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Why Do I need to tell UPS that it's a Gun?

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by marklbucla, Dec 21, 2006.

  1. marklbucla

    marklbucla Well-Known Member

    As long as I ship it Next Day Air according to their policy, why do I need to tell them that it's a handgun inside the box? Is it so that the clerk has a chance to deny it? Or to steal it?
  2. DMK

    DMK Well-Known Member

    Because unlike the shipping method which is their rule, federal law requires you to tell them it's a firearm. It doesn't make sense (*), nor is it especially prudent, but it made some lawmaker somewhere feel good. Now follow your command like a good serf.

    *Do they do anything different because you told the clerk this? No. Is the package safer? No. Do they even check to see if it's unloaded or properly packaged? No. Does it save any children? No.
  3. Blackfork

    Blackfork Well-Known Member

    shipping rules

    I wonder if thats a Fed rule or a UPS rule? If it's a UPS rule, then they can go fish. They don't have muscle, jails, courts, judges, et, et to back up silly shipping rules against law abiding citizens. Only the Gov has those. If it's just company rules, I'd mark it "agricultural implements" or "machined parts" and ship it.
  4. marklbucla

    marklbucla Well-Known Member

    No it isn't.

    The ATF FAQ says that you're supposed to tell people it's a gun, but the full reading of the law doesn't.

    It's company policy, not federal law.
  5. XD Fan

    XD Fan Well-Known Member

    Any attorneys out there with expertise in this area?
  6. DMK

    DMK Well-Known Member

    That's a bit stronger wording than "you're supposed to do that". I haven't looked up the specific codes, but even if it's not in there, isn't this an ATF ruling? That would certainly get you arrested and cost you big bucks to fight it.
  7. marklbucla

    marklbucla Well-Known Member

  8. MisterPX

    MisterPX Well-Known Member

    On a more intimate note, if you don't tell them it's a gun inside and it disappears, they'll deny you any claims.
  9. Henry Bowman

    Henry Bowman Senior Member

    18 United States Code Section 922(e):

  10. DMK

    DMK Well-Known Member

    Interesting letter marklbucla. Thanks for linking to that.

    So I guess you answered your own question then, no?
  11. jungleroy

    jungleroy Well-Known Member

    My appologies all, do what you feel is in your best interest.
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2006
  12. RNB65

    RNB65 Well-Known Member

    Incorrect. The ATF considers the receiver/frame a firearm. If you're shipping a stripped receiver, you're shipping a firearm.
  13. ocabj

    ocabj Well-Known Member

    I've sold/traded many long guns and long gun receivers. I have always used UPS. I have had zero problems going to the UPS staffed location and shipping a firearm. I've always told the guy processing the package that it's a firearm (non-handgun) with no hassles. I always have the receiver's FFL and tell them I have it and show it, but they don't even bother to look at it.
  14. GunNut

    GunNut Well-Known Member


    My experience has always been exactly the opposite of yours.

    The local UPS shipping center here, always hassles me and tells me that I have to be a FFL dealer to ship any gun with them.

  15. orionengnr

    orionengnr Well-Known Member

    If it is not an actual UPS staffed office, yes, you will likely have difficulties.

    If you go to an actual UPS Shipping Hub (or whatever they call it) and bring a printed copy of their rules (from their website) it will be pretty difficult for them to refuse you (voice of experience here).
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2006
  16. GunNut

    GunNut Well-Known Member

    The one that I go to is actually a UPS staffed distribution hub, and they still don't know their own rules.:rolleyes:

  17. RNB65

    RNB65 Well-Known Member

    I've shipped guns from my local UPS hub on several occasions. I've always told the clerk I was shipping a firearm and they could have cared less. No problems at all.

    I love the big brown truck of happiness. :)
  18. DMK

    DMK Well-Known Member

    It greatly depends on who's working behind the counter and what their own level of arrogance is (kinda like some gunshops no? ;) ).

    I have gotten both scenarios at both my local official UPS staffed depots (ie. the ones with lots of big brown trucks coming and going from there).

    I had one lady who refused to ship 30.06 ammo even when I showed her the law in my C&R legal book. Then I called their own 1-800 number on my cell and verified it was OK. Still no way, she told me she knew better than them because she was some kind of security expert. :scrutiny: I finally when back to the same center on a different shift and the girl said no problem, the other woman was full of it. :mad:

    In light of the above info from the ATF, it's probably best to pre-pay online and adopt a don't ask, don't tell policy.
  19. El Tejon

    El Tejon Well-Known Member

    Mark, why? Because it's federal law and the feds have a bunch of guns and prisons.:D Have never seen it prosecuted though, at least IME.

    Yes, tell them. No big deal. I am continually shipping out firearms.
  20. Jim K

    Jim K Well-Known Member

    There is a rationale behind the wording of the law. Prior to GCA 68, it was legal for anyone to ship a firearm in interstate commerce to anyone else. (Lee Harvey Oswald bought his Carcano by mail order, and it was widely reported that teen gang members were able to purchase handguns by mail simply by signing a form saying they were 21.) The law changed that in regard to interstate shipments by effectively banning shipments to non-licensees, but intra-state shipments to non-licensees are still legal.

    The law specifically says that disclosure does not have to be made for shipments to licensees, no matter where located, but does require disclosure for shipments to non-licensees. This is so the carrier can determine whether to deliver or not. If the person receiving the package is obviously a minor, or there is some other reason to be suspicious, the carrier has the discretion not to make the delivery.

    The carrier companies know this, but have chosen to extend the disclosure to all firearms shipments, in order to cover their fannies. Since disclosure is in the contract, if you don't go along, and something happens, they can sue your socks off, even if there is technically no law violation.

    The USPS is different. Their disclosure rules apply to all mailings, and have the force of federal law. Period.


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