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The National Firearms Act (NFA), requires a tax to be paid to own, possess or transfer guns such as machine guns, short barreled rifles and shotguns, silencers or sound suppressors, and AOWs. They are referred to as Title 2 firearms because they are regulated under Title 2 of the 1968 Gun Control Act.

The (6) distinct types of Class III NFA weapons are …

1) Machineguns – Often referred to as full-autos, automatics, etc… any firearm which fires more than 1 bullet for each individual pull of the trigger.

2) Short Barreled Rifles (SBR) – Rifles with barrels less than 16″.
3) Short Barreled Shotguns (SBS) – Shotguns with barrels less than 18”.
4) Silencers (Suppressors).  Silencers/Suppressors are never portrayed accurately in the movies.  If the bullet speed breaks the sound barrier, you WILL hear a pop.  Suppressors are meant to alter the signature of a weapon so that it sounds like something else and/or the sound heard doesn’t mark the shooter’s position as easily as a non-suppressed weapon.  .22 cal firearms can be suppressed very well though. You can make them so quiet that the action cycling produces more sound than the fired bullet does.  With other calibers, sub sonic ammo can be used to lessen the signature as the bullet leaves the barrel.  Best analogy I can give is a normal suppressed 5.56/223 from an AR15 will sound more like a .22 cal. rifle being fired.

5) Any Other Weapon (AOW) – these are usually things that don’t meet the other criteria above.  Put a fore grip on a pistol, guess what?  You JUST made an AOW weapon and if the proper paperwork and approval were not obtained prior, you have violated NFA regulations and possess a contraband weapon that carries severe fines and penalties.  Other common AOW classifications are these wallet holsters you see that are meant to be/could be fired while the weapon is still in the holster. Pen guns are another example.

AOWs are a little special in that the transfer tax for them is only $5.00.  Ironically, the “maker” of the AOW still has to pay a $200 maker Form 1 fee just like he/she would to make a SBR, SBS or Silencer.

6) Destructive Devices (DDs) – these are self explanatory, but the ATF has classified several classes of shotguns now as destructive devices.  The infamous ‘Street Sweeper’ shotgun is considered a DD by the ATF and falls into the title 2/NFA realm.

The ATF forms usually used in dealing with these weapons are …

1) ATF Form 1 – Maker Form – used by non manufactures to make NFA weapons – for civilians, only Short Barrel Rifles, Short Barreled Shotguns, Silencers and AOWs can still be made (after May 1986).  The ‘one time’ tax stamp for this form is $200.  Maker will received an approved form back from ATF and he/she can then make the item in question. Once made, if transfer of ownership is ever needed, this would be facilitated on a Form 4 below.

2) ATF Form 2 – Manufacturer Registration Form – used by manufacturers only.

3) ATF Form 3 – Dealer to Dealer tax-free form.  Any SOT can transfer to any other SOT tax free NFA weapons he/she has in their possession/ownership.  This is usually done when someone buys an item and it is transferred from a dealer in one state to a dealer in the buyer’s state to facilitate the approval/filing process.

4) ATF Form 4 – Tax paid to/from individual form – used when a NFA item is transferred TO or FROM an individual.  Even if the individual transfers the said item to a SOT holder/dealer, there still is a $200 transfer tax.  Once the SOT has it, they can transfer it back out to another SOT holder tax free (Form 3) or directly to another individual in their state on a tax paid (Form 4).

5) ATF Form 5 – Used to transfer NFA items to police departments for official use – tax fee transfer.  Dealer use only.

6) ATF Form 5320 – Used in the Interstate Transportation of all Title II firearms. If you are traveling between states, you WILL need to fill this form out a few weeks in advance.
NFA weapons must remain in the possession of the registered owner so short of just a few exceptions; you may not permit anyone to have possession of your weapon without you being in immediate presence.

Here at Old Glory Guns & Ammo NH, we can make your NFA Class III weapons purchase painless! It’s easier than buying a car. We will walk you through the process, and assist in filling out the forms properly the first time, so there is no ‘back and forth’ with the BATF. If you have any questions on the process, or are unsure of what you need to get the process started, call us and one of our knowledgeable sales staff will help you!


LEGAL DISCLAIMER: Please note that this content is not legal advice and does not constitute as an attorney / client relationship. If you need professional legal advice,  please contact an qualified attorney that practices in this field.


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