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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

What was the semiautomatic assault weapon (SAW) ban?

The SAW ban was enacted on September 13, 1994, by PL 103-322, Title IX, Subtitle A, section 110105. The ban made it unlawful to manufacture, transfer, or possess SAWs. The law defined SAWs as 19 named firearms, as well as semiautomatic rifles, pistols, and shotguns that have certain named features. The ban was codified at 18 U.S.C. § 922(v). SAWs lawfully possessed on September 13, 1994, were not covered by the ban. There also were certain exceptions, such as possession by law enforcement.