U.S. Firearms Laws

Second Amendment to the United States Constitution (1791)

"A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed." Went into effect on December 15, 1791 when the Bill of Rights had been ratified by three-fourths of the States.

National Firearms Act (NFA) Gun Control Act of 1934

73rd Congress, Sess. 2, ch. 757, 48 Stat. 1236, enacted June 26, 1934. TITLE 26, UNITED STATES CODE, CHAPTER 53 Imposes a tax on the manufacture and transfer of all Title II weapons and mandates the registration of those weapons. NFA of 1934 (NFA) is Title II of the U.S. federal firearms laws Enforced by the ATF Restricts importation of machineguns, silencers and other Title II weapons Where we get definitions of "Title II weapons": - Machine Guns (Full Auto) - Short barreled rifles (SBRs) - Short barreled shotguns (SBSs) - Suppressors - Destructive Devices (DDs) - Any Other Weapons (AOWs) http://www.atf.gov/pub/fire-explo_pub/2005/p53004/26usc_chap53.pdf Violations of the Act are punishable by up to 10 years in federal prison and forfeiture of all devices or firearms in violation, and the individual's right to own or possess firearms in the future. The Act provides for a penalty of $10,000 for certain violations

Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968

(Pub.L. 90-351, June 19, 1968, 82 Stat. 197, 42 U.S.C. § 3711) The assassination of President John F. Kennedy raised public concern over the sale and possession requirements of firearms in America - Increased the minimum age to 21 for buying handguns - Created the Law Enforcement Assistance Administration (LEAA) which was abolished in 1982 Followed by the Gun Control Act of 1968

Gun Control Act of 1968

Pub. L. No. 90-618, 82 Stat. 1213 Chapter 44 of Title 18, United States Code United States federal law that regulates the firearms industry and firearms owners. The Gun Control Act of 1968 focuses on regulating interstate commerce in firearms by prohibiting interstate firearms transfers except among licensed manufacturers, dealers and importers - GCA is Title I of the U.S. federal firearms laws - Enforced by the ATF - Added a "sporting purpose" test which bans import of military rifles - ATF Form 4590, Factoring Criteria for Weapons, evaluates imported handguns http://www.atf.gov/firearms/firearms_guidebook/FEA-Docs/4590a2X.pdf Where we get: The 10 restrictions on firearm ownership (the questions on Form 4473) - Created the FFL License System, Gunsmiths and Manufacturers - Required Serial Numbers on Firearms - Prohibits persons under 18 from possessing handguns or handgun ammunition - Effectively prohibited the direct mail order of firearms - 922r (firearm assembly regulation) http://www.atf.gov/pub/fire-explo_pub/2005/p53004/18usc_chap44.pdf The following groups of people are ineligible to own firearms under the Gun Control Act of 1968 - Those convicted of felonies and certain misdemeanors - Fugitives from justice - Unlawful users of certain depressant, narcotic, or stimulant drugs - Those adjudicated as mental defectives or incompetents or those committed to any mental institution and currently containing a dangerous mental illness. - llegal Aliens Citizens who have renounced their citizenship - Those persons dishonorably discharged from the Armed Forces - Minors defined as under the age of eighteen for long guns and handguns - Persons subject to a restraining order - Persons convicted in any court of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence (a later addition) - Persons under indictment for a crime punishable by imprisonment for more than one year are ineligible to receive, transport, or ship any firearm or ammunition

Arms Export Control Act of 1976

22 U.S.C. § 2778 gives the President of the United States the authority to control the import and export of defense articles and defense services. It requires governments that receive weapons from the United States to use them for legitimate self-defense. It places certain restrictions on American arms traders and manufacturers, prohibiting them from the sale of certain sensitive technologies to certain parties and requiring thorough documentation of such trades to trusted parties. Regulates the importation of certain firearms, firearms parts and ammunition, Night Vision, etc

Firearm Owners Protection Act of 1986

Firearm Owners' Protection Act (FOPA) 1986 Pub. L. No. 99-308, 100 Stat. 449 (May 19, 1986) - 18 U.S.C. § 921 United States federal law that revised many statutes in the Gun Control Act of 1968. Banned the sale to civilians of NFA weapons manufactured after the date of enactment May 19, 1986 Restricted sales of newly manufactured NFA weapons to military and law enforcement Ended record keeping on ammunition sales, except for armor piercing "Safe passage" provision allows persons to travel with firearms through states that have strict gun control laws Forbid the U.S. Government or any agency of it from keeping any records linking non-National Firearms Act firearms to their owners Because of this Act, records of background checks from the NICS Check are legally required to be destroyed after 24 hours

Semiautomatic Rifle Import Ban (1989)

Section 925(d)(3) of Title 18, United States Code Report And Recommendation Of The ATF Working Group On The Importability Of Certain Semiautomatic Rifles Gun Control Act (re-interpretation) (1989) On March 14, 1989, ATF announced that it was suspending the importation of several “assault-type” rifles http://www.cs.cmu.edu/afs/cs/usr/wbardwel/public/nfalist/atf_1989_report.txt

Brady Bill (1994) expired in 1998

Pub.L. 103-159, 107 Stat. 1536 - enacted November 30, 1993 Went into effect on February 28, 1994 expired in 1998. Created a national background check system to prevent firearms sales to such "prohibited persons." (Form 4473) initially required purchasers to wait up to five days for a background check The waiting period provision of the Act expired in 1998

Title XI, subtitle A, of the Violent Crime and Law Enforcement Act of 1994

Federal Assault Weapons Ban or Semiautomatic Assault Weapons Ban. The act created a definition of "assault weapons" and subjected firearms that met that definition to regulation Took effect September 13, 1994 and expired September 13, 2004 Attempted again to define an "Assault Weapon" Banned the manufacture of 19 specific semi-automatic firearms deemed to be assault weapons Banned any semi-automatic rifle that is capable of accepting a detachable magazine, and which has two or more of the following features: - telescoping or folding stock- pistol grip- flash suppressor- grenade launcher- bayonet lug Banned possession of newly-manufactured magazines holding more than ten rounds of ammunition Federal Assault Weapons Ban = The 1994 ban expired at 12:01am on Monday, September 13, 2004 March 2, 2004, Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) suggested a ten-year extension to the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban, her bill was voted down 8-90

Federal Assault Weapons Ban Expired

Federal Assault Weapons Ban = The 1994 ban expired at 12:01am on Monday, September 13, 2004

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