What Is The National Firearms Act?
The National Firearms Act, 72nd Congress, Session, Sess. 2, ch. 755, enacted on June 25, 1934, and now codified and amended as I.R.C. ch. 53, is an Act of Congress for the regulation of firearms, with respect to firearms sales and use. Congressman Barney Frank (D-PA) was the chief sponsor of this Act. He believed that this Act should “clamp down on the manufacture, transfer and possession of firearms.”
Regarding regulation of firearms, Congressmen thought it was necessary to have a Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms to regulate interstate commerce in firearms and to provide for licensing of firearm dealers and all other persons engaged in the business of manufacturing or dealing with firearms. The Bureau was established under the law and is called the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF). Its purpose is to protect the citizens from gun violence.
The basic sections of the Firearms Act are divided into chapters and are written as folios. Chapter 1 establishes the purposes and functions of the ATF. It includes offenses relating to manufacturing, selling and possession of firearms and ammunition. The term “firearm” is used to describe any weapon or device that is specifically designed and used for the purpose of inflicting death or other permanent injury or other lasting damage through a firing mechanism. This includes both rifles and handguns.
Chapter 2 defines “manufacturer” to mean a person who manufactures a firearm or any accessory to the manufacture of a firearm. It also explains that any person who receives an original order for a firearm from a manufacturer and who then delivers the weapon to a licensed dealer and who later on sells that firearm to a customer is a manufacturer of that firearm. A retailer is defined as a person who lawfully sells a firearm to a customer.
Another provision of the Firearms Act makes it illegal to import or export firearms between countries or within a state if such possession would in any way interfere with the United States legal system. This includes the use of a firearm by a member of the U.S. military in an army camp, if there is a lawful order requiring such use. Violation of this provision is punishable by fine or imprisonment for up to 10 years or both. This portion of the Firearms Act also prohibits the transportation of a firearm if the transporting of firearm would in any way interfere with the normal functions of the United States government or any department or agency of the United States. This includes the use of a firearm in connection with any crime committed by a criminal with a firearms if the crime is an act which would have been illegal under the applicable federal or state law.
There are many parts to the What is the National Firearms Act and what it means to you as a firearm owner in America. It is always wise to consult a licensed firearms lawyer who has experience in interpreting and implementing the provisions of the Federal Firearms Act so that you can be sure that your rights are protected. Remember that even if you have a long gun for hunting purposes, you must still follow the rules of the road and keep your firearm in a secure place so that it can always be used. The bottom line is that if you must know what is the national firearms act, it is best to find an experienced attorney who specializes in this particular area of firearm law.