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Firearms transfer?

Jul 31

Firearms transfer?

This is a question we get asked frequently and a term we can sometimes take for granted. A transfer, in a nutshell, is a physical hand-over of a firearm. For a FFL dealer, it means that your customer fills out the ATF Form 4473, you run the NICS background check, and upon a “proceed” decision, can then give the firearm to the customer. This is going to be what the ATF is referring to when asking you how many transfers you’ve done.

The act of doing a transfer is something that many FFL dealers build their business model off of because it can be so useful in today’s market. For example, many people purchase firearms from GunBroker, an online gun auction website. When one of those purchases takes place, the seller cannot just ship the firearm directly to the buyer. It will need to be shipped to a FFL dealer in the state where the buyer resides. If you advertise your services as an FFL dealer willing to do transfers, GunBroker members in your area can contact you for aid in the transfer process. You can charge a small fee for this service, usually $15-$30. You provide a service while helping people in your area!

Another important note to mention in regards to transfers is that they can only take place in one of two locations. The first is your licensed business premises, i.e. the physical address listed on your FFL. The other location is a gun show, which the ATF views as an extension of your license.

Transfers performed by a FFL dealer are an important part of the firearms business. They are what help to keep guns out of criminals’ hands and the streets of America safe. Join FFL123.com Today!

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  1. Brandon,
    Does ATF dictate that the gun has to be shipped to your FFL address when doing a transfer? My business is small and part time so no one is home to sign for shipments during the day can I have them sent to my work address where I am available? I’ve gotten some opposing answers on this question. The transaction will still take place at my FFL address I just want to receipt the gun at a different location.

    • Yes, ATF allows firearms to be shipped to address other than FFL Licensed address. I will send you a link via the forums on this. Brandon

  2. If transferring in multiple firearms for the same transaction, are multiple form 4473’s needed, or just 1 per transaction?

  3. I need to ship a pistol to an FFL in Texas because I am selling the pistol to a friend there. I live in MN. Does MN require I ship through a MN-based FFL, or can I ship to a TX-based FFL myself? This can be bewildering!

    • can send directly to an FFL from MN

  4. I would like to give by Beretta Silver Pidgeion shotgun to my stepson as a present who lives in another state. What is the best way to accomplish this task.

    • Buy and have shipped to an FFL dealer near him.

  5. My son is currently serving on active duty in the Army in Alaska. He shipped me a shot gun to Academy Sports. I went in to the store as instructed completed all of the paperwork and paid the $40 FFL fee. I returned to the weapons section of the store and completed another form, they entered my information and told me that it could take anywhere from 5 minutes to 5 weeks to get the grren light for them to give me the gun. I am a Army Veteran and also a government employee. So its safe to assume that I should have passed this test with flying colors. However, that is incorrect it’s been 2 weeks and I have heard nothing from Academy. The last call I placed to them I was told that the response is still in pending. Is this normal?

  6. Can an FFL dealer transfer for someone that lives near them but is DL is for another state?

  7. Can an FFL dealer transfer for someone that lives near them but is DL is for another state?

  8. I want to do transfer’s, but I work full time and can not receive shipments. My girlfriend owns a hair salon where shipments can be received. Can she sign for them, and or does she have to be on my FFL

    • Yes, this is fine. Our guides cover how to properly get her involved sir.

  9. Want to buy pistol for my dad but want transferred to his name. What are my steps to take?

  10. I am a Colorado resident and I have 2 shotguns and 2 rifles with my family members in British Columbia Canada that I would like to have shipped to me here in Colorado or bring with me air cargo during a visit. How can I accomplish this? What documents would I need to fill out? Can an FFL dealer handle this transfer? Thanks.

    • get an FFL that does imports / exports to help.

  11. If an FFL I had guns shipped to will not release firearms to me because I wanted to transfer/ gift a firearm to my Mother through a FFL in another state. Can I demand he send the firearms to another FFL in my state for my pickup? Learned a lesson though. Gift Certificates are no problem. This FFL thinks I will just give firearm and not use FFL in other state.

    • cannot make an FFL do anything they don’t want to do. Play nicely.

  12. According,to the ATF my zoning (R-1) won’t allow customers in and out of my home. I can only sell online if i get an ffl. In your opinion could this be very successful?

    • We indeed have a few workarounds on this sir.

  13. This all was helpful. Can you clarify something. Can an FFL holder do
    transfers at a banquet or dinner, where the attendees may win or get a
    firearm by auction? I’ve been told in one instance the FFL cannot, but in
    another witnessed it being done by an FFL. So I am confused about what can be done.

    • Normally no, depends on organization doing the auction.

  14. Dear Sir 2 questions,
    1. Which states require FFL to FFL dealer transfers on both ends for long guns, rifles & shotguns? 2. And which states require FFL to FFL transfers on both ends for pistols? There seems to be a lot of FFLs that attempt to force a transfer from a FFL even if it is NOT required by law. I have had other FFLs in the same state that allowed the transactions. Some of the FFLs that hand wrote a note on their license stating “we only accept transfers from FFL holders”, but even those FFLs accepted a transfer from me & I am NOT an FFL holder.

    • Federal law allow private sales within the same state, each state may vary, ie think gunshows where non-FFL holders can sell personal firearms. An FFL holder does not want to create risk for themselves on a private sell, thus smart to require a NICS check if they are involved.

  15. How many single tranfers are we allowed per week ? Example I get a shotgun transfer on Tuesday an then on Saturday I get a pistol transfer. Is that allowed ? How many per week ?

  16. To do a transfer ,do I have to go to an FFL in the same state that I bought the gun or can I go to ani state?

    • Are you a customer? We can discuss in the private forums.

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    I operate my FFL business online, at gun shows and operations in several states. I have learned all the tricks of the trade.

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