NFA / Title 2 / Class 3
There are a lot of
misconceptions about firearms laws and your rights. It is our opinion, as was
that of our founding fathers that our rights are not given by the government,
but are secured by it. While we may disagree with these laws, our
responsibility is to change them at the polls, not to break them. The following
questions are posted here to help you understand what is legal. We are not
lawyers, and you will need to consult an attorney for precise legal answers. The
following are intended as guides and are our understanding of the legal issues
as we see them. If you need more details, contact us or a legal professional.
Q: I see a sign in your
store about civilian legal silencers. Are silencers legal?
A: As a resident of Georgia,
you can legally own a silencer. Georgia has no prohibition on the ownership of
silencers. So, you are only limited by federal law. The National
Firearms Act was enacted in 1934. The NFA limits ownership of silencers to
those registered to the owner in the NFA database. To get a silencer registered
to you, you purchase a silencer from an NFA dealer who should assist you in
filling out a few pages of paperwork. Next you get a Chief Law Enforcement
Officer (your sheriff, police chief, or state police commander) to sign that
you are not under indictment, and send Form 4 along with fingerprint cards and
passport photos to the ATF. You also have to send in $200 for a tax stamp. The
dealer will retain possession of your silencer until your Form 4 is approved
and returned. The ATF will approve this (6-10 weeks) and return it to your
dealer who will contact you to pick up your form and silencer. You then are
legal to own that silencer. The registration is one-time for that specific
silencer and no other tax is required for continued ownership. The process is
the same for most states that allow silencers.
Q: What states allow for
ownership of silencers?
A: The following states
allow ownership of silencers by civilians: AL, AR, AK, AZ, CO, CT,
FL, GA, ID, IN, KS, KY, LA, ME, MD, MO, MS, MT, ND, NE, NV, NH, NM, NC, OH, OK,
OR, PA, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, WA, WI, WV, and WY. A few other allow for
ownership of silencers by dealers and manufacturers only: CA, IA, MA, and MI.
The states that do not allow for ownership at all don't deserve to even have
their abbreviations listed on my website.
Q: What states allow for
ownership of machine guns?
A: First, let’s
define a machine gun. Two- and three-round-burst firearms are considered
machine guns. Any caliber is considered a machine gun if it meets the
requirements. Submachine gun is a term for machine guns of pistol calibers but
are still defined as machine guns. The ATF defines a machine gun as any firearm
that fires more than one round with a single pull of the trigger. Further, 26
U.S.C. section 5845(b)), says "any part designed and intended solely and
exclusively . . . for use in converting a weapon into a machine gun" is a machine
gun. The following states allow ownership of machine guns by civilians: AL, AR,
AK, AZ, CO, CT, FL, GA, ID, IN, KY, LA, MA, ME, MD, MS, MT, NE, NV, NH, NM, NC,
NJ, ND, OH, OK, OR, PA, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, VT, WA, WI, WV and WY. A few other
allow for ownership of machine guns by dealers and manufacturers only: CA, IA,
MI, MO, and MI. Many states have restrictions on ownership above the federal
law, and some jurisdictions within a state may have bans. Do some research with
a local firearms dealer to be sure what the laws are in your jurisdiction.
Q: What is a Class 3
A: The term “Class 3” is the
most misunderstood term in the industry. “Class 3” is a classification of SOT.
It is not a license, a firearm designation, or gun type. It is a tax classification.
The most common FFL types are 1 and 7. A type 1 FFL is a dealer in firearms. A
type 7 FFL is a manufacturer of firearms. The major difference is the type 7
can manufacture guns. To be able to sell NFA firearms, the dealer must pay a
Special Occupational Tax to the Department of Revenue. A Class 3 SOT is for a
dealer in NFA firearms. A Class 2 SOT is a manufacturer of NFA firearms. The
term Class 3 as commonly misused should usually be replaced with NFA, or Title
2 firearm. Title 2 firearms are those regulated by the National Firearms Act of
Q: What is required to legally own a machine gun?
A: The requirements and
process are the same for machine guns and other NFA weapons as they are for
silencers. Purchase the weapon from an NFA dealer, complete Form 4 and send it
to ATF with your $200. Note that while there are no additional fees or
paperwork required for continued ownership of NFA weapons there are some
special rules that apply to them. A copy of your Form 4 must always accompany
the weapon. You should make several copies and put the original in protected
storage like a safe deposit box. Only keep a copy with the weapon. You cannot
lend your NFA weapon to anyone. You must always be physically present when it
is used. You cannot transport it across state lines without prior
notification of the BATF. If you decide to sell it, you will need to do so
through an NFA dealer and the purchaser must go through the same steps you did
to obtain a tax stamp prior to taking possession of the weapon. Your dealer
will explain all the rules that will keep you on the right side of the law and
allow you to fully enjoy ownership of your NFA weapon. If you have questions
about NFA / Title 2 / Class 3 weapon ownership we will be happy to answer them.
Give us a call, email or stop by the store Guns & Gear is located in
Lavonia, GA and serves the southeast from Metro Atlanta to
Greenville/Spartanburg. We also serve customers nationwide from our website.
Our retail store and indoor shooting range are within easy driving distance of
Atlanta, Decatur, Stone Mountain, Duluth, Cumming, Alpharetta, Roswell,
Norcross, Lawrenceville, Buford, Gainesville, Athens, Commerce, Hartwell,
Toccoa, Anderson, Greenville, Spartanburg, and Walhalla.