What Is the Penalty for Carrying a Gun Without a Permit in Pennsylvania?

by | Aug 22, 2022

The penalty for carrying a concealed gun without a permit in Pennsylvania depends upon whether you face a third-degree felony or first-degree misdemeanor. A third-degree felony conviction could result in up to seven years imprisonment and $15,000 in fines, while a first-degree misdemeanor carries up to five years imprisonment and $10,000 in fines.

However, a convicted person could face additional consequences in the future, such as missing out on jobs, not being able to rent an apartment, or losing their right to own a firearm. Get legal advice from a criminal defense attorney in Pennsylvania if you or a loved one face Firearms Not to Be Carried Without a License charges.

In This Article

Philadelphia gun crimes defense attorney, Brad V. Shuttleworth, Esq., discusses how Firearms Not to Be Carried Without a License charges work, associated penalties if convicted, and the defensibility of firearms charges. Shuttleworth Law wrote this article for individuals facing these types of charges.

What Are Firearms Not to Be Carried Without a License Charges?

Pennsylvania statutes prohibit the possession of firearms by specific persons without a license, either as a concealed carry weapon or as transport, under 18 Pa.C.S. § 6106. Without a proper license, it is illegal to transport or conceal a handgun, outside of your home or place of business.

The Commonwealth will charge the crime as either a felony misdemeanor, described in more detail below:

  • Third-degree felony: Carrying a Weapon Without a License when you are ineligible to apply for a license to carry
  • First-degree misdemeanor: Carrying a Weapon Without a License when you are eligible to apply for a license to carry

What makes someone ineligible to obtain a license to carry a firearm? A person can be ineligible for quite a few reasons, such as: being under 21 years of age, having been convicted of certain crimes, or not being of sound mind or having been committed to a mental institution.

This type of crime violates the Uniform Firearms Act, also known as a “VUFA.” VUFAs, in general, are weapons or gun-related crimes. Commonwealth statutes determine the outcome of VUFA charges, including Firearms Not to Be Carried Without a License.

Related Article: What Is a Violation of the Uniform Firearms Act (VUFA)?

What Are the Penalties for Carrying a Gun Without a PA Permit?

One charge is more severe than the other when facing this type of VUFA. A felony will result in a more significant loss of your rights. However, a misdemeanor conviction can negatively impact the short- and long-term future.

Below, we have outlined the penalties related to each type of grading if convicted of a Firearms Not to Be Carried Without a License crime:

Third-Degree Felony

A third-degree felony charge could result in up to seven years imprisonment and $15,000 in fines. The Commonwealth sets this maximum penalty per 18 Pa.C.S. § 1103. You could face a third-degree felony if you were transporting via a motor vehicle or carrying a concealed firearm, such as a rifle, gun, or pistol, and you are not legally eligible to receive a license if you were to apply for one hypothetically.

Related Article: What is a Felony in Pennsylvania?

First-Degree Misdemeanor

A first-degree misdemeanor results in a maximum prison sentence of not more than five years and fines that do not exceed $10,000. It is the most serious of misdemeanor charges, and the Commonwealth sets this maximum penalty per 18 Pa.C.S. § 1104. You could face a first-degree misdemeanor if you were transporting via a motor vehicle or carrying a concealed firearm, and you are legally eligible to get a license if you were to apply for one hypothetically.

Related Article: What Is a Misdemeanor in Pennsylvania?

Non-Statutory Penalties

Regardless of your crime’s grading, you will have a criminal record to face in the future if convicted. These non-statutory, collateral damage penalties can result in a loss of child custody, firearms, housing, and employment rights. Ensure you speak with a gun crimes defense attorney in PA to help you or your loved one mount a legal defense that seeks to protect you from criminal and non-statutory consequences.

Are Gun Crimes Charges in PA Defensible?

Yes, you can defend against gun crime charges in Pennsylvania. Work with a gun crimes defense attorney in Pennsylvania to investigate your charges, preserve evidence, and protect your legal rights. However, every case is unique, and the defense you select for your case will impact the outcome.

Common defenses to gun crimes charges like this in PA include:

  • Unconstitutional search or seizure by police
  • Civil rights violations
  • Insufficient evidence
  • Gun was not concealed
  • Lack of constructive possession
  • Case of mistaken identity
  • Did not meet the legal definition of a firearm
  • Other appropriate legal defenses

While the above-referenced list showcases examples of defenses, you do not know what your options are until you hire a lawyer. We can determine what evidence prosecutors have against you if it is possible to get your charges dropped or reduced, and how to mitigate damage to your life and reputation. Start by meeting with an attorney during a free case evaluation to find out if legal representation is right for your case.

Try to Mitigate the Penalty of Carrying a Gun Without a Permit in Pennsylvania

Shuttleworth Law welcomes accused people or their loved ones to contact us for a free case evaluation. It is your opportunity to speak with a Philadelphia gun crimes attorney about your situation and gather our feedback on your next steps. Past and current clients find this meeting extremely helpful in evaluating their situation and how we could help them fight back against false or unproven accusations.

Call Shuttleworth Law for My Free Case Evaluation Now

Call Shuttleworth Law for your Free Case Evaluation at (215) 774-1371 or message us online. We can also arrange for a secure video conference or meet at your preferred location if you are unable to travel to our office.

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