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FFLs can ship a handgun UPS Ground?

Discussion in 'Legal' started by bikemutt, Apr 29, 2012.

  1. bikemutt

    bikemutt Active Member

    I just was notified a handgun I bought online has been shipped to my FFL. The service level is Ground and the estimated delivery date is consistent with ground service. Adult signature is required. The shipment is Interstate. Additionally the tracking information states the recipient is "Xyx GUNS & Ammo".

    I had no idea FFLs could use ground service for Interstate shipping of handguns. I thought the rasison d'etre why UPS/FedEx require overnight service is to minimize the amount of time a gun languishes in their custody where it could be stolen. Furthermore, I always thought their should be nothing on the package to indicate the contents. I know that just because it says GUNS doesn't necessarily mean it is a gun, could be gun parts I suppose.

    In any event, the shipment just seemed to me to go against two of the basic tenets of handgun shipping as I've come to know them.
  2. Taurus 617 CCW

    Taurus 617 CCW Active Member

    As far as I knew (and have always done), all handguns go by air. Whether it be one, two, or three day. Here is a section on shipping handguns copied directly from their website.

    Handguns, as defined by 18 U.S.C. § 921,will be accepted for transportation only via UPS Next Day Air Services, specifically, UPS Next Day Air® Early A.M.®, UPS Next Day Air®, and UPS Next Day Air Saver®.

    Source: http://www.ups.com/content/us/en/resources/ship/packaging/guidelines/firearms.html
  3. Bubbles

    Bubbles New Member

    He probably didn't declare it as a handgun. We get a lot shipped in from FFL's that go ground with no insurance or signature required. We're home-based and it's quite disconcerting to open the front door and find a stack of rifles on the porch.
  4. deadin

    deadin Active Member

    If the FFL was paying the shipping charges, I suppose they could "self insure" and figure an occasional loss could be covered by the savings in shipping costs. What would be interesting is if the recipient is paying the shipping, what did the sender charge them? Then the FFL could probably make up for any losses with ease......
  5. Bubba613

    Bubba613 member

    An FFL may ship a handgun via USPS to another FFL. There is no further requirement.
  6. mesinge2

    mesinge2 New Member

    FFLs do not have to ship next day air like the rest of us. USPS or Ground is perfectly legal and common for an FFL to use to ship a gun. Imagine the cost of a transfer it they had to ship next day. It'd be $100 to pick up your gun ($40 for the FFL and $60 for the shipping)
  7. dogtown tom

    dogtown tom Active Member

    FFL's get no special exemption from UPS or FedEx.

    Do not get confused......both USPS and common carriers will accept rifles and shotguns for shipment from anyone. UPS and FedEx allow rifles and shotguns to go Ground....for ANYONE.

    Licensed dealers can mail handguns through the USPS and mere mortals are restricted by law to rifles and shotguns only when mailing USPS.

    When shipping via common carrier such as UPS or FedEx, ANYONE (FFL's and mortals) can choose any level of service they desire (Ground, 3 day, Next Day, Overnight, whatever) without violating Federal law.

    If the common carrier's tariffs (shipping policies) say handguns must go "Overnight" and you decide to ship "Ground" you risk getting denied for any insurance claim for loss, damage or theft..........because you violated their policies. (It doesn't matter what the clerk at the UPS Store or FedEx told you)

    While some high volume dealers may get an exemption from a common carrier, I've yet to see it. Even Bud's ships handguns UPS Next Day (and they aren't paying standard consumer rates). If Buds cant ship handguns Ground, quite likely no dealer has the exemption.
  8. brickeyee

    brickeyee New Member

    Instead of blathering you might go read the terms of carriage form UPS or FedEx.
  9. mesinge2

    mesinge2 New Member

    Thank you for the correction dogtown tom, I learned something. I was simply misinformed from my local UPS Store. They should better explain what is the law and what their policies state.

    Also, thank you for the respectful tone brickeyee. It is clear you have a way with others.

    Have a nice Sunday.
  10. karlsgunbunker

    karlsgunbunker New Member

    Same here!
  11. crracer_712

    crracer_712 New Member

    I asked about this to my FFL whom I do most of my trasnfer with. He said he called ATF and that they said they didn't care how a gun was shipped, FFL to FFL, and that the carreir may have the restrictions as to how it is shipped.
  12. bikemutt

    bikemutt Active Member

    I don't think ATF cares how a gun is shipped by anyone as long as it's going to a FFL. Now if it's a handgun, USPS does not permit non-licensees to ship one period; UPS and FedEx have rules stating it must be sent using overnight service.
  13. oneounceload

    oneounceload member

    Even S&W uses Fedex air for returns of handguns sent to them for repair - it is the slowest form of air available and I am sure they get a nice discount for volume, but it is, nevertheless, by air
  14. NavyLCDR

    NavyLCDR member

    Thompson Center returns repaird firearms via UPS ground. At least to me they did.
  15. brickeyee

    brickeyee New Member

    Stating things as fact without even bothering to check the accuracy is not the way to "have a way" with others.

    Some of us actually spend time learning before saying things.
  16. bikemutt

    bikemutt Active Member

    The fact that some FFLs and gun manufacturers appear to routinely use FedEx and UPS ground services leads me to believe those carriers may very well make unpublished deals available to FFLs which they don't for non-licensees.

    If that's the case then I think it's a bit of a stretch to cite minimizing the opportunity for theft as a reason to use their overnight service. I don't know where or when that claim grew legs but if it's accurate, I call steer manure :cuss:
  17. dogtown tom

    dogtown tom Active Member

    The fact that Bud's (who ships 200+ guns a week) doesn't use Ground for handguns, leads me to believe that no dealer, distributor or manufacturer gets an exemption from the overnight/next day requirement.

    What they DO get is heavily discounted rates for Overnight/Next Day service.

    Quite simply, those that ship handguns Ground do it because they haven't been caught.
  18. mgkdrgn

    mgkdrgn New Member

    I remember going through this on another site (FFL Only maybe?) and seem to recall that there are some distributors that are using 2nd day air rather than next day ... but you for sure had to be a major shipper to get that. Any Joe Blow or FFL is going to be told Next Day Air only.

    But ... its a "carrier guideline", not a law, hence the carriers can do with it what they will.
  19. medalguy

    medalguy Active Member

    And that's the operative word, "guideline," not law. The law makes no distinction as to how firearms are to be shipped. The companies have their own rules and regulations, called "tariffs" within the industry. Those are the requirements of the carriers, and can require anything the carriers desire as long as it does not violate law.

    Both Fedex and UPS, in their tariffs, require that handguns be sent overnight, for whatever reason you wish to ascribe to it. It may be to reduce the chance for theft, or it may be to increase revenue. It really doesn't matter, and if you wish to use the carrier, you must follow their tariffs. Otherwise, if the item disappears in transit, they will not honor any insurance.
  20. bikemutt

    bikemutt Active Member

    I suppose if the contents of a package are undeclared with respect to what it is, and it's insured for a certain value, if UPS acknowledges losing it, who's to say it's not a rare book? Of course if they find it later the fur could really fly :D

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