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Know the Laws: Pennsylvania

UPDATED May 25, 2017

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Below is information about state gun laws in Pennsylvania.  A PFA order or criminal conviction may make it illegal for an abuser to have a gun.  However, in addition to these state-specific laws, there are also federal gun laws that could apply.  To fully understand all of the legal protections available, it is important that you also read the Federal Gun Laws pages.

Please consider getting in touch with a domestic violence advocate in your community for more information on gun laws in your area.  Go to our PA Where to Find Help to find an organization near you.

Basic Info about Pennsylvania's State Gun Laws

back to topI am a victim of domestic violence and the abuser has a gun. Is that legal?

It depends.  If you have a PFA order in which the judge told the abuser to give up his firearms, it would be illegal for the abuser to have a gun.*

Also, even if you don’t have a PFA order, it may be illegal for the abuser to have a gun if s/he has been convicted of certain drug crimes, felony crimes (including stalking, assault, kidnapping, and many others), is a fugitive from justice, or has been declared mentally incompetent.**  For more information, go to If the abuser has been convicted of a crime, can he keep a gun or buy a new gun?

Also, federal laws, which apply to all states, restrict a person's right to have a gun under certain circumstances such as when the abuser has been convicted of certain domestic violence-related crimes or if you have an order of protection against the abuser that meets certain requirements.  Go to Federal Gun Laws to get more information.

* 18 Pa.C.S.A. § 6105(c)(6)
** 18 Pa.C.S.A. § 6105(b) & (c)

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