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Just got my supressor, what should I do with my paperwork?

Discussion in 'NFA Firearms and Accessories' started by Soapy5, Jan 30, 2013.

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  1. thorazine

    thorazine Member

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    You are allowed to do whatever you please with the original as you see fit.

    Mine are setup in an alter like configuration along with spot lights, disco balls, fog machines, flame units and other theatrics all choreographed precisely through my soundboard to the music of my choice.

    -and-

    They are laminated!! (gasp) :what:
     
  2. Donut Destroyer

    Donut Destroyer Member

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    You are correct Aaron, the registration doesn't have to be with the NFA item if you don't mind having it taken from you and going through the process of proving registration. So I guess MUST was not the best choice of words, but it is certainly a good rule of thumb. You are also correct about not requiring prior approval to take a suppressor across state lines, but most other things do require it. As for not seeing any ATF agents at the range, well, don't hang your hat on that one. ATF does not own a single shooting range in the country, so they have to practice somewhere.
     
  3. Aaron Baker

    Aaron Baker Member

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    Frankly, guys, I think it is important not to put out misinformation by trying to pass one's opinion off as the law or rule.

    That's why I've said in every post that it's a good idea to have your paperwork with you. As has already been pointed out, some ranges will insist on seeing it. Or you might run into a local law enforcement official that will give you a hassle if you don't have it on hand. Or there's always a tiny chance that you'll meet an ATF field agent some day.

    But while I might think it's a good idea to keep a copy of the paperwork at hand, it isn't legally required, so I don't want to misinform people by saying it is. You won't go to prison for not having your paperwork on you. It might create hassles, and in the cases of some uninformed LEOs, it might be a big hassle, but it isn't illegal.

    Also, unless your state has laws on NFA firearms, which my home state of Kentucky does not, the game warden or sheriff isn't the authority having jurisdiction because he doesn't have any jurisdiction. Where I live, the only laws governing NFA firearms are federal laws. Local law enforcement don't enforce federal laws. That doesn't mean that they might not try, but the statute is clear that only federal agents have the authority to ask for your records. That's the point of citing the statute.

    Then again, I'm a lawyer, so I know what I'm doing when I have a confrontation with law enforcement and so what I choose to do isn't necessarily what other people should do.

    Which means keeping a copy with you is a good idea. It just isn't the law and it isn't illegal to have your NFA firearm without the paperwork nearby. Period.

    Aaron
     
  4. MasterSergeantA

    MasterSergeantA Member

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    Aaron makes some very excellent points. And the difference between what is legally required and what might merely be a 'good idea' should always be considered.

    ATF agents are typically taught to always think 'confiscation', so if you were asked for your paperwork and had to go home to get it, you would likely be missing your firearm for a while. I will not fathom a guess at how long that might be or what hoops you might have to negotiate to get it back.

    And with state and local constabulary, being clueless doesn't stop them from acting...at least initially. As the saying goes, you might beat the rap, but not thride.

    So I will continue to keep my paperwork with me and hope that I never had a need of it.
     
  5. Aaron Baker

    Aaron Baker Member

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    I think that expression about "beating the rap, but not the ride" sums up exactly my feelings on the issue. It's good to keep the paperwork handy to minimize problems. I recommend it.

    Personally, I don't always follow my own advice, but I'm confident in my chances to prevail in "roadside court" since I know the law and am an attorney. However, I may just be acting foolish, since hardly anyone ever wins in "roadside court." I suppose it's a matter of "do what I say, not what I do."

    But I do think we should tell people the truth about what is legally required because otherwise we're spreading misinformation out of a desire to scare people into acting the way we think is prudent. I'd rather give factual information and good advice, and let adults make their own informed decisions.

    Aaron
     
  6. MasterSergeantA

    MasterSergeantA Member

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    I wholeheartedly agree, Aaron. Having the facts is always a better starting point than relying on "he said" or flat out rumour. There is a lot of crap flying around the 'Net and it is always nice to have someone who actually knows the law.
     
  7. Donut Destroyer

    Donut Destroyer Member

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    I do agree with putting the truth out, but the thing you have to consider in attending "roadside court" is that, while you may be confident in your chances to prevail being a lawyer, the officer is the judge in that particular court. As a career law enforcement officer, I never lost a "roadside court" verdict. I never met anyone who could talk me out of a ticket, but I certainly met quite a few who could talk me into one. Don't dismiss a local officer's authority to question the registration of an NFA firearm either, even in states with no specific NFA laws of their own. There are many local officers who serve on federal task forces and they are commissioned as federal officers, which may give them the authority to ask for NFA registration. Of course they will have federal ID to prove their commission, but they are still local officers. Just sayin'.....
     
  8. Bovice

    Bovice Member

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    So you're admitting to being part of the problem and not the solution.

    This is THR, and LEO or not, your actions are not high road.
     
  9. Aaron Baker

    Aaron Baker Member

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    Donut Destroyer, your attitude makes me sad.

    NFA firearms are required to be stamped with the maker's name, city and state. I am confident that anyone who has the ACTUAL authority to ask for proof of registration under 26 U.S.C. 5841(e), which does not include all federal agents and certainly excludes local authorities who are not commissioned federal agents, will know that a person carrying an NFA firearm that is properly engraved or stamped is extremely unlikely to be illegally possessing it.

    In other words, if I have an SBR with my name, city and state stamped on it, or a suppressor made by a suppressor company with their info engraved on it, chances are I'm legally in possession. And "chances are" translates into a lack of probable cause for you to believe it's illegal. And since I've already proven that you don't know the law and that a copy of the paperwork accompanying the firearm at all times isn't a "MUST," you don't have the authority to seize my firearm or my person.

    If you were to seize my firearm or my person without probable cause, especially if you actually lacked the authority to enforce the federal law in question, then it sounds like I'd lose in "roadside court," which wouldn't surprise me in the least.

    But that's nothing compared to you and your department losing a civil lawsuit in federal court brought under Section 1983 for violation of my civil rights.

    Throwing your LEO weight around without the actual legal authority to back it up is definitely not High Road, especially when you're penalizing fellow gun owners for violating what you THINK the law is.

    Aaron
     
  10. Aaron Baker

    Aaron Baker Member

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    As a post script, Donut Destroyer...

    Your Gestapo-esque "show me your papers" attitude towards legal, law-abiding gun owners is extremely anti-Second Amendment and anti-American, and it's the unfortunate reason that I DO recommend carrying a copy of your tax stamp when you aren't legally required to. Because cops like you exist.
     
  11. MasterSergeantA

    MasterSergeantA Member

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    Hear, hear!
     
  12. PGT

    PGT Member

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    random Q which I'm sure has been answered 1000 times; who holds the can while the paperwork goes through? The manufacturer/vendor or your FFL?
     
  13. Captains1911

    Captains1911 Member

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    The manufacturer holds it until Form 3 is approved, the dealer holds the item until the Form 4 is approved.
     
  14. Captains1911

    Captains1911 Member

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    This is the reason why so many good cops get a bad name.
     
  15. PBR Streetgang

    PBR Streetgang Member

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    as a NFA stamp collector ,put your original away some place safe such as nonmovable fireproof safe or in a bank safe deposit box. Make yourself some copies and carry one either with you or with your NFA item.

    In 98% of original stamp loss cases, you will need to reapply and pay another $200
     
  16. Donut Destroyer

    Donut Destroyer Member

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    Whoa, time out here guys. Getting a little carried away. Aaron, you can quote all the laws you want, but in my state, registration is required at the state level, so local officers do have the authority to ask for registration. Maybe not NFA, but state. I know what information is required to be on a firearm and I have also had occasion (more than once) to encounter NFA weapons on the street, possessed by people to whom they were not registered to and weapons that were not registered at all. It would be a dereliction of my duty not to ask for proof and since state registration is required, reasonable suspicion would exist to take a weapon into custody until proof is offered. I mentioned the "roadside court" issue because the side of the road as it where is not the place for someone to get an attitude when cooperation and courtesy would go much further. By your own statement, your personal inclination would be to argue because you are a lawyer. I take great pride in my personal and professional integrity and have nothing but disdain for LEO's who do not. There is nothing anti second ammendment or American about taking due diligence in enforcing the law. You can take offense all you want, but I was only trying to point out that "roadside court" is rarely the proper venue for arguing a position. Is it easier to stand on the side of the road and just get everybody pissed off or is it easier to just have the documentation at hand. I used the term "must" mainly because most people would not split hairs like you have. It was not the best choice of words, but it wasn't a bad rule of thumb. And no Bovice, I am not admitting to being part of the problem. The problem is that everyone sees boogeymen hiding at every turn, and until you have walked a mile in my shoes, don't be so quick to judge.
     
  17. Captains1911

    Captains1911 Member

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    You made it sound like you enjoy harassing honest people for no reason other than you can. Sorry that i misinterpreted your post.
     
  18. Donut Destroyer

    Donut Destroyer Member

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    Hey, no worries Cap. Sometimes things come across different than they were intended. I have never harassed someone just for giggles, never will.
     
  19. Aaron Baker

    Aaron Baker Member

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    Great, your state has its own NFA laws. Feel free to enforce those. If my state had such laws, I would take a different position personally.

    My issue is that you took a long time to get around to saying what you really meant. And I'm sorry if you think I'm splitting hairs, but words mean things.

    The word "must" does not mean "is probably a good idea and keeps you safest from overstepping police officers." It means "required." In states that don't have additional state laws, your statement was simply not true.

    Beyond that, you said:

    As I already pointed out, I do dismiss their authority. If you're not an ATF agent, you're not entitled to ask me for my documentation of having paid the tax. (Absent state laws to the contrary...)

    If you want to offer some state-specific advice when someone asks what to do with their paperwork, feel free to tell people what Louisiana's requirements are. Just please don't misstate the federal requirements.

    Aaron
     
  20. Donut Destroyer

    Donut Destroyer Member

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    So, if a local officer, sworn and credentialed by a municipal agency, is also carrying ID showing he is an ATF Task Force officer, you would dismiss his authority to ask for your registration?

    Fine Aaron, point taken. I misspoke by saying "must". I was wrong. Words do mean things and your own words that you would not follow your advice regarding "roadside court" because you are an attorney is a reason why LEO's have no respect for lawyers. This isn't a courtroom though, it is a discussion forum. You have your perspectives and I have mine. I doesn't make either of us right or wrong. One of my intents is just that there are many laws, regulations and restrictions at all levels and the best guide is to just keep things simple. Keep the paperwork with the gun and things are much easier for all.
     
  21. Bovice

    Bovice Member

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    This isn't about perspectives or walking in someone else's shoes, donut. Just because you found a couple unregistered NFA weapons doesn't mean they all are, and it doesn't give you the right to assume guilt. People are innocent until proven guilty.

    This is about what's written in the books. Entering opinions into your self proclaimed "roadside court" won't fly here.
     
  22. Charles S

    Charles S Member

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    As a long time Louisiana resident... No longer... You are correct that NFA weapons must be registered with the State Police. However, no where in the statute does it say an individual...once registered, must produce that on demand. I will concede that as a law abiding citizen I would have produced that information if asked...However you, unless working under the jurisdiction of the ATF have no authority to demand the Federal tax stamp.

    I carried concealed in LA for a long time under the jurisdiction of individual parishes, prior to the state wide law, and was never harassed when pulled over.

    I am always polite when I deal with a police officer and very cognizant of their safety. I appreciate your service, but I must admit your post has rubbed me wrong and initially gives me the impression you are part of the problem. Your later clarification helps.

    There is a great deal of ignorance regarding NFA laws and I feel it is all of our jobs to educate, when appropriate, in a polite manner. I agree the road side when an officer is concerned for his and hopefully your safety may not be the best time.
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2013
  23. bill3424

    bill3424 Member

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    I'd make some reduced copies and keep it with the can at all times. More often than not, you'll probably never need to show them to anyone....but just in case.
     
  24. Donut Destroyer

    Donut Destroyer Member

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    Yes Charles. My post obviously rubbed a few people the wrong way. I assure you that was not my intent. We already established that local LEOs do not have the authority to ask for federal registrations unless they are ATF task force officers. I also agree that LA does not specify that registration must be carried with a registered gun but my main point is that without the registration, there is no immediate way to prove that a weapon is in fact registered and it can be seized until proof is provided or obtained. So the best policy is to avoid issues is to keep the registration with the gun. LA law is squirrelly. The law does not provide for private citizens to possess NFA type firearms under most circumstances, but registrations are still issued. LA law also gives two different definitions of machine gun in the same section of the law.
     
  25. Charles S

    Charles S Member

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    Donut Destroyer,

    Thank you for your response,

    Just so you know... We (I) appreciate your service and the sacrifices you make to serve the public. It is not an easy job, nor does the pay reflect the risk or simply the headaches you deal with. I hope you know, as a citizen, I am always cognizant of your safety.. and if ever called upon (hopefully not) would help protect you.

    You are obviously knowledgeable about the Louisiana law, not every law enforcement officer is, which as you stated is written in a confusing manner.

    It is tough (read frustrating) at times on citizens who have chosen to inform ourselves of the law when we deal with others..fellow citizens or LE who have not taken the time to know the law.

    I cannot tell you how many times I have been asked if I have a license for one of my cans. I cannot count the number of times I have been treated as ignorant by "the knowledgeable," who have never taken a course from Gun Sight, Lethal Force Institute.... etc..

    Again.. No offense intended.. I appreciate your service.. Welcome to TheHighRoad
     
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