Can Felons own a Pellet Gun?

What is a Pellet Gun?

Pellet guns are air guns that can shoot pellets through the use of pressurized air or CO2.The speed of bullet from a pellet gun is much slower than traditional gun. Pellet guns are often used for hunting small games.

Advantages of using a Pellet gun for hunting

  • Pellet guns are comparatively easy to use. So, an expert as well as a beginner can use them.
  • Pellet guns are quieter than Rifles. So, they won’t scare away the game.
  • Pellet guns cock and fire easily so they don’t need much force or muscle power.
  • Pellet guns hit the targets accurately so they are suitable for hunting.

We often visualize a BB gun when we hear about Pellet guns. Although identical, they are not exactly the same. They use different ammunition and have different barrel type. Pellet guns use lead-based projectiles while BB guns use steel ones.

Due to rifled barrels, pellet guns have higher velocity compared to BB guns that have smooth barrels. Pellet guns are used to hunt small games like squirrels and rabbits.

Are Pellet Guns considered Firearms?

A convicted felon is not permitted to own or possess a firearm under the Gun Control Act. If found doing so, he/she can be charged with Class 6 Felony.

Pellet guns are not considered as firearm technically as they use air pressure to shoot out pellets unlike traditional guns that burn powder. So, rules regarding owning and using pellet guns are different than those for traditional guns.

Requirements to Own a Pellet Gun

There is no Federal law regarding ownership or possession of pellet guns. Laws that regulate the use of pellet guns exist at state level but almost half the states do not have any concrete laws in this regard.

Since pellet guns are not firearms, laws regarding them are different from the traditional guns. You do not need to have a permit for a pellet gun.

In some states, you have to be at least 18 years of age to legally buy a pellet gun while the minimum age criteria is 21 years in some other states.

It is important to know about the state and regional laws before you decide to buy a pellet gun. You should also consult your attorney to check if having a pellet gun can land you in trouble.

Hunting with a Pellet Gun

Even if you are legally permitted to buy a pellet gun, it does not mean that you can hunt with it. You need a hunting license to be able to legally hunt. Hunting laws and regulations vary by state and they do change rapidly.

So, it is important that you aware of the current laws. It is better to err on the side of caution and consult a lawyer.

What does that mean for Felons?

It is better to consult your lawyer and speak to the local authorities before buying a pellet gun since you might be unknowingly violating local laws and this can result in your arrest.