ATF Posts New Processing Times for Applications and Variance Requests

Washington, DC
Washington, DC
Reeves & Dola, LLP
Reeves & Dola, LLP

Washington, DC -(AmmoLand.com)- The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) recently posted new processing times for National Firearms Act (NFA) transfer applications, Gun Control Act (GCA) license applications, and explosives applications.

Processing times of most interest to firearms industry members are the following:

ATF Form 3  2 months
ATF Form 5 1 month
ATF Form 9 1 month
Marking Variances 3 months
Form 6 6 weeks

In addition, the current processing time for ATF Form 4, Application for Tax-Paid Transfer and Registration of Firearms, is six months. Industry members may recall that within the past two years processing time for this form was as high as ten months.

The decrease in processing time is attributable to ATF's recent hiring of more Examiners to process NFA registration and transfer documents. However, ATF officials advise the agency has received hundreds of thousands of transfer applications during the months of May and June as industry members try to avoid the requirements of recent regulatory changes.  The changes to 27 C.F.R. Part 479 (announced in our Alert of January 13, 2016), require that all responsible persons of trusts and legal entities such as partnerships and corporations submit photographs and fingerprints when the entity submits an application to make or transfer a firearm subject to the National Firearms Act.

Previous regulations allowed the transfer of NFA firearms to trusts and other legal entities without any photographs and fingerprints. The new requirements became effective on July 13, 2016, and ATF has been deluged with transfer applications submitted under the old requirements. It is likely that processing times for Forms 4 (and potentially other NFA forms) will increase with application volume.

The updated information on ATF's website indicates the processing times indicated are those applicable to paper forms only. Processing times may be significantly less for electronic forms.

Information on ATF's eForms is available on the ATF website.

About Reeves & Dola:

Reeves & Dola is a Washington, DC law firm that specializes in helping clients navigate the highly regulated and complex world of manufacturing, sales and international trade of defense and commercial products. We have a deep understanding of the Federal regulatory process, and use our expertise in working with a variety of Federal agencies to assist our clients with their transactional and regulatory needs.

For more information, visit: www.ReevesDola.com.

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Michael Oranch
Michael Oranch
2 years ago

What about the timeline for form one or form for applications? Called the ATF and they told me average waiting time is nine months. Their website stage 30 to 90 days. Why the difference between what they tell you and their website?

Vanns40
Vanns40
3 years ago

Well now, aren’t they doing such a great job and treating us well (he says dripping with sarcasm). Is there any greater reason to take suppressors off NFA? Is there any reason we shouldn’t start repealing gun laws, one at a time, until there are absolutely none left? Yeah, that’s what I said, repeal GCA ’68, repeal NFA. No? Give me a single reason why we shouldn’t.

TEX
TEX
3 years ago

Got all the NFA items I will ever need ,SBR’s,Cans ! no passport photos,prints never,I’m done