FFL Record Keeping Requirements

FDO Tunell

FFL Record Keeping Requirements – From the Desk of Alexis Tunell

Filing Requirements

If there’s one thing operating a Federal Firearms License (FFL) requires, it’s paperwork! Regardless of the type of FFL, the business model or the technology solutions you’re running, understanding exactly what documents to maintain, in what system, and for how long are critical to your business’s compliance.

An FFL’s record keeping requirements relate largely to the type of License as well as the type of document.

FFL Type 01 – Dealer or Type 02 – Pawnbroker

  • Acquisition & Disposition Record
    • 27 CFR 478.129(e)
    • 20 Years*
  • ATF Form 4473 – Transfer Occurred
    • 27 CFR 478.129(b)
    • 20 Years*
  • ATF Form 4473 – Transfer DID NOT Occur; Background Check Initiated/Completed
    • 27 CFR 478.129(b)
    • 5 Years*
  • ATF Form 3310.4 – Report of Multiple Sale or Other Disposition of Pistols and Revolvers
    • 27 CFR 478.129(c)
    • 5 Years*
    • Attached to ATF Form 4473 that resulted in the multiple sale/disposition
  • ATF Form 3310.12 – Report of Multiple Sale or Other Disposition of Certain Rifles
    • 18 USC 923(g)
    • 5 Years*
    • Recommended attached to ATF Form 4473 that resulted in the multiple sale/disposition
    • Pertains to FFLs in Arizona, California, New Mexico, and Texas only
  • ATF Form 3310.11 – Theft/Loss Report
    • 27 CFR 478.129(c)
    • 5 Years*
  • IF Transacting in NFA Items
    • NFA Registration Documents
    • 27 CFR 479.131
    • 20 Years*
    • Associated Forms
      • ATF Form 1 (5320.1) – Application to Make and Register a Firearm
      • ATF Form 2 (5320.2) – Notice of Firearms Manufactured or Imported
      • ATF Form 3 (5320.3) – Application for Tax-Exempt Transfer and Registration
      • ATF Form 4 (5320.4) – Application for Tax Paid Transfer and Registration
      • ATF Form 5 (5320.5) – Application for Tax-Exempt Transfer and Registration
    • IF Exporting Firearms
      • ATF Form 9 (5320.9) – Application and Permit for Permanent Exportation of Firearms
      • 27 CFR 123.1
      • 20 Years*

FFL Type 07 – Manufacturer of Firearms Other Than Destructive Devices

  • Manufacture/Acquisition Records
    • 27 CFR 478.129(d)
    • Forever
  • Disposition Records
    • 27 CFR 478.129(d)
    • 20 Years*
  • IF Transacting in NFA Items
    • NFA Registration Documents
    • 27 CFR 479.131
    • 20 Years*
    • Associated Forms
      • ATF Form 1 (5320.1) – Application to Make and Register a Firearm
      • ATF Form 2 (5320.2) – Notice of Firearms Manufactured or Imported
      • ATF Form 3 (5320.3) – Application for Tax-Exempt Transfer and Registration
      • ATF Form 4 (5320.4) – Application for Tax Paid Transfer and Registration
      • ATF Form 5 (5320.5) – Application for Tax-Exempt Transfer and Registration
    • IF Exporting Firearms
      • ATF Form 9 (5320.9) – Application and Permit for Permanent Exportation of Firearms
      • 27 CFR 123.1
      • 20 Years*

FFL Type 08 – Importer

  • Importation/Acquisition Records
    • 27 CFR 478.129(d)
    • Forever
  • Disposition Records
    • 27 CFR 478.129(d)
    • 20 Years*
  • ATF Form 6 – Application and Permit to Import Arms, Ammunition and Implements of War
    • 27 CFR 478.129(d)
    • 20 Years*
  • ATF Form 6A – Release and Receipt of Imported Firearms, Ammunition and Implements of War
    • 27 CFR 478.129(d)
    • 20 Years*
  • IF Transacting in NFA Items
    • NFA Registration Documents
    • 27 CFR 479.131
    • 20 Years*
    • Associated Forms
      • ATF Form 1 (5320.1) – Application to Make and Register a Firearm
      • ATF Form 2 (5320.2) – Notice of Firearms Manufactured or Imported
      • ATF Form 3 (5320.3) – Application for Tax-Exempt Transfer and Registration
      • ATF Form 4 (5320.4) – Application for Tax Paid Transfer and Registration
      • ATF Form 5 (5320.5) – Application for Tax-Exempt Transfer and Registration
    • IF Exporting Firearms
      • ATF Form 9 (5320.9) – Application and Permit for Permanent Exportation of Firearms
      • 27 CFR 123.1
      • 20 Years*

*Upon discontinuance / surrender / out of business for any type of FFL, all currently maintained records should be submitted to ATF Out of Business Records Center, in compliance will all applicable Rulings/Regulations.


For questions or additional information, contact Orchid Advisors here.


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