Purchasing guns online

Purchasing Guns On The Internet

In previous posts we discussed the private sale of firearms within a state and between states.  We also posted about how to document a private firearm sale, should you choose to do so.  This post addresses purchasing firearms on the internet.  As discussed in the previous posts, a private sale must be between residence of the same state or completed through an FFL.  In response to those posts we have been asked, “can I purchase guns on the Internet?”


The answer is, yes.  When a sale is conducted online between two people in the same state, the internet is simply a means of communication.  However, all legal requirements for a transfer must be followed.  If the buyer and seller are both residents of the same state, then the two may legally conduct a private sale.  But, all other legal issues must be satisfied and all state laws obeyed.  In other words, even through the internet, you can not sell to a disqualified person or in violation of state law.  This includes disqualification due to age, felony conviction, mental incapacity, and a host of other reasons listed in Florida law.

A Federal Firearms Licensee (FFL) must be used if the Buyer and Seller reside in Different States.

If the buyer and seller live in different states, the purchase of guns on the internet can only be legally completed through an FFL.  To complete the sale, the buyer pays for the firearm.  The seller ships it to an FFL in the buyers state.  The buyer completes all paperwork with the FFL.  This includes filling out ATF form 4473 and a background check if required by law.  Once the FFL receives clearance, the firearm is released to the buyer.  Be aware however, that the FFL is likely going to charge for his services.  Additionally, you will likely pay for shipping too.  Make sure you consider this additional cost when deciding if the firearm is a good deal.

Finally, ff you ever sell a handgun online, remember that you cannot ship it through the United States Postal Service.  To learn about shipping handguns click here.

We are here to help!

The Expert Firearm Attorneys at The Firearm Firm are here to help.  Further, our primary goal is to keep gun owners legal.  If you have any firearm related questions, visit our website.  There, you can search our knowledge base, or leave a question for us to answer.  The Firearm Firm is a statewide Second Amendment and Self-Defense law firm.


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