Pennsylvania Firearm Owners Association
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  1. #1
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    North Huntingdon, Pennsylvania
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    Default gun transfer question

    A friend of mine was helping to clean out some of the possessions of his friend's deceased stepfather, (I know, but try to stick with me). In His attic they found a savage model 1907, good bit of surface rust probably not touched in many years but still seemed operational. I Assume ownership goes to his wife, but with a gun that old, they don't know if it has any paperwork, or is in the state's database. Does that affect her ability to sell, or transfer the gun's ownership? If so what steps need to be taken?

  2. #2
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    Malvern, Pennsylvania
    (Chester County)
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    Default Re: gun transfer question

    Quote Originally Posted by BeerBaron View Post
    I Assume ownership goes to his wife, but with a gun that old, they don't know if it has any paperwork, or is in the state's database. Does that affect her ability to sell, or transfer the gun's ownership? If so what steps need to be taken?
    She can still sell/transfer it following all the regular applicable laws regarding the sale/transfer of a pistol in PA. She doesn't need any of the original receipts/paperwork from when it was purchased and it doesn't need to be in the state police sales database before she proceeds with it's disposition.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    Brookville, Pennsylvania
    (Jefferson County)
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    Default Re: gun transfer question

    Ownership goes to the estate by default. If there is a will, it may name who inherits it. If there is no will, an executor may determine who gets it. In absence of a will and an executor, intestate rules determine who inherits what portion of the properties - with I think the spouse getting the lions share, then any blood and legal adoptive kids getting the next portion.

    Long guns have no paperwork. And if there aren't any estate issues it may be transferred to another resident of the same state by simply taking possession and assuming ownership. If there is any cross-state line transfers, both state's laws will apply. Federal law allows for transfers though for bequested firearms(via a will) or following intestate succession(inheritance rights by family). If the receiving person is from another state than the deceased, and isn't named in a will, or doesn't fall under intestate succession rules, it will have to go through a FFL.
    Last edited by knight0334; April 12th, 2010 at 10:59 PM.
    RIP: SFN, 1861, twoeggsup, Lambo, jamesjo, JayBell, 32 Magnum, Pro2A, mrwildroot, dregan, Frenchy, Fragger, ungawa, Mtn Jack, Grapeshot.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: gun transfer question

    Since the Savage 1907 is a handgun, the rules are a little tougher. The transfer to the person who inherits the gun requires no paperwork, even across state lines unless the "receiving" state requires it. Assuming that the wife will inherit it, she can then sell/give it to a child or grandchild who is a PA resident without paperwork. Otherwise the transfer would need to go through an FFL.

    Lots of legal guns in PA are not in the SP database. Some have simply been owned for a long time. Anyone moving to PA can simply bring their guns along with no paperwork. Gun registration in PA is specifically forbidden by state law; the only reason the SP gets away with retaining their "purchase" database is that it's incomplete so the court has ruled that it's not really registration. Weird, huh?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    Brookville, Pennsylvania
    (Jefferson County)
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    Default Re: gun transfer question

    Quote Originally Posted by donm View Post
    Since the Savage 1907 is a handgun, the rules are a little tougher. The transfer to the person who inherits the gun requires no paperwork, even across state lines unless the "receiving" state requires it. Assuming that the wife will inherit it, she can then sell/give it to a child or grandchild who is a PA resident without paperwork. Otherwise the transfer would need to go through an FFL.

    Lots of legal guns in PA are not in the SP database. Some have simply been owned for a long time. Anyone moving to PA can simply bring their guns along with no paperwork. Gun registration in PA is specifically forbidden by state law; the only reason the SP gets away with retaining their "purchase" database is that it's incomplete so the court has ruled that it's not really registration. Weird, huh?
    For PA, this section of law can be of use for handguns. A copy of a death certificate & the will naming you, or a letter from the executor for estate disposal should be proof enough to validate the exemption. However, doing as you stated by going through a FFL will guaranty no issues later.


    18 Pa.C.S. 6115: Loans on, or lending or giving firearms prohibited
    (b) Exception.--
    (2) Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit the transfer of a firearm under 20 Pa.C.S. Ch. 21 (relating to intestate succession) or by bequest if the individual receiving the firearm is not precluded from owning or possessing a firearm under section 6105.
    RIP: SFN, 1861, twoeggsup, Lambo, jamesjo, JayBell, 32 Magnum, Pro2A, mrwildroot, dregan, Frenchy, Fragger, ungawa, Mtn Jack, Grapeshot.

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