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Assault Weapon FAQ

Assault Weapon FAQ

What is considered an assault weapon under California law?

There are three categories of assault weapons under California law:
Category One: Firearms specified on the original Roberti-Roos assault weapons list. [Penal Code, section 30510, subdivisions (a), (b), and (c)].
Category Two: Firearms specified on the AK and AR-15 series weapons listing [Penal Code section 30510, subdivisions (e) and (f)].
Category Three:
Firearms defined as assault weapons based on specific generic characteristics, often called “SB 23 assault weapons.” (Penal Code section 30515).
Firearms that do not have a fixed magazine, as defined in Penal Code section 30515, including those weapons with an ammunition feeding device that can be readily removed from the firearm with the use of a tool. Assembly Bill 1135 / Senate Bill 880 [Penal Code, section 30900(b)(1)].

What are AK and AR-15 series weapons?

These assault weapons are listed by the Department of Justice (DOJ) in the California Code of Regulations, title 11, law division 5, firearms regulations chapter 40, assault weapons identification 11, sections 5495 and 5499. The consolidated assault weapons list is available here:
https://oag.ca.gov/sites/all/files/agweb/pdfs/firearms/infobuls/kaslist.pdf.

How and when do I register a firearm that is affected by AB 1135/SB 880?

All registrations must be submitted electronically through the California Firearms Application Reporting System (CFARS) at https://cfars.doj.ca.gov. The registration fee is $15 for each transaction (for each person) [See also: FAQ Question 8]. The registration period began August 2017 and will end on June 30, 2018.

Can I send in a manual registration form?

No. Firearms affected by AB 1135/SB 880 must be registered electronically through CFARS at https://cfars.doj.ca.gov/login.do.

What forms of payment will be accepted for the registration fee?

Payment can be made using a Visa, MasterCard, American Express, or Discover debit/credit card.

What if I don’t have a Visa, MasterCard, American Express, or Discover credit card?

Prepaid cards/gift cards for Visa, MasterCard, American Express, or Discover can be purchased at local stores. These cards are also acceptable forms of payment.

How much does it cost to register a firearm affected by AB 1135/SB 880?

The registration fee is $15 for each transaction (for each person). There is a $15 fee for each joint registrant.

Will I be able to register multiple firearms affected by AB 1135/SB 880 at the same time?

Yes. You can register multiple firearms during the same transaction. However, if you log out of the system and then submit more registrations, in the same day or on a different day, you will be charged another $15 fee.

Once I have submitted my registration, how will I know that my firearm has been successfully registered?

Once you have submitted your electronic registration, you will immediately receive a submission confirmation email acknowledging the successful submission of your registration. When your registration has been processed, you will be notified via U.S. mail that your assault weapon has been registered.

Once I have registered my firearm, do I ever have to register it again?

No.

If I already have a registered assault weapon, do I have to register it again under this new registration period?

No. This registration period is specific to Penal Code section 30900 (b)(1).

Can any other assault weapons, aside from those affected by AB 1135/SB 880, be registered under this new registration period?

No. Weapons that previously required registration such as named assault weapons pursuant to Penal Code 30510 (cat 1 and cat 2) are not eligible for registration during the 2017-2018 registration period. Reference Penal Code section 30900 (b).

How complete will the firearm need to be to be registered as an assault weapon under the new law?

The firearm must be fully functional and semi automatic. Lower receivers, including “80 percent lowers,” cannot be registered because they are not fully functional and semi automatic.

Registration is allowed for a firearm defined as an assault weapon only if it does not have a fixed magazine and does have one of the additional features specified in Penal Code section 30515.

Are there any options other than registering an AB 1135/SB 880 assault weapon?

Yes. By June 30, 2018 you can:
- Remove the characteristic(s) specified in Penal Code section 30515 that make the firearm an assault weapon (contact ATF for a determination as to whether making these changes would require a Type 07 FFL to manufacture).
- Modify the firearm(s) so that it has a "fixed magazine" pursuant to Penal Code section 30515(b) (contact ATF for a determination as to whether making these changes would require a Type 07 FFL to manufacture).
- Lawfully remove the weapon from this state or sell it to a DOJ approved Dangerous Weapons Permittee. Make arrangements with the local police department or sheriff's office to relinquish the AB 1135/SB 880 assault weapon. Call first. Do not go to the police department or sheriff’s office without first making prior arrangements.

What if I don’t register my AB 1135/SB 880 assault weapon during the specified registration period?

If you are found in possession of an unregistered AB 1135/SB 880 assault weapon after June 30, 2018 (end of the registration period), you will be in violation of Penal Code section 30605. Depending on the circumstances, the first conviction can result in a $500 fine or up to one year imprisonment in a county jail and confiscation of the firearm.

Once I register my AB 1135/SB 880 assault weapon, can I replace the bullet button style release with a traditional magazine release?

No. This registration is specific to “bullet button” firearms. As such, the firearm must remain in its current “bullet button” configuration. California Code of Regulations, title 11, division 5, chapter 39, article 2, section 5477(b) allows for repairs and replacement of the bullet button mechanism. California Code of Regulations, title 11, division 5, chapter 39, article 2, section 5477(c) details what can occur during deregistration.

Can I joint-register a firearm that is affected by AB 1135/SB 880?

Yes. Pursuant to Penal Code section 30955, the option for joint registration is authorized. The registration fee is $15 for each transaction (for each person). There is a $15 fee for each joint registrant.

What are the joint registration requirements?

Pursuant to Penal Code section 30955, the assault weapon must be owned by family members residing in the same household.

Who is considered a “family member” for the purpose of joint-registering an assault weapon?

Pursuant to California Code of Regulations, title 11, division 5, chapter 39, article 2, section 5474.1, “family member” is defined as:
Parent
Child
Grandparent
Grandchild
Spouse
Domestic Partner
Sibling

What if my AB 1135/SB 880 firearm(s) does not have a serial number engraved, can I still register it?

No. Firearms without government issued serial numbers (engraved or otherwise applied to the firearm) pursuant to federal law at the time of application shall not be registered by DOJ until such time as a DOJ provided serial number has been applied in a manner consistent with state and federal law. Pursuant to California Code of Regulations, title 11, section 5474.2, if you have a Firearm Manufactured By Unlicensed Subject (FMBUS) you will need to apply for a Department issued serial number prior to initiating the assault weapon registration process. Please contact the DOJ at DOJserialnumber@doj.ca.gov to obtain a Department issued serial number.

I already placed a personal serial number on my assault weapon. Do I still have to obtain a DOJ serial number and have it engraved?

Yes. You must still request a DOJ issued serial number and it must be engraved on the assault weapon in accordance with California Code of Regulations, title 11, division 5, chapter 39, article 2, section 5474.2.

Can I create my own serial number?

No. AB 1135/SB 880 assault weapons must have a federal type “07” manufacturer issued serial number or DOJ issued serial number pursuant to California Code of Regulations, title 11, division 5, chapter 39, article 2, section 5474.2.

How can I obtain a serial number for my self-built AB 1135/SB 880 firearm(s)?

Pursuant to California Code of Regulations, title 11, section 5474.2, if you have a Firearm Manufactured By Unlicensed Subject (FMBUS) you will need to apply for a DOJ issued serial number prior to initiating the registration process. Please contact the DOJ at DOJserialnumber@doj.ca.gov to obtain a Department issued serial number.

Where can I get my DOJ serial number engraved?

DOJ serial numbers can be engraved by Federal Firearms Manufacturers. Persons who have manufactured their own firearms may also use non-licensed parties to apply the serial number or markings as long as the firearm is not left unattended during the engraving process.

Weapons must be engraved pursuant to California Code of Regulations, title 11, division 5, chapter 39, article 2, section 5474.2. Proof of compliance will be required at time of registration in the form of uploaded photographs.

What are the serial number engraving specifications?

Reference California Code of Regulations, title 11, division 5, chapter 39, article 2, section 5474.2

What is considered a “self-built” firearm?

“Self-built” assault weapon means the firearm was manufactured by an unlicensed subject from an unfinished lower receiver. Serialized firearms (manufactured by an FFL) later assembled into a functional semiautomatic firearm are not considered “self-built.”

Pursuant to California Code of Regulations, title 11, section 5474.2 if you have a Firearm Manufactured By Unlicensed Subject (FMBUS) you will need to apply for a Department issued FMBUS serial number prior to initiating the registration process. Please contact the DOJ at DOJserialnumber@doj.ca.gov to obtain a Department issued serial number.

Can I take my AB 1135/SB 880 firearm to a shooting range up until the conclusion of the registration period, if the assault weapon is not registered yet?

Yes. During the registration period, firearms affected by AB 1135/SB 880 may still be used at shooting ranges by the owner.

Can a registered AB 1135/SB 880 assault weapon be rented at a gun range after January 1, 2017?

No. Penal Code section 30945 does not authorize possession of a registered assault weapon for use as a rental.

Can a firearms dealer install the patriot mag lock for a customer after January 1, 2017 as long as the owner stays with the firearm?

Yes; however, in order to install a patriot mag lock or similar device designed to fix the magazine in place, the deregistration process has to be started before any change to the magazine release is made. Refer to California Code of Regulations, title 11, division 5, chapter 39, article 2, section 5477(b) and (c) for details.

Can I keep a registered assault weapon that I inherited?

No. Pursuant to California Penal Code section 30915, any person who obtains title to a registered assault weapon by bequest or intestate succession shall, within 90 days, do one or more of the following:
Render the weapon permanently inoperable.
Sell the weapon to a licensed gun dealer who has a permit from DOJ to purchase assault weapons.
Obtain a permit from the DOJ in the same manner as specified in Article 3 (commencing with Section 32650) of Chapter 6.
Lawfully remove the weapon from this state.

What should I do if I do not want to keep my assault weapon?

If you have an unregistered assault weapon you must relinquish it to law enforcement. If you have a registered assault weapon, you have the following options:
- Sell the weapon to a licensed gun dealer who has a permit from DOJ to purchase assault weapons.
- Lawfully remove the weapon from this state.
- Render the weapon permanently inoperable.
- Make arrangements with your local police department or sheriff's office to relinquish your assault weapon. Call first. Do not go to the police department or sheriff’s office without first making prior arrangements.

I changed my registered assault weapon to no longer qualify as an assault weapon. Do I have to inform DOJ?

Yes. You will need to deregister your assault weapon. Deregistration requests will be accepted for assault weapons, as defined in Penal Code section 30515, that have been modified or reconfigured to no longer meet that definition. Reference California Code of Regulations, title 11, division 5, chapter 39, article 2, section 5478 for more information on deregistration.

What changes can I make to my assault weapon after I register it?

The AB 1135/SB 880 assault weapons regulations created by DOJ state that the bullet button style release must remain on the firearm. The owner should not shorten a rifle barrel below 16” or the overall length under 26” (Penal Code 33210 and Penal Code 17170). The owner should not shorten a shotgun barrel below 18” or the overall length under 26” (Penal Code § 33210 and Penal Code § 17180). See the “key terms” section of the AB 1135/SB 880 assault weapons regulations.

Can I transport my registered assault weapon the same way as before I registered it?

No. Registered assault weapons may be transported only between specified locations and must be unloaded and stored in a locked container when transported. Please refer to California Penal Code section 30945 for further details.

What notifications must I make in order to bring my AB 1135/SB 880 assault weapon into California legally?

Pursuant to Penal Code section 30600, persons moving to California cannot import assault weapons of any kind.

Will AB 1135/SB 880 impact the ability for law enforcement officers, identified in Penal Code section 30625, to purchase assault weapons as they do now, with an agency letter?

No. AB 1135/SB 880 should not impact law enforcement officers’ ability to buy assault weapons with the letterhead exemption.

In 2017, will law enforcement agencies be able to release unregistered firearms affected by SB 1135/AB 880 to members of the public through the Law Enforcement Gun Release process? What if it is built from an unfinished receiver and has no serial number?

Law enforcement agencies must follow the LEGR process outlined here:
https://oag.ca.gov/firearms/legrinfo.

A person in lawful possession of an AB 1135/SB 880 assault weapon prior to December 31, 2016 could have it returned to them and the weapon would be eligible for registration that ends on June 30, 2018. The AB 1135/SB 880 assault weapons regulations created by DOJ have a process that allows for self built guns to be serialized with DOJ issued serial numbers.

SOURCED FROM THE DOJ WEBSITE 2018

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