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Old December 24, 2011, 10:05 PM   #1
Red Dog
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What is meant by registering your firearm?

I was asked if my firearm was legally registered. Not really sure how to answer that.
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Old December 24, 2011, 10:09 PM   #2
JohnKSa
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It depends on the state where you live. In most states there is no requirement for registration.
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Old December 24, 2011, 10:19 PM   #3
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And in some states where there is no requirement for registration of handguns per se there is a permit or sales approval process that amounts to the same thing, since the state authorities keep a record of the gun and the person to whom it was sold. In MD, for example, both handguns and guns defined as "assault rifles" are in fact registered at purchase.

That question, incidentally, is often asked by naive persons ignorant of both guns and the law. They may have heard or read that guns should be or must be "registered" and they sometimes believe that anyone with an unregistered gun is a dangerous criminal or plans to become one. It is often difficult to explain to those folks about the law or lack of it on the subject. Similar beliefs are that machineguns or suppressors ("silencers") are illegal and used only by criminals. Again, explanations are needed, though surprisingly often they are useless - the person simply believes what he or she believes and there is no way to change that person's mind.

Jim
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Old December 24, 2011, 10:25 PM   #4
Jim Watson
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Who asked you?
A lot of people watch too much tv and get funny ideas and get nosy.
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Old December 24, 2011, 11:07 PM   #5
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CSI and other police procedurals have been the culprit for spreading the myth of registering a gun. Some are worse than others. NCIS is one of the better ones about real world scenarios, but I've caught a lot of mistakes on there as well. There is no magic computer that can track guns down, only a few states have registration. It is illegal on a Federal level.
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Old December 25, 2011, 12:08 AM   #6
ak2323
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Store bought guns can usually be traced starting with the manufacturer through to the store to the customer. No real need for 'registration'.
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Old December 25, 2011, 01:28 AM   #7
shortwave
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Quote:
No real need for 'registration.
While you and I agree there's no real need, there are a few states that require it.
IIRC, Michigan may be one of those states.

Quote:
What is meant by registering...
Note: I think this is how 'must register' states work, someone more knowledgeable will chime in and correct me if I'm wrong.

If you buy your gun at a gun store, your gun will be registered with 'big brother' automatically where ever you reside. But say you purchase a gun from an individual as a private sale, if you live in a must register state, once the transaction is made, you have to register the gun and you as the new owner with the PD of that state.

BG's don't care about the law, so it's just a way for 'Big Bro' to keep track of where the 'goods guys' guns are at.

Last edited by shortwave; December 25, 2011 at 01:46 AM.
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Old December 25, 2011, 03:19 AM   #8
r_magill
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I live in PA where PA law prohibits a gun registry. If you live in a similar state, you could respond with the facts (and maybe a pamphlet or something) and explain to them that in your state it is not required.

The other option would be to tell the person that it is a legally owned firearm and all of the paperwork for it is up to date. However, I think the first option is better because it educates the public and helps correct the miss-conception that most firearms are in some registry somewhere.
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Old December 25, 2011, 03:23 AM   #9
SHNOMIDO
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sometimes here in IL I'll see signs on the windows of currency exchanges that say something like "Handgun registration here! guaranteed lowest price!"

AFAIK, theres no weapon registration in IL. Maybe in Chicago, but these currency exchanges were far out of the way of Chicago.

weird.

Today on Christmas I showed a family member a pistol of mine hes never seen. He said Is it registered?

I said uhh...its legal if thats what you mean...

Hes not a firearms enthusiast/hobbyist. Not pro or anti, just a neutral walk down the street guy. I dont know where this stuff comes from.
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Old December 25, 2011, 07:21 AM   #10
Ben Towe
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If you buy your gun at a gun store, your gun will be registered with 'big brother automatically where ever you reside.
Not true. This is a common misconception. There is no federal level registration. End of story.
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Old December 25, 2011, 07:36 AM   #11
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When you buy a gun where a background check is required, like here in Texas, a call is made to the FBI to check you out. If you really believe they don't keep records I think you are fooling yourself. No, the gun isn't "registered" but it is on record somewhere.
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Old December 25, 2011, 08:26 AM   #12
mrgoodwrench76
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Quote:
There is no federal level registration. End of story.
'

And there's no area 51 ......... I love when people end their statements with things such as 'period' or 'end of story' to try and make their statements seem more definate or bold.

I think you would be very nieve to believe that 'big brother' dosn't keep track of names that get a background check with every set of serial numbers next to it but by all means, dont let me burst the bubble your living in.

It should be our duty to set uneducated people straight to reduce the amount of misconception about the firearms community.
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Old December 25, 2011, 08:48 AM   #13
tubeshooter
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I happen to live in the only county in my state that technically requires you to register handguns.

I have never, ever heard of anyone being given a hard time about this in a justified shooting - even remotely justified. I am sure there are many who simply choose not to comply with the registration.



So it depends on your state/local laws, basically.
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Old December 25, 2011, 10:02 AM   #14
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I have never, ever heard of anyone being given a hard time about this in a justified shooting - even remotely justified. I am sure there are many who simply choose not to comply with the registration.
To each there own. IMHO, there is too much at stake to run afoul of one's local firearms laws. Failing to license your dog is one thing, violating firearms laws is another matter entirely. All it takes is one person in the system to make you and/or yours an example to others.
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Old December 25, 2011, 10:12 AM   #15
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Not true. This is a common misconception. There is no federal level registration. End of story.
Then please explain the reasons for:

The forms to BATF and all records mandated by the Feds. for my LGS to keep, when I purchase a gun?
Which includes background check(all info big bro's got on me), type of gun, serial number,date of purchase, etc. etc. that are kept as a matter of record for infinity.

In this country, we make up or change words/terms to try and disguise things for what they really are to try and be more politically correct and socially acceptable, such as the way we've changed the term 'illegal immigrant'. But make no doubt about it, we do have Fed. level registration however it's termed.
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Old December 25, 2011, 10:40 AM   #16
357 Python
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I don't know what state you are in but in Virginia the only firearm that is required to be registered by state law is a machine gun. Handguns, shotguns, and rifles do not need to be registered not even if they are sold by private parties instead of FFL's.
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Old December 25, 2011, 10:45 AM   #17
Mike38
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arch308 wrote: If you really believe they don't keep records I think you are fooling yourself. No, the gun isn't "registered" but it is on record somewhere.
I guaranty you, records of new firearm purchases are being held by the Federal Government.

Long story short, while applying for a C&R License, I had a few conversations with an agent from the FBI. This agent was able to read me a list of all firearms I have bought from a FFL dealer, back at least 20 years.

Don’t fool yourself folks, there is a list out there…..
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Old December 25, 2011, 11:00 AM   #18
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To each there own. IMHO, there is too much at stake to run afoul of one's local firearms laws. Failing to license your dog is one thing, violating firearms laws is another matter entirely. All it takes is one person in the system to make you and/or yours an example to others.
I was not advocating breaking any laws of any kind with my post. I want to make that perfectly clear, just in case anybody got that out of what I said.
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Old December 25, 2011, 11:04 AM   #19
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Hollywood and the media is the culprit of spreading misinformation, i think. Movies show mostly police and criminals as gun carriers and users, and given how the average folk is highly influenced by TV and Hollywood, thats how they think things are in real life.

Same for third world countries, they cannot grasp the concept that a regular citizen can legally have a handgun, let alone a rifle.
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Old December 25, 2011, 11:06 AM   #20
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"[I guaranty you, records of new firearm purchases are being held by the Federal Government.
Long story short, while applying for a C&R License, I had a few conversations with an agent from the FBI. This agent was able to read me a list of all firearms I have bought from a FFL dealer, back at least 20 years.
Don’t fool yourself folks, there is a list out there]"

YEA & How long you lived in Ill.??
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Old December 25, 2011, 11:07 AM   #21
overkill0084
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Quote:
I was not advocating breaking any laws of any kind with my post. I want to make that perfectly clear, just in case anybody got that out of what I said.
Sorry, if I came across as directing that at you. That was not my intent. It was intended as a general statement on the wisdom of disregarding firearms laws.
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Old December 25, 2011, 11:09 AM   #22
BOBA FETT
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i live in mass and you have to register firearms...
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Old December 25, 2011, 11:14 AM   #23
tubeshooter
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Sorry, if I came across as directing that at you. That was not my intent. It was intended as a general statement on the wisdom of disregarding firearms laws.
No problem!


It's a disclaimer that needs to be there, anyway.
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Old December 25, 2011, 01:24 PM   #24
brickeyee
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Store bought guns can usually be traced starting with the manufacturer through to the store to the customer. No real need for 'registration'.
Only if they already have the gun usually.
They need the make and serial number to search from the manufacturer to the first point of retail sale. And in may states that allow private sales the record ends a the first point of retail sale.
Even if the gun went through another FFL again, there is no way to tie it back to the original purchaser.

Quote:
I think you would be very nieve to believe that 'big brother' dosn't keep track of names that get a background check with every set of serial numbers next to it but by all means, dont let me burst the bubble your living in.
Pretty tough since it in many states the serial number is never reported as part of the NICS check, or the make, caliber, or any thing much about the gun beyond long gun or handgun.

Quote:
The forms to BATF and all records mandated by the Feds.
4473s oly have to h\be held by theFFL for 20 years ad can then be destroyed.
If the FFL terminates ther license any 4473s less than 20 years old go to BATFE to sit in file cabinets.
The FFKs bound book goes to BATFE when they end their licernse, to live in filing cabinets in WV.
Quote:
I guaranty you, records of new firearm purchases are being held by the Federal Government.
Only if they are machine guns.
BATFE is prohibited every year from using any of their budget allocation to even try an computerize the old FFL records they have.
They live in file cabinets, ad must be searched by hand.

There is no way to take a persons name and search all the records.

Some states require registration, and others have been caught keeping background check data, but it is pretty far from a federal undertaking.
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Old December 25, 2011, 03:05 PM   #25
ak2323
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Not true. This is a common misconception. There is no federal level registration. End of story.
Read my post. It only applies to store bought guns. They are traceable, it is a pain in the a** but it doesn't require 'registration'.

As for guns bought privately, that is a different matter. They are still traceable in many instances.

It depends on how much effort goes into it.

A properly cleaned drop gun is usually untraceable.
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