When can I lose my right to own a gun?

If you are like many Pennsylvania residents, your Second Amendment right to bear arms is very dear to you. If you are like most gun owners, you are a good person who possesses, stores and uses his or her guns in a highly responsible manner. Even a good person, however, can make a mistake and lose his or her right to own a gun.

Section 6105 of the Pennsylvania Code lists a number of ways in which you could lose your right to possess a gun as well as to use, sell, transfer or manufacture one, including the following:

  • You were convicted of a crime under Pennsylvania’s Controlled Substance, Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act
  • You were convicted of three or more DUI offenses within five years
  • You are in the United States illegally
  • You have an outstanding protection from abuse order against you
  • You were adjudged incompetent or committed involuntarily to a mental institution
  • You were adjudged delinquent as a juvenile

Criminal convictions resulting in loss of gun rights

You also could lose your right to possess and own a gun if you were convicted of committing 38 other enumerated crimes, including the following:

  • Murder
  • Rape
  • Kidnapping
  • Voluntary or involuntary manslaughter
  • Aggravated or indecent assault
  • Burglary or robbery

Such convictions and/or adjudications are not limited to those you receive in Pennsylvania. They apply to all such convictions, both federal and state, wherever they occurred.

If you lose your right to possess a gun but do so anyway and are convicted of this felony, you could serve a substantial prison sentence. This is general information only and is not intended to provide legal advice.

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