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Concealed Carry State Laws In Pennsylvania
Concealed carry laws, or CCW’s, in Pennsylvania refers to the legally issued permit which allows for the carrying of a handgun or other weapon in a concealed manner within any place open to the general public.
Not all weapons that fall under concealed carry state laws in Pennsylvania are lethal, there are some states that regulate non-lethal items such a pepper spray that are carried over a set volume requiring the obtaining of a CCW permit. (In some states non-lethal items require a separate permit)
Every State's Concealed Carry Laws Are Unique In Pennsylvania
While in Pennsylvania there is no current federal law that specifically address the issuance of concealed carry permits for private citizens as each state is responsible for the control of concealed carry permits within its sovereign borders. All 50 states have passed laws allowing their respective residents to carry certain concealed firearms in public, either without a permit or after obtaining a permit from their local Sheriff’s office or Chief of police.
In all states and in Pennsylvania the only federal law concerning CCW’s is the Peace Officer Safety Act of 2004, (H.R. 218) to lean about this and all other states Concealed Carry Laws see our database on our website US Precision Defense where we maintain a comprehensive listing of every States weapons laws.
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Pennsylvania State Constitutional Provision states: “The right of the citizens to bear arms in defense of themselves and the State shall not be questioned.”
The process for obtaining an License To Carry a Firearm (LTCF) in Pennsylvania is good due to the fact that the process is very thorough in making sure that permits are not granted to people that may be irresponsible or pose a danger to others (minors, convicted felons, domestic abusers, etc.) while making it very simple for trustworthy and law-abiding citizens to obtain with relative ease.
An individual who is 21 years of age or older may apply for a license to carry firearms by submitting a completed Application for a Pennsylvania “License to Carry Firearms” to the sheriff of the county in which they reside or if a resident of a city of the first class, with the chief of police of that city along with the required fee.
May 2013; A switch to an online system and additional staffing are expected to speed up Pennsylvania's approval of concealed weapons license applications, eliminating delays. A $1.2 million upgrade is planned for the Pennsylvania Instant Check System, which is used for the background checks sheriff's departments and firearms dealers must run to issue concealed-carry licenses or sell guns.
Pennsylvania has reciprocity agreements with; Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
Pennsylvania shall issue a LTCF to residents and non-resident applicants if no good cause exists to deny the license. Non-resident applicants must first obtain a license from their home state, unless their home state does not issue licenses
The state preempts local regulation of the lawful ownership, possession, transfer or transportation of firearms, ammunition, or ammunition components.
US Precision Defense maintains a database of every states gun laws and reciprocity agreements. We also have a free directory of; firearms instructors, shooting ranges, and gun smiths. We also have an on-line store of shooting products and accessories and an exclusive members only section.
While Pennsylvania has a specific law that requires a License To Carry Firearms for the concealed carry of a firearm, and the carry of firearms in vehicles, the law is silent on the legality of openly carrying a firearm in other situations, making it what some would argue legal by default. It is highly suggested that before you “open carry” you contact your local law enforcement agency to get their interpretation of the law, (get the name and rank of the officer you speak to.)
There is however a law that requires a License To Carry Firearms to carry either way in "cities of the first class", which as defined by law is only the city of Philadelphia.
“Open Carry” is a term referring to the right of law abiding citizens 18 or older to display their firearm in public spaces without the need for a permit. The legal basis for this right can be found in the 2nd Amendment of the US Constitution. This federal right has been further defined by the Pennsylvania Uniform Firearms Act of 1995 which places restrictions on firearms owned by citizens of the Commonwealth. Open carry is Prohibited in the following places: Within the city of Philadelphia, any school, any courthouse, any federal facility, and state park, any adult or juvenile detention facility, in a motor vehicle, in a private business (if notified verbally or by signage)
The Pennsylvania Sheriff’s association when asked about their position on gun control efforts coming out of Washington took a somewhat neutral stance, much different than other Sheriff’s associations from across the country, their official statement is: “The Sheriffs are Constitutional Officers sworn to uphold the Constitutions of the United States and the Commonwealth. No directive has been given, nor is any directive expected to require the removal or surrender of any firearms in this state.”
A police chief in Gilberton, Pennsylvania, a small burough in Schuylkill County with a population of only 867 people, is proposing a ’2nd Amendment Preservation’ Ordinance that he plans to present to the city council during its January 24, 2013 meeting. The ordinance, if adopted, would formally require the city to “enact any and all measures as may be necessary” to prevent the violation of the 2nd Amendment by any federal, state or local entity. The support of the second amendment is growing and the push back to the feds is something the liberal congress we don’t thing ever saw coming!
US Precision Defense has a complete library of how to reports with supporting videos in our members only section.