View Full Version : FFL 03 Question

Remington 51
June 27, 2012, 09:25 PM
I am a new FFL C & R licensee. I have a question from you more experienced licensees.

There is a C & R listed handgun that I am interested in that is owned by a private individual in an adjacent and nearby State.

He is not a C & R licensee. I am.

Is it legal, under the terms and conditions of my license, for me to purchase the firearm, get a receipt and to then log it appropriately in my bound book? If that is the case, can someone point me to a citation?

Or is it the case that I can ONLY buy from an regular FFL or C&R licensee? If that is the case, can someone point me to a citation?

Thanks guys.

June 27, 2012, 09:39 PM
Yes, it is perfectly legal - such transactions are, after all, precisely what the 03 FFL is intended to facilitate.

There is no requirement that the shipper of the gun be an FFL holder - only the receiver.

No, I cannot point you to a "citation" saying that this is legal. Laws don't specify what is permitted, they specify what is prohibited/forbidden, or also sometimes outline certain courses of action to be followed in certain situations. But either way, the law says what one must or must not do, not what one may do.

James K
June 28, 2012, 10:16 AM
The law allows a seller to ship a handgun to a LICENSEE in another state. You are a licensee. But since it is a handgun he cannot mail it; he must ship via UPS/FEDEX or other common carrier. If he is close, you can go to his residence or place of business and pick it up, or he can bring it to your residence or place of business if state/local law allows him to transport the gun in both states.


June 28, 2012, 11:42 AM
From the BATFE website, FAQ's.
Q: To whom may an unlicensed person transfer firearms under the GCA?

A person may sell a firearm to an unlicensed resident of his State, if he does not know or have reasonable cause to believe the person is prohibited from receiving or possessing firearms under Federal law. A person may loan or rent a firearm to a resident of any State for temporary use for lawful sporting purposes, if he does not know or have reasonable cause to believe the person is prohibited from receiving or possessing firearms under Federal law. A person may sell or transfer a firearm to a licensee in any State. However, a firearm other than a curio or relic may not be transferred interstate to a licensed collector.
[18 U.S.C. 922(a)(3) and (5), 922(d), 27 CFR 478.29 and 478.30]

As long as the gun is C&R, just send the seller a signed copy of your license and all is well.

June 28, 2012, 11:58 AM
As long as the gun is C&R, just send the seller a signed copy of your license and all is well.
...only if the seller is also a FFL. A non-licensed individual presumably won't have any use for a copy of your FFL!

AFAIK a C&R licensee isn't required to send a signed copy of his/her FFL to a non-licensed seller, and the seller isn't required to retain it, but the seller may want to keep a copy for verification purposes. AFAIK an email scan or fax should be OK.

In order to log the purchase in your bound book, the following documentation information is needed:

If the seller is a FFL, you need their official name and FFL number.

A non-licensed private individual needs to provide a name and address. There is no federal requirement for you to retain copies of documentation proving the veracity of the person's information; however, for CYA purposes, I like to see a document. Due to the ease of producing false photocopied documents with photo-editing software, I prefer not to engage in sight-unseen C&R purchases unless the non-licensed seller is personally known to me, or a friend or relative can vouch for the seller.

June 28, 2012, 01:48 PM
The seller, either licensed or unlicensed, does need a copy of the buyers FFl in order to verify that the buyer has a current and valid license. Otherwise, the seller could find himself in a world of trouble because he shipped a handgun to Joe Shmoe who lied when he said "Sure, I've got a license, you can trust me."

June 28, 2012, 02:58 PM
^^^ OK, I realize in 20/20 hindsight that my wording was misleading. I've corrected the post so it says what I MEANT to write. :o

June 28, 2012, 03:18 PM
OK, got a citation!


Scroll down to the bottom of Pg2 and top of Pg3:
Section 27 CFR 478.94 requires licensees to verify the identity and licensed status prior to transferring a firearm to a person who states they are licensed to receive it. “Verification shall be established by the transferee furnishing to the transferor a certified copy of the transferee’s license and by such other means as the transferor deems necessary…” This section does not apply to transfers between a licensee and an unlicensed person.
(emphasis mine)

27 CFR 478.30 governs out-of-state disposition of firearms by nonlicensees, but this section does not address disposition from a nonlicensee to a licensee, only to unlicensed persons or corporate entities.

IOW it may be stupid for a nonlicensee to sell a firearm to an out-of-state FFL without verifying their license status, but it's not illegal, at least under federal law. :rolleyes:

James K
June 28, 2012, 05:59 PM
I know folks like to play with words and look for ways to get around the law, but for myself, if I am going to ship a firearm to a buyer in another state, I am darned well going to want a copy of his FFL. Somehow I doubt "...but X said on the web site that it was legal..." will cut much ice in federal court.


June 29, 2012, 12:10 AM
It won't cut any ice in court, or with the BATF, at all. Do provide a copy of your license to the seller, and obtain a signed receipt for the transaction. Keep one copy of the receipt, and give another to the seller. That should cover both of you. Also ensure the gun is a C&R, there is a list of eligible guns. If it is not on the list, go through an FFL01 for the transfer.

June 29, 2012, 01:21 AM
Also ensure the gun is a C&R, there is a list of eligible guns.

As a general rule, ATF's list was started to exempt guns that are less than 50 years old. Any 50 year old or older gun is automatically considered a C&R. (of course, any gun made in or before 1898 is completely exempt from Federal law, and needs no license of any kind; State laws may dictate otherwise.)

And, while I can't remember exactly where I "heard" (or read) this, I believe the transferor has the right to demand a copy of the recipient's license. Perhaps some of you may know where this is spelled out (or not).

James K
June 29, 2012, 12:31 PM
Wrong order, gyvel. The list was started first and intended to list the ONLY firearms granted C&R status. ATTD/ATD/ATF/BATF/BATFE did NOT initiate the list or put anything on it themselves. Someone, collector, dealer, or whatever, had to write them with a descripiton of the gun or guns that they wanted listed as a C&R. Often the request would come from an individual collector and address a specific gun. That is where the "XYZ Co., Model 999, Serial # 123456" listings come from.

In other cases a dealer or importer with a number of guns would make the application. That is where those "XYZ Co., 9mm Model 999 pistols, Slobovian contract, with picture of King Blotz engraved on slide" items come from.

Each applicant had to show that the gun(s) in question was odd, different from other guns of the same model, and that its main value was as a curio or relic, not as a gun. If the ATTD, etc., agreed, the gun or guns was put on the list.

Later the law gave the agency more leeway and they saved themselves a lot of time and trouble by putting in place the 50 year rule. They still have to follow the original procedure for later guns, and still accept applications. They still do NOT put guns on the list on their own initiative.