non-resident purchasing handgun in VT?


April 5, 2008, 04:14 AM
hi everyone, i'm lauren. this is my first post. i'm posting this because i'm moving to vermont in ~2 months and want to get a handgun for protection (especially because i'll be living alone). the thing is, i'm only 20, so i can't buy one for myself for another year.

what i'm wondering is this:
what are the requirements for purchasing a handgun in vermont? i think my father will be willing to buy me one, but will he legally be allowed to buy/furnish me with a handgun even though he is a resident of new jersey?

how exactly would this work? i read about non-residents sending handguns from VT to an FFL in their state, but what if the non-resident wants the gun to stay in vermont? is that possible/legal?

thank you in advance :)

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April 5, 2008, 04:49 AM
As per federal law you may not purchase a handgun in a state in which you do not have residency unless it is transfered through an FFL(federally licensed gun dealer) in that state and mailed to one in your state, unfortunately the age limit still applies.

The best/easiest way to go about getting a handgun would be to buy from an individual(non-FFL holder) in VT, as the age requirement applies solely to buying/transferring a handgun(or NFA item) through an FFL. I would suggest that you take an NRA handgun safety course if you are not already familiar with firearm safety/handgun operation, but the state of Vermont does not require it(which is as it should be).

This should be possible right after you get a VT driver's license(though it may or may not be necessary to meet the federal law's requirement of residing in the state of Vermont to purchase a handgun in the state of Vermont) to prove to the seller that they are not breaking federal law.


All I did was read the law:
Federal - Specifically (a) (3), though I was not able to find a definition for residency. Perhaps someone familiar with the case law/the appearance of the term in other places in federal law will fill that in.
Vermont - I couldn't find anything that said what I said was illegal, but again, I am not a lawyer, so ask one before doing anything potentially illegal. There is nothing on the LCAV website ( to suggest that I missed something, if that counts for anything.

April 5, 2008, 04:52 AM
You can only purchase or receive ownership of a handgun in your state of residence (the state on your driver's license). If you are a legally a resident of Vermont then no, your father in New Jersey can't buy a handgun for you and then you take it back to Vermont, nor can you purchase one in New Jersey.

You can, however, select a gun out-of-state and have it sent to a FFL in Vermont to be transferred to you. You will first need to make arrangements with a dealer in Vermont to affect the transfer for you. Then have a dealer in New Jersey (or where ever else) ship the gun to the Vermont FFL to be transfered to you.

Even easier: Find the gun you like in Vermont. Tell Dad how much it costs and have him send you the money. Then go buy it.

Complicating all of this, you will need to be 21 to buy a gun from a FFL anywhere. I don't know if Vermont allows a face-to-face (non-dealer) sale at 18 or not. Some states do, so that may (or may not) be an option. Maybe somebody from VT will chime in on that aspect.

April 5, 2008, 01:25 PM
What state are you in/a resident of now? You can probably buy a handgun from an individual in your state now. The 21 age limit usually only applies by federal law to purchases from an FFL.

You can even arrange for a friend, who is legal to purchase the handgun, to buy the handgun from an FFL. They can then turn around and sell that handgun to you, if it is legal for the Face to Face sale to occur in your state. This is NOT a straw purchase. A simple bill of sale between that party and you is all that is recommended (if nothing else is required by state law). If you want to PM me with your current state of residence, I can look up the laws for you.

April 5, 2008, 01:42 PM
thanks for all the replies.

OMGWTFBBQ: i'm not really trying to evade the age requirement to purchase a handgun, as my father is willing to do it for me. i'm just trying to ascertain what the easiest legal way would be to do that. it seems like buying from an individual in vermont may be the way to go... but what i'm wondering is: how would one go about finding individuals who are selling handguns? it's not as easy as just going to a store, so i don't even know where to start looking.

mojo-jo-jo: buying a handgun in nj and sending it to an FFL in vermont does seem plausible, but new jersey requires a permit to purchase a handgun, so there's that. i'm sure my father would be able to secure the permit, it's just whether or not he's willing to that's the issue. haha.

navyLT: i've also considered having a friend buy me a handgun and then buying it from them, but at this point i don't have any friends in vermont who are interested in guns... so that might be a little strange. i PMed you back, though.

thanks again - and it'd be awesome if a VT resident could put in their .02

Art Eatman
April 5, 2008, 02:14 PM
Once you've established residency in Vermont, with such proof as a driver's license and some utility/telephone bills, you are legal for face-to-face purchase from an individual. Newspaper/tradepaper ads, gunshows (non-FFL guys)...

I'm assuming there's no age problem in Vermont...


April 5, 2008, 02:27 PM
art: thank you. i was actually just about to post that as soon as i get a vermont ID, it seems as though the easiest way to go about procuring a handgun for myself would be to buy it face to face.

one question, though: besides gun shows, how do i find individuals selling handguns? i've tried doing some research, but i'm coming up short. any links/advice in the right direction would be very much appreciated.

Winchester 73
April 5, 2008, 02:36 PM
one question, though: besides gun shows, how do i find individuals selling handguns?

Shotgun News,Gun Digest,classified ads in some newspapers and:
are possibilities.

Cavalier Knight
April 5, 2008, 03:18 PM
Click here: Vermont Laws (

April 5, 2008, 04:10 PM
Turnyourback:most states have "want add" magazines,where you can buy any thing.usually for 50/75 cents.there are sections for guns.WE had on in Mass,there are some here in SC.get a copy of gun regulations for VT.dont ask police or others.get it from the horses mouth.VT has very little gun rules.also you can get a CCW from them for the asking which will cover you in some states[not mass or nj or ny]:uhoh:--:D

April 5, 2008, 05:55 PM
VT has very little gun rules.

also you can get a CCW from them for the asking which will cover you in some states[not mass or nj or ny]--
VT doesn't issue carry permits, as none is needed in VT. You might want to look into non-resident permits from neighboring states though.

April 6, 2008, 02:33 AM
You can also join a gun club/range. You can probably find sellers there. In Oklahoma there is a gun forum just for Okies, and man they usually had some good deals in their classifieds!

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