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Machine Gun Legality Map

Machine Gun Legality Map

DARK GREEN => Not Allowed        LIGHT GREEN => Allowed

Nothing else in the gun business is as regulated as Title II arms like machine guns, suppressors and short-barreled guns. A Class III machine gun dealer must know federal and state firearms regulations inside and out, along with knowing appraisal values and the players in the trade. Midwest Tactical Inc. is staffed with NFA firearm specialists who deal with trusts, estates, National Firearms Act (NFA) transfers and Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms (ATF) regulations.

Silencer Legality Map

Silencer Legality Map
Most people don't realize suppressors are completely legal to own under federal law. Some state do however prohibit private ownership of silencers. Silencers are legal for private ownership in these states: AL, AR, AK, AZ, CO, CT, FL, GA, ID, IN, KY, LA, ME, MD, MS, MT, NE, NV, NH, NM, NC, OH, OK, OR, PA, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, WA, WI, and WY.

Silencers are regulated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms. The procedure required to purchase a silencer seems like a hassle. However, the process and paperwork is less trouble than getting a loan from the bank.

There are some people restricted from owning silencers by federal law. These include those under 21, non US residents, and those with felony records. All purchases of silencers must be handled by a Class 3 dealer in the state of the purchaser. We can connect you with a class 3 dealer in your area. It will be the Class 3 in your area who will handle the transfer of the silencer. There is generally a small fee attached to the transfer by the dealer. The dealer will provide you with duplicate ATF Form 4's and fingerprint cards. Your photo must be affixed to the backside of the form. There is a place on the form where a Chief Law-Enforcement officer (CLEO) must sign. This is to attest that the you do not have a criminal record and are not wanted. In most cases this signature is attained from the sheriff. The fingerprint cards will also be completed and signed by the CLEO. Your local class 3 will walk you through this process which can generally be done in the sheriffs office within an hour or two. The completed form 4 must be sent to the address on the form with a check or money order for $200.00. The $200.00 is a one time fee charged for transfer of the silencer. The fee is called a transfer fee and is only due upon a change in ownership of the silencer.

After the paper work reaches the ATF it will take at least 30 days to receive the approved paperwork. ATF prohibits your possession of the silencer before the paperwork is approved. A copy of the approved paperwork must accompany the silencer at all times (the original should be stored in a safe deposit box).

Buying an NFA firearm

NFA firearms are divided into seven types - Machine guns, silencers, Short barrel shotguns, short barrel rifles, AOW's and Destructive devices. For all practical purposes these can all be considered pretty much the same in the way the transfer process is handled by ATF. These types of weapons are legal in most states (see our legality map) and are easier to acquire than many people realize. In fact if you can buy a handgun at your local gun store ATF will most likely approve your transfer of an NFA weapon. We have had very few customers denied transfer of an NFA weapon. There tends to be a lot of confusion about how the NFA transfer process works. The following is a brief description of the process, designed to help our potential buyers understand what is required.

First it is helpful to understand an NFA weapon is a registered weapon. These can be owned by individuals, Corps or trusts. The NFA branch of ATF must approve transfer of these types of weapons from one individual or entity to the next prior to transfer of actual physical possession. You can think of an approved transfer document as a title so to speak, and the said weapon to be actually titled to its owner. It is a serious violation for anyone to possess an NFA weapon which is not currently titled to that person or entity and is therefore important that the item remain with its previous owner until the NFA approval of transfer is received.

ATF regulations require that an NFA weapon be transferred to its new owner from a class 3 dealer in their own state. For this reason, after payment is received for an item purchased, we submit a request for transfer by submitting an ATF form 3. This form 3 is submitted to the NFA branch of ATF via fax and is currently approved within 30-45 days. When approved NFA branch will physically mail the approval to our office. We will not be able to send the NFA item to your dealer until this approved form is received. 

When your NFA item is received by your dealer, it will be time to inspect the weapon. If there are any issues we should be made aware of, this is the time. We stand behind our product with an unconditional 3 day inspection period after your item is received. If needed we will refund the purchase, or repair the item. Problems are fairly uncommon but we want you to know your satisfaction is important to us. 

Your local class 3 dealer will work with you on submitting a one page (front and back) form called an ATF form 4. The dealer normally completes the front of the ATF form 4 with information about the firearm, serial number, etc as well as his FFL numbers and info. On the front page your name or trust name will be listed as the transferee of the item. You will normally complete the back of the form and will attach a passport size physical photo of yourself. Fingerprints are also currently required. The CLEO sign off is no longer required. This is a big change as this means your local law enforcement agency will no longer be able to block your acquisition of legal NFA firearms.  

After your form four is ready to send, it should be sent in duplicate to NFA branch along with a one time 200 dollar tax payment. The NFA branch will do a background check and verify the document sent is correct prior to approval. You will be able to check on your transfer via phone, but will need the serial number for the item in order to check. The process times for items going to individuals, trusts and corps vary based on ATF work load, but have been averaging roughly 4-6 months. When the item is approved NFA will send the approval to your local dealer. At that time it will be legal for you to possess your new NFA firearm!

The NFA purchase process takes time, and is frustrating for some because it takes a fair amount of time to actually acquire the item purchased. It is however, worth the wait. Most of our customers very much enjoy their machine guns and silencers. Its an amazing privilege to own these types of weapons and is a privilege not available to law abiding citizens anywhere else in the world!  Due to the 1986 ban on further production of machine guns for civilians, these have become the most collectible firearms available. Our sources tell us there were approximately 250,000 registered transferable machine guns when the 1986 ban was put into place. Due to various causes of loss, there are now approximately 186,000. As a result of a decreasing supply and a vastly increasing demand, these have been an excellent investment.  It may be a wise decision to invest in machine guns as part or your retirement portfolio. 

 

I hope this has helped eliminate any confusion and answered some of the questions you may have had. Feel free to contact us with any questions.

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