Firearm Rights And Restoration
The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is one of the stricter states when it comes to gun control laws. There are a number of different restrictions that apply to those who wish to own or carry a firearm. Felony convictions will always disqualify citizens from owning a gun, yet some misdemeanor convictions will prevent ownership. Sometimes gun rights are in question because of error in the complicated paperwork that gun owners must fill out, or there may be a failure to renew a permit on time.
The Hoover Firm, LLC, provides staunch defense of gun rights for individuals. Based in Harrisburg, David Hoover is a criminal defense lawyer who represents clients who were wrongly stripped of their Second Amendment right, or fulfilled their legal obligations and penalties, and they now wish to restore their firearm rights. Customizing our approach to fit the needs of the case, we work with you to challenge local ordinances as well as state laws.
Four Main Points Of Firearm Legislation
The guns laws are different from state to state. While our neighbors to the east like New Jersey, Maryland and New York have stricter laws, Pennsylvania’s guns laws nonetheless still include the following:
- Mandatory universal background checks for handgun transfers (with limited exemptions)
- Prohibitions for individuals with domestic violence convictions
- Prohibitions for individuals with a Protection from Abuse (PFA) order against them
Who Cannot Legally Purchase A Firearm
The most commonly applied restrictions include the following:
- You were convicted of a felony, or a misdemeanor punishable by greater than two years (the sentence you were given does not matter; the law looks to the maximum possible sentence the judge could have given you).
- You were convicted of a misdemeanor of domestic violence.
- You have had involuntary mental health treatment or have been involuntarily committed to a mental hospital (302, 303, 304 under the Mental Health Procedures Act).
- You are under 18 years of age for a long gun, or under 21 for a handgun.
- You were convicted of three DUIs within five years.
- You are an unlawful user of narcotics (or have been charged with any drug-related crime within the previous year).
- You are the subject of an active restraining order.
License To Carry Firearms
With the exception of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania allows individuals to open carry a handgun on foot without a license. However, individuals must obtain a license to carry firearms if they wish to carry a concealed weapon in the Keystone state. Generally, a license is also necessary to have a handgun in a vehicle regardless of whether it is carried open or concealed. Without a License to Carry Firearms, individuals can only have a handgun in their vehicle if they are going to and from very specific places and if it is stored in a very specific manner.
Restoration Of Gun Rights
The commonwealth does allow for the restoration of firearm rights in certain situations. What avenues are available will depend upon why the person is prohibited. If a person has a conviction, they may need a Governor’s Pardon to restore their rights. If a person has been “302’d” (involuntary mental health treatment) they may need an expungement (if available) for a restoration of rights. Regardless of why a person is prohibited, many times people are good candidates to restore their rights and don’t even realize it until many years later.
PICS Denials And License To Carry Firearms Denials
If you are not sure whether you are prohibited from possessing firearms you should NEVER try to buy a gun without first consulting an experienced firearms attorney who completes a full investigation. When a person is denied the purchase of a firearm, they can be charged with a felony if they are prohibited. If you have already been denied the purchase of a firearm or denied a License to Carry Firearms, you should contact an attorney immediately. It is very important to start working on the case immediately to avoid a felony conviction. Sometimes people are wrongfully denied, and an experienced firearms attorney can overturn the denial through a PICS challenge.
Let Us Protect Your Gun Rights
The fact is that folks in central Pennsylvania like to hunt. Moreover, guns owners are allowed to protect themselves and their families. While special interest groups and some government officials would like to further regulate firearm ownership, the laws can still work in gun owners’ favor with help from the right attorney.