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View Full Version : What to do when FFL say's you don't need a DROS


Shinobi'sZ
01-27-2011, 9:54 AM
A guy at the gym asked me a question, coincidentally while I was talking to the Sheriff (former DOJ Agent) but he didn't know he was the Sheriff (out of uniform). Anyway he told me that he went to buy a DSA (FAL) upper receiver from a friend of his (who happens to be LEO) and when they took it to the gunshop (FFL) to do the transfer, that the person working there told them they didn't need to DROS it because it was an upper and not a lower. From what he told me they even argued about it with the FFL and tried to explain it was an upper (serial number) and was different then an AR lower. The FFL then called the DOJ BATF and asked an agent...and the agent confirmed that it was not needed. He then said the FFL went onto the DROS software and even showed them that a DROS on a long gun doesn't even require a serial number.

I was at a loss and told him I would ask around about this.

Matt C
01-27-2011, 9:57 AM
The upper is the serialized part that is a firearm. There is no question here, the FFL is wrong and asking for trouble. As usual the DOJ is about as useful as a football bat.

Merle
01-27-2011, 10:03 AM
That seems about right. The lower is the part which gets registered as a firearm and has the serial number.

I've purchased uppers (by USPS to NV) w/o incident. Not sure if this is a CA only issue, but I couldn't imagine that CA would call something a firearm (upper) while other states/Fed disagreeing.

Matt C
01-27-2011, 10:04 AM
That seems about right. The lower is the part which gets registered as a firearm and has the serial number.

I've purchased uppers (by USPS to NV) w/o incident. Not sure if this is a CA only issue, but I couldn't imagine that CA would call something a firearm (upper) while other states/Fed disagreeing.

:rolleyes: It's a FAL, not an AR. Reading comprehension...

This is a non-serialized non-firearm lower parts kit that does not need a DROS:
http://picturearchive.auctionarms.com/982125159/8352140/3f963f1d2c532c1a464e99d02daa423f.jpg

This is a serialized firearm UPPER receiver:
http://www.sixgunsworld.com/wecsog/fal/carbine/graphics/bp/upper1.jpg

CSACANNONEER
01-27-2011, 10:08 AM
The FFL has shown his lack of firearms knowledge and knowledge of the law. I would probably out the FFL and find a new one to do bussiness with.

OTOH, he did take the time to call the governing agency and get their opinion. So, he did question his beliefs. Unfortunately, the agency in charge of ths (CA DOJ) can give bad advise and it won't affect them. However, it will affect any FFL who blindly follows what they tell him in non written form. So, the FFL in question's biggest lack of judgement is blindly believing what "the experts" have told him. He will probably end up loosing his FFL if he continues to listen to them. Maybe, he should have called ATF and asked them which part of a FAL is considered to be a firearm.

Shinobi'sZ
01-27-2011, 10:09 AM
I agree. It's interesting that the DOJ doesn't keep records past 5 days, and that the the FFLs are required to hold the paper work for 20 years. I will mention to him as it's the only thing I can think of, is that they might try another FFL.

Merle
01-27-2011, 10:09 AM
:rolleyes: It's a FAL, not an AR. Reading comprehension...

This is a non-serialized non-firearm lower parts kit that does not need a DROS:
http://picturearchive.auctionarms.com/982125159/8352140/3f963f1d2c532c1a464e99d02daa423f.jpg

This is a serialized firearm:
http://www.sixgunsworld.com/wecsog/fal/carbine/graphics/bp/upper1.jpg

Lol, FAIL comprehension thanks! Whenever someone starts saying "upper" I immediately think a) drugs and then b) AR-15 platform.

CSACANNONEER
01-27-2011, 10:10 AM
That seems about right. The lower is the part which gets registered as a firearm and has the serial number.

I've purchased uppers (by USPS to NV) w/o incident. Not sure if this is a CA only issue, but I couldn't imagine that CA would call something a firearm (upper) while other states/Fed disagreeing.

Like BWO pointed out, a FAL is not an AR15. A FAL upper is considered a firearm, the lower is not.

wash
01-27-2011, 10:14 AM
Maybe take him a lower to DROS? You know, one with no serial number and a full auto selector (perfectly legal on a semi-auto FAL, no NFA issues kind of like a M16 bolt carrier in an AR15).

That would be good for a few chuckles.

Shinobi'sZ
01-27-2011, 10:15 AM
Maybe take him a lower to DROS? You know, one with no serial number and a full auto selector (perfectly legal on a semi-auto FAL, no NFA issues kind of like a M16 bolt carrier in an AR15).

That would be good for a few chuckles.

lol.


The FFL has shown his lack of firearms knowledge and knowledge of the law. I would probably out the FFL and find a new one to do bussiness with.

OTOH, he did take the time to call the governing agency and get their opinion. So, he did question his beliefs. Unfortunately, the agency in charge of ths (CA DOJ) can give bad advise and it won't affect them. However, it will affect any FFL who blindly follows what they tell him in non written form. So, the FFL in question's biggest lack of judgement is blindly believing what "the experts" have told him. He will probably end up loosing his FFL if he continues to listen to them. Maybe, he should have called ATF and asked them which part of a FAL is considered to be a firearm.


From what I got, it sounds like the buyer and owner questioned the FFL's beliefs and thus the reason the FFL went as far as to call DOJ and show them the DROS requirements for a long gun. I can't believe the FFL wouldn't at least try and take the $$ lol.

n2k
01-27-2011, 10:15 AM
This is like a Sig 556 upper which is also the serialized component.

The thing here though is that yes the FFL/DOJ is giving out wrong information to the customer, but is he actually creating a transaction that will be documented?

The thing is that he is telling them to do the transfer without a DROS (which we know is not correct), but that is on the customer at that point.

Shinobi'sZ
01-27-2011, 10:28 AM
This is like a Sig 556 upper which is also the serialized component.

The thing here though is that yes the FFL/DOJ is giving out wrong information to the customer, but is he actually creating a transaction that will be documented?

The thing is that he is telling them to do the transfer without a DROS (which we know is not correct), but that is on the customer at that point.

Are you suggesting that they get something in writing (sign it) from the FFL who is telling them that no DROS is necessary and save it in case there is ever an issue?

Matt C
01-27-2011, 10:36 AM
Are you suggesting that they get something in writing (sign it) from the FFL who is telling them that no DROS is necessary and save it in case there is ever an issue?

I don't see how that would do any good. What you could do is send the DOJ a request in writing for a clarification (email) then print out the response and take it to the FFL.

wash
01-27-2011, 10:41 AM
I wonder if we could get the PPT law to be found unconstitutionally vague?

Actually the problem here is the FFL. They are trying to tell the customers to do an illegal transfer. Since the transfer is the crime, if it happens nothing ties it to the FFL, they live to spread FUD another day.

Tell your friend to find an FFL that actually knows what they are doing, maybe even Big-5.

Shinobi'sZ
01-27-2011, 10:55 AM
I don't see how that would do any good. What you could do is send the DOJ a request in writing for a clarification (email) then print out the response and take it to the FFL.
Not sure that would do them any good if the FFL called the DOJ and confirmed for them that a DROS was not necessary...however if DOJ provided the same response in writing it might help the buyer if an issue ever came up in the future.
I wonder if we could get the PPT law to be found unconstitutionally vague?

Actually the problem here is the FFL. They are trying to tell the customers to do an illegal transfer. Since the transfer is the crime, if it happens nothing ties it to the FFL, they live to spread FUD another day.

Tell your friend to find an FFL that actually knows what they are doing, maybe even Big-5.
I always forget that Big-5 sells guns lol. All this has got me wondering though. If we all have guns and did DROS's on them, but the DOJ only holds records for 5 days. How do they even know on a long gun if somebody purchased it through an FFL or not???? I mean unless a person keeps their original purchase paperwork how is it proven that it was not done legally between private party to private party? I guess anybody could be screwed if they didn't have something to show that they purchased with a DROS right?

wash
01-27-2011, 11:40 AM
We do PPTs through an FFL because that is the law.

Since FFLs do maintain their paperwork, guns can be traced through them kind of...

Mike's Custom
01-27-2011, 11:51 AM
I am wondering if that same FFL would not require a DROS on a Ruger Mk I, II or III upper? The frame is just a grips and trigger groupd holder while the upper is the receiver.

n2k
01-27-2011, 12:18 PM
Are you suggesting that they get something in writing (sign it) from the FFL who is telling them that no DROS is necessary and save it in case there is ever an issue?

No, I am suggesting that they go to a different FFL that understands the laws and they (being the seller/buyer) protect themselves.

The FFL will have nothing to lose by telling you something that is not correct because they will not be engaging in a transaction.

Again laws are only there for those who want to abide by them.

Shinobi'sZ
01-27-2011, 12:57 PM
We do PPTs through an FFL because that is the law.

Since FFLs do maintain their paperwork, guns can be traced through them kind of...

Agree. It just seems odd to me that the vehicle for which these transactions take place is mandated but yet there is no mandate on that vehicle towards the point of correctness.

Here we have a seller and a buyer attempting to do the correct thing, and according to them challenging the process to do the right thing, but yet both mechanisms that are in place for the right thing to happen are incorrect.

It seems that if the DOJ and FFL are in error that the vehicle is broken and not in favor of the law abiding citizens attempts to do the correct thing. In thinking about it, it kind of bothers me that DOJ doesn't maintain records as if a question of ownership came up and no receipt was available by the owner...the lawful owner may be in for trouble....but maybe asking for the law to protect law abiding citizens from the law is trouble too.

Based on these discussions when I see him again I will recommend that he try another FFL, or try and see if the FFL he used previously would DROS the upper receiver anyway.

seabass
01-27-2011, 1:04 PM
I agree, find another FFL who actually knows what they are doing.

Where can I find a football bat? I want one, it might be worth some money in the future.;)

wash
01-27-2011, 1:07 PM
I believe I am much more capable of maintaining proof of ownership of my weapons than the DOJ is.

If I want to do that it should be up to me.

Shinobi'sZ
01-27-2011, 1:14 PM
I believe I am much more capable of maintaining proof of ownership of my weapons than the DOJ is.

If I want to do that it should be up to me.

Not sure I understand your point.

But maybe I can clarify mine.

If one is made to fill out all of the paperwork and submit that information for the transfer. It would seem like it should be kept as a protection for the owner in the event their copy of the transaction was lost.

You have a driver's license and if you lose it, you go to the DMV and they can print you a new one, because they have the same information that was on your license. But here we have a right, not a privilege that laws apply to you, yet those governing laws offer no protection to the owner.

If an FFL and DOJ confirm something is not needed, and if one was lucky enough to get in writing...it would seem that the person would have some reasonable expectation of security from the system. But maybe not.

The whole reason I posted it on Calguns was to flush this out because I didn't not know what to tell the guy...with the exception of trying another FFL that knows what the hell they are doing.

wash
01-27-2011, 1:22 PM
That is essentially registration.

CA's handgun registry is wildly innacurate.

You know they say "registration leads to confiscation".

I'm really glad that CA doesn't keep track of my rifles and like I said, I can maintain proof of ownership just fine all by myself (and accurately).

I don't see any benefit to CA keeping these records.

12voltguy
01-27-2011, 3:45 PM
Maybe take him a lower to DROS? You know, one with no serial number and a full auto selector (perfectly legal on a semi-auto FAL, no NFA issues kind of like a M16 bolt carrier in an AR15).
That would be good for a few chuckles.

:rolleyes:
all my ar15s have full auto m16 bolts.......that is not in any way a problem;)

bohoki
01-27-2011, 6:56 PM
wow we need to get a group buy on fal receivers from this ffl think of the savings

Shinobi'sZ
01-31-2011, 8:17 AM
I don't see how that would do any good. What you could do is send the DOJ a request in writing for a clarification (email) then print out the response and take it to the FFL.

What I did was print out the pics that you posted and I plan on giving them to him when I see him so that he can take them to the FFL and try again.
Thanks

Wherryj
02-01-2011, 7:50 AM
The upper is the serialized part that is a firearm. There is no question here, the FFL is wrong and asking for trouble. As usual the DOJ is about as useful as a football bat.

I agree with the part about the DoJ's usefulness, but you are assuming that he actually called them. I suspect that he called the local pizza place to place his lunch order, then came back to tell the customer that he was right.

dfletcher
02-01-2011, 8:52 AM
You know what would be interesting? Go back to the gun shop with the FAL in two separate pieces. Show the upper & remind him "this is what you let me walk out of here with no wait & no DROS" then hand him the lower and say "since this is the only other part of the gun, according to you it must be "the gun" - now find the serial number ...." It will be interesting to see the "Aw, shoot" look creep on to his face as he realizes what was done and imagines what could happen.

Mesa Tactical
02-01-2011, 11:15 AM
Not sure that would do them any good if the FFL called the DOJ and confirmed for them that a DROS was not necessary...however if DOJ provided the same response in writing it might help the buyer if an issue ever came up in the future.

Much ado about nothing.

The customer knows more about the firearm - and firearm laws - than the FFL. Big deal. This is not exactly a first.

Forget about getting signed affidavits, etc. Find another FFL.

JagerTroop
02-01-2011, 12:58 PM
(1st)The FFL then called the DOJ BATF and asked an agent...and the agent confirmed that it was not needed.

(2nd)He then said the FFL went onto the DROS software and even showed them that a DROS on a long gun doesn't even require a serial number.



1st part - my guess is that the FFL called DOJ and simply asked if he needed to DROS an "upper receiver". Not specifying that it was a FAL. The BOF agent probably assumed he meant AR upper. Just a guess.

2nd part - Correct. there is no serial number needed until the completion of the transaction (4473). To the best of my knowledge.

Shinobi'sZ
02-07-2011, 7:18 AM
:rolleyes: It's a FAL, not an AR. Reading comprehension...

This is a non-serialized non-firearm lower parts kit that does not need a DROS:
http://picturearchive.auctionarms.com/982125159/8352140/3f963f1d2c532c1a464e99d02daa423f.jpg

This is a serialized firearm UPPER receiver:
http://www.sixgunsworld.com/wecsog/fal/carbine/graphics/bp/upper1.jpg

Just wanted to get back to the board with an update on this. Blackwater, I printed your pics and this thread and put it in my gym bag. I saw the guy at the gym and gave him the pics and told him what the general response was. I saw him on Friday and he told me that the FFL agreed to run the DROS on the upper based on the info. He says thanks for the info.

tenpercentfirearms
02-07-2011, 7:33 AM
Just wanted to get back to the board with an update on this. Blackwater, I printed your pics and this thread and put it in my gym bag. I saw the guy at the gym and gave him the pics and told him what the general response was. I saw him on Friday and he told me that the FFL agreed to run the DROS on the upper based on the info. He says thanks for the info.

Well done.