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United Parcel Service appears to have put last month’s silencer shipment kerfuffle to bed with a change to its official policies. Going forward, UPS will treat silencer shipments identically to firearms shipments . . .

UPS accepts firearm parts for shipment, provided the part is not a “firearm” as defined under federal law; the contents of the package cannot be assembled to form a firearm; and the package otherwise complies with federal, state, and local law. (Note: Receivers or frames of a firearm and firearm mufflers/silencers (also referred to as suppressors) are considered “firearms” and are accepted for transportation only if shipped in accordance with UPS’s requirements for shipping firearms.)

The company hitherto officially banned silencers, but would allow “licensed entities” to get special exceptions via contract around the ban. Steve Gaut, who handles public relations for the shipping company, was quoted by as stating:

UPS has determined that instead of having a special exception program for suppressor/silencer shipments, it is sufficient to apply the existing UPS firearms policy, included the UPS Tariff/Terms and Conditions of Service and in the guidelines for Shipping Firearms and Ammunition available on, essentially treating a suppressor/silencer as a firearm for purposes of shipping with UPS….

UPS customers will no longer be required to receive an exception for the shipment of suppressors/silencers, as long as the customer and their shipments comply with the UPS firearms policy noted above…. The updated policy reflects the company’s desire to make it easy for customers to do business with UPS and seeks to minimize the complexity of shipping regulated items through UPS.

Big Brown’s official policies have not changed, however, with regard to another popular NFA item:

UPS does not accept automatic weapons, including machine guns, for shipment.


DISCLAIMER: The above is an opinion piece; it is not legal advice, nor does it create an attorney-client relationship in any sense. If you need legal advice in any matter, you are strongly urged to hire and consult your own counsel. This post is entirely my own, and does not represent the positions, opinions, or strategies of my firm or clients.

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      • You laughed for as long as it would take to perform “a slow, stately ballroom dance for two in triple time, popular especially in the 18th century”?

  1. How is dramatically increasing shipping cost (next day only service) making it easy on customers?????

  2. So when is something that’s not a firearm become a firearm? When Brown says so, that’s when.

    • Simply taking a page out of the NJ definitions where once fired brass is the same thing as a loaded firearm.

      • Lol no logic at all. They would probably say that I have a loaded rifle in my pocket because I have a mangled 8mm mauser soft point projectile that I dug out of the dirt at the range.

  3. They seem determined to drive business away and get a premium for the gun business they do get. It’s almost like there is a FedEx plant making decisions.

    • You forget UPS is unionized while FedEx is not. Also the labor unions only donate to Democratic Party members & the occasional left leaning Independent Party members. Also the unions are trying to stop investing in firearms related companies.

  4. Private company, they can do what they want. As a consumer, I too can choose as I wish to not ship with UPS anymore if at all possible. This is a BS backpedal; they know it and we know it.

  5. So are they treating them as handguns or long guns? If the latter, be prepared to pay $$$. No surprises here, just a replay of their scam from over a decade ago when they hosed us on handguns because their employees were stealing them. And I suspect that has not changed. One of my wholesale reps told me recently that another dealer informed her that their local UPS hub hires inmates for cheap labor on work release programs. I can’t verify that, but maybe somebody else can.

  6. Another $ maker for shipping parts because UPS does not trust their employees not to steal stuff?
    A few years ago I shipped a pistol from CA to a gunsmith in GA and was required to ship over night at $200 round trip for a 2.5 – 3.5 lb. package.
    When I asked why I was told that the less time in transit less chance of it being stolen.
    The whole time in transit UPS employees had possession.

    Over the years I haven’t had a problem with deliveries by their drivers, more than once the driver has had positive comments when delivering ammo.

  7. I really don’t see the big deal here. You guys have really been harping on the whole UPS thing. It must be a slow news day.

  8. “UPS does not accept automatic weapons, including machine guns, for shipment.”

    When is an automatic weapon *not* a machine gun?

  9. When I buy a gun on most of the time it’s picked by UPS transported to nearest to destination USPS hub for transported to local post office that covers destination zip code. So as long as UPS has the USPS mailman deliver it to the FFL location that’s not “transporting”?

  10. Meh, not worried about it. I have 3 home bound suppressors that were just recently approved. FedEx or UPS makes no difference to me.

  11. Shipping companies ship stuff. Advice to UPS: Just ship stuff, do your job, and stay out of politics. Okay?

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