Registering Your Firearm During a Pandemic…?! | Missouri

In Missouri, you are not required to register firearms with the state, and the Coronavirus has not changed this fact.

Rules to follow for private sales #1: Keep Records

Although some states require you to register your firearms, Missouri does not. You may purchase firearms in Missouri through a FFL or through private sale. And it is good practice to document your private firearm purchase or sale with a bill of sale. By documenting your sale, you can protect yourself from liability if a crime is later committed using the firearm you sold by the purchaser of your firearm or a subsequent owner.

Rules to follow for private sales #2: Verify

Before purchasing a firearm, you may want to check with your local Sheriff’s office to ensure the gun you are purchasing is not stolen. You will need the serial number of the firearm you plan to purchase, in order to ensure it has not been reported stolen.

By documenting your purchase, you can later verify the time of purchase if a liability issue were to arise based on a crime or accident previously committed with the firearm you purchased. The ATF offers a helpful pamphlet entitled “Best Practices: Transfers of Firearms by Private Sellers” located on its website. This pamphlet is a good idea to read before entering into a “private sales” transaction involving a firearm.

Rules to follow for private sales #3: Background Check

A FFL will run a background check, as required by law, prior to your purchase of a firearm through a licensed dealer. Background checks are not required for private sales of firearms, but you are responsible for knowingly selling a firearm to someone who is prohibited by law from purchasing or possessing a firearm. Persons who have been convicted of a felony offense, fugitives from justice, persons who are habitually drugged or intoxicated, and persons who have been adjudicated as mentally incompetent are not allowed to purchase or possess firearms under Missouri law. The same set of criteria apply to the sale of ammunition.

After your purchase of a firearm, it is a best practice to retain a copy of the serial number, receipt, and the make and model of your firearm. Store this information in a separate place from where you store your firearm. In the event that your firearm is ever lost or stolen, these key pieces of information will assist you in filing a police report, or an insurance claim if you have applicable coverage.

If you have any more firearm related questions, please call U.S. LawShield and ask to speak to your Independent Program Attorney.

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