Peifer Co-Sponsors Castle Doctrine Legislation

Legislation reinforcing a person’s right to defend himself or herself when attacked has been approved by the state House, according to Rep. Mike Peifer (R-Monroe/Wayne/Pike), a co-sponsor of the bill.

“This right to self protection is the foundation of the Second Amendment and of House Bill 40, which I was proud to co-sponsor and vote for this week,” said Peifer.  “A person who is being attacked at their home, in their car or at work should have a right to defend himself or herself with impunity.”

If a person has a reasonable belief that death, serious bodily injury, kidnapping or sexual assault is going to occur, House Bill 40 creates a presumption in law that a person fending off an attacker is entitled to use deadly force to protect his or her life and those of his or her family and others. 
The presumption would not apply if the person entering a home was:  

  • Another resident of the home.
  • A law enforcement officer.
  • A parent, grandparent or other guardian removing a child from the home or vehicle.  

House Bill 40 essentially eliminates an individual’s duty to retreat before using lethal force.  In addition, the legislation also offers specific protection against civil liability for the lawful use of force in self-defense.

“Law-abiding citizens have the right to defend themselves and their families against threatening criminal behavior,” said Peifer.  “If that means deadly force must be used, that is unfortunate, but people defending themselves should not have to face legal action for protecting their life or the lives of their loved ones.”

The bill now goes to the Senate for consideration. 

Rep. Mike Peifer
139th District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

(570) 253-5533
(717) 783-2037
Contact: Todd Abele
(717) 783-3957
Member Site:
Caucus Site:

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