Many states have their own laws regarding firearms. For example, you can legally carry a gun in Pennsylvania without a permit, though this does not apply in all cases. Per 18 Pa. C.S.A. § 6106, you must have a license for concealed carry and when transporting a gun in your vehicle.
It’s critical to be aware of local gun laws as a gun owner, whether you live in Pennsylvania or are passing through with your weapon. If you are caught carrying a gun without a permit in these scenarios, there can be serious legal consequences.
Are there any exceptions to Pennsylvania’s gun license law?
Every state has the right to establish its own laws, and they can vary greatly depending on where you are. Specifically, Pennsylvania state law allows you to carry a gun without a permit when you:
- Are within the premises of your own home
- Are within the premises of your fixed place of business
- Are a member of the military or a law enforcement agency
- Visit a gun range
- Work for an entity involved in the purchase, sale, or transport of firearms
- Are legally hunting during the permitted season
- Carry a valid license in another state
- Have a permit that recently expired while within the legal renewal period
Any individual who breaches gun-carrying laws in Pennsylvania could be subject to serious repercussions. However, if you were wrongly arrested or charged with possession of a firearm, you could use one of these exceptions to fight your charges. A criminal defense attorney from our firm could represent you.
Penalties for carrying a firearm without a permit in Pennsylvania
Depending on the details of your case, you could face various penalties for possession of a firearm without a license in Pennsylvania. For instance, if you receive no other charges and otherwise qualify for a license to carry in the state, you’ll face a first-degree misdemeanor.
Misdemeanor charges are less serious than felonies, but they can still carry a hefty sentence. For example, gun-related misdemeanors can result in prison time and carry a fine of up to $10,000 in Pennsylvania.
Meanwhile, if you are not otherwise eligible for a license to carry in PA, you can receive third-degree felony charges. Felonies are much more serious offenses, generally resulting in potentially longer prison sentences and even more severe fines. Previous charges could also impact the outcome of your case.
Other consequences you could face if convicted
If charges of carrying a gun in PA without a permit are filed, it can impact many aspects of your life. For example, you may experience changes in your personal and professional relationships. Upon conviction, you will receive a mark on your record that can affect your ability to:
- Receive financial assistance for school
- Rent a property
- Get hired at a new job
Spending time in jail can further impact your relationships and even cause you to lose your job. Therefore, it’s critical to defend yourself against charges to reduce or eliminate the potential consequences you face. Our attorneys can help you explore possible defenses.
Legal options if you involved with an illegal gun case
The circumstances of each case affect the type of defense an attorney can build for their client. In general, the options for fighting a gun charge include:
- Proving a violation of your civil rights
- Presenting evidence of your exception to Pennsylvania’s gun license law
- Negotiating a plea deal for a lesser charge
While this is likely a time of stress, anxiety, and uncertainty, you have the legal right to defend yourself in a court of law. Hiring an attorney can help.
Hiring a lawyer to fight your gun charges
If you find yourself charged with a crime or would like to pursue charges yourself, having a lawyer representing you can be helpful. There are several ways our team could support you during this challenging time, including by:
- Organizing the facts of your case to ensure your defense is as strong as possible
- Filing the tedious paperwork related to your case
- Navigating the legal system to give you a fair shot at justice
- Answering your questions and offering general support
- Determining if your case falls within one of the exemptions for possession of a firearm without a permit
Following your charges, you may face many questions from authorities. Securing legal help as soon as possible can help you avoid missteps in your case. A lawyer from our firm can help guide you through the process in a fair and legal manner that protects your rights.
Contact McKenzie Law Firm, P.C., today
If you find yourself having legal difficulties and are unsure what to do next, our team is available to help. Reviewing the details of your case with a representative from McKenzie Law Firm P.C., can help you understand your options and determine the best path forward.
Call (610) 680-7842 for a free, no-obligation consultation today.