A common question for those who have recently moved to the Commonwealth or are new hunters is “Can I carry a firearm for self-defense while hunting?” The answer is yes!
Section 2525 of the PA Game code provides that: “It is lawful for…any person who possesses a valid license to carry a firearm…to be in possession of a loaded or unloaded firearm while engaged in any activity regulated by this title.”
Do not confuse this with being allowed to hunt game with that firearm or ammunition that is otherwise not permitted by the code. It is only for your own personal protection.
Have any questions about the game laws in Pennsylvania or have had an interaction with the PA Game Commission this season and want legal representation? Give us a call anytime, toll free, at 888-313-0416.
Published by Adam Kraut, Esq.
Adam Kraut was born and raised in Chester County, PA. Active in scouting since kindergarten, Adam achieved the rank of Eagle Scout in 2004. After graduating high school, Adam attended SUNY Binghamton where he graduated in 2009 with a major in Political Science concentrating in politics and law. After taking a year away from academics, Adam attended Widener Law School at night while maintaining a day job and graduated in 2014.
Adam is an avid firearms enthusiast, whose love for firearms began in Boy Scouts at Camp Horseshoe. Adam’s experience in the firearms industry as the general manager of a Federal Firearms Licensee, who is a Class 3 dealer, gives him a working knowledge of the challenges the industry, licensees and individuals face on a daily basis. Having worked with industry leaders, individual licensees and individuals both from behind the counter and in a legal context, Adam is in a unique position to give advice with insight others may not have.
In addition to being active in the courtroom, Adam is politically active to ensure that the Second Amendment rights of future generations continue to be protected. He is the host of The Gun Collective‘s show, The Legal Brief, where he dispels the various legal myths and misinformation in the gun world. In his free time, Adam volunteers with his old Boy Scout troop, cranks out ammunition behind the reloading press, can be found at the range training, enjoys hiking through the woods and cares for his small pack of dogs.
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2 thoughts on “Can I carry a firearm for self-defense while hunting?”
Page 29 of the pa hunters digest under “spring gobbler” tells a different story…
I went looking for that page in the digest last night. I did find what you are referring to. However, that doesn’t change the fact that the law says if you are a LEO or have a valid LTCF that you may possess a firearm while engaged in any activity regulated by the title.
I called over to the PA Game Commission this morning to confirm that they weren’t implying an individual couldn’t possess a firearm pursuant to having a valid LTCF and they confirmed that was not the case.
I’ve included a link to the relevant code. It specifically contains the provision below.
(1) This section shall supersede any prohibition on the
possession of a firearm or ammunition contained in any other
provision of this title.
So you absolutely MAY carry a firearm if you have a valid LTCF.