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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives
Firearms

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Firearms Verification

National Firearms Act Definitions
Firearm

26 U.S.C. Chapter 53

For the purposes of the National Firearms Act, the following definitions are used to define and verify the different types of firearms:

  • § 5845(d) — The term “Shotgun” means a weapon designed or redesigned, made or remade, and intended to be fired from the shoulder, and designed or redesigned and made or remade to use the energy of the explosive in a fixed shotgun shell to fire through a smooth bore either a number of ball shot or a single projectile for each single pull of the trigger. Shotgun - Unaltered.
  • § 5845(a)(1) — The term “Firearm” means a shotgun having a barrel or barrels of less than 18 inches in length; Shotgun - Barrel(s) less than 18 inches.
  • § 5845(a)(2) — The term “Firearm” means a weapon made from a shotgun if such weapon as modified has an overall length of less than 26 inches or a barrel or barrels of less than 18 inches in length; Shotgun - Overall length less than 26 inches and barrel(s) less than 18 inches.

Rifle

26 U.S.C., § 5485(a)

For the purposes of the National Firearms Act, the following definitions are used to define and verify the different types of firearms:

  • § 5845(c) — The term “Rifle” means a weapon designed or redesigned, made or remade, and intended to be fired from the shoulder, and designed or redesigned and made or remade to use the energy of the explosive in a fixed metallic cartridge to fire only a single projectile through a rifled bore for each single pull of the trigger. Rifle - Unaltered.
  • § 5845(a)(3) — The term “Firearm” means a rifle having a barrel or barrels of less than 16 inches in length; Rifle - Barrel(s) less than 16 inches.
  • § 5845(a)(4) — The term “Firearm” means a weapon made from a rifle if such weapon as modified has an overall length of less than 26 inches or a barrel or barrels of less than 16 inches in length; Rifle - Overall length less than 26 inches and barrel(s) less than 16 inches.
 
 

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