If denied, how can I become cleared to possess explosives?

  • Appeals Process — If upon receiving a denial letter from ATF you believe that you are not prohibited from possessing explosives (due to reasons such as identity theft, the dismissal of criminal charges, or other reasons), you may appeal your denial by supplying a written statement, new fingerprint cards, and any supporting documentation that you may have which demonstrates that you are not prohibited. ATF will consider all appeal documents submitted and send the fingerprint cards to the FBI for processing. A determination will be made as to whether the denial should be overturned and you will be notified of the outcome. You will remain in a denied status while your appeal is pending.
  • Explosives Relief of Disabilities Process – If your denial is upheld, you may apply for relief from your Federal explosives disability by sending ATF an Application for Restoration of Explosives Privileges on Form 5400.29 along with the required additional information specified in the application. Your application will be coordinated by ATF personnel in the Explosives Relief of Disability (EROD) Program.  An investigation will then be conducted, to include, but not limited to, interviews and review of court documents and other information.  ATF will notify you in writing of its decision.  You may contact the EROD Program by email at EROD@atf.gov or phone at (256) 261-7640.
Last Reviewed March 22, 2021