Wednesday, February 1, 2023


The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives (BATFE or ATF) conducted webinars in the wake of the publishing of ATF Final Rule 2021R-08F, yesterday. Although the final rule was announced on 01/13/2023, the rule did not become effective until 01/31/2023 when it was published in the National Register.

Take aways from the webinar:

1. Possessors of what is now classified as a NFA short barreled rifle or SBR (previously, a braced pistol, AR-style pistol or AR-caliber pistol ) have until 05/31/2023 to bring their firearm into compliance with the new rule. There are _ options for coming into compliance.

     ° Register the firearm as a SBR using ATF E-Form 1. 
     ° Remove and sell, give away, destroy, or otherwise divest themselves of the brace to avoid being in "constructive possession" of an unregistered NFA firearm.
     ° Replace the barrel with a 16 inch barrel, thus converting the firearm to a non-NFA rifle.
     ° Destroy the firearm.
     ° Turn the firearm into the ATF.

2. Besides a brace that affords the ability to shoulder fire the firearm, the ATF also indicated receivers fitted with magnified optics or scopes are an indication that a firearm is an SBR.

3. For those who choose to register the firearm as a SBR, the ATF will accept the Tax Forebarrence E-Form 1 until 05/31/2023. The form does not have to be approved by 05/31/2023, only submitted in order to be in compliance with the rule. The possessor of the firearm MUST maintain in their possession a copy of proof of submission until final determination is received.

4. The waiving of the tax is only during the grace period and only for those firearms possessed at the time of the rule change. If the firearm came into the possession of the owner after 01/31/2023, then the ATF says the tax must be paid.

5. Tax forebarrence is only for registering the firearm. All transfers that occur after the firearm is registered will incur the normal taxes.

6. As long as the firearm has the name of the manufacturer, the model, the caliber (if one is
specified) and the serial number present on the
receiver, no additional markings are required if the firearm is submitted for registration by

7. Purchase and transfer of AR receivers that include a brace, but do have an upper receiver with a barrel, are not restricted by this rule.

8. Effective 01/31/2023, Type 01 (Dealer), 02 (Pawn Broker), and Type 07 (Mannufacture) FFLs are required to have a Class 3 Special Occupancy Tax stamp to possess or transfer a firearm classified as a SBR under this rule.

A PDF copy of the slide stack presented during the webinar, which contains links to additional resources related to NFA registration and FAQs can be found at:

Friday, December 23, 2022


As age and disease claim ever more of our Korean War and Vietnam War Veterans, a potential legal pitfall for their survivors is on the rise. Some families of those Veterans are discovering firearms stored in safes, closets, sheds, and garages which were brought back as momentos -- some legally, some otherwise -- that no one, except the veteran, knew about!

Sometimes it's a rather simple matter of finding an old pistol, hunting rifle or shotgun. But occassionally, it can be really tricky. Especially when firearms that fall under the control of the National Firearms Act (NFA) are involved. Some of the more common include:

• Machine guns or firearms capable of firing more than one round with one trigger pull (aka fully automatic)

• Short-barrel rifles (less than 16 in.) and shotguns (less than 18 in.) 

• Suppressors (aka silencers)

Broadly these firearms fall into two categories: Registered (Legal) or NOT Registered (Illegal).

But it is more complicated than that, as the legal machine guns are further categorized as;

"Fully Transferable": can be transferred to anyone who is legally able to possess a machine gun, with a $200 Transfer Tax. These are worth the most.

"Pre-May 19, 1986 Registered Dealer Sample machine guns": Guns that can be transferred between Federal Firearms Licensed (FFL) Dealers that also have an Special Occupational Tax Stamp (SOT) without a “Law Enforcement Sample Request Letter”. While worth a lot less than a Fully Transferable machinegun, they are easy to transfer between  FFL Dealers with a SOT so these have gone up substantially in value

"Post May 19, 1986 Restricted Dealer Samples" : Guns that can only be transferred to another FFL dealers that has an SOT, but require a “Law Enforcement Request Letter." These guns are much harder to transfer so the value is quite low, often just a bit more than the parts would be worth

It can be very confusing!!

If a firearm is located during the process of cleaning out an estate, after making sure it is not loaded,  the first question should be, is there any documentation about the firearm present or elsewhere on the premises? Documentation, if any, will be key in communicating with anyone about the discovered property.

Documents to look for include:

• Documents creating a Firearms Trust, which will identify the firearms that are controlled by the Trust and the individuals named as Trustees 

• A Special Occupational Tax (SOT) stamp affixed to an ATF Form 4 (Application for Tax Paid Transfer and Registration of Firearm)

• A SOT stamp affixed to a Federal Firearms License (FFL) for a Dealer.

• Any letter on US Department of War (Prior to 1947), Department of the Navy, Department of the Army (After 1947), Department of the Air Force (After 1947), Department of Defense (After 1949), Department of Transportation (Coast Guard, prior to 2003), or Department of Homeland Security (Coast Guard, 2003 and later) letterhead transferring ownership of a military firearm to a service member

If the firearm turns out to be a NFA firearm that was Not Registered  in the National Firearms Act (NFA) Registry, it is Not Legal to possess and could result in a $10,000 fine and 10 years in prison.

In the case of a NFA weapon without any documentation, the proper thing to do is to contact local law enforcement agency and turn it in as an "Estate Find." In all likelihood, firearms surrendered to law enforcement will be destroyed.

You could also contact the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives BATFE or, more commonly ATF), but usually local Law Enforcement (City Police Department or County Sheriff Department) is sufficient and, if you are familiar them or someone who works there, will be a much less dramatic experience.

You can also ask to strip the parts, but be aware that a complete parts set, even without the receiver, are still considered a NFA firearm. You can have some of the parts, but not all.

Family members and estate executors are always wise to consult with legal counsel if a firearm is found and not otherwise documented or addressed in a decedent's will.

Now, if proper registration paperwork is available, there are processes for legally transferring ownership. So dig deep for the paperwork. But sadly most of these “bring-backs” were never registered. So be very careful!

Again after checking for paperwork, if none is found, I would turn it in to local Law Enforcement. Very sad, but this one is probably going to the destruction pile.

Monday, October 31, 2022


 FN announced a voluntary recall of certain number of FN 502 Tactical pistols due to a safety concern with the manual safety lock lever. Under certain conditions, it may be possible for the pistol to fire when the trigger is pulled, even if the manual safety lever is in the SAFE position.

The recall includes FN 502 Tactical pistols with a serial number lower than LR010300. FN requests owners of pistols subject to recall to cease using their pistol immediately. 

All available information about this recall, including how to return a pistol for retrofit to correct the safety issue, is available at:


 Apex Tactical Specialties announced a mandatory recall of a limited number of Apex Action Enhancement Kits for Slim Frame Glock pistols sold between October 2021 and March 2022. These specific kitswere assembled with an Apex in-house manufactured trigger bar - NOT a Glock factory trigger bar - and were sold through Apex's dealer and distributor network.

Apex identified an issue with the Apex trigger bar where, under certain circumstances, the demensions are out of spec resulting in failure to reset the trigger. Apex instructs customers to discontinue use of firearms fitted with trigger kit part numbers 102-117 (Black) and 102-157 (Red) and contact Apex Tactical Specialties to return the affected kits for replacement.

Note that Apex kits assembled with Glock manufactured factory trigger bars and sold prior to October 2021, as well as Apex "No Bar" kits with part numbers 102-114 and 102-154 are NOT affected by this recall.

National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) Enhanced Processes

 If you are between the ages of 18 and 21, prepare yourselves for longer waits between when you pay for a firearm, and when you will be cleared to actually take posession of that firearm.

As a result of the passage of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act (BSCA) of 2022, signed into law on June 25, 2022, the FBI'S NICS Section is working towards implementation of an enhanced background check process for persons between the ages of 18-20. The enhancement provides the opportunity for additional outreach and research to be conducted regarding the existence of any juvenile adjudication information and/or mental health prohibition. As a result, transactions on persons between the ages of 18-20 will initially be delayed.

In order to conduct the aforementioned outreach and research, the address of the individual will be collected so that the appropriate local and state entities may be contacted. All descriptive information, including address, will follow normal purge requirements (i.e., deleted from NICS within 24 hours of the FFL receiving a proceed status). If potentially prohibiting juvenile information is uncovered, the BSCA allows for the delay period to extend up to ten business days. However, if no potentially prohibiting information is located, the transaction will be proceeded as soon as possible.

So, if it hasn't already started, when will it start?

Currently, for all FFLs conducting checks through the FBI web-base NICS system, the enhanced process for persons under the age of 21 will begin on Monday, November 14, 2022.

Monday, August 8, 2022


 The task of patterning a shotgun has become somewhat of a lost art. But it is an essential part of understanding how the gun will work with the varying shell velocities and shot sizes which make shotguns such a versatile option for home defense.

The most important variable that must be taken into account is that the further the shot has to travel, the more disbursed the pattern will be. In a home defense scenario, 10 to 20 feet would probably be the maximum distance the average home would afford. At those distances, the shot pattern would be from 2 to 6 inches, which makes the need for an aimed shot far more essential than the common myth about shotguns would suggest. 

The common myth is, "you don't have to aim a shotgun. Just point it in the general direction and pull the trigger." Nothing could be further from the truth. On the contrary, the truth is that distance, the velocity of the shell charge, and the size of the shot all work together differently through different guns causing variations in the shot pattern. So understanding how YOUR shotgun and ammunition work together is so important to proper use as a home defense tool.

This video, provided by the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), does a great job demonstrating how important shot patterning is and how to do it.

Thursday, May 19, 2022


Mossberg International, Inc. (“Mossberg”) recommends all owners of the Model SA-410 shotgun to cease using that firearm until they can confirm whether or not their shotgun is affected by this recall notice. 

Mossberg recently discovered a potential safety issue with certain Mossberg International Model SA-410 Shotguns which may lead to personal injury and/or damage to the shotgun. Mossberg is voluntarily initiating a recall to protect the safety of its customers because if a user prematurely releases a shotshell while loading or unloading, the unretained shotshell could potentially contact the Bolt Lock Button inside the loading port and detonate.

This link will route you to the official Mossberg recall notice which contains the step-by-step instructions to address this pitential safety issue: