paragraph, the term "firearm" shall include any scope, sight, bipod, sling, light, magazine, clip, ammunition or other firearm accessory attached to or seized, confiscated or relinquished with a firearm.
  •  
  • (g) Other restrictions.--Nothing in this section shall exempt a person from a disability in relation to the possession or control of a firearm which is imposed as a condition of probation or parole or which is imposed pursuant to the provision of any law other than this section.

 

(h) License prohibition.--Any person who is prohibited from possessing, using, controlling, selling, purchasing, transferring or manufacturing any firearm under this section shall not be eligible for or permitted to obtain a license to carry a firearm under section 6109 (relating to licenses).

 

(i) Firearm.--As used in this section only, the term "firearm" shall include any weapons which are designed to or may readily be converted to expel any projectile by the action of an explosive or the frame or receiver of any such weapon.

 

(j) Copy of order to State Police.--If the court grants relief from the disabilities imposed under this section, a copy of the order shall be sent by the prothonotary within ten days of the entry of the order to the Pennsylvania State Police and shall include the name, date of birth and Social Security number of the individual.

 

CREDIT(S)

 

1972, Dec. 6, P.L. 1482, No. 334, 1, effective June 6, 1973. Amended 1995, June 13, P.L. 1024, No. 17 (Spec. Sess. No. 1), 2, effective in 120 days; 1995, Nov. 22, P.L. 621, No. 66, 4, imd. effective; 1997, April 22, P.L. 73, No. 5, 1, effective in 60 days; 1998, June 18, P.L. 503, No. 70, 2, imd. effective; 1998, Dec. 3, P.L. 933, No. 121, 4, imd. effective; 1999, Dec. 15, P.L. 915, No. 59, 4, effective in 60 days; 2002, June 28, P.L. 481, No. 82, 5, effective in 60 days; 2002, Dec. 9, P.L. 1759, No. 218, 5, effective in 60 days; 2003, Sept. 30, P.L. 120, No. 24, 1, effective Feb. 1, 2004; 2005, Nov. 10, P.L. 335, No. 66, 2, effective in 180 days [May 9, 2006]; 2008, Oct. 17, P.L. 1628, No. 131, 1.2, effective in 60 days [Dec. 16, 2008].

 

[FN1] 35 P.S. 780-101 et seq.

 

 

 

[FN2] 50 P.S. 7302 to 7304.

 

 

 

 

HISTORICAL AND STATUTORY NOTES

 

Act 1995, June 13, No. 17 (Spec. Sess. No. 1) rewrote the section.

 

Act 1995, Nov. 22, P.L. 621, No. 66, 4, in subsec. (a), designated par. (1) as such, in par. (1), substituted "whose conduct meets the criteria in subsection" for "any of the offenses enumerated in subsection (b) or", and added par. (2); in subsec. (b), included 2703, 2910, and 3702, within the list of offenses that apply to subsec. (a), and, in the last paragraph, inserted "offense equivalent to any of the above-enumerated offenses under the prior laws of this Commonwealth, or any"; in subd. (c)(4), changed a reference to "sections 302, 303 and 304" to "section 302, 303 or 304; in subd. (c)(6), added the last sentence; in subsec. (d), rewrote the introductory paragraph; and, in subsec. (f), rewrote par. (1) and added the last sentence in par. (2). Prior to revision, the introductory paragraph of subsec. (d) and subd. (f)(1) read:

 

"(d) Exemption.--A person who has been convicted of a crime specified in subsection (a), (b) or (c)(1), (2), (5) or (7) may make application to the court of common pleas of the county where the principal residence of the applicant is situated for relief from the disability imposed by this section upon the ownership, possession or control of a firearm. The court may grant such relief if it determines that any of the following apply:"

 

"(f) Other exemptions and proceedings.--

 

"(1) Upon application to the court of common pleas under subsection (e) by an applicant subject to the prohibitions under subsection (c)(4), the court may grant such relief as it deems appropriate if the court determines that the applicant may possess a firearm without risk to the applicant or any other person and that a period of five years has elapsed since the applicant's most recent adjudication or commitment under subsection (c)(4)."

 

 

The 1997 amendment, in subsec. (f), par. (3), added "unless otherwise requested to be open by the applicant", and added par. (4).

 

Act 1998-70, in subsec. (c)(4) added the second sentence, and added subsec. (j).

 

Act 1998-121 in subsec. (c)(1) added the second sentence.

 

Act 1999-59 added subsec. (a.1) and, in subsec. (c)(2), inserted "or any equivalent Federal statute or equivalent statute of any other state".

 

Act 2002-82 legislation

 

Act 2002-82, 5, in subsec. (b), added references to sections 2716 and 5516.

 

Act 2002-218 legislation

 

Act 2002-218, in subsec. (b), substituted "Section 2709.1 (relating to stalking)." for "Section 2709 (relating to harassment and stalking) if the offense relates to stalking.".

 

Act 2002-218 overlooks the amendment by Act 2002-82, but the amendments do not conflict in substance and both have been given effect in setting forth the text of this section.

 

Act 2003-24 legislation

 

Act 2003-24, 1, in subsec. (c)(3), substituted "3802 (relating to driving under influence of alcohol or controlled substance) or the former 75 Pa.C.S. 3731," for "3731 (relating to driving under influence of alcohol or controlled substance)".

 

Act 2005-66 legislation

 

Act 2005-66, 2, in subsec. (a)(2), designated the existing text as (a)(2)(i) and added (a)(2)(ii); rewrote subsec. (a.1), which prior thereto read:

 

"(a.1) Penalty.--Any person convicted of a felony enumerated under subsection (b) or a felony under the act of April 14, 1972 (P.L. 233, No. 64), known as The Controlled Substance, Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act, or any equivalent Federal statute or equivalent statute of any other state, who violates subsection (a) commits a felony of the second degree."

 

; in subsec. (c)(6), deleted "(relating to relief)" following " 6108" and twice substituted "relinquishment" for "confiscation"; added subsec. (c)(9); in subsec. (d), in the introductory paragraph, substituted ", (7) or (9)" for "or (7)"; in subsec. (d)(3)(ii), substituted ", a felony violation of The Controlled Substance, Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act or the offense which resulted in the prohibition under 18 U.S.C. 922(g)(9)" for "or a felony violation of The Controlled Substance, Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act"; in subsec. (e)(1), substituted ", (7) or (9)" for "or (7)"; in subsec. (f)(2), inserted ", to the sheriff and to the Pennsylvania State Police. The application and any proceedings on the application shall comply with 23 Pa.C.S. Ch. 61 (relating to protection from abuse)"; and rewrote subsec. (f)(4), which prior thereto read:

 

"(4) The owner of any seized or confiscated firearms shall be provided with a signed and dated written receipt by the appropriate law enforcement agency. This receipt shall include, but not limited to, a detailed identifying description indicating the serial number and condition of the firearm. In addition, the appropriate law enforcement agency shall be liable to the lawful owner of said confiscated or seized firearm for any loss, damage or substantial decrease in value of said firearm that is a direct result of a lack of reasonable care by the appropriate law enforcement agency."

 

Act 2008-131 legislation

 

Act 2008-131, 1.2, in subsec. (b), in the section 2910 reference, inserted "or structure", added the section 4906 reference, and in the section 4953 reference, substituted ", victim or party" for "or victim".

 

Prior Laws:

  • 1968, July 31, P.L. 802, 1.
  • 1968, July 30, P.L. 690, 1.
  • 1963, Aug. 13, P.L. 660, No. 346, 1.
  • 1961, Aug. 4, P.L. 921, 1.
  • 1953, July 27, P.L. 627, 1.
  • 1943, May 21, P.L. 485, 1.
  • 1943, May 21, P.L. 306, 1.
  • 1939, June 24, P.L. 872, 628 (18 P.S. 4628).
  • 1931, June 11, P.L. 497, 1 to 21.
  • 18 Pa.C.S.A. 6105, PA ST 18 Pa.C.S.A. 6105
  •  

Current through Act 2009-12

 

Title 18

 

6106. Firearms not to be carried without a license.

 

(a) Offense defined.--

  • (1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), any person who carries a firearm in any vehicle or any person who carries a firearm concealed on or about his person, except in his place of abode or fixed place of business, without a valid and lawfully issued license under this chapter commits a felony of the third degree.
  • (2) A person who is otherwise eligible to possess a [FN1] valid license under this chapter but carries a firearm in any vehicle or any person who carries a firearm concealed on or about his person, except in his place of abode or fixed place of business, without a valid and lawfully issued license and has not committed any other criminal violation commits a misdemeanor of the first degree.
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  • (b) Exceptions.--The provisions of subsection (a) shall not apply to:
  • (1) Constables, sheriffs, prison or jail wardens, or their deputies, policemen of this Commonwealth or its political subdivisions, or other law-enforcement officers.
  • (2) Members of the army, navy, marine corps, air force or coast guard of the United States or of the National Guard or organized reserves when on duty.
  • (3) The regularly enrolled members of any organization duly organized to purchase or receive such firearms from the United States or from this Commonwealth.
  • (4) Any persons engaged in target shooting with a firearm, if such persons are at or are going to or from their places of assembly or target practice and if, while going to or from their places of assembly or target practice, the firearm is not loaded.
  • (5) Officers or employees of the United States duly authorized to carry a concealed firearm.
  • (6) Agents, messengers and other employees of common carriers, banks, or business firms, whose duties require them to protect moneys, valuables and other property in the discharge of such duties.
  • (7) Any person engaged in the business of manufacturing, repairing, or dealing in firearms, or the agent or representative of any such person, having in his possession, using or carrying a firearm in the usual or ordinary course of such business.
  • (8) Any person while carrying a firearm which is not loaded and is in a secure wrapper from the place of purchase to his home or place of business, or to a place of repair, sale or appraisal or back to his home or place of business, or in moving from one place of abode or business to another or from his home to a vacation or recreational home or dwelling or back, or to recover stolen property under section 6111.1(b)(4) (relating to Pennsylvania State Police), or to a place of instruction intended to teach the safe handling, use or maintenance of firearms or back or to a location to which the person has been directed to relinquish firearms under 23 Pa.C.S. 6108 (relating to relief) or back upon return of the relinquished firearm or to a licensed dealer's place of business for relinquishment pursuant to 23 Pa.C.S 6108.2 (relating to relinquishment for consignment sale, lawful transfer or safekeeping) or back upon return of the relinquished firearm or to a location for safekeeping pursuant to 23 Pa.C.S. 6108.3 (relating to relinquishment to third party for safekeeping) or back upon return of the relinquished firearm.
  • (9) Persons licensed to hunt, take furbearers or fish in this Commonwealth, if such persons are actually hunting, taking furbearers or fishing as permitted by such license, or are going to the places where they desire to hunt, take furbearers or fish or returning from such places.
  • (10) Persons training dogs, if such persons are actually training dogs during the regular training season.
  • (11) Any person while carrying a firearm in any vehicle, which person possesses a valid and lawfully issued license for that firearm which has been issued under the laws of the United States or any other state.
  • (12) A person who has a lawfully issued license to carry a firearm pursuant to section 6109 (relating to licenses) and that said license expired within six months prior to the date of arrest and that the individual is otherwise eligible for renewal of the license.
  • (13) Any person who is otherwise eligible to possess a firearm under this chapter and who is operating a motor vehicle which is registered in the person's name or the name of a spouse or parent and which contains a firearm for which a valid license has been issued pursuant to section 6109 to the spouse or parent owning the firearm.
  • (14) A person lawfully engaged in the interstate transportation of a firearm as defined under 18 U.S.C 921(a)(3) (relating to definitions) in compliance with 18 U.S.C. 926A (relating to interstate transportation of firearms).
  • (15) Any person who possesses a valid and lawfully issued license or permit to carry a firearm which has been issued under the laws of another state, regardless of whether a reciprocity agreement exists between the Commonwealth and the state under section 6109(k), provided:
  • (i) The state provides a reciprocal privilege for individuals licensed to carry firearms under section 6109.
  • (ii) The Attorney General has determined that the firearm laws of the state are similar to the firearm laws of this Commonwealth.
  • (16) Any person holding a license in accordance with section 6109(f)(3).
  •  
  • (c) Sportsman's firearm permit.—
  • (1) Before any exception shall be granted under paragraph (b)(9) or (10) of this section to any person 18 years of age or older licensed to hunt, trap or fish or who has been issued a permit relating to hunting dogs, such person shall, at the time of securing his hunting, furtaking or fishing license or any time after such license has been issued, secure a sportsman's firearm permit from the county treasurer. The sportsman's firearm permit shall be issued immediately and be valid throughout this Commonwealth for a period of five years from the date of issue for any legal firearm, when carried in conjunction with a valid hunting, furtaking or fishing license or permit relating to hunting dogs. The sportsman's firearm permit shall be in triplicate on a form to be furnished by the Pennsylvania State Police. The original permit shall be delivered to the person, and the first copy thereof, within seven days, shall be forwarded to the Commissioner of the Pennsylvania State Police by the county treasurer. The second copy shall be retained by the county treasurer for a period of two years from the date of expiration. The county treasurer shall be entitled to collect a fee of not more than $6 for each such permit issued, which shall include the cost of any official form. The Pennsylvania State Police may recover from the county treasurer the cost of any such form, but may not charge more than $1 for each official permit form furnished to the county treasurer.
  • (2) Any person who sells or attempts to sell a sportsman's firearm permit for a fee in excess of that amount fixed under this subsection commits a summary offense.
  •  
  • (d) Revocation of registration.--Any registration of a firearm under subsection (c) of this section may be revoked by the county treasurer who issued it, upon written notice to the holder thereof.

 

(e) Definitions.—

  • (1) For purposes of subsection (b)(3), (4), (5), (7) and (8), the term "firearm" shall include any weapon which is designed to or may readily be converted to expel any projectile by the action of an explosive or the frame or receiver of the weapon.
  • (2) As used in this section, the phrase "place of instruction" shall include any hunting club, rifle club, rifle range, pistol range, shooting range, the premises of a licensed firearms dealer or a lawful gun show or meet.
  •  

CREDIT(S)

 

1972, Dec. 6, P.L. 1482, No. 334, 1, effective June 6, 1973. Amended 1973, Oct. 12, P.L. 283, No. 81, 1, effective June 6, 1973; 1986, July 8, P.L. 442, No. 93, 2, eff. July 1, 1987; 1988, Dec. 19, P.L. 1275, No. 158, 1, effective in 180 days; 1995, Nov. 22, P.L. 621, No. 66, 4, imd. effective; 1997, April 22, P.L. 73, No. 5, 1, effective in 60 days; 2000, Dec. 20, P.L. 728, No. 101, 3, effective in 60 days; 2005, Nov. 10, P.L. 335, No. 66, 3, effective in 180 days [May 9, 2006]; 2008, Oct. 17, P.L. 1628, No. 131, 2, effective in 60 days [Dec. 16, 2008].

[FN1] "a" omitted in enrolled bill.

 

 

HISTORICAL AND STATUTORY NOTES

 

The 1995 amendment rewrote subsec. (a); in subd. (b)(8), inserted "or from his home to a vacation or recreational home or dwelling or back, or to recover stolen property under section 6111.1(b)(4) (relating to Pennsylvania State Police) or to a location to which the person has been directed to surrender firearms under 23 Pa.C.S. 6108 (relating to relief) or back upon return of the surrendered firearm"; and added subd. (b)(11).

 

The 1997 amendment, in subsec. (a), designated the former text as par. (1), inserted "Except as provided in paragraph (2)," and added par. (2); and, in subsec. (b), added par. (12).

 

Act 2000-101 legislation

 

Act 2000-101 added subsec. (b)(13).

 

Act 2005-66 legislation

 

Act 2005-66, 3, in subsec. (b)(2), substituted ", marine corps, air force or coast guard" for "or marine corps"; in subsec. (b)(3), substituted "firearms" for "weapons"; in subsec. (b)(4), substituted "a firearm" for "rifle, pistol, or revolver" and "the firearm is not loaded" for "the cartridges or shells are carried in a separate container and the rifle, pistol or revolver is unloaded"; rewrote subsec. (b)(8), which prior thereto read:

 

"(8) Any person while carrying a firearm unloaded and in a secure wrapper from the place of purchase to his home or place of business, or to a place of repair or back to his home or place of business, or in moving from one place of abode or business to another or from his home to a vacation or recreational home or dwelling or back, or to recover stolen property under section 6111.1(b)(4) (relating to Pennsylvania State Police) or to a location to which the person has been directed to surrender firearms under 23 Pa.C.S. 6108 (relating to relief) or back upon return of the surrendered firearm."

 

; in subsec. (b)(9), inserted "as permitted by such license,"; and added subsecs. (b)(14), (b)(15) and (e).

 

Act 2008-131 legislation

 

Act 2008-131, 2, added subsec. (b)(16).

 

Prior Laws:

  • 1968, July 31, P.L. 802, 1.
  • 1968, July 30, P.L. 690, 1.
  • 1963, Aug. 13, P.L. 660, No. 346, 1.
  • 1961, Aug. 4, P.L. 921, 1.
  • 1953, July 27, P.L. 627, 1.
  • 1951, Aug. 17, P.L. 1241, 1 (18 P.S. 4625).
  • 1943, May 21, P.L. 485, 1.
  • 1943, May 21, P.L. 306, 1.
  • 1939, June 24, P.L. 872, 623, 624, 625, 628 (18 P.S. 4623, 4624, 4625 and 4628).
  • 1931, June 11, P.L. 497, 1 to 21.
  • 1917, July 11, P.L. 817, 1, 2 (18 P.S. 4623).
  • 1913, June 6, P.L. 454, 1, 2 (18 P.S. 4624).
  • 1903, April 15, P.L. 198, 1, 2 (18 P.S. 4625).
  • 18 Pa.C.S.A. 6106, PA ST 18 Pa.C.S.A. 6106
  •  

Current through Act 2009-12

 

 

TITLE 18

PA CRIMES CODES

 

 

6106.1. Carrying Loaded Weapons Other Than Firearms.

(a)            General rule.—Except as provided in Title 34 (relating to game), no person shall carry a loaded pistol, revolver, shotgun or rifle, other than a firearm as defined in section 6102 (relating to definitions), in any vehicle The provisions of this section shall not apply to persons excepted from the requirement of a license to carry firearms under section 6106(b)( 1), (2), (5) or (6) (relating to firearms not to be carried without a license) nor shall the provisions of this section be construed to permit persons to carry firearms in a vehicle where such conduct is prohibited by section 6106.

(b)            Penalty.—A person who violates the provisions of this section commits a summary offense.

(Added by L. 1989, Act 68(1); chgd. by L. 1995, Spec. Sess. 1, Act 17(2,). eff 10/11/95.)

 

TITLE 18

PA CRIMES CODES

 

6107. Prohibited Conduct During Emergency.

(a) General rule.--No person shall carry a firearm upon the public streets or upon any public property during an emergency proclaimed by a State or municipal governmental executive unless that person is:

  •  
  • (1) Actively engaged in a defense of that person's life or property from peril or threat.
  •  
  • (2) Licensed to carry firearms under section 6109 (relating to licenses) or is exempt from licensing under section 6106(b) (relating to firearms not to be carried without a license).
  •  
  • (b) Seizure, taking and confiscation.--Except as otherwise provided under subsection (a) and notwithstanding the provisions of 35 Pa.C.S. Ch. 73 (relating to Commonwealth services) or any other provision of law to the contrary, no firearm, accessory or ammunition may be seized, taken or confiscated during an emergency unless the seizure, taking or confiscation would be authorized absent the emergency.

 

(c) Definitions.--As used in this section, the following words and phrases shall have the meanings given to them in this subsection:

 

"Accessory." Any scope, sight, bipod, sling, light, magazine, clip or other related item that is attached to or necessary for the operation of a firearm.

 

"Firearm." The term includes any weapon that is designed to or may readily be converted to expel any projectile by the action of an explosive or the frame or receiver of any weapon.

 

CREDIT(S)

 

1972, Dec. 6, P.L. 1482, No. 334, 1, effective June 6, 1973. Amended 1995, June 13, P.L. 1024, No. 17 (Spec. Sess. No. 1), 2, effective in 120 days; 2008, Oct. 17, P.L. 1628, No. 131, 3, effective in 60 days [Dec. 16, 2008].

 

HISTORICAL AND STATUTORY NOTES

 

Act 1995-17 (SS1) legislation

 

The 1995 amendment substituted "State or municipal" for "Municipal or State"; in cl. (1), substituted "that person's" for "his"; and, in cl. (2) following section references in two places, deleted "of this title".

2008 Electronic Update

 

Act 2008-131 legislation

 

Act 2008-131, 3, designated the existing text as subsec. (a) and therein deleted ", rifle or shotgun" following "carry a firearm"; and added subsecs. (b) and (c).

 

Prior Laws:

1968, July 31, P.L. 802, 1.

1968, July 30, P.L. 690, 1.

1963, Aug. 13, P.L. 660, No. 346, 1.

1961, Aug. 4, P.L. 921, 1.

1953, July 27, P.L. 627, 1.

1943, May 21, P.L. 485, 1.

1943, May 21, P.L. 306, 1.

1939, June 24, P.L. 872, 628 (18 P.S. 4628).

1931, June 11, P.L. 497, 1 to 21.

18 Pa.C.S.A. 6107, PA ST 18 Pa.C.S.A. 6107

 

Current through Act 2009-12

  

TITLE 18

PA CRIMES CODES

 

 

 

6108. Carrying Firearms on Public Streets or Public Property in Philadelphia.

No person shall carry a firearm, rifle or shotgun at any time upon the public streets or upon any public property in a city of the first class unless:

(1)            such person is licensed to carry a firearm; or

    • (2)        such person is exempt from licensing under section 6106(b) of this title (relating to firearms not to be carried without a license)
  •  

 

TITLE 18

PA CRIMES CODES

 

6109. Licenses.

 

(a) Purpose of license.--A license to carry a firearm shall be for the purpose of carrying a firearm concealed on or about one's person or in a vehicle throughout this Commonwealth.

 

(b) Place of application.--An individual who is 21 years of age or older may apply to a sheriff for a license to carry a firearm concealed on or about his person or in a vehicle within this Commonwealth. If the applicant is a resident of this Commonwealth, he shall make application with the sheriff of the county in which he resides or, if a resident of a city of the first class, with the chief of police of that city.

 

(c) Form of application and content.--The application for a license to carry a firearm shall be uniform throughout this Commonwealth and shall be on a form prescribed by the Pennsylvania State Police. The form may contain provisions, not exceeding one page, to assure compliance with this section. Issuing authorities shall use only the application form prescribed by the Pennsylvania State Police. One of the following reasons for obtaining a firearm license shall be set forth in the application: self-defense, employment, hunting and fishing, target shooting, gun collecting or another proper reason. The application form shall be dated and signed by the applicant and shall contain the following statement:

 

I have never been convicted of a crime that prohibits me from possessing or acquiring a firearm under Federal or State law. I am of sound mind and have never been committed to a mental institution. I hereby certify that the statements contained herein are true and correct to the best of my knowledge and belief. I understand that, if I knowingly make any false statements herein, I am subject to penalties prescribed by law. I authorize the sheriff, or his designee, or, in the case of first class cities, the chief or head of the police department, or his designee, to inspect only those records or documents relevant to information required for this application. If I am issued a license and knowingly become ineligible to legally possess or acquire firearms, I will promptly notify the sheriff of the county in which I reside or, if I reside in a city of the first class, the chief of police of that city.

 

(d) Sheriff to conduct investigation.--The sheriff to whom the application is made shall:

(1) investigate the applicant's record of criminal conviction;

(2) investigate whether or not the applicant is under indictment for or has ever been convicted of a crime punishable by imprisonment exceeding one year;

(3) investigate whether the applicant's character and reputation are such that the applicant will not be likely to act in a manner dangerous to public safety;

(4) investigate whether the applicant would be precluded from receiving a license under subsection (e)(1) or section 6105(h) (relating to persons not to possess, use, manufacture, control, sell or transfer firearms); and

(5) conduct a criminal background, juvenile delinquency and mental health check following the procedures set forth in section 6111 (relating to sale or transfer of firearms), receive a unique approval number for that inquiry and record the date and number on the application.

 

(e) Issuance of license.--

(1) A license to carry a firearm shall be for the purpose of carrying a firearm concealed on or about one's person or in a vehicle and shall be issued if, after an investigation not to exceed 45 days, it appears that the applicant is an individual concerning whom no good cause exists to deny the license. A license shall not be issued to any of the following:

(i) An individual whose character and reputation is such that the individual would be likely to act in a manner dangerous to public safety.

(ii) An individual who has been convicted of an offense under the act of April 14, 1972 (P.L. 233, No. 64), known as The Controlled Substance, Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act. [FN1]

(iii) An individual convicted of a crime enumerated in section 6105.

(iv) An individual who, within the past ten years, has been adjudicated delinquent for a crime enumerated in section 6105 or for an offense under The Controlled Substance, Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act.

(v) An individual who is not of sound mind or who has ever been committed to a mental institution.

(vi) An individual who is addicted to or is an unlawful user of marijuana or a stimulant, depressant or narcotic drug.

(vii) An individual who is a habitual drunkard.

(viii) An individual who is charged with or has been convicted of a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year except as provided for in section 6123 (relating to waiver of disability or pardons).

(ix) A resident of another state who does not possess a current license or permit or similar document to carry a firearm issued by that state if a license is provided for by the laws of that state, as published annually in the Federal Register by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms of the Department of the Treasury under 18 U.S.C. 921(a)(19) (relating to definitions).

(x) An alien who is illegally in the United States.

(xi) An individual who has been discharged from the armed forces of the United States under dishonorable conditions.

(xii) An individual who is a fugitive from justice. This subparagraph does not apply to an individual whose fugitive status is based upon nonmoving or moving summary offense under Title 75 (relating to vehicles).

(xiii) An individual who is otherwise prohibited from possessing, using, manufacturing, controlling, purchasing, selling or transferring a firearm as provided by section 6105.

(xiv) An individual who is prohibited from possessing or acquiring a firearm under the statutes of the United States.

(2) Deleted by 1995, June 13, No. 17 (Spec. Sess. No. 1), 2, effective in 120 days.

  • <Text of subsec. (e)(3) effective until publication of the notice under 18 Pa.C.S.A. 6109(h)(2) or five years and 60 days [Jan. 10, 2011], whichever is first.>
  • (3) The license to carry a firearm shall be designed to be uniform throughout this Commonwealth and shall be in a form prescribed by the Pennsylvania State Police. The license shall bear the following:

(i) The name, address, date of birth, race, sex, citizenship, height, weight, color of hair, color of eyes and signature of the licensee.

(ii) The signature of the sheriff issuing the license.

(iii) [Reserved]

(iv) [Reserved]

(v) The reason for issuance.

(vi) The period of validation.

  • The sheriff may also require a photograph of the licensee on the license.
  • <Text of subsec. (e)(3) effective upon publication of the notice under 18 Pa.C.S.A. 6109(h)(2) or five years and 60 days [Jan. 10, 2011], whichever is first.>
  • (3) The license to carry a firearm shall be designed to be uniform throughout this Commonwealth and shall be in a form prescribed by the Pennsylvania State Police. The license shall bear the following:

(i) The name, address, date of birth, race, sex, citizenship, height, weight, color of hair, color of eyes and signature of the licensee.

(ii) The signature of the sheriff issuing the license.

(iii) A license number of which the first two numbers shall be a county location code followed by numbers issued in numerical sequence.

(iv) The point-of-contact telephone number designated by the Pennsylvania State Police under subsection (l).

(v) The reason for issuance.

(vi) The period of validation.

  • <Text of subsec. (e)(4) effective upon publication of the notice under 18 Pa.C.S.A. 6109(h)(2) or five years and 60 days [Jan. 10, 2011], whichever is first.>
  • (4) The sheriff shall require a photograph of the licensee on the license. The photograph shall be in a form compatible with the Commonwealth Photo Imaging Network.

(5) The original license shall be issued to the applicant. The first copy of the license shall be forwarded to the Pennsylvania State Police within seven days of the date of issue. The second copy shall be retained by the issuing authority for a period of seven years. Except pursuant to court order, both copies and the application shall, at the end of the seven-year period, be destroyed unless the license has been renewed within the seven-year period.

 

(f) Term of license.—

(1) A license to carry a firearm issued under subsection (e) shall be valid throughout this Commonwealth for a period of five years unless extended under paragraph (3) or sooner revoked.

(2) At least 60 days prior to the expiration of each license, the issuing sheriff shall send to the licensee an application for renewal of license. Failure to receive a renewal application shall not relieve a licensee from the responsibility to renew the license.

(3) Notwithstanding paragraph (1) or any other provision of law to the contrary, a license to carry a firearm that is held by a member of the United States Armed Forces or the Pennsylvania National Guard on Federal active duty and deployed overseas that is scheduled to expire during the period of deployment shall be extended until 90 days after the end of the deployment.

(4) Possession of a license, together with a copy of the person's military orders showing the dates of overseas deployment, including the date that the overseas deployment ends, shall constitute, during the extension period specified in paragraph (3), a defense to any charge filed pursuant to section 6106 (relating to firearms not to be carried without a license) or 6108 (relating to carrying firearms on public streets or public property in Philadelphia).

 

(g) Grant or denial of license.--Upon the receipt of an application for a license to carry a firearm, the sheriff shall, within 45 days, issue or refuse to issue a license on the basis of the investigation under subsection (d) and the accuracy of the information contained in the application. If the sheriff refuses to issue a license, the sheriff shall notify the applicant in writing of the refusal and the specific reasons. The notice shall be sent by certified mail to the applicant at the address set forth in the application.

 

(h) Fee.—

(1) In addition to fees described in paragraphs (2)(ii) and (3), the fee for a license to carry a firearm is $19. This includes all of the following:

(i) A renewal notice processing fee of $1.50.

(ii) An administrative fee of $5 under section 14(2) of the act of July 6, 1984 (P.L. 614, No. 127), [FN2] known as the Sheriff Fee Act.

(2) (i) The Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency shall implement, within five years of the effective date of this paragraph, a system in conjunction with the Pennsylvania State Police and the Pennsylvania Sheriffs' Association to standardize and modernize the process of issuing licenses to carry firearms. Upon implementation of the system under this paragraph, the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency shall publish notice thereof in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.

(ii) An additional temporary fee of $5 shall be remitted by the sheriff to the Firearms License to Carry Modernization Account, which is hereby established as a special restricted receipt account within the General Fund of the State Treasury. Moneys and investment income in the account shall be awarded as grants to sheriffs to implement the system, including grants to reimburse sheriffs for expenses incurred prior to the effective date of this paragraph.

(iii) Moneys credited to the account and any investment income accrued are hereby appropriated on a continuing basis to the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency. The commission shall establish procedures related to the application process for and distribution of funds to sheriffs under this paragraph. Notwithstanding the provisions of subparagraph (ii), the commission may withhold annually an amount not exceeding 5% of the funds credited to the account in that fiscal year for the cost to implement the system under subparagraph (i) and for administrative costs directly related to the responsibilities of the commission under this paragraph.

(iv) This paragraph shall expire five years after its effective date. Any surplus funds remaining in the account established in subparagraph (ii) at such time shall lapse into the General Fund.

(3) An additional fee of $1 shall be paid by the applicant for a license to carry a firearm and shall be remitted by the sheriff to the Firearms License Validation System Account, which is hereby established as a special restricted receipt account within the General Fund of the State Treasury. The account shall be used for purposes under subsection (l). Moneys credited to the account and any investment income accrued are hereby appropriated on a continuing basis to the Pennsylvania State Police.

(4) No fee other than that provided by this subsection or the Sheriff Fee Act may be assessed by the sheriff for the performance of any background check made pursuant to this act.

(5) The fee is payable to the sheriff to whom the application is submitted and is payable at the time of application for the license.

(6) Except for the administrative fee of $5 under section 14(2) of the Sheriff Fee Act, all other fees shall be refunded if the application is denied but shall not be refunded if a license is issued and subsequently revoked.

(7) A person who sells or attempts to sell a license to carry a firearm for a fee in excess of the amounts fixed under this subsection commits a summary offense.

 

(i) Revocation.--A license to carry firearms may be revoked by the issuing authority for good cause. A license to carry firearms shall be revoked by the issuing authority for any reason stated in subsection (e)(1) which occurs during the term of the permit. Notice of revocation shall be in writing and shall state the specific reason for revocation. Notice shall be sent by certified mail to the individual whose license is revoked, and, at that time, notice shall also be provided to the Pennsylvania State Police by electronic means, including e-mail or facsimile transmission, that the license is no longer valid. An individual whose license is revoked shall surrender the license to the issuing authority within five days of receipt of the notice. An individual whose license is revoked may appeal to the court of common pleas for the judicial district in which the individual resides. An individual who violates this section commits a summary offense.

 

(i.1) Notice to sheriff.--Notwithstanding any statute to the contrary:

(1) Upon conviction of a person for a crime specified in section 6105(a) or (b) or upon conviction of a person for a crime punishable by imprisonment exceeding one year or upon a determination that the conduct of a person meets the criteria specified in section 6105(c)(1), (2), (3), (5), (6) or (9), the court shall determine if the defendant has a license to carry firearms issued pursuant to this section. If the defendant has such a license, the court shall notify the sheriff of the county in which that person resides, on a form developed by the Pennsylvania State Police, of the identity of the person and the nature of the crime or conduct which resulted in the notification. The notification shall be transmitted by the judge within seven days of the conviction or determination.

(2) Upon adjudication that a person is incompetent or upon the involuntary commitment of a person to a mental institution for inpatient care and treatment under the act of July 9, 1976 (P.L. 817, No. 143), known as the Mental Health Procedures Act, or upon involuntary treatment of a person as described under section 6105(c)(4), the judge of the court of common pleas, mental health review officer or county mental health and mental retardation administrator shall notify the sheriff of the county in which that person resides, on a form developed by the Pennsylvania State Police, of the identity of the person who has been adjudicated, committed or treated and the nature of the adjudication, commitment or treatment. The notification shall be transmitted by the judge, mental health review officer or county mental health and mental retardation administrator within seven days of the adjudication, commitment or treatment.

 

(j) Immunity.--A sheriff who complies in good faith with this section shall be immune from liability resulting or arising from the action or misconduct with a firearm committed by any individual to whom a license to carry a firearm has been issued.

 

(k) Reciprocity.—

(1) The Attorney General shall have the power and duty to enter into reciprocity agreements with other states providing for the mutual recognition of a license to carry a firearm issued by the Commonwealth and a license or permit to carry a firearm issued by the other state. To carry out this duty, the Attorney General is authorized to negotiate reciprocity agreements and grant recognition of a license or permit to carry a firearm issued by another state.

(2) The Attorney General shall report to the General Assembly within 180 days of the effective date of this paragraph and annually thereafter concerning the agreements which have been consummated under this subsection.

 

(l) Firearms License Validation System.—

(1) The Pennsylvania State Police shall establish a nationwide toll- free telephone number, known as the Firearms License Validation System, which shall be operational seven days a week, 24 hours per day, for the purpose of responding to law enforcement inquiries regarding the validity of any Pennsylvania license to carry a firearm.

(2) Notwithstanding any other law regarding the confidentiality of information, inquiries to the Firearms License Validation System regarding the validity of any Pennsylvania license to carry a firearm may only be made by law enforcement personnel acting within the scope of their official duties.

(3) Law enforcement personnel outside this Commonwealth shall provide their originating agency identifier number and the license number of the license to carry a firearm which is the subject of the inquiry.

(4) Responses to inquiries by law enforcement personnel outside this Commonwealth shall be limited to the name of the licensee, the validity of the license and any information which may be provided to a criminal justice agency pursuant to Chapter 91 (relating to criminal history record information).

 

(m) Inquiries.—

(1) The Attorney General shall, not later than one year after the effective date of this subsection and not less than once annually, contact in writing the appropriate authorities in any other state which does not have a current reciprocity agreement with the Commonwealth to determine if:

(i) the state will negotiate a reciprocity agreement;

(ii) a licensee may carry a concealed firearm in the state; or

(iii) a licensee may apply for a license or permit to carry a firearm issued by the state.

(2) The Attorney General shall maintain a current list of those states which have a reciprocity agreement with the Commonwealth, those states which allow licensees to carry a concealed firearm and those states which allow licensees to apply for a license or permit to carry a firearm. This list shall be posted on the Internet, provided to the Pennsylvania State Police and made available to the public upon request.

 

(m.1) Temporary emergency licenses.—

(1) A person seeking a temporary emergency license to carry a concealed firearm shall submit to the sheriff of the county in which the person resides all of the following:

(i) Evidence of imminent danger to the person or the person's minor child. For purposes of this subparagraph, the term "minor" shall have the same meaning as provided in 1 Pa.C.S. 1991 (relating to definitions).

(ii) A sworn affidavit that contains the information required on an application for a license to carry a firearm and attesting that the person is 21 years of age or older, is not prohibited from owning firearms under section 6105 (relating to persons not to possess, use, manufacture, control, sell or transfer firearms) or any other Federal or State law and is not currently subject to a protection from abuse order or a protection order issued by a court of another state.

(iii) In addition to the provisions of subsection (h), a temporary emergency license fee established by the Commissioner of the Pennsylvania State Police for an amount that does not exceed the actual cost of conducting the criminal background check or $10, whichever is less.

(iv) An application for a license to carry a firearm on the form prescribed pursuant to subsection (c).

(2) Upon receipt of the items required under paragraph (1), the sheriff immediately shall conduct a criminal history, juvenile delinquency and mental health record check of the applicant pursuant to section 6105. Immediately upon receipt of the results of the records check, the sheriff shall review the information and shall determine whether the applicant meets the criteria set forth in this subsection. If the sheriff determines that the applicant has met all of the criteria, the sheriff shall immediately issue the applicant a temporary emergency license to carry a concealed firearm.

(3) If the sheriff refuses to issue a temporary emergency license, the sheriff shall specify the grounds for the denial in a written notice to the applicant. The applicant may appeal the denial or challenge criminal records check results that were the basis of the denial, if applicable, in the same manner as a denial of a license to carry a firearm under this section.

(4) A temporary emergency license issued under this subsection shall be valid for 45 days and may not be renewed. A person who has been issued a temporary emergency license under this subsection shall not be issued another temporary emergency license unless at least five years have expired since the issuance of the prior temporary emergency license. During the 45 days the temporary emergency license is valid, the sheriff shall conduct an additional investigation of the person for the purposes of determining whether the person may be issued a license pursuant to this section. If, during the course of this investigation, the sheriff discovers any information that would have prohibited the issuance of a license pursuant to this section, the sheriff shall be authorized to revoke the temporary emergency license as provided in subsection (i).

(5) The temporary emergency license issued pursuant to this section shall be consistent with the form prescribed in subsection (e)(3), (4) and (5). In addition to the information provided in those paragraphs, the temporary emergency license shall be clearly marked "Temporary."

(6) A person who holds a temporary emergency license to carry a firearm shall have the same rights to carry a firearm as a person issued a license to carry a firearm under this section. A licensee under this subsection shall be subject to all other duties, restrictions and penalties under this section, including revocation pursuant to subsection (i).

(7) A sheriff who issues a temporary emergency license to carry a firearm shall retain, for the entire period during which the temporary emergency license is in effect, the evidence of imminent danger that the applicant submitted to the sheriff that was the basis for the license, or a copy of the evidence, as appropriate.

(8) A person applying for a temporary emergency license shall complete the application required pursuant to subsection (c) and shall provide at the time of application the information required in paragraph (1).

(9) Prior to the expiration of a temporary emergency license, if the sheriff has determined pursuant to investigation that the person issued a temporary emergency license is not disqualified and if the temporary emergency license has not been revoked pursuant to subsection (i), the sheriff shall issue a license pursuant to this section that is effective for the balance of the five-year period from the date of the issuance of the temporary emergency license. Records and all other information, duties and obligations regarding such licenses shall be applicable as otherwise provided in this section.

(10) As used in this subsection, the term "evidence of imminent danger" means:

(i) a written document prepared by the Attorney General, a district attorney, a chief law enforcement officer, judicial officer or their designees describing the facts that give a person reasonable cause to fear a criminal attack upon the person or the person's minor child. For the purposes of this subparagraph, the term "chief law enforcement officer" shall have the same meaning as provided in 42 Pa.C.S. 8951 (relating to definitions) and "judicial officer" shall have the same meaning as provided in 42 Pa.C.S. 102 (relating to definitions).

(ii) a police report.

 

(m.2) Inconsistent provisions.--Notwithstanding the provisions of section 7506 (relating to violation of rules regarding conduct on Commonwealth property), 75 Pa.C.S. 7727 (relating to additional limitations on operation) or the act of June 28, 1995 (P.L. 89, No. 18), [FN3] known as the Conservation and Natural Resources Act, and regulations promulgated under that act, a firearm may be carried as provided in subsection (a) by:

(1) a law enforcement officer whose current identification as a law enforcement officer shall be construed as a valid license to carry a firearm; or

(2) any licensee.

 

(m.3) Construction.--Nothing in this section shall be construed to permit the hunting or harvesting of any wildlife with a firearm or ammunition not otherwise permitted by 34 Pa.C.S. (relating to game).

 

(n) Definition.--As used in this section, the term "licensee" means an individual who is licensed to carry a firearm under this section.

 

CREDIT(S)

 

1972, Dec. 6, P.L. 1482, No. 334, 1, effective June 6, 1973. Amended 1986, April 17, P.L. 82, No. 28, 1, effective Jan. 1, 1987; 1988, Dec. 19, P.L. 1275, No. 158, 1, effective in 180 days; 1995, June 13, P.L. 1024, No. 17 (Spec. Sess. No. 1), 2, effective in 120 days; 1995, Nov. 22, P.L. 621, No. 66, 4 imd. effective; 1997, April 22, P.L. 73, No. 5, 1, effective in 60 days; 1998, June 18, P.L. 503, No. 70, 3, imd. effective; 2005, Nov. 10, P.L. 335, No. 66, 3; 2008, Oct. 17, P.L. 1628, No. 131, 4, effective in 60 days [Dec. 16, 2008].

 

[FN1] 35 P.S. 780-101 et seq.

 

[FN2] 42 P.S. 21114(2).

 

[FN3] 71 P.S. 1340.101 et seq.

 

HISTORICAL AND STATUTORY NOTES

 

2000 Main Volume

 

Act 1995, No. 17 (Spec. Sess. No. 1) also, in subsec. (g), second sentence, preceding "reasons" and in subsec. (i), second sentence, preceding "reason", inserted "specific"; in subsec. (h), increased the fee from $12.50 to $17.50; and added subsec. (k).

 

Act 1995, Nov. 22, P.L. 621, No. 66, 4, in subsec. (a), deleted the last sentence, which provided that any person who carried a firearm concealed on or about his person or in a vehicle without a valid and lawfully issued license under this section committed a felony of the third degree; in subsec. (f), designated par. (1) as such and added par. (2); and, in subsec. (h), substituted "$19" for "$17.50", and inserted the second and fourth sentences.

 

The 1997 amendment, in subsec. (a), substituted "throughout" for "within".

 

Act 1998-70, in subsec. (e)(1)(xii) added the second sentence and, in subsec. (i), inserted the second and sixth sentences.

 

Act 1995, June 13, No. 17 (Spec. Sess. No. 1) in subsec. (a), added the second sentence; in subsec. (c), second sentence, substituted "this section" for "subsection (c)(2); in subsec. (d), added "or section 6105(h) (relating to persons not to possess, use, manufacture, control, sell or transfer firearms) and shall conduct a criminal background, juvenile delinquency or mental health check following the procedures set forth in section 6111 (relating to firearm ownership)"; in subsec. (e)(1)(iii) and (iv) following "a crime", substituted "enumerated in section 6105" for "of violence", added subcl. (xii), and deleted cl. (2), which read: "(2) In a city of the first class, a license shall be issued only if it additionally appears that the applicant has good reason to fear an injury to the applicant's person or property or has any other proper reason for carrying a firearm and that the applicant is a suitable individual to be licensed."

2008 Electronic Update

 

Act 2005-66 legislation

 

Act 2005-66, 3, in subsec. (c), in the statement, substituted "that prohibits me from possessing or acquiring a firearm under Federal or State law" for "of violence in the Commonwealth or Pennsylvania or elsewhere", and added the sixth sentence; rewrote subsec. (d), which prior thereto read:

 

"(d) Sheriff to conduct investigation.--The sheriff to whom the application is made shall investigate the applicant's record of criminal convictions, shall investigate whether or not the applicant is under indictment for or has ever been convicted of a crime punishable by imprisonment exceeding one year, shall investigate whether the applicant's character and reputation are such that the applicant will not be likely to act in a manner dangerous to public safety and shall investigate whether the applicant would be precluded from receiving a license under subsection (e)(1) or section 6105(h) (relating to persons not to possess, use, manufacture, control, sell or transfer firearms) and shall conduct a criminal background, juvenile delinquency or mental health check following the procedures set forth in section 6111 (relating to firearm ownership)."

 

; added subsec. (e)(1)(xiv); rewrote subsec. (e)(3) as subsecs. (e)(3) to (5), prior to which reading:

 

"(3) The license shall bear the name, address, date of birth, race, sex, citizenship, Social Security number, height, weight, color of hair, color of eyes and signature of the licensee; the signature of the sheriff issuing the license; the reason for issuance; and the period of validation. The sheriff may also require a photograph of the licensee on the license. The original license shall be issued to the applicant. The first copy of the license shall be forwarded to the commissioner within seven days of the date of issue, and a second copy shall be retained by the issuing authority for a period of six years."

 

; rewrote subsec. (h), which prior thereto read:

 

"(h) Fee.--The fee for a license to carry a firearm is $19. This includes a renewal notice processing fee of $1.50. This includes an administrative fee of $5 under section 14(2) of the act of July 6, 1984 (P.L. 614, No. 127), known as the Sheriff Fee Act. No fee other than that provided by this paragraph or the Sheriff Fee Act may be assessed by the sheriff for the performance of any background check made pursuant to this act. The fee is payable to the sheriff to whom the application is submitted and is payable at the time of application for the license. Except for the administrative fee of $5 under section 14(2) of the Sheriff Fee Act, all other fees shall be refunded if the application is denied but shall not be refunded if a license is issued and subsequently revoked. A person who sells or attempts to sell a license to carry a firearm for a fee in excess of the amounts fixed under this subsection commits a summary offense."

 

; in subsec. (i), substituted "to the individual whose license is revoked, and, at that time, notice shall also be provided to the Pennsylvania State Police by electronic means, including e-mail or facsimile transmission, that the license is no longer valid" for ", and, at that time, a copy shall be forwarded to the commissioner"; added subsec. (i.1); rewrote subsec. (k), which prior thereto read:

 

"(k) Reciprocity.--The Attorney General may enter into reciprocity agreements with other states providing for the mutual recognition of each state's license to carry a firearm."

 

; and added subsecs. (l) to (n).

 

Sections 14 and 15 of 2005, Nov. 10, P.L. 335, No. 66, provide:

 

" 14. The Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency shall submit a report to the General Assembly three years after the effective date of this section on the progress of the Firearms License to Carry Modernization account.

 

" 15. This act shall take effect as follows:

 

"(1) The addition or amendment of 18 Pa.C.S. 6109(e)(3) introductory paragraph, (i), (ii), (v) and (vi) shall take effect in 90 days [Feb. 8, 2006].

 

"(2) The addition or amendment of 18 Pa.C.S. 6109(e)(3)(iii), (iv) and (4) shall take effect upon publication of the notice under 18 Pa.C.S. 6109(h)(2) or five years and 60 days [Jan. 10, 2011], whichever is first.

 

"(3) This section shall take effect immediately.

 

"(4) The remainder of this act shall take effect in 180 days [May 9, 2006]."

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