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Do you want to know how to get your Hawaii FFL? Are you overwhelmed by the seemingly heavy-handed government regulations and confusing laws and rules about being an FFL in Hawaii? Don’t worry, you aren’t alone!
There are only 227 registered FFLs in Hawaii as of June 2021. This isn’t too surprising since the entire state’s population is about the same size as the city of San Diego. Don’t be discouraged, though, as there’s still money to be made there. Just know that you have to tread carefully when getting your Hawaii FFL and you need to make sure you’ve got all your ducks in a row in order to get into – and stay in – business.
That’s where we come in. FFL123 is here to make sure you can get that Hawaii FFL you want and deserve!
Hawaii is increasingly hostile to gun owners and has some of the most oppressive laws against ownership of common semi auto rifles and handguns in the country, including restrictive magazine capacity laws, and discretionary issue carry permits.
NFA devices are impossible to own in Hawaii unless you happen to be active duty law enforcement, and only then with some limited exceptions. Suffice it to say, Hawaii FFL’s won’t be doing much NFA business.
Ready to get your Hawaii FFL? Great! Let’s look at the simple steps you need to get it.
The very simple answer is: yes. If you plan on running a business that deals with firearms, you need to have an FFL. This isn’t a state requirement, but rather a Federal requirement. Speaking of which…
The ATF has pretty basic requirements to get an FFL. So basic, in fact, we’ll only glance at them.
To get an FFL, the ATF requires that you be a law-abiding US citizen or a permanent resident over 21 years of age who can legally own a firearm. Pretty simple stuff, really. The paperwork is annoying, and you have to demonstrate you are planning to operate a business, but that’s not too hard.
What is hard for would-be Hawaii FFL holders is that the ATF also requires that you have all appropriate state and local licenses before you can be in business. And that is where the “fun” starts…
Once you meet the federal requirements, it’s time to make sure you meet the state ones next. One big difference between other states and Hawaii is the process of selling a gun legally within the state. As an FFL, it will be your responsibility to know how to do this properly.
These steps require the buyer to:
Once all of this is completed and approved, they will undergo a 14-day waiting period to receive the permit to acquire a handgun. This permit is good for one purchase only and must be used within 10 days of pickup.
For other firearms such as long guns, one permit is good for multiple purchases and is valid for a whole year.
Once they have purchased a firearm from you, the FFL, they must then go to their local law enforcement agency to register their new firearm with the police within 5 days of purchase or within 5 days of bringing it in from out of state. The only exceptions are black powder rifles, rifles that use a black powder substitute, or antique and inoperational firearms.
Hawaii requires additional licenses before you can sell guns there. A license to sell firearms is needed before you can open up shop.
Hawaii FFL holders are required to comply with a great many burdensome state and local regulations, and must process several different state forms for simple gun purchases, along with required Federal paperwork.
For this reason, Hawaii FFL’s must be absolutely certain they understand the legal environment they operate in, and must have foolproof methods for ensuring compliance with state and local laws.
You also have to operate in a correctly zoned area that matches the type of business you are doing.
Yes, you must be registered with the state as some kind of business to get an FFL in Hawaii. While there are no state-level gun dealer licenses in Hawaii, you must still be successfully licensed with the state and the local area in which you are doing business. You also have to operate in a correctly zoned area that matches the type of business you are doing.
First, you need to get a state business license. This is a pretty cut and dry process and even largely automatic as long as you pay the licensing fees. Now is a good time to decide if you are setting up as a corporation or not. We suggest doing business as an LLC or other corporation to limit personal liability.
Next, it’s time to get your local business licenses. Cities and counties may also require a business license. Again, this should be pretty cut and dry.
Make sure you are properly zoned for the kind of business you plan on doing. In most places, a home-based FFL should be possible. Type 07 FFLs that engage in more than the lightest of manufacturing probably won’t be possible in residential areas.
Hawaii has a couple major population centers, and a few smaller towns. Getting a home based FFL could be a problem due to harsh anti-gun politics and zoning regulations, but not impossible.
As you can see, you cannot get your Hawaii FFL until you are licensed to do business at the location you choose. Both the ATF and the State of Hawaii require that you be properly licensed locally before you can do business.
It is impossible to describe all the possible local problems getting a business license in Hawaii for your FFL. Typically your biggest issue will be zoning. If you are in town that’s usually pretty cut and dried. If you are trying to set up a home based FFL, you need to make sure that you can get a zoning variance for the kind of business you are trying to operate.
To get your Hawaii FFL, you’ll likely mostly have to satisfy the ATF that you’ve done your homework. Local business licenses shouldn’t be a problem, but there is always the chance that local offices could try and hold you up.
Local requirements, zoning, and regulations are where you’re most prone to run into issues in any state, and Hawaii is no exception. Still, this shouldn’t be too big of a deal and should be able to be resolved rather easily.
If for some reason, you encounter a snag, FFL123 is here to help. Our members are provided access to private forums with other FFL dealers just like you, as well as members-only resources to help you navigate these waters.
On the Federal level, it costs between $30-$200 to get an FFL for the first three years. Each license type’s cost varies due to the different responsibilities they allow the licensee to perform. There are different kinds of licenses for selling a few handguns versus handling or making NFA items.
There are also other costs associated with Hawaii state and local licenses. Because of the wide variety of localities and their different policies and procedures, it’s best to check directly with your local government to find out how much they charge for business licenses, etc.
How to Become a Federal Firearms Licensee in 10 Easy Steps: This is the ATF’s own guide to getting your FFL.
US Code § 923: Federal US Code § 923 covers regulations for the import, manufacture, and dealing of firearms and ammunition. This is the law that requires firearms businesses to get an FFL.
US CFR § 478.47 – Issuance of License: This explains how a Federal Firearms License is issued, including who must assign the license number. It requires the ATF to qualify applicants based on a predetermined list of requirements and to issue Federal Firearms Licenses. If a correct FFL application has been submitted, the Chief of the Federal Firearms Licensing Center must issue the license and assign a serial number to the licensee.
Gun Control Act (GCA): The GCA of 1968 established stricter laws on the firearms industry than were already present in the NFA of 1934. This included new regulations regarding firearms offenses, firearms/ammunition sales to “prohibited persons,” and federal jurisdiction for “destructive devices” (bombs, grenades, mines, etc.) These are just some of the things that were created with the GCA.
Truth be told, we’d like a world where any law-abiding American could easily get into the gun business. But we don’t live in that world. We know this, and so does our staff of industry insiders and legal experts. FFL123 has assembled a staff that is dedicated to helping our customers cut through the red tape of getting an FFL.
When you purchase an FFL123 guide, you aren’t just buying a comprehensive step-by-step guide to applying for an FFL. You are also getting decades of combined industry and legal experience that is there when you need it the most.
Every FFL123 customer is entitled to direct, one-on-one customer support for their specific problems in getting an FFL. We specialize in helping people understand and navigate complex local zoning issues, as this is where most problems with getting your Hawaii FFL will occur.
In other words, when you do business with FFL123, we back you up until you get your FFL. In fact, we go beyond that, and keep backing you up for as long as you are in business! Our customers get ongoing support for everything from finding suppliers to keeping abreast with the latest changes in gun laws and regulations.
With just a couple of easy clicks, you can start your journey to your Hawaii FFL today. Rest easy knowing that you aren’t cast adrift with confusing federal and state paperwork, or left alone to figure out how to fill out and file seemingly conflicting forms. FFL123 is here for you along your entire journey from choosing the FFL that’s right for you, to your first day of business and everything in between.
Are you ready to get your Hawaii FFL? Choose the guide that is right for you. Not sure which one you need? No problem! Just ask and we’ll help you with that too. What are you waiting for? The sooner you start, the sooner you can enjoy all the benefits of an FFL!
Great system. I had my interview today, and the ffl course had me well prepared for anything the ATF agent asked me. Easy to do with ffl123.com, follow the ffl instructions and you'll have your FFL license in no time. FFL license in the state of Hawaii!
Thanks Brandon - had a 2 hour ffl interview last Monday, FFL arrived today. You have been a tremendous help and gave me a great advantage. I sincerely appreciate you help and excellent guides! I really enjoy meeting others in the ffl member area as well! Thanks!
Thanks so much for all your great ffl information. Hawaii is very tough to get an ffl license, as you know. We were able to successfully obtain our ffl license in about 70 days, excited to be one of the only ffl dealers from home, based here in kaneohe, hawaii.
GOT IT!!!! I just received my FFL License in the mail this morning !!!!! Yeeee-Hawwwwww !!!!! I could not have done it without your ffl materials and personalized responses to my emails !!!!! Next time you come over to Kauai let me know ... I'll take ya' scuba diving (No Charge) !!! ...
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