The Truth About NFA Inspection: Forfeiting 4th Amendment Rights

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It seems like every post about an NFA firearm — whether SBR, silencer, etc — is followed by comments along the lines of “owning an NFA item isn’t worth giving up my Fourth Amendment rights.” These comments stem from the belief that NFA ownership means the ATF is legally allowed to stop by and enter your home at any random time for a no-warrant-or-notification-needed “NFA inspection,” and that you’re obligated to comply. The truth of the matter is. . .

This is completely false! These are unfounded rumors. The BATFE cannot and will not show up at your home to inspect your NFA items. Ever. At least not without a warrant, and they damn sure cannot enter your property without a warrant. No, owning NFA-regulated firearms is not any sort of reason for any sort of judge to issue a warrant, either. End of story. You absolutely do not waive your 4th Amendment rights in whole or in part by owning NFA items.

Now, these rumors and fears probably do have some root in fact, though. The ATF can randomly inspect FFLs. ATF’s fact sheet on compliance inspections states that the Gun Control Act allows them to conduct as many as one warrantless, annual compliance inspection (full text of the law is here). It can be random, but it must be during stated business hours at the FFL’s premises. This has nothing to do with NFA firearms in particular, though, as it’s part of the GCA and applies to any FFL regardless of whether or not they deal in NFA items. Again, it only applies to FFLs, not to private parties, gun trusts, etc.

It does apply to licensed C&R collectors as well, although as most C&R licensees are home-based there is no requirement for stating “hours of operation” and, therefore, the ATF will call to make an appointment. The law also states that a collector can elect to have the inspection (it’s an inspection of the collector’s “bound book” of transactions and, if desired, the firearms collection itself to validate it against the bound book) at the nearest ATF office rather than at the collector’s premises.

Bringing this back to the NFA, if a C&R licensee owned NFA items personally or via a trust, they wouldn’t be allowed as part of the inspection anyway since they aren’t C&R (Curious & Relics) and therefore wouldn’t be in the licensee’s bound book as part of the collection. In this case the up-to-once-per-year inspection is very strictly restricted to only the property that falls under the C&R license.

Hope this clears up a common, FUD-filled rumor! I know of a few folks who wanted an SBR but avoided it for years due to the belief that it meant their home would suddenly be open for Federal inspection at any dang time, day or night. This simply is not the case. At all. At least, it doesn’t make Federal intrusion any more likely than it is for a non-NFA owner or, for that matter, a non-firearm owner.

comments

  1. avatar MIKE CROGNALE says:

    Thanks. I needed that. I have two items and had been informed of this. Glad I need not worry.

    1. avatar Joe R. says:

      shh, jeez “Mike” we’re just using our ‘fake’ names today. ; )

  2. avatar Chris Plitt says:

    You didn’t touch on NFA C&R items. Those do exist…

    1. avatar JasonM says:

      But wouldn’t that go through a SOT for transfer, rather than a C&R?

    2. avatar Jeremy S says:

      Same rule. If it’s in your C&R book it’s subject to inspection. Since most C&Rs don’t have business hours you’ll still get that appointment request and can still elect to have it at the ATF office if chosen, or set a specific location in your home for the inspection to take place and the inspector is NOT allowed to go elsewhere in your home without a warrant. The scope of the inspection is still only the bound book and the firearms therein…

  3. avatar Vitsaus says:

    A further reminder that the NFA is not only outdated, but has only helped to create a government body with no accountability, no real regulation, that is far outside the pesky ability of democracy to abolish that which is harmful to people.

    1. avatar DickG says:

      “A further reminder that the NFA is not only outdated, but has only helped to create a government body with no accountability, no real regulation, that is far outside the pesky ability of democracy to abolish that which is harmful to people.”
      .
      A further reminder that the NFA is not only outdated, but has only helped to create a government body with no accountability, no real regulation, WITH NO JUSTIFIABLE PURPOSE, that is far outside the pesky ability of democracy to abolish that which is harmful to people.
      .
      There! Fixed it for ya!

      1. avatar Will says:

        NFA or no, that horse is out of the barn.

        If you read the dissent on the 7th circuit ruling the other day, it basically flat out said that automatic weapons are not covered by the 2A, under the guise that “they’re not common in civilian hands”. It even mentioned that they weren’t common back in the day, save for criminals, so restricting them was likely constitutional.

        I can’t speak to their popularity, though it wouldn’t surprise me as they were likely expensive weapons and firearms were less the hobby they are today than a tool, and most folks didn’t need an automatic weapon to keep predators from their livestock (though clearly they didn’t have the pig problem we have today).

        1. avatar Storm says:

          So the “in common use” was part of Scalia’s opinion as part of “Heller”. The other side of the coin from “US v. Miller” which stated, “The Second Amendment protects only the ownership of military-type weapons appropriate for use in an organized militia.” MGs (automatic weapons) are obviously “military-type weapons appropriate for use in an organized militia”. Eventually, those two opinions are going to have to butt heads.

        2. avatar 16V says:

          Every person interested in the 2A should read at least the basics of Miller.

          http://jpfo.org/filegen-a-m/miller.htm

          Sadly, the case itself was never actually ruled on, as Miller was found dead and never represented in The Court. Despite the fact that antis try to twist Miller more than a double-helix (and sadly succeed) the ruling would have been very pro-gun. Or at least, we get to have everything the military does. Without any impediments or registers.

        3. avatar JJVP says:

          “A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear commonly used, non-automatic arms, shall not be infringed.”

          I don’t see the problem. It is right there on the second amendment. Oh, wait, something doesn’t look right. Hmm.

      2. avatar Raven says:

        Actually, you forgot one use of the BATFE. Some things they seem to be chomping at the bit to do at any given moment; starting gunfights & ordering (requesting?) FBI snipers to execute suspects.

        Oh right, I almost forgot one: Giving dangerous criminals automatic weapons with the express intent of using that subterfuge to negatively influence public opinion in order to subvert the Constitution (again).

        Speaking of. I’m still wondering why no one, bar none has lifted even one finger to remove H0lder from office over F&F, and had him tried for treason. Along ofc, with whomever (come on, we all know who) gave him the authorization to do so, and anyone that had direct/indirect operational knowledge as well.

        They should all be swinging from a nearby tree, by all rights.

        1. avatar Jeremy S says:

          Holder resigned in September and was superseded by Loretta Lynch last month.

        2. avatar LarryinTX says:

          Jeremy, he was not removed, no one even tried, his boss never paid any attention to his crimes, and described him as a minor god when he announced his resignation. Raven’s post is correct.

        3. avatar Jeremy S says:

          No yeah I gotcha there. Just suggesting that if it’s about “still wondering” why nobody is lifting fingers to have him removed from office, the point there became moot last September. Now, prosecuting and holding accountable and all that good stuff, YUP! I’d love to see that happen and I fully believe it damn well should happen. But still working to remove him from office seems a little silly at this point?

  4. avatar Curtis in IL says:

    “The BATFE cannot and will not show up at your home to inspect your NFA items.”

    It’s a pretty big leap from “cannot” to “will not.”

    I’m sure the people of New Orleans shortly after Katrina believed the local police and the National Guard could not, and would not, kick in their doors and confiscate their guns under threat of arrest.

    Sometimes, one man’s paranoia is another man’s history lesson.

  5. avatar Ken says:

    Meanwhile, this is how it REALLY works out in the real world:
    https://gunowners.com/batf.htm

    1. avatar Russ in AK says:

      None of that article has anything to do with private citizens owning NFA items.

      1. avatar Ken says:

        I was intended as a rebuttal to the author’s assertions that the BATF will not come on surprise inspections, will call first, will be great and polite and professional, etc… No, they won’t.
        As the author of the piece I posted(a lawyer and former federal prosecutor) said: “it is based on real world experience with an agency [BATF] which has been found by Congress, by various federal judges and juries, by other federal and local law enforcement agencies, and even by some Presidents to be inept, indifferent to citizens’ rights, and capable of the most outrageous abuses of the law.”
        I think that about says it all….

        1. avatar DickG says:

          Could we add “Thuggish” to your adjectives describing BATFE?
          .

        2. avatar Ken says:

          You sure could in my estimation. I was just quoting the former fed. HE didn’t call them that, but then he used to be one of them….

        3. avatar Raven says:

          I’d take that in the literal sense a bit further than “thuggish”. That description is almost disingenuous when contrasted with some of their recent & past actions.

        4. avatar 16V says:

          They do whatever they want, whenever they want, and no one can stop them legally. There’s too many hundreds of examples of bad behavior to believe any of this pollyanna delusion.

          If they have any interest in you at all, they will arrive in force, behave like animals, trash your place, confiscate whatever they want extralegally, and even if you miraculously find a judge to shut them down, you’re still screwed.

  6. avatar Ken says:

    Those auto-play ads here that you cannot stop makes you not want to come here. If they keep coming, I won’t.

    1. avatar JasonM says:

      Adblock?

        1. avatar The Mountain That Rides says:

          What about people on their phones?

        2. avatar John L. says:

          TMTR: I’m currently running Adblock Plus on Firefox, on an Android phone.

          The ads still load (so I guess TTAG gets some revenue) but then they are deleted from the page display. So if you scroll while the page is loading you may see them, but then they disappear. Not perfect, but far better than without.

          I’m running Firefox, BTW, because google kept messing with Chrome and Dolphin kept getting slow-e–r—… (Ptagh sputter die). So if anyone has a suggestion for a better / faster android browser, please speak up…

        3. avatar Raven says:

          You’d do well to swap to Adblock Edge instead of ABP. It’s a fork of ABP, without the data collection & it doesn’t allow any ads unlike ABP.

      1. avatar Chris says:

        What about those of us who want to support this “Ad-Supported” site?

        TTAG: If you insist on becoming like the front-page of Yahoo circa 2000-2004, expect similar consequences.

    2. avatar Steve says:

      Same here.

    3. avatar Gatha58 says:

      Get a good ad blocking program. I use Malwarebytes and have NO issues with ads on this site. There are many others that work as well.

      1. avatar Will says:

        The point is that you shouldn’t have to have an adblock. Sometimes, folks want to support the site, and not adblock them. But we shouldn’t have to hand curate each ad that comes through. Quiet, static, annoying-free ads are usually not too bad. But the auto plays are terrible. They reduce traffic (folks stop coming), and they reduce revenue (folks shut off ads completely).

        You’d like to think TTAG has the option to not include such ads, to select ad providers that don’t distribute such ads. So, either TTAG has no power and should change providers, or TTAG does have the power, but chooses to not use it — punishing folks who choose not to, or simply can’t, take mitigating steps.

        Most folks don’t have a problem with video per se (save that it’s slow, and bandwidth hungry, and crushes browsers), but having the sound belt out on some ad, on some page, at full volume, is just the worst possible customer experience, in every possible way. If there was a way to tell Flash to STFU and default to zero volume, all the time, that would help. But that appears to be impossible.

        1. avatar Raven says:

          Also, NoScripts will stop almost all of that as well. I agree with you incidentally, about not wanting to block ad revenue from sites I like & frequent. However, in consideration of the facts, and that is that 90%+ of all infections come from advertising as the main threat vector. it’s pretty foolhardy not to block every single ad co. everywhere.

          I also suggest using a host file.

          And I’m pretty adverse to being spied on as well. If you like, I’ll be more than happy to detail how to prevent most of this garbage on the web.

        2. avatar foo dog says:

          Thanks, Raven. I would be interested in learning more, including host file. Maybe a simple article for TTAG or a link to elsewhere, comments forum, etc.

          Its getting to the point where many of the mainstream news site have as many or more than here, by far. USAtoday is so wonky its unreadable on my kindle (safari).

          I dont have a problem paying for cojtent, like WSJ, nor do I fault free sites like TTAG for using ads to pay the bills.
          Good writing and true facts take good staff, and webhosting is not cheap either.

    4. avatar chotto says:

      The issue i have with them is when I leave my browser open and start watching a movie or something and then all of a sudden it starts blaring music. So annoying…

  7. avatar Dustin says:

    Go ahead and refuse the ATF’s illegal demands when they show up, based on this blog post.

    It will surely resurrect your copse and set to truth all of the lies the agents who murdered you put in their reports…

    1. avatar JasonM says:

      Did somebody kill your small group of trees?

    2. avatar Jeremy S says:

      I suppose there’s a disconnect here. The point of the article is that owning an NFA item does not waive your 4th Amendment rights. You aren’t consenting to this sort of behavior by the ATF in order to own it. Whether the ATF may or may not do some jack booted thug crap isn’t actually relevant, since they may or may not do that to anyone they want regardless of whether they own NFA firearms, normal firearms, or no firearms. The point is that NFA ownership doesn’t give them legal permission, which is what a lot of people mistakenly believe!

      For the record, I have never ever heard of or seen evidence of an “NFA inspection” of a private party. Ever. Yes, the ATF has kicked down doors due to specific interest in criminal activity of somebody (or the wrong address “LOL”), but while the concept of the “NFA Inspection” isn’t unbelievable as, yeah, the ATF does insane crap and could kick down your door for no dang reason, there’s no evidence that NFA ownership alone has ever led to anything of the sort. Or even a friendly request — “oh hello sir, we understand you own an NFA item. May we inspect it?”. Like…ever.

      1. avatar LarryinTX says:

        It was explained to me (Silencer Shop?) that if you own a full auto weapon, ATF may come visit, other NFA items, no. Somewhere, I also got the idea (don’t rely on it) that if you have a registered select fire whatever, whether it is suppressed, SBR, whatever is uncontrolled, full auto carries the whole shitaree.

        1. avatar Jeremy S says:

          I don’t see any reason to believe machine guns are treated any differently from any other NFA item for this purpose. There is nothing at all in the text of the GCA or Huges Amendment to suggest this whatsoever, and the regulations surrounding inspection of licensees is from the GCA and included again in the FOPA that includes Hughes. There is ZERO mention whatsoever of any ability for the gov’t to inspect private parties unless they are suspects of criminal activity and a resulting warrant has been issued.

          It’s my understanding that one tax stamp covers a machine gun and that it’s just a “machine gun” and cannot be multiple NFA items at once. For instance, if it’s an Uzi or a Mac-10, it’s a single stamp “machine gun” no matter what the barrel length is and whether or not it has a stock. It cannot also be an SBR and/or AOW and/or whatever. You can configure your machine gun however you darn well please and it’s all okay under that stamp. I don’t actually know how this rule applies to an integral suppressor, though. Certainly if the suppressor is separate it needs to be registered on its own…

  8. avatar JasonM says:

    To expand on the home FFL random inspection based on what I’ve read while looking into getting one:
    * The ATF wants a few weekday hours of operation on the application, but will not show up at that time without an appointment.
    * The inspection is limited to the area of the home you explicitly define as the the FFL business area (e.g. your kitchen table, or the empty shed out back), your transfer records, and any on-hand firearms. And they need a warrant to go in without your permission. (Repeatedly refusing to schedule, or honor, an appointment might be grounds for a warrant, or for revoking your FFL.)

    1. avatar Voice of Experience says:

      ATF does NOT call to make an appointment to inspect an FFL. Depending on local policy, ATF Industry Operations Investigators will frequently pull surprise inspections with no advance warning trying to catch you being behind keeping up your books – or have unlogged firearms on your premises. Don’t know if it’s country-wide but it’s certainly true in some areas.

      Never, if you can avoid it, have an FFL in your home. Rent a broomcloset somewhere zoned for business and hang your license there.

  9. avatar Noishkel says:

    For me there’s such a long history of shenanigans involving the BATFE that there’s really not tell what they will try to pull tomorrow. Yeah, sure. They’re ‘never going to come inspect your stuff’. But at the same time the BATFE has the power to change it’s mind. The recent m855 debacle should be more than enough evidence of this for anyone of this.

    1. avatar Jeremy S says:

      Again, I clearly derailed the point of this by going into too much detail and making statements beyond “owning an NFA item does not waive your 4th A rights or give the ATF permission to inspect your NFA items without a warrant.” Whether they violate the law and do these sorts of things anyway is a different discussion. The rumor is that NFA ownership literally means you are waiving your rights. That isn’t the case. But it doesn’t protect you from violations of your rights. It doesn’t make you more likely to have them violated either. If you think the ATF isn’t aware of what citizens have purchased any firearm through a 4473, or can immediately become aware, I have a bridge to sell you. I certainly don’t lack cynicism and distrust.

    2. avatar corey says:

      I also want to add to your comment. That if there ever a coup by our government, they will use that list to target for confiscation first, just like Nazi did to jews. and the brits did to us before independence. and during civil war.

      Not trying to freak anyone out just trying to remind people DO NOT forget history. Or we are doomed to repeat it.

      If I owned a NFA item/s I would be reluctant to a search, especially if they just showed up. I would be saying Not without that warrant you wont.

      That is the one lesson I took away from this article. “need of warrant to look”.

  10. avatar Raoul Duke says:

    I have my own reasons for not doing it.

    -Do not want to register my guns. I know someone is going to pipe in and say 4473 but it is vague and not definitive proof you own the gun. I know this working in a gunshop. The ATF has to do work unlike NFA items which are a short click away so why would I want to make it easy for them? The gun can be a gift to someone else even though you went through the background check since you were the actual buyer. I could sell the same gun the next day and the ATF would have no clue since it is legal to do so depending on jurisdiction of where you live. Besides when the jackboots come to take the guns where do you think they will be stopping at first?

    -Do not want to go through the hassle/red tape and trusts are not easy as people make them out to be nor are they cheap.

    -Do not want to deal with the BS wait time for the government to approve me.

    -Do not want to deal with BS of telling the ATF when I leave the state with them.

    -My bullpups fulfill my SBR needs while still retaining muzzle velocity that ends up being wasted on short barrel lengths anyway. Also treated as Title 1 firearms so I am not dealing with the same amount of BS that NFA arms do.

    -I would love a machinegun but I do not want to pay the inflated prices they are going for, want newer stuff that isn’t held back in 1986, and again dealing with NFA red tape. No thanks.

    -No need to engrave my information on the side of the gun.

    To each their own.

    1. avatar Sexual Tyrannosaurus says:

      Simplest reason not to do it: giving another $200 to the government is vile and repulsive.

      1. avatar Raoul Duke says:

        Yea I didn’t mention it cause I thought it was a given haha.

      2. avatar David says:

        I got to ask. Have you ever tried chaw or dip. Cause I am pretty sure your handle comes from a line in one of the greatest movies ever and it would be a shame if well . . . you never heeded Gov. Ventura’s advice! 🙂

        1. avatar Sexual Tyrannosaurus says:

          That movie made me try it. 🙂

      3. avatar JasonM says:

        Simplest reason not to do it: giving another $200 to the government is vile and repulsive.

        But they spend way more than $200 to process that paperwork. So the net effect is slowly bankrupting the feds, which is good for everybody.

        1. avatar Sexual Tyrannosaurus says:

          Where do you think the feds get their spending money? Oh right, from us.

        2. avatar Ken says:

          Any entity that has an honest cost of more than 200 FRNs to file a couple forms has either far too many fools, or far to bloated a bunch of phoney make work jobs at 6 figures a year, or both.

    2. avatar mike says:

      I get what you’re saying… but there’s comes a point where you just have to say… efff it, i wanna have some cool toys and some REAL fun at the range.

    3. avatar corey says:

      then I suggest you read truth about guns “backdoor registry” eTrace.

  11. avatar FUDD says:

    Thanks, Jeremy.

    Maybe what we 2A rights believers should do is create a multi-level web-based FFA consulting service, maybe a privately funded by some billionaire, using non-profit shells with a name like Regular Joe’s Common-Sense Guns, with the mission being to educate, like you did so well, that NFA items like easily used light carbines for smaller sized or the elddrly, and hearing protectors for hunting, and target range, like commonly required in Europe, are no threat to National Security.

    If that couls help any responsible gun owner or collector, to manage the maze of regs, easily and efficiently, then perhaps it could re-orient the ATF to support law abiding citizens, which also normatizes the idea that there is nothing special about the accessory, per se, and nothing special about the person, and of course, would level set some of the sillier states, by making the tools available to all citizens, instead of some special secret category the ATF suspects.

    This networking business would use commonly available webhosting, ad revenue enhancing social media, and by virtue of its independence go around the censorship of the Reliable Party Organs, reach independent minds via the innertubz. If you wanted to be really cost-effective, you could setup as a public educational organization, take advantage of non-profit tax treatments, and credibility to reach the broader citizenry about not just the law, and citizen rights, while camoflauging the shy funders.

    You know, if you did this by the book, with full disclosure, and simply stuck to the facts, without spin or lies,
    Why, then a side benefit by example would contrast with the dozens on the Left-Progressives side, that have abused the IRS non-profit rules, for example in the variety of bogus faux Morons Against Legal Guns type entities, and MILFs Demanding Attention.

    And perhaps remind the ATF of its purpose under a simple limited government concept of basic policing, to serve the law abiding.

    Instead of abusing the honorable oath taking agents there, by managerial and politicians pressure to force them to instead manufacture fake crimes, to provide cover for illegal anti-citizen action, including violating soveireign countries territorial rights, by smuggling in assault rifles to justify illegal regulation on more citizens, and small businesses. (Fast and Furious).

    While we are on the topic of disreputeable, any news on ATGs negotiations with certain Congress critters, and gun rights advocates to quietly revise some laws, through new legislation, to help the ATF off the hook of litigation and the discovery process, that would reveal the incompetence, or perhaps, similar malfeasance under the color of authority of the law?

    I’ve read speculation that this scandal would conceivably result in dismantling the ATF, long overdue.

    Hmmmm. Who would know more?

    1. avatar corey says:

      Quote: “Why, then a side benefit by example would contrast with the dozens on the Left-Progressives side, that have abused the IRS non-profit rules, for example in the variety of bogus faux Morons Against Legal Guns type entities, and MILFs Demanding Attention.”

      ok this is out of line because it is only half truth, Fact: tea party is a libertarian front for koch brothers getting non profit status. along with libertarian “heritage foundation” etc. etc etc. Thus plenty of blame of abuse of non profit status goes around on all sides.

      “Morons Against Legal Guns type entities” ” MILFs Demanding Attention” Is Bloomberg paid front groups, He is ABSOLUTELY NOT PROGRESSIVE AT ALL. Bloomberg is defacto definition of “corrupt totalitarian”. pretending to be: democrat with a golden heart.

  12. avatar 2aSux says:

    Does the FFL not tell the ATF where to look when time comes (and it is) to confiscate civilian firearms?

  13. avatar neiowa says:

    The BATFE cannot and will not show up at your home to inspect …..

    Until the do.

    1. avatar Jeremy S says:

      I don’t disagree. I detracted from the point that NFA ownership isn’t giving the ATF permission to do that. It doesn’t make that sort of activity any more legal than not owning any NFA items. The singular point of the article was supposed to be that there is no waiver of rights by owning NFA goodies. Now whether the ATF is going to violate your rights is another subject that I shouldn’t have accidently touched…

  14. avatar Alex Waits says:

    The NFA has to be fundamentally changed / removed.

    I as a private citizen should not have to put my name in a government database, pay 200 dollars and await approval to possess a rifle or shotgun with arbitrary length restrictions that make no sense. Or a gun muffler that protects my (and those around me) hearing.

    1. avatar Joe R. says:

      Ahhh, 47 Years, and they still love how their applied headcount doesn’t constitute ‘throttling’ when it comes to Form 4 Approvals. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gun_Control_Act_of_1968

    2. avatar Patriot says:

      Yep!!

  15. avatar Tim U says:

    The ATF agent that conducted my interview for my home FFL said that they typically call to make an appointment specifically so they don’t waste their time coming when you’re not home.

    Your area may vary, but up in MN they just don’t care enough about the “surprise” factor. Either that or they are simply lying. I’ll let you know which if or when I know.

  16. avatar Dan says:

    We should be Constitutionally allowed to carry that which is one step better than that which can be used against us.

  17. avatar Grindstone says:

    No, owning NFA-regulated firearms is not any sort of reason for any sort of judge to issue a warrant, either.

    Yeah, good luck fighting that ex post facto. Just like how police cannot stop you for simply legally carrying a firearm (obviously where legal) yet still do. Law Enforcement will do what they want to do and may pay you in somebody else’s tax dollars at a later point, well after the damage has already been done.

    (BTW, TTAG, is your comment coding broken?)

    1. avatar Jeremy S says:

      Don’t think so. The blockquote tag wasn’t closed out with a /blockquote at the end, from what I could tell. Fixed it for you.

  18. avatar Red in Texas says:

    It’s great to see so many people afraid, or unwilling to play the NFA game, it makes for faster approval times. Thanks, y’all.
    😀

  19. avatar Jody says:

    Am I the only one that had to go look up what NFA and C&R allow you to own?

    I never even considered it because I thought the inspection bit was true.

  20. avatar Patriot says:

    Because the ATF always follows the rules and respects the rights of citizens? SMH, NFA = Short List

  21. avatar Sian says:

    They’ve always called us a couple days ahead of time, giving us time to get our books straight. The local agents at least are personable, gun people, and understanding. Never had a problem with them. We get hit every couple of years.

  22. avatar Rocky says:

    The National Fireams Act is in violation of the 2nd Amendment, being a considerable infringement, in an of itself.
    ‘Progressive’ government steals our unalienable Rights and then rents them back to us with unwarranted control mandates imposed.

    1. avatar Larson says:

      well said!

    2. avatar corey says:

      You obviously have no real inkling of what progressive is.
      Bloomberg and brady are NOT progressive, in the least, where the source of most of the anti gun policies is coming from. STOP blaming all the anti gun garbage on me/progressive.

      Progressive = anti corruption. regardless of source of corruption right, left, middle, doesn’t matter.
      Progressive are a LOOSE organization. So it is very dangerous to use blanket statement in regards to progressives. It is NOT narrowly defined as say the NRA-ILA. In fact I just volunteered with their “frontlines” group, to get info, that can help advocate, with more reasoning, on sites like daily kos. to try and steer progressives as a whole, back to the middle somewhere. AND I joined as a direct result of AMY and Al franken’s participation in the ill conceived filibuster to push 4 really bad bills.

      I am Progressive, I am as PRO 2nd as they come, so long as the rights of one does not interfere with the rights of the next. (In other words: Gun owner is NOT allowed to shoot neighbor, just because of disagreement. But can if neighbor is trying to kill gun owner.”self defense”. BUT most important of all, is the “Tyranny deterrent” of well armed population.)

      1. avatar Surly Old Armorer says:

        Spare us the pathetic attempts at whitewashing your political allies’ policies.

        The NFA was enacted by that most “progressive” of Presidents, Franklin Delano Roosevelt. You know, FDR? Obama’s role model?

        You “Progressives” are nothing but yesterday’s “Liberals” with a name label pasted over the brand that wasn’t selling in America. Just as “Liberal” was the self-applied label that Progressives used when their Socialist ideas failed to appeal to American voters in the early 20th century.

        Your ideology has been pushing gun control since at least 1911 and the Sullivan Act in New York. Stop pissing on us and pretending it’s rain — you are not one of us. You are in league with the Second Amendment’s sworn enemies.

  23. avatar jjl471 says:

    I think the authirnof this article is very naive if he believes this. I have first hand knowledge of abuse of the atf’s ability to search without warrant without notice for nfa items. A friend who I stayed with during my divorce had several full auto weapons and a few suppressors all with the proper tax forms. He had never had an inspection until one day he got a call. They very polite ARF agent set up an appointment to inspect his forms and storage of said nfa items. The inspection went well until the second agent asked to see what was in his other gun safes (he had 4). My friend politely declined and explained that they were not privy under the atf’s nfa inspection. The agent balked. My friend asked them if they were through and politely asked them to leave as he was in full compliance. Over the next 4 months the second Atf agent showed up at 1am, 2:30am, & 4am for impromptu inspections. My friend hired an attorney who sent a certified letter and formal complaint of harassment to the regional director of the atf. Only then did this jack booted behavior stop. It cost him over $700 I legal fees to accomplish what should have been guaranteed by law. I witnessed this first hand. The field agents can and do whatever they want until their Superiors are put on the spot and must reign them in.

    1. avatar Jeremy S says:

      There is no such thing as an NFA inspection for individuals (non-licensees) under the law. There is no waiver of your rights or giving of any sort of consent whatsoever to the sort of inspection you say your friend submitted to by owning an NFA item. Period.

      Again, this does NOT mean the ATF, IRS, or any other Federal agency won’t abuse its power and do illegal things to people. The point of the article is that owning an NFA item does NOT make those illegal things legal things. You have exactly the same rights as before owning an NFA item. You have the same recourse if the government abuses any of your rights. Any citizen in the country, firearms owner or not, NFA owner or not, etc etc, could be subject to government abuse and overreach at any time. Registering an NFA item does NOT waive one iota of your 4th Amendment or other rights. Period.

    2. avatar corey says:

      @jjl471
      I honestly think your friend might have been a victim of the https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knock_and_talk investigative technique. As a way to circumvent their rights, in hopes they would slip up and say or do something, that would give the agent “just cause” to do search and seizure.

      For example said gun safes were open that were not open at time of inspection. Thus allowing agent to do warrant-less search of the open safe that they refused to open during inspection, because its in clear view of agents eyes being open during “surprise inspection” AKA “knock and talk” They then can do seizure if something was out of place. Giving “just cause”. .

    3. avatar Surly Old Armorer says:

      Your story is simply not believable. You are either suffering from delusions, or simply lying to us.

      ATF simply DOES NOT do such inspections of NFA owners.

      You are making an extreme claim, and the burden is on you to provide evidence — which quite simply you have not done. So either stop lying to us, or post the evidence that would substantiate your claims. Starting with the “certified letter” and the attorney’s name.

  24. avatar lowell says:

    Notice how all these statements supporting the ATF are full of qualifiers and misstatements?
    When considering such responses keep in mind who runs the ATF/FBI
    Anyway, as of January’s Town Hall Obama has stated that Congressional approval of his New Regulations are not required, the rule of law is dead. Ruby Ridge

  25. avatar corey says:

    Note: the post date: post dem fillabuster and failure to pass any of 4 anti gun bills. 1 universal background check, 1 no buy list of people on a notorious inaccurate list. The question is related to the bills and if they were passed later, how would this effect the current article with ATF inspections. To give reference point to following question.

    Just an ignorant but serious question on this subject of ATF inspections..

    Would this still hold true, if the universal background check or other related bills of the list of 4 that was just defeated, but most likely will comeback after july reopening of government? If they passed, where essentially EVERYONE that transfers or sells even 1 firearm becomes a defacto dealer? Thus would they be subjecting themselves to the inspection, if say the transaction was done in their home, where at that moment, the home is place of business???

    These “private transactions” would be considered a “business transaction” and thus dealers rules comes into play…. ESPECIALLY in the universal background check bill.

    I am thinking in these terms as a direct result of “Truth about guns” article dealing with “illegal backdoor registry”. Etrace related stuff, Which I was unaware of before reading said article and reading some of the source information they provided. especially by government themselves. ..

  26. avatar Kell490 says:

    I would like to point out as my family owned a Pawn Shop for 30 years an FFL inspection also does not force the business owner to give up 4th amendment rights. What the ATF will do if you refuse to allow them to inspect is suspend your FFL license, and they will be back with a warrant. During the 30 year course of owning the shop they have been inspection many times and never had any issues with them, now the local police was a different story and on more then one occasion their attorney had to show up and tell them to leave the property because they didn’t have a warranty which did lead to legal action in court ending in their favor.

  27. avatar Kell490 says:

    I would like to point out as my family owned a Pawn Shop for 30 years an FFL inspection also does not force the business owner to give up 4th amendment rights. What the ATF will do if you refuse to allow them to inspect is suspend your FFL license, and they will be back with a warrant.

  28. avatar BUZZ LIGHTYEAR says:

    HELL, I WAS AN FFL FOR YEARS AND NEVER HAD ANY ISSUES WITH BATFE COMING IN AND CHECKING MY INVENTORY, BOOKS AND PAPERWORK.

  29. avatar Surly Old Armorer says:

    The author has the strange belief that NFA firearms can not also be C&R.

    In actual fact, there are a large number of C&R NFA firearms. The same criteria apply to Title II “firearms” as to Title I guns. In particular, being at least 50 years old makes a gun (Title I or Title II) a C&R. Every original (as opposed to guns built using a new receiver tube) Sten, MP40, Type 96 or Type 99, Bren, etc, are C&R guns. They’re the only NFA guns allowed in some states.

    With the May 1986 cut-off of civilian transferable machine guns, eventually (June 2036) ALL machine guns will be C&R.

    A licensee with a Type 03 FFL (the “C&R”/”Collector” FFL) can purchase C&R NFA firearms without having to go through a dealer. Still has to do the Form 4 to transfer the gun, but it can transfer directly from the seller to the new owner once the Form 4 is approved. When this happens, the new owner needs to log it into his C&R “bound book” just like a $60 Moisin Nagant he bought from Century Arms.

    If the ATF decides to do an inspection of the Type 03 FFL then any C&R NFA firearms obtained while a licensee would be subject to the inspection, and would need to be recorded in his bound book.

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