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How to buy a silencer

How to Buy a Silencer

Purchasing and possessing a silencer or suppressor became legal in the state of Minnesota on August 1st, 2015. The question then becomes, how do I buy a silencer?

Silencers (or suppressors) are regulated under the National Firearms Act (NFA) which means they are subject to additional regulations above and beyond purchasing a “regular” firearm. Learn more about NFA Firearms in this blog.

How to buy a silencerThe NFA firearm regulations require a $200 tax to be paid per item upon purchase as well as the purchaser to either set up a trust or file on a personal level with several limitations. A trust is a separate legal entity, like a corporation. Choosing to form a trust allows you to skip the photo, fingerprint, and chief law enforcement officer sign-off requirements that individuals must meet before getting a suppressor. This can be useful if you live in a municipality where law enforcement officials refuse to sign NFA paperwork for political reasons.  

As previously mentioned, there are two ways you can get a suppressor. Please know that the information below is only a comprehensive overview. Please feel free to contact us for more information on the best way to get your suppressor.

How to Get a Suppressor as an Individual

 

  • Go to a suppressor dealer and place your order.
    Most dealers require, at minimum, a down payment. More often than not, you’ll find that they require complete payment up front.
  • Your dealer must have the product before moving on to the next step.
    Unless your dealer has the suppressor you are purchasing in stock, you’ll need to wait for the dealer to receive the suppressor you’re purchasing because in order to complete the paperwork, you’ll need the actual serial number off of the suppressor. If the dealer has to order the product, you may have to wait up to several months for the suppressor to come in because the dealer has to file their own federal paperwork as well.
  • Pick up your paperwork from the dealer.
    The dealer will give you two copies of ATF form 4 containing your serial number, make and model.
  • Fill out ATF form 4.
    ATF form 4 is your application for your tax stamp. You’ll need to fill out two copies of this form.
  • Get two passport photos and get fingerprinted.
    Many drug stores offer passport photos in a timely fashion. You’ll also need to get fingerprinted. To do this, you’ll likely have to go down to the sheriff’s office, jail or police station and pay a small fee (usually about $10 or so).
  • Get a CLEO (Chief Law Enforcement Officer) signature on your form 4.
    A local chief law enforcement officer (your local police chief, sheriff, or county attorney, usually) must sign your form 4 application, indicating that they are not aware of any legal impediment to your ownership of a suppressor, and that the fingerprints and photos are actually yours.
  • Send the application, fingerprints, photos, and a $200 tax payment to the ATF.
    This will likely take several months to process.
  • Dealer will receive your tax stamp.
    The ATF will eventually mail the dealer a copy of your paperwork, with your tax stamp which allows the dealer to complete the transaction.

 

How to Get a Suppressor as a Trust

When purchasing a suppressor with a trust versus as an individual, you do not have to submit fingerprints, passport photos or

 

  • See a trust lawyer.
    The trust becomes the owner of the item(s) that you purchase. A good trust lawyer will make sure that the trust is properly and legally created. We don’t recommend using fill-in-the-blank trusts from non-attorneys as they may not satisfy your needs.

 

    1. Go to a suppressor dealer and place your order.
      Most dealers require, at minimum, a down payment. More often than not, you’ll find that they require complete payment up front.
    2. Your dealer must have the product before moving on to the next step.
      Unless your dealer has the suppressor you are purchasing in stock, you’ll need to wait for the dealer to receive the suppressor you’re purchasing because in order to complete the paperwork, you’ll need the actual serial number off of the suppressor. If the dealer has to order the product, you may have to wait up to several months for the suppressor to come in because the dealer has to file their own federal paperwork as well.
    3. Pick up your paperwork from the dealer.
      The dealer will give you two copies of ATF form 4 containing your serial number, make and model.
    4. Fill out ATF form 4.
      ATF form 4 is your application for your tax stamp. You’ll need to fill out two copies of this form.

 

  • This Step is Coming June 28th, 2016
    Get two passport photos and get fingerprinted.
    Many drug stores offer passport photos in a timely fashion. You’ll also need to get fingerprinted. To do this, you’ll likely have to go down to the sheriff’s office, jail or police station and pay a small fee (usually about $10 or so).

 

  1. Send the application, a copy of your trust, (coming soon – two passport photos and fingerprint card) and a $200 tax payment to the ATF.
    This will likely take several months to process.
  2. Dealer will receive your tax stamp.
    The ATF will eventually mail the dealer a copy of your paperwork, with your tax stamp which allows the dealer to complete the transaction.

Source: Minnesota Gun Owners Civil Rights Alliance website, ATF.gov National Firearms Act website

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