Reporting Multiple Firearms Sales

The Gun Control Act (GCA) of 1968 requires federal firearms licensees (FFLs) to send a report to ATF when there is a sale of multiple firearms to the same purchaser within a certain time period.

ATF uses the information gathered from multiple sales transactions to investigate possible firearms trafficking cases. If one or more firearms recovered from a crime are part of a multiple purchase, this could be an indicator of potential firearms trafficking. Crime guns recovered shortly after a multiple sale is known as a short time-to-crime ratio.

Individual Sales

Under federal law, there are no recordkeeping requirements for transferring a firearm between two individuals who are not federal firearms licensees. However, there are individuals who cannot purchase or possess a firearm known as prohibited persons. As a seller, you should make every effort to ensure you are not transferring a firearm to a prohibited person.

Sales of Handguns

Licensees must report the sale of two or more handguns if they occur at the same time or within five consecutive business days of each other.

Reporting Process for Pistols and Revolvers

  1. Fill out three copies of the Report of Multiple Sale or Other Disposition of Pistols and Revolvers.
     
  2. Send the first copy to the ATF National Tracing Center no later than the close of business on the day that the multiple sale or other disposition occurs. Send by fax at 1-877-283-0288, email MultipleHandgunSalesForms@atf.gov, or mail to:

    U.S. Department of Justice
    NTC - MS
    P.O. Box 0279
    Kearneysville, WV 25430–0279

  3. Send the second copy to the Chief Local Law Enforcement Official (CLEO). The CLEO is a local or state official designated to receive this form. If you do not know your CLEO, contact your local ATF office to find out.
     
  4.  Attach the third copy to the corresponding Firearms Transaction Record ATF Form 4473, executed upon delivery of the pistols or revolvers [Regulation 478.126a]

Sales of Rifles

In 2011, ATF was authorized to enforce multiple firearms sales for certain types of rifles from FFLs in Arizona, California, New Mexico and Texas. An extension was granted for the collection of this information in 2018, and the expected end date is Jan. 31, 2021.

FFLs in these states must report the following types of rifles:

  • Semiautomatic rifles
  • Rifles with a caliber greater than .22 (including .223 or 5.56 mm)
  • Rifles with the ability to accept detachable magazines

Reporting Process for Rifles

  1. Fill out two copies of the Report of Multiple Sale or Other Disposition of Certain Rifles.

  2. Send the first copy to ATF’s National Tracing Center by fax at 1-877-283-0288, email MultipleLonggunSalesForms@atf.gov, or mail to:

    U.S. Department of Justice
    NTC
    P.O. Box 0279
    Kearneysville, WV 25430-0279

  3. ATF recommends that the licensee retains the second copy and attaches it to the back of the Firearms Transaction Record ATF Form 4473 that covers the transfer of the firearms.

Contact Us

If you have any questions about the multiple sale reporting process, please contact your local field office or ATF’s Firearms Industry Programs Branch.

If you are a FFL and need to order more ATF Form 4473s, please fill out the online order form.

Frequently Asked Questions

Last Reviewed July 2, 2020