Private Sale


November 16, 2008, 06:24 PM
Is it legal to sell a rifle privately? My friend may be selling his AR, and since I'm new to the firearm game, I wanted to know if I could buy it off him, legally? I see alot of talk about only going through FFL's, ast least with online purhcases, and was wondernig if it was the same when buying from a private seller.


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November 16, 2008, 06:31 PM
If the sale would involve crossing a state line, then you would need to do it through a federally licensed firearms dealer.

If not, then it's a question of state law, which we can't answer without knowing your state of residence--and even then, you will want to be sure to do some confirmation research yourself. Do not trust legal advice you get from faceless netizens, even well-intentioned ones; they will not do jail time for you, no matter how genuine their concern and advice.

November 16, 2008, 06:33 PM
As long as you live in the same state, it is okay without a FFL. Interstate, a FFL is needed. To buy from the manufacture (ie gun stores) you must be a FFL holder.

November 16, 2008, 06:33 PM
Yes. Private sales are legal. As long as you live in the same state, you can buy or sell just like any other piece of property.
Take a look at your state laws, because CT for example requires reporting of handgun sales(long guns can be bought or sold privately without any paper trail), but in most states private sales are legal with no paperwork required. The seller can't sell to someone he knows is a "prohibited person."

November 16, 2008, 06:35 PM
Thanks for the help guys. I guess I forgot to do my state in my profile. Unfortunately, I live in the great state of NY, so it's not always 'easy' with this stuff.

Who would I talk to about that? Should I call the local LEO's? Or just stop by a store and see what they know?


November 16, 2008, 06:37 PM
I'd do some research online or call someone at the state level before I voluntarily notified my local law enforcement that I was getting a rifle shipped in the mail.
Remember..*67 before you dial anyone requesting info.

November 16, 2008, 06:38 PM
I'd do a search online for NY state law at the site, or wherever they post their laws. Police may not be up to date on the law.
Also research the NY assault weapons ban, and make sure it conforms to those rules. Stores are probably a good place to ask, if you have a local store where you know them and trust them. They would definitely be up on the NY AWB ins and outs.
Getting a gun in a private sale has the advantage of not being "on the books" which in my opinion is a very good thing. Government employees, police etc. may "recommend" that you register it, or report your ownership somehow, but unless its required by law, I'd take it as a great opportunity to get a rifle privately.

November 16, 2008, 07:07 PM
Do a "bill of sale" (you can find generic on the internet) that documents the 2 parties involved and what was sold and for how much. Both sign and date it, give a copy to the other party and you keep the original.

November 16, 2008, 08:15 PM
What is the legality of buying a rifle from another private party and having them ship it directly to me? Was looking at a rifle on GB and after exchanging emails he offers to ship it directly to my home as we are both in TX. Seemed a little bit murky to me, but I really haven't looked into it to see what the laws are regarding non FTF private sales.

Jim Watson
November 16, 2008, 08:19 PM
There is no FEDERAL law against him shipping you a rifle in the same state. There might be a state law restricting it. He might have trouble getting Fed-UP to accept a gun to a non FFL, even though it is legal.

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