View Full Version : Do I need a permanant residence to get a supressor?

Outlaw Patriot
May 25, 2009, 02:39
I want a suppressor bad (ok, well several really :D ). Problem is, I'm young, don't own my own place, and move around every six months. Even worse, I'll be moving between a few different states.

I know you have to notify the ATF if you're going over sate lines, but is that it? As long as the individual states allow you to have nfa items, can you move around at will?

I've been looking at the overall cost of a few suppressors, and I think I'll be able to afford it money wise, but I'm not sure if its worth the hassle.

Also, is there any legal way to leave a suppressor in the care of someone else? Like if I was to travel out of the country would I have to leave it in a safe deposit box, or with a class III FFL, or could I just let one of my parents hold on to it for a while?

Thanks for any help, and please forgive my ignorance.

May 25, 2009, 05:41
If you form a trust and have the item registered to the trust. You can add your parents to the trust and then they may have possession of it. Otherwise only you are supposed to be able to access it. I don't see why having an ffl that pays an sot to hold it would be a problem. But I dunno if many would unless you were buddy buddy.

" Moving Registered NFA Firearms Interstate

Individuals other than qualified Federal firearms licensees must obtain permission from ATF prior to temporarily or permanently moving a machine-gun, short-barreled shotgun, short-barreled rifle, or destructive device interstate. To obtain permission to move these firearms, please submit to ATF either a letter requesting permission to move them or an ATF Form 5320.20, Application to Transport Interstate or Temporarily Export Certain NFA Firearms. This form is available at the ATF Internet website or may be obtained by contacting the NFA Branch. If you are submitting the request by letter, please include the:

• Name of registrant;
• The firearm(s);
• The current location of the firearm(s);
• The location to which the firearm(s) will be transported;
• The date(s) and means of transportation (car, plane, boat, etc.); and
• The reason the firearm is being moved.

Please also indicate in the letter whether: (1) the move is temporary or permanent; (2) the move will involve a transfer of the title; and (3) whether the possession of the firearm will violate local or State law at the destination. The ATF Form 5320.20 includes these requirements. Requests for interstate transportation will be denied by ATF if possession of the firearm at the destination will violate State or local law.

Registrants do not have to obtain permission from ATF to move a silencer or “any other weapon” interstate. However, if a registrant’s address for these types of firearms changes after registration with ATF, please notify the NFA Branch in writing of the new address, so the NFRTR can reflect the registrant’s correct address."
-quoted from atf website.

As you can see it does not state anything about suppressors. Supposedly you don't need to inform them. But i'd have to google more. One thing to worry about is states that have laws with further restrictions on top of the federal regulations. Some states ban suppressors. Some states may not have pre-emption laws so maybe suppressors are illegal in some counties or cities while legal in others.

I'm betting the atf would prefer you had a permanent address. But as it states above even for an mg if the move is within state nothing is required of you. But local laws may say differently. Some states require you register your mgs with the atf and the state goverment or police.

From what you say i'm thinking it might be a problem. It's possible the address you live at may be different by the time you even get the paperwork back. Which could be months and right now could be quite a few months. The backlog is alot longer this year. Supposedly 2x as many forms filed as last year. So you'd have a stamp with the wrong address. If you had already moved to another state. I dunno. But i'm not an agent. Give em a call.

The best thing to do would be to call your closest atf office and ask someone who knows.

May 25, 2009, 05:51
(M22) If an individual is changing his or her State of residence and the individual’s application to transport the NFA firearm cannot be approved because of a prohibition in the new State, what options does a lawful possessor have? [Back]

NFA firearms may be left in a safe deposit box in his or her former State of residence. Also, the firearm could be left or stored in the former State of residence at the house of a friend or relative in a locked room or container to which only the registered owner has a key. The friend or relative should be supplied with a copy of the registration forms and a letter from the owner authorizing storage of the firearm at that location.

USMC 0341
May 25, 2009, 10:52
I've been living overseas since 1993 and have had 2 registered MG's and a registered suppressor in a safe deposit box in AZ since then. Someday I will transfer them to NM which is now my state of residence (legal residence - pay taxes, driver's license, registered to vote, etc. - not actual residence).

In my discussions with the BATF(E) this has not been pointed out as a problem.

Outlaw Patriot
May 25, 2009, 16:49
That's good to hear guys. I know I could have just googled this, or called the ATF, and I'll probably still give em a ring just to double check, but I wanted to hear from some actual owners as well. I have a hunch that what the atf says on paper might not always be the whole story.

I can stay put long enough to a couple cans initially, just didn't want to be tied to one place or state for the foreseeable future.

I'd only ever live in Mt, Co, Ut, Wy, or Ak, anyways so the state regs won't bother me too much.

Thanks for the info guys, if anyone else has any experiences or ideas, feel free to chime in, but I think my questions have been answered.

May 26, 2009, 15:58
Some notes on moving while paperwork is in process...

As long as you are on a Form 4, moving while in the middle of a transfer isn't a problem.

Form 1's are more difficult because they get mailed directly to you, and if you move while in process, they go back to ATF.

They don't call you when that happens. You have to track it down. It is a PITA.
Ask me how I know.

So, as long as you are "buying" a suppressor (Form 4, paperwork goes to SOT) and not "building" a suppressor (Form 1, paperwork goes to you), you will be fine.