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Whats the process to buy a suppressor

Updated: Aug 13

The process to buy a suppressor (also known as a silencer) in the United States is regulated by the National Firearms Act (NFA).

The NFA imposes certain requirements and a waiting period for the purchase of NFA items, including suppressors.

Please note that firearm laws can change, so it is essential to verify current regulations before proceeding.

Here are the steps involved in buying a suppressor:

  1. Check Local and State Laws: Before purchasing a suppressor, ensure you are legally allowed to own one in your state and local jurisdiction. Some states have restrictions or prohibitions on NFA items.

  2. Choose an Authorized Dealer: Find a licensed firearms dealer that is authorized to sell NFA items. These dealers typically have experience with NFA regulations and can guide you through the process.

  3. Create an ATF eForms account here: This is your personal account that will be used to notify you when the process is complete. Make sure you bring your user id and pin number to your dealer when you are purchasing your suppressor.

  4. Complete ATF Form 4: The primary document required for purchasing a suppressor is ATF Form 4 (Application for Tax Paid Transfer and Registration of Firearm). This form requires information about you as the purchaser, the specific suppressor you are buying, and a passport-sized photo.

  5. Obtain Fingerprints and Passport Photos: You will need to obtain two sets of fingerprint cards and two passport-sized photos to submit along with your Form 4 application.

  6. Pay the Required Tax: There is a $200 tax stamp associated with purchasing an NFA item, including suppressors. This tax must be paid at the time of submitting your Form 4 application.

  7. Submit the Application: Once you have completed the Form 4 and collected all necessary documents, you must submit the application to the ATF (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives) for processing.

  8. At Tall Timber Tactical, we take your photo, fingerprints and submit your form directly to ATF digitally. We have streamlined the process to shorten the wait time. estimated time, 7-12 months.

  9. Wait for Approval: The processing time for Form 4 applications can vary, but it often takes several months. During this time, the ATF will conduct a background check and verify your eligibility to own a suppressor.

  10. Transfer Approval: Once your application is approved, you will receive a tax stamp by email, indicating that you are allowed to take possession of the suppressor. The stamp will have information such as the suppressor's make, model, and serial number, and it must be kept with the suppressor at all times.

  11. Take Possession: After receiving the approved tax stamp, you can take possession of your suppressor from the licensed dealer.

a pistol with suppressor being held

Keep in mind that buying a suppressor requires patience due to the wait times for approval.

Additionally, always ensure compliance with federal and state laws during the entire process.

If you are unsure or have specific questions, consider consulting an attorney or an experienced firearms dealer in your area.

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