Rules and Regulations Library

Title Description Category Document Type
Pennsylvania-Dec2005-Open Letter-Private Transfers of Firearms and Using NICS or the Pennsylvania Instant Check System (PICS) (37 KB)
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) has received questions from firearms dealers in Pennsylvania concerning the use of the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS)/Pennsylvania Instant Check System (PICS) to do background checks of people who are acquiring firearms from other nonlicensees in what are commonly called “private transfers.”
Firearms Open Letter
Indiana-Dec2005-Open Letter-Procedures for Indiana FFLs Using the Revised ATF Form 4473 (54 KB)
The purpose of this letter is to clarify that the revised ATF Form 4473, Firearms Transaction Record Part I – Over The Counter, has no effect on the procedures Indiana Federal Firearms Licensees must follow in order to comply with the Brady Law. The procedures enumerated in the September 2003 Open Letter To All Indiana Firearms Licensees are still in effect.
Firearms Open Letter
All FFLs-Nov2005-Open Letter-Lawful Importation of Certain Firearm Barrels into the United States for Commercial Purposes (35 KB)
The purpose of this open letter is to update licensed and registered importers of firearms, ammunition and other regulated commodities on the lawful importation of certain firearm barrels into the United States for commercial purposes.
Firearms Open Letter
Northern Mariana Islands-Oct2005-Open Letter-Northern Mariana Island Weapons Identification (39 KB)
This open letter informs Northern Mariana Island Federal firearms licensees that beginning October 19, 2005, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Island Weapons Identification Card Permits no longer qualifies as an alternative to a National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) check.
Firearms Open Letter
Alaska-Oct2005-Open Letter-Alaska Concealed Handgun Permits Marked "NICS Exempt" Qualify as NICS Check Alternative (39 KB)
This open letter informs Alaska Federal firearms licensees that beginning October 19, 2005, only Alaska Concealed Handgun Permits marked “NICS EXEMPT” will qualify as an alternative to a National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) check.
Firearms Open Letter
Virgin Islands-Oct2005-Open Letter-U.S. Virgina Islands Firearms Permits No Longer Alternative to NICS Check (39 KB)
This open letter informs Federal firearms licensees in the U.S. Virgin Islands that the U.S. Virgin Islands Firearms Permits no longer qualifies as an alternative to a National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) check.
Firearms Open Letter
All FFLs-Aug2005-Open Letter-Extension of Time to Effect Importation of Approved Permits for Frames, Receivers or Barrels (34 KB)
The purpose of this open letter is to provide important updated information to importers concerning the lawful importation of certain frames, receivers and barrels.
Firearms Open Letter
Georgia-Apr2005-Open Letter-Georgia Crime Information Center Ceases Operations as NICS Point of Contact (36 KB)
The purpose of this letter is to inform you that on July 1, 2005, the Georgia Crime Information Center (GCIC) will cease to operate as the point of contact (POC) for the National Instant Background Check (NICS) program, and to further advise you of the affect these changes may have on firearms transactions conducted under your Federal firearms license.
Firearms Open Letter
All FFLs-July2005-Open Letter-Importation of Frames, Receivers or Barrels of Firearms Under Title 18 U.S.C. § 925(d)(3) (41 KB) The purpose of this open letter is to provide important information to importers concerning the lawful importation of certain frames, receivers and barrels Firearms Open Letter
California-Oct2004-California Entertainment Firearms Permit (35 KB)
The purpose of this letter is to inform you that, on September 20, 2004, Governor Schwarzenegger approved a change in California law that establishes an Entertainment Firearms Permit, and to further advise you of the affect this new permit may have on firearms transactions conducted under your Federal firearms license.
Firearms Open Letter
All FFLs-Sept2004-Open Letter-Expiration of the Ban on the Importation of SAWs and LCAFDs (45 KB)
This open letter is to advise the import community of the provisions of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 that no longer apply to the manufacture, transfer and possession of semiautomatic assault weapons (SAWs) and to transfer and possess large capacity ammunition feeding devices (LCAFDs).
Firearms Open Letter
All FFLs-May2004-Open Letter-Importation of Articles Added by the Amendment to Annex A of the Voluntary Restraint Agreement (VRA) (43 KB) A decision was agreed upon to amend Annex A of the Voluntary Restraint Agreement (VRA) by adding 74 types of firearms to the list. Please note, that even though these 74 firearms have been added to Annex A, ATF will still need to determine the importability of some of these firearms. Firearms Open Letter
Michigan-Mar2004-Open Letter-Curbing the Flow of Illegal Crime Guns (75 KB)
The purpose of this letter is to advise you of ATF’s continued commitment and strong partnership with the Michigan firearms industry and to request your assistance in combating the illegal traffic and use of firearms.
Firearms Open Letter
All FFLs-Oct1998-Open Letter-Pawnbroker Transactions (30 KB)
The Omnibus Appropriations Act for 1999 provides that a pawnbroker may complete a NICS check when a firearm is offered as collateral for a loan, at the option of the dealer.  ATF will be publishing a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking setting forth the procedures pawnbrokers must follow if they wish to complete the optional NICS check at the time a firearm is offered for pawn.
Firearms Open Letter
South Carolina-Sept1999-Open Letter-Notice of Amendment-South Carolina Ceases Operations as NICS Point of Contact (98 KB)
The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division has now notified ATF and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) that they will cease operations as the NICS point of contact on September 30, 1999.  Therefore, beginning October 1, 1999, in order to initiate a NICS check for any firearm, South Carolina licensees must contact the FBI’s NICS Operations Center
Firearms Open Letter
North Dakota-Apr2000-Open Letter-Correction Notice-Qualifying Permit Alternatives to NICS Check (103 KB)
The provisions of North Dakota law regarding the issuance of concealed weapons permits were recently amended.  Based on these changes, concealed weapons permits issued on or after December 1, 1999, will now qualify as alternatives to a NICS check at the time of transfer.
Firearms Open Letter
All FFLs-June2000-Open Letter-Open Letter to Importers Regarding CICAD Model Regulations (113 KB) Through a final rule published June 20, 2000, in the Federal Register, ATF is amending its regulations and affected forms to comply with Model Regulations for the Control of the International Movement of Firearms, Their Parts and Components, and Ammunition (the Model Regulations). Firearms Open Letter
Oregon-Dec2000-Open Letter-Notice of Amendment for All Oregon Firearms Background Checks (101 KB)
The provision of Oregon State law regarding all firearms background checks was recently amended. Effective December 8, 2000, the Oregon State Police will act as the point of contact for all firearms background checks (handguns and long guns).
Firearms Open Letter
All FFLs-Nov2001-Open Letter-Supporting Documentation for the Importation of Surplus Military Curio or Relic Firearms (90 KB) In response to the recent number of inquiries from licensed importers concerning the importation of surplus military curio or relic firearms and the submission of supporting documentation, ATF has published ATF Ruling 2001-3. Firearms Open Letter
All FFLs-May2006-Open Letter-Adding a Vertical Fore Grip to a Handgun (193 KB) This open letter provides information regarding the affect of adding a vertical fore grip to a handgun, therefore making it a firearm that falls under the National Firearms Act (NFA). Firearms Open Letter
National-Jan2005-Open Letter-Fabrique Nationale FR 5.7 Pistol (530 KB)
The letter provides information in response to numerous questions that ATF has received regarding the capabilities of the 5.7 X 28mm cartridge and the FR 5.7 (Fabrique Nationale) pistol.
Firearms Open Letter
National-Oct2004-Open Letter-Improperly Destroyed Russian GP-30 Grenade Launcher (543 KB)
The letter provides information on ATF's findings with regards to the improperly destroyed Russian GP-30 grenade launcher, which is classified as a destructive device.   
Firearms Open Letter
2016-1- Requirements to Keep Firearms Records Electronically (157 KB) Approved alternate method or procedure for licensed importers, licensed manufacturers, licensed dealers, and licensed collectors to maintain their firearms acquisition and disposition records electronically instead of in paper format provided the conditions set forth in this ruling are met.  Supersedes ATF Ruling 2013-5. Firearms Ruling
2016-2 – Electronic ATF Form 4473 (160 KB)
Approved alternate method or procedure for FFLs to use an electronic version of Form 4473, instead of the paper format, provided the conditions set forth in this ruling are met.  Supersedes ATF Rul. 2008-3.
Firearms Ruling
2016-3 – Consolidation of Records Required for Manufacturers (143 KB)
Approved alternate method or procedure for licensed firearms manufacturers to consolidate their records of manufacture or other acquisition of firearms with their separate firearms disposition records, provided all of the conditions in this ruling are met.  Supersedes Ruling 2010-8.
Firearms Ruling
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