PA Non Resident License

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Sep 11, 2005
Leoburg/Fitchminster area
This past week I had the unpleasant task of attending a funeral of a long time friend, 1SG (ret.) Mark D. Kotanchik. Mark was from the same town as my wife in Pennsylvania. Since I was there for a few days, I decided to apply for a PA non-resident LTC. Here is my experience, yours may vary:

Licenses are issued by County Sheriffs in PA. There are 61 counties in that state (which also styles itself as a Commonwealth). PA is also a shall-issue state. If you already possess a NH Non Res (which I do) you are already good to go in PA. I decided to apply anyway, since I was there.

It was a simple process. I went to the Northumberland County Courthouse in Sunbury, PA (about 12 miles from my wife's hometown) and went to the Sheriff's Office there. There was a very nice uniformed clerk who guided me through the process. I had to show my MA LTC and my MA Driver's License and she made copies. She also made a copy of my NH non-res although it wasn't necessary (She said it wouldn't hurt). I then filled out a simple form. There were options as to why I wanted the license. She instructed me to put down self-defense. I also had to supply two references. In my case because I have extended family there I had local references but I also had out of state references as well. She instructed me to use the local references (which were not checked). While I was filling out the form, she made a phone call apparently to initiate a background check. This was completed concurrently when I completed the form. I asked her what the fee was and she said: "Twenty dollars, it used to be thirty dollars but we lowered the fee." She then proceeded to take my picture. I said "Will you mail it to me?" and she said "I am going to issue it to you right now." So for twenty bucks I got a PA non-res license plus she gave me a Sheriff's Dept refrigerator magnet as well. The whole process went very smoothly and she was extremely courteous. I walked out of the Court House with my license.

Checking with Handgun Law I checked to see where the PA non-res is recognized. If you have a NH non-Res and a MA LTC you do pick up a few states with a PA non-Res: VA,WV, NC,MT, (or four states for five bucks each [wink]).

Between my MA LTC, my NH LTC and PA LTC I can carry in the following states: MA, PA, NH, VT, IN, KY,TN, IA,MO, OK,TX, UT,AZ,ID, MT,MI,ND, SD,WY, GA, VA, MS, NC, AL, LA, AR,AK, and WV. This is not too shabby.

I am not saying that you should not get a Utah non-res and you can no longer get a PA non-res in the mail. You must apply in person. Since there are 61 different sheriff's offices in PA, your experience may be different than mine and it is true that most of the states are covered by MA and NH, but for twenty bucks I don't think you can go wrong. [smile]

It was nice doing business in a "shall-issue' state. One forgets that there are still places in the USA where getting a LTC is as normal as breathing. (Whether one should be required to have a license for CCW is another topic for another time [thinking]).
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