Firearms - Guides - Importation & Verification of Firearms, Ammunition and Implements of War - Types of Forms - Processing ATF Form 6 Part I

Types of Forms

Processing ATF Form 6 Part I

To assist us in the processing of your forms in a timely manner, we ask that you ensure the following:

  • The form is the most current edition, is fully completed, and contains accurate and complete information. If the form is missing information or does not contain the required supporting documentation, it will be disapproved and returned to you, along with a letter stating the reason(s) for disapproval. If the information on the form is not legible, it may cause a delay in processing.
  • Item 1 contains a complete and valid 15-digit FFL number and the expiration date. The 9th digit of the FFL number indicates the year the license expires, and the 10th character indicates the month. The expiration date also appears on the face of the license.
Code Month
A January
B February
C March
D April
E May
F June
G July
H August
J September
K October
L November
M December
  • Item 2 contains your business telephone number. You may also provide a business fax number. Please note “B” next to your business telephone number and the “F” next to your fax number.
  • Item 3 notes the name of the country of export. Pursuant to 27 CFR § 447.52, ATF is prohibited from approving applications to import articles that were manufactured in, or are being exported from, a proscribed country.
  • Item 4 lists the name and address of your Customs broker, if you are using one. If you would like the Form 6 to be returned to the broker, indicate by checking the box at the bottom of this section.
  • Item 5 contains your name and address, not the name and address of the person for whom you may be importing the articles. If you use your own tracking number, please enter it in the “For Applicant’s Optional Use” section of Form 6 at the top of the form.
  • Item 6 lists the foreign seller’s name and address.
  • Item 7 lists the foreign shipper’s name and address. If this information is identical to the information in Item 6, you may note the words “See Item 6.”
  • Item 8a notes the name, address, and the country in which the firearm was manufactured. This section needs, at minimum, the full name and country of the manufacturer. Pursuant to 27 CFR § 447.52, ATF is prohibited from approving applications to import articles that were manufactured in, or being exported from a proscribed country.
  • Item 8b notes only the following acronyms:

    Code Description
    SG shotgun
    RI rifle
    PI pistol
    RE revolver

    Any information you can provide to further identify articles may be noted in Item 8b. For example, if you know the firearm is a nonsporting or an NFA firearm, you may note this information separately, directly under columns Item 8b-d, after you have described the articles in Items 8a-k. Also, if you are importing frames or receivers, indicate this in the same area. If you enter items on a separate attached sheet, put the total quantity of all articles applied for on the front of the application in Item 8d.

    Please ensure all required information required by Item 8 is included on attachments. Copies of invoices or catalogs may not contain sufficient information for ATF to determine if the articles are importable.

  • Items 8c-k notes further description of the article, such as caliber/gauge, quantity, unit cost in US dollars, USMIL category, model designation, barrel and overall lengths in inches, serial number, if known, and the condition of the articles (N=new and U=used). The USMIL categories are in 27 CFR § 447.21 as outlined in our ATF Publication 5300.4.

    For example, firearms and firearms components are Category I and ammunition is Category III.

  • Item 9a, 9b, or 9c must be checked. Please note that Items 9b and 9c pertain to U.S. military defense articles designated as Significant Military Equipment (SME) by the Department of State (e.g. firearms and firearm component parts, ammunition and ammunition components, military vehicles, military aircraft) and not to goods manufactured for the commercial or civilian market. You must check Item 9b if the SME sought for importation contains U.S. manufactured parts or components or parts or components that were manufactured with U.S. military technical data or assistance and the SME was provided to by the U.S. government to a foreign government through a grant or Foreign Military Sales program, and you must attach to your application a copy of the written retransfer authorization issued to the foreign seller by the following office:

              Department of State
              Office of Regional Security and Arms Transfer Policy (RSAT)
              Washington, DC USA
              Voice (202) 647-9750
  • You must check Item 9c if the SME sought for importation contain U.S. manufactured parts or components and/or foreign manufactured parts or components that were manufactured with U.S. military technical data or assistance, and were provided to a foreign government pursuant to an export license issued by the Department of State, and you must attach to your application a copy of the written retransfer authorization issued to the foreign seller by the following office:

             Department of State
             Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (DDTC)
             Washington, DC USA
             Voice (202) 663-1282
  • Item 10 must always state the specific purpose of importation, such as, without limitation, resale, gun show, personal use, on behalf of an individual, entry or removal from a CBW or FTZ, etc. Please provide the name of the special (occupational) taxpayer (SOT) and/or law enforcement/government entities ultimately demonstrating or receiving the imported articles. If you are importing on behalf of a non-licensee, include his or her name and addresses in this section.
  • Item 11. This item pertains to the Arms Export Control Act of 1976 (AECA). If you completed the ATF F 5330.4 (4587), Application to Register as an Importer of U.S. Munitions Import List Articles (USMIL) , and paid $250–$1000 to become a registered importer, you must check “yes”, even if the item(s) you are applying for do not fall under the AECA.
  • Item 12 notes the full 10-digit AECA number which was issued by the Firearms and Explosives Imports Branch (FEIB) when you completed Form 4587.
  • Item 13 bears your original signature.
  • Item 14 notes your title, such as Importer, CEO, or President.
  • Item 15 is the date the person in Item 13 signed the form.
  • The detachable perforated strip located at the top of the triplicate Form 6 is completely removed.
  • All carbon sheets are completely removed, if located inside the original Form 6 import permit application.
  • Three (triplicate) copies of any supporting documentation pertaining to the application are submitted, which includes fax copies. The supporting documentation must be attached to each copy of the Form 6.
  • Any separate sheets you prepare and attach to the completed Form 6, listing articles you wish to import must coincide with the format (Items 8a-k) on the face of the form. You must submit three copies of these attachment sheets, attached to each copy of the Form 6.
  • Supporting documentation lists only those articles listed on the completed Form 6, and those articles are identical and distinctly identified by the manufacturer’s name and address, type, caliber/gauge, model designation, and serial number(s) if known.
  • ATF’s four-to-six weeks processing period begins the day FEIB receives the application. Please try to wait until that period expires before contacting FEIB to inquire about the receipt or processing status of your Form 6, as it interrupts and delays the processing of your applications and those of other applicants.
  • Forms 6 are processed on a first-come, first-served basis. Any Form 6 resubmitted because your initial permit has or will soon expire, will be considered a newly received Form 6. 27 CFR § 447.43 states that Form 6 import permit applications are valid for one year from their issuance date. Please ensure that your applications are submitted with sufficient lead time to avoid your current permit from expiring. Also remember that only the articles which are listed on the approved permit may be imported within the approved time period.
  • Firearms returned to the United States for repair, replacement, or customizing and subsequent export should be imported with a temporary import license issued by the U.S. Department of State:

           Department of State
           Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (DDTC)
           PM/DTC, Room 1304, SA-1
           Washington, DC 20037 USA
           Voice (202) 663-1282

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Last Reviewed September 22, 2016