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How to get FFL in Texas (TX)?

Do you want to know how to get a Texas FFL? Texas is one of the largest markets for guns in the United States, and also one of the largest markets for NFA items in the country. That means it is a good place to get an FFL, and even a Class 3 SOT to make NFA items like silencers or short barrel shotguns. However, getting your Texas FFL is more than just filling out some confusing forms, and sending the off to the ATF.

how to get ffl in texas flag

You have to first satisfy the Feds that you are operating a business, and can legally do so. This means there are all sorts of hoops you have to jump through on a Federal, state and even local level. The type of FFL you are applying for makes a difference as does where you plan to operate.

For instance, you’ll probably have a hard time getting approved for an 07 manufacturing FFL in your suburban garage because of zoning issues. So lets take a look at the basic requirements for your Texas FFL and some zoning tips while we are at it, so you can get on your way to getting your Texas FFL!

Do you still want to know how to get your Texas FFL?

Are you overwhelmed by the seemingly heavy-handed government regulations and confusing laws and rules about being an FFL in Texas? Don’t worry, you aren’t alone!

Everything’s bigger in Texas. There are a lot of gun owners in Texas, and as of June 2021, it should come as no surprise that Texas ranks 1st in the nation for states with the most FFLs. There are 11,164 of them! While Texas government may be kind to gun owners and gun businesses, the same cannot always be said for the federal government. That means you have to tread carefully when getting your Texas 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 Texas FFL you want and deserve!

Do You Need an FFL in Texas?

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…


Federal Requirements

In order to qualify for an FFL first you have to be legally able to get one. That means a few broad conditions have to apply first before the ATF will even take a closer look at your application. Generally, you have to meet the following criteria before even thinking about applying for a Texas FFL.

  • Be at least 21 years old.
  • Be a US citizen or legal permanent resident.
  • Not be convicted of any felony or misdemeanor crime of domestic violence.
  • Not be a user of illegal drugs (including marijuana)
  • Never have been dishonorably discharged from the US Military.
  • No outstanding arrest warrants.
  • No pending criminal charges.

Basically, if you can legally own a gun and are over 21, you fulfill most of the requirements to get a Texas FFL right away. However there is more to getting at Texas FFL than just being a law abiding American. You also have to satisfy the ATF examiner that you can legally conduct the type of business you want to operate in your chosen location, and are familiar with Federal, state and local laws that relate to selling (or manufacturing) guns.

You also have to show that you can operate the business at your chosen location, and that means having or being able to get permitted locally for the kind of business you want to run.

So in nutshell, 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 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.

State Requirements

Once you meet the federal requirements, it’s time to make sure you meet the state ones next.

Texas does not require FFL holders to get a redundant state level gun dealer license. This greatly simplifies how to get a Texas FFL, and makes it easier to get into business. Many states still require this extra license, so be glad Texas does not.

You still have to be a registered business or corporation to have a Texas FFL, but that’s pretty easy and largely involves filling out a couple forms and paying a fee. Your local business licensing folks can help you with that process. But there are still local issues to contend with…

Do I Need to Register as a Business for an FFL in Texas?

Yes, you must be registered with the state as some kind of business to get an FFL in Texas. While there are no state level gun dealer licenses in Texas, 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.

Local Requirements

All businesses have to operate in locations zoned for the type of business. That’s why you won’t see an industrial manufacturing process in a residential neighborhood, or light retail in the middle of an area devoted to heavy manufacturing. The ATF requires that FFL holders be able to operate their chosen type of business at the location they give for their address.

In most cases, this is not an issue, especially if you are operating a traditional storefront FFL. With as pro-gun as Texas is, even in the biggest cities you won’t have much trouble opening up a gun shop in a retail zoned location. That means local efforts to limit gun stores from opening will be few to non existent and your biggest issue there will be simply finding a location you like.

However, if like many FFL123 customers, you are interested in running a small, home based FFL you may face some zoning issues. This is where many people have the most trouble with their FFL applications and where many fail.

Most residential areas allow for light retail activities with the proper permit. If you live in an HOA with restrictive covenants you may not be able to engage in any sort of business activity. Check your bylaws to be sure, as they vary from HOA to HOA. Outside of HOA’s, you’ll need to check with local permitting departments to see what their specific rules are for retail operations in a residential neighborhood.

The ATF often strictly examines home based FFL’s. Rarely do “appointment only” hours suffice to be approved. Instead, the ATF prefers you have some posted business hours, even if it is just one day a week, or a few hours a day. But don’t worry, FFL123 customers receive personalized assistance in this and many other things when they are preparing their FFL application.

Texas is a really big state and, thankfully, almost all of it is pro-gun. That’s not to say, however, that you won’t possibly run into some minor hiccups with local authorities. 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.

How Much Does a Texas FFL Cost?

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 Texas 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.

Additional Business Resources

Start a Business in Texas: Texas’ Economic Development website is full of information to help you get set up as a business there.

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.

The FFL123 Advantage

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 Texas 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.

Start Today!

With just a couple easy clicks, you can start your journey to your Texas 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 Texas 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!


If you want to know how to get your Texas FFL, then buying an FFL123 guide is the place to start. We are so sure of our process, that we have a 150 percent money back guarantee that you’ll get the FFL you apply for, or we’ll lose money on the deal!

FFL123 customers enjoy unique, hands on industry insider guidance during the entire process of getting your Texas FFL. And we don’t stop there. FFL123 provides ongoing personal help for as long as you have your FFL. We have member only forums where you can get your questions answered, and regular industry news updates so you can keep up on things like industry trends, ATF rule changes, and other related material.

If you are ready to get your Texas FFL, we are here for you! For decades, FFL123 has been the number one go-to choice for people looking to get the FFL they want and deserve. We’ve helped thousands of Americans just like you. Choose the guide that’s best and get started today!


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