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Pennsylvania Firearm Owners Association

18 Pa.C.S. 6111.1: Pennsylvania State Police

(a) Administration.--The Pennsylvania State Police shall have the responsibility to administer the provisions of this chapter.
(b) Duty of Pennsylvania State Police.--
  (1) Upon receipt of a request for a criminal history, juvenile delinquency history and mental health record check of the potential purchaser or transferee, the Pennsylvania State Police shall immediately during the licensee's call or by return call forthwith:
    (i) review the Pennsylvania State Police criminal history and fingerprint records to determine if the potential purchaser or transferee is prohibited from receipt or possession of a firearm under Federal or State law;
    (ii) review the juvenile delinquency and mental health records of the Pennsylvania State Police to determine whether the potential purchaser or transferee is prohibited from receipt or possession of a firearm under Federal or State law; and
    (iii) inform the licensee making the inquiry either:
      (A) that the potential purchase or transfer is prohibited; or
      (B) provide the licensee with a unique approval number.
  (2) In the event of electronic failure, scheduled computer downtime or similar event beyond the control of the Pennsylvania State Police, the Pennsylvania State Police shall immediately notify the requesting licensee of the reason for and estimated length of the delay. If the failure or event lasts for a period exceeding 48 hours, the dealer shall not be subject to any penalty for completing a transaction absent the completion of an instantaneous records check for the remainder of the failure or similar event, but the dealer shall obtain a completed application/record of sale following the provisions of section 6111(b)(1) and (1.1) (relating to sale or transfer of firearms) as if an instantaneous records check has not been established for any sale or transfer of a firearm for the purpose of a subsequent background check.
  (3) The Pennsylvania State Police shall fully comply, execute and enforce the directives of this section as follows:
    (i) The instantaneous background check for firearms as defined in section 6102 (relating to definitions) shall begin on July 1, 1998.
    (ii) The instantaneous background check for firearms that exceed the barrel lengths set forth in section 6102 shall begin on the later of:
      (A) the date of publication of the notice under section 6111(a)(2); or
      (B) December 31, 1998.
  (4) The Pennsylvania State Police and any local law enforcement agency shall make all reasonable efforts to determine the lawful owner of any firearm confiscated or recovered by the Pennsylvania State Police or any local law enforcement agency and return said firearm to its lawful owner if the owner is not otherwise prohibited from possessing the firearm. When a court of law has determined that the Pennsylvania State Police or any local law enforcement agency have failed to exercise the duty under this subsection, reasonable attorney fees shall be awarded to any lawful owner of said firearm who has sought judicial enforcement of this subsection.
(c) Establish a telephone number.--The Pennsylvania State Police shall establish a telephone number which shall be operational seven days a week between the hours of 8 a.m. and 10 p.m. local time for purposes of responding to inquiries as described in this section from licensed manufacturers, licensed importers and licensed dealers. The Pennsylvania State Police shall employ and train such personnel as are necessary to administer expeditiously the provisions of this section.
(d) Distribution.--The Pennsylvania State Police shall provide, without charge, summaries of uniform firearm laws and firearm safety brochures pursuant to section 6125 (relating to distribution of uniform firearm laws and firearm safety brochures).
(e) Challenge to records.--
  (1) Any person who is denied the right to receive, sell, transfer, possess, carry, manufacture or purchase a firearm as a result of the procedures established by this section may challenge the accuracy of that person's criminal history, juvenile delinquency history or mental health record pursuant to a denial by the instantaneous records check by submitting a challenge to the Pennsylvania State Police within 30 days from the date of the denial.
  (2) The Pennsylvania State Police shall conduct a review of the accuracy of the information forming the basis for the denial and shall have the burden of proving the accuracy of the record. Within 20 days after receiving a challenge, the Pennsylvania State Police shall notify the challenger of the basis for the denial, including, but not limited to, the jurisdiction and docket number of any relevant court decision and provide the challenger an opportunity to provide additional information for the purposes of the review. The Pennsylvania State Police shall communicate its final decision to the challenger within 60 days of the receipt of the challenge. The decision of the Pennsylvania State Police shall include all information which formed a basis for the decision.
  (3) If the challenge is ruled invalid, the person shall have the right to appeal the decision to the Attorney General within 30 days of the decision. The Attorney General shall conduct a hearing de novo in accordance with the Administrative Agency Law. The burden of proof shall be upon the Commonwealth.
  (4) The decision of the Attorney General may be appealed to the Commonwealth Court by an aggrieved party.
(f) Notification of mental health adjudication, treatment, commitment, drug use or addiction.--
  (1) Notwithstanding any statute to the contrary, judges of the courts of common pleas shall notify the Pennsylvania State Police, on a form developed by the Pennsylvania State Police, of:
    (i) the identity of any individual who has been adjudicated as an incompetent or as a mental defective or who has been involuntarily committed to a mental institution under the act of July 9, 1976 (P.L. 817, No. 143), [FN1] known as the Mental Health Procedures Act, or who has been involuntarily treated as described in section 6105(c)(4) (relating to persons not to possess, use, manufacture, control, sell or transfer firearms) or as described in 18 U.S.C. 922(g)(4) (relating to unlawful acts) and its implementing Federal regulations; and
    (ii) any finding of fact or court order related to any person described in 18 U.S.C. 922(g)(3).
  (2) The notification shall be transmitted by the judge to the Pennsylvania State Police within seven days of the adjudication, commitment or treatment.
  (3) Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, the Pennsylvania State Police may disclose, electronically or otherwise, to the United States Attorney General or a designee, any record relevant to a determination of whether a person is disqualified from possessing or receiving a firearm under 18 U.S.C. 922 (g)(3) or (4) or an applicable state statute.
(g) Review by court.--
  (1) Upon receipt of a copy of the order of a court of competent jurisdiction which vacates a final order or an involuntary certification issued by a mental health review officer, the Pennsylvania State Police shall expunge all records of the involuntary treatment received under subsection (f).
  (2) A person who is involuntarily committed pursuant to section 302 of the Mental Health Procedures Act may petition the court to review the sufficiency of the evidence upon which the commitment was based. If the court determines that the evidence upon which the involuntary commitment was based was insufficient, the court shall order that the record of the commitment submitted to the Pennsylvania State Police be expunged. A petition filed under this subsection shall toll the 60-day period set forth under section 6105(a)(2).
  (3) The Pennsylvania State Police shall expunge all records of an involuntary commitment of an individual who is discharged from a mental health facility based upon the initial review by the physician occurring within two hours of arrival under section 302(b) of the Mental Health Procedures Act and the physician's determination that no severe mental disability existed pursuant to section 302(b) of the Mental Health Procedures Act. The physician shall provide signed confirmation of the determination of the lack of severe mental disability following the initial examination under section 302(b) of the Mental Health Procedures Act to the Pennsylvania State Police.
(h) Juvenile registry.--
  (1) The contents of law enforcement records and files compiled under 42 Pa.C.S. 6308 (relating to law enforcement records) concerning a child shall not be disclosed to the public except if the child is 14 years of age or older at the time of the alleged conduct and if any of the following apply:
    (i) The child has been adjudicated delinquent by a court as a result of an act or acts which constitute any offense enumerated in section 6105.
    (ii) A petition alleging delinquency has been filed by a law enforcement agency alleging that the child has committed an act or acts which constitute an offense enumerated in section 6105 and the child previously has been adjudicated delinquent by a court as a result of an act or acts which included the elements of one of such crimes.
  (2) Notwithstanding any provision of this subsection, the contents of law enforcement records and files concerning any child adjudicated delinquent for the commission of any criminal activity described in paragraph (1) shall be recorded in the registry of the Pennsylvania State Police for the limited purposes of this chapter.
(i) Reports.--The Pennsylvania State Police shall annually compile and report to the General Assembly, on or before December 31, the following information for the previous year:
  (1) number of firearm sales, including the types of firearms;
  (2) number of applications for sale of firearms denied, number of challenges of the denials, and number of final reversals of initial denials;
  (3) summary of the Pennsylvania State Police's activities, including the average time taken to complete a criminal history, juvenile delinquency history or mental health record check; and
  (4) uniform crime reporting statistics compiled by the Pennsylvania State Police based on the National Incident-based Reporting System.
(j) Other criminal information.--The Pennsylvania State Police shall be authorized to obtain any crime statistics necessary for the purposes of this chapter from any local law enforcement agency.
(j.1) Delinquency and mental health records.--The provisions of this section which relate to juvenile delinquency and mental health records checks shall be applicable when the data has been made available to the Pennsylvania State Police but not later than October 11, 1999.
(j.2) Records check.--The provisions of this section which relate to the instantaneous records check conducted by telephone shall be applicable 30 days following notice by the Pennsylvania State Police pursuant to section 6111 (a)(2).
(j.3) Immunity.--The Pennsylvania State Police and its employees shall be immune from actions for damages for the use of a firearm by a purchaser or for the unlawful transfer of a firearm by a dealer unless the act of the Pennsylvania State Police or its employees constitutes a crime, actual fraud, actual malice or willful misconduct.
(k) Definitions.--As used in this section, the following words and phrases shall have the meanings given to them in this subsection:
  "Firearm." The term shall have the same meaning as in section 6111.2 (relating to firearm sales surcharge).
  "Physician." Any licensed psychiatrist or clinical psychologist as defined in the act of July 9, 1976 (P.L. 817, No. 143), known as the Mental Health Procedures Act.