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Summary of laws regarding Interstate sales/transfers.

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It's always best to ask the OWNER of the shop on these type questions. It's HIS FFL that is on the line and thus his answers will stick.
 

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QUESTION: If an out-of-state buyer has an FFL that is willing to receive a handgun shipped directly from me, for subsequent legal transfer to the resident buyer, is there a way I can verify that this FFL is "real"? They will mail/fax me a copy of the FFL, but is there a source where I can verify the validity and address?
 

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The BATFE has an online system FFL eZCheck.
Federal Firearms License Search

The purpose of this program is to allow an FFL or other user to verify that a Federal Firearms License (FFL) is valid. The user needs only enter the first 3 digits and the last 5 digits of the FFL being verified in the blocks provided and select the SUBMIT button. Selecting the RESET button will clear previously entered data.

FFL eZ Check does not validate Type 03 (Collectors of Curios and Relics) and Type 06 (Manufacturer of Ammunition) licenses. All attempts to check the validity of Type 03 and Type 06 licenses will result in an error message, even though the licenses may be valid. An FFL should not use this error message as reason to deny dealing with a Type 03 licensee.
 
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My requirements as a Seller...

Hi All,

I'm selling a revolver to an individual.

He gave me the name of an FFL to do the transfer.

Where can I find out what my requirements are? What kind of paperwork do I need to keep and or file with the state?

Thanks.

David
 

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Hi All,

I'm selling a revolver to an individual.

He gave me the name of an FFL to do the transfer.

Where can I find out what my requirements are? What kind of paperwork do I need to keep and or file with the state?

Thanks.

David
If you're using an FFL, the answer is "nothing". Even if it goes
out of state, there is no requirement to notify anyone. I would
probably just keep a receipt of the transfer via the FFL for my
own records, but thats about it.

-Mike
 

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Well, I would request a copy of the FFL's FFL OR at least get his FFL Number, then verify with BATFE EZ-Check (on their website). You crank in the number and it gives you the FFL's status and address.

Otherwise, you could be shipping to a NON-FFL on someone's "say-so" and be in Federal hot water (felony) if it turns out the receiver doesn't have a valid FFL. Address you ship to HAS to match what the BATFE has for him/her.

Print out the EZ-Check screen and keep it with your paperwork as proof.
 
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Along the lines of selling to someone out-of state:

If a MA C&R is selling a C&R gun to an out-of state individual, (a) can seller ship directly to the buyer's FFL or is the C&R irrelevant and the shipment must go through a Massachusetts FFL and (b) what would the FA-10 requirements be - in order to "unregister" the gun from the seller?
 

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Along the lines of selling to someone out-of state:

If a MA C&R is selling a C&R gun to an out-of state individual, (a) can seller ship directly to the buyer's FFL or is the C&R irrelevant and the shipment must go through a Massachusetts FFL and (b) what would the FA-10 requirements be - in order to "unregister" the gun from the seller?

You can personally ship the firearm directly to the C&R holder or the purchaser's 01 FFL. It should be noted that you should check to make sure that whatever your shipping can be legally possessed by the receiver if you're selling/shipping directly to a C&R.
As for the FA-10, the database will show that you own it forever. There is no mechanism in place to remove your firearms from the database in this case.
In-state (MA) C&R transactions follow the same rules as if you didn't have C&Rs.
 
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Question... I'm a little confused on the law. I'm a VT resident. Can I purchase a Long gun from a Mass dealer? Or does the rifle have to be transffered to an FFL in my home state before I can take posession?
 

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I could use some help with this scenario.

My son in law (out of state) wanted to buy me a gun using his military discount and send it to me in MA.

I was told by dealers in both states and the ATF that once he bought it through his FFL, his FFL would need to transfer it to a MA FFL. I would then pick it up in MA, and process the change of ownership in MA and fill out the FA-10.

Sound correct?


In the gift scenario described above, suppose he had bought the same gun and kept it for me until he left the military and returned to MA. If he THEN got a MA LTC and THEN just GAVE me the gun as a gift, am I correct in understanding that the entire transaction would have been perfectly legal and a MUCH cleaner transaction (although delayed)?
 
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Either one is perfectly legal as long as the gun is not affected by the AWB, no postban hicaps are involved, and the proper paperwork is filed.

If you go the FFL route, it would be the same paperwork as buying a gun from any dealer (4473/dealer-filed FA-10)
 
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Specifically for Massachusetts, although one can purchase a post or no-ban assault weapon such as a RRA AR-15 or a LE marked Colt outside of MA, you cannot bring said rifle back into the state.
Please tell me how a MA resident can legally purchase a post ban assault weapon outside of MA (keeping in mind 18 USC 44 § 922(b)(3))?
 

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Please tell me how a MA resident can legally purchase a post ban assault weapon outside of MA (keeping in mind 18 USC 44 § 922(b)(3))?
While it -might- not be legal for the dealer to sell it - eg "It shall be unlawful for any licensed importer, licensed manufacturer, licensed dealer, or licensed collector to sell or deliver—" I don't see anything in that section of law that says that the person buying the gun is committing a crime. (although they would be the moment they brought it back over the border, but that's a completely different issue. ) Of course, there might be some other section of federal law that I'm missing.

Further, that whole segment of law would be a hard sell legally, IMO. You're creating a situation where contextually, a person is bound to the laws of another state when they're not even within the borders if that state. I'm fairly sure there is some legal precedents that prohibit or block this to some degree, which would be why I've never heard of an FFL getting hung out to dry for this.

Even if there is a legal block against the FFL selling the rifle, there is no legal block to someone owning or possessing such a rifle. (at least within the borders of the states where they're legal. ) So worse comes to worse, a guy with an NH/ME/FL whatever vacation home could build a post-ban EBR and keep it there, if they wanted to, they just couldn't buy a whole rifle at once. [laugh]

-Mike
 
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While it -might- not be legal for the dealer to sell it - eg "It shall be unlawful for any licensed importer, licensed manufacturer, licensed dealer, or licensed collector to sell or deliver—" I don't see anything in that section of law that says that the person buying the gun is committing a crime.
They have not committed a crime, per se, but they are also not legally in possession of the rifle, because the sale was illegal. If you argue that it isn't the buyers responsibility and they are legally in possession, then you'd have to argue the same thing when buying stolen merchandise from a fence. Further, if you have knowledge of the federal law but still allow the FFL to sell it to you, you are an accomplice to their crime.

drgrant said:
Further, that whole segment of law would be a hard sell legally, IMO. You're creating a situation where contextually, a person is bound to the laws of another state when they're not even within the borders if that state. I'm fairly sure there is some legal precedents that prohibit or block this to some degree, which would be why I've never heard of an FFL getting hung out to dry for this.
That's a fine possible defense, but that's hardly an argument that the law doesn't exist and there is no issue with buying the gun. As the law stands, you cannot legally do it. I think you probably don't hear of an FFL being hung out to dry because you haven't heard of anybody being charged under 131M, even without this complication.

drgrant said:
Even if there is a legal block against the FFL selling the rifle, there is no legal block to someone owning or possessing such a rifle. (at least within the borders of the states where they're legal. ) So worse comes to worse, a guy with an NH/ME/FL whatever vacation home could build a post-ban EBR and keep it there, if they wanted to, they just couldn't buy a whole rifle at once.
Agreed. That's a different situation legally.
 

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They have not committed a crime, per se, but they are also not legally in possession of the rifle, because the sale was illegal. If you argue that it isn't the buyers responsibility and they are legally in possession, then you'd have to argue the same thing when buying stolen merchandise from a fence.
Frankly, thats apples vs oranges. In this case the merchandise is hardly "stolen". Further, why should the buyer be legally liable for a mistake made by the FFL? A better example would be trying to charge a buyer with a crime because the FFL did not log the transfer in his bound book correctly- it just doesn't wash.

For starters-

Look at other parts of federal gun law. They start with things like "for any person" which, means everyone. Yet, you look at 8 USC 44 § 922(b)(3), and it explicitly says " It shall be unlawful for any licensed importer, licensed manufacturer, licensed dealer, or licensed collector...." this clause, IMO, is intentionally restrictive, for a reason. It's readily clear to me that it was intended only to apply to the people described within it. Other clauses in federal law are far less restrictive. For example- if a licensee knowingly sold a prohibited person a handgun, there would be two or more charges. There would be at least one charge against the dealer, and possibly two against the buyer, (one for FIP, another for lying on the 4473, which IIRC, is a crime by itself) but all from different parts of the law.

Further, if you have knowledge of the federal law but still allow the FFL to sell it to you, you are an accomplice to their crime.
Possibly. Good luck to the feds trying to prove that. The vast majority of the people who have done this probably went by whatever the FFL told them. While "ignorance is no excuse" I find it hard to believe that if the buyer is otherwise clean (and following the provisions on the 4473, for example, which, btw, none of this "8 USC 44 § 922(b)(3)" junk is even on it, at least last I looked) because it's not really directly relevant from the buyer's perspective. IMO Compliance with 922(b)(3)is not the responsibility of the buyer.

That's a fine possible defense, but that's hardly an argument that the law doesn't exist and there is no issue with buying the gun. As the law stands, you cannot legally do it.
Or rather, as I maintain, the DEALER cannot legally do it. [laugh] I agree that a dealer that does it, may be placing themselves at some legal peril for doing so. Then again, I consider 922(b)(3) in the same realm as 922(r)- nearly unenforceable. If 922(r), for example, was enforceable, then every gun shop in america with a composite stocked SKS with a frankenmag coming out of it would get shut down. (And there have been 922(r) cases, but not in that sense. )

I think you probably don't hear of an FFL being hung out to dry because you haven't heard of anybody being charged under 131M, even without this complication.
How is 131M even relevant here? The gun isn't even coming back into MA, in the example I posited above. The reason it likely hasn't happened, is the whole thing is very legally perilous to prosecute for the reasons I mentioned before. How the hell can the feds tell someone in one state to obey the laws of another state, especially when, in this case, the interstate commerce portion of the transaction doesn't even involve the gun going into that state? The whole idea sounds very legally dubious, at best.

-Mike
 
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Frankly, thats apples vs oranges. In this case the merchandise is hardly "stolen". Further, why should the buyer be legally liable for a mistake made by the FFL? A better example would be trying to charge a buyer with a crime because the FFL did not log the transfer in his bound book correctly- it just doesn't wash.
You're missing my point. There's a difference between committing a crime and not being legally in possession of something. My example was showing that. If you buy a stolen item from a pawnshop who was acting as a fence without your knowledge, you have committed no crime (the pawn shop owner has), but you cannot keep the item you purchased because it was not a legal sale. Same with the FFL. They cannot legally sell you that item, so even though you went through a transaction with them, it is void and the rifle does not belong to you.

Notice the wording of the federal law is much different than the wording of the MA AG regulations that we all say are the dealer's responsibility. There it is an 'unfair and deceptive practive' not an 'illegal sale', so you have no legal obligation to return the gun. This is, however, a different situation.

drgrant said:
Look at other parts of federal gun law. They start with things like "for any person" which, means everyone. Yet, you look at 8 USC 44 § 922(b)(3), and it explicitly says " It shall be unlawful for any licensed importer, licensed manufacturer, licensed dealer, or licensed collector...." this clause, IMO, is intentionally restrictive, for a reason.
Yes, the law is restricted to sales by FFLs. It has nothing to do with private sales. Since private sales of rifles to non-residents are forbidden, I fail to see your point here.


drgrant said:
Good luck to the feds trying to prove that.
You can talk all you want about whether the feds could actually successfully prosecute a federal law, but that's an entirely different argument from whether the federal law exists. Putting the wording, "you can do this" when there is a federal law saying you can't is a half truth at best, and irresponsible at worst.


drgrant said:
How is 131M even relevant here? The gun isn't even coming back into MA, in the example I posited above.
Because who is going to accuse an FFL of selling a post-ban rifle to a non-resident while in a state without a AWB? Nobody. The only way it would ever cause trouble for an FFL is if the rifle was discovered in a AWB state and was traced back to an FFL in the non-AWB state. Then the feds might be interested in why the FFL sold it illegally to the non-resident.

I understand the point that if the FFL sells it to you and you keep it in the non-AWB state, there's very, very little chance of it ever causing you a problem. But again, that is a far cry from it being a strictly legal thing to accomplish.
 

drgrant

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You're missing my point. There's a difference between committing a crime and not being legally in possession of something. My example was showing that. If you buy a stolen item from a pawnshop who was acting as a fence without your knowledge, you have committed no crime (the pawn shop owner has), but you cannot keep the item you purchased because it was not a legal sale. Same with the FFL. They cannot legally sell you that item, so even though you went through a transaction with them, it is void and the rifle does not belong to you.
I still think that your example is bad- mainly because something which was stolen property is contraband to begin with. Our hypothetical rifle, on the other hand, is not contraband, in and of itself. The dealer's act of selling it might be illegal, but that doesn't make the rifle contraband. It'd be a different story if we were talking about something like an illegal machinegun, etc, which is clearly contraband.

If what you posit is true, then the BATFE would be able to justify systematically seizing firearms from every otherwise law abiding person who just so happened to buy a gun from a dealer that wasn't on the straight and level. (Perfect example- that guy in Norton who was selling on an expired FFL... ) I'm sure they would just love to do something like that, but reality is that they would get laughed out of court for trying to make the case that a buyer with a clean record that filled out the paperwork, and is otherwise legal for Title I ownership, now all of a sudden owns "contraband" because of the transgressions of the dealer that sold them the thing. At the end of the day it's still just a Title I firearm, even if the dealer screwed up his duties in the transfer process, that doesn't change the nature of the item.

Notice the wording of the federal law is much different than the wording of the MA AG regulations that we all say are the dealer's responsibility. There it is an 'unfair and deceptive practive' not an 'illegal sale', so you have no legal obligation to return the gun. This is, however, a different situation.
Show me an example where a dealer made a mistake *only on their part* and the buyer was compelled to return the firearm that was transferred. The only way I can see this happening is if BATFE invents a ponzi scheme to somehow incriminate the buyer, and perhaps intimidates them into surrendering the firearm, or if the buyer was directly
involved in violating gun laws themselves.

Yes, the law is restricted to sales by FFLs. It has nothing to do with private sales. Since private sales of rifles to non-residents are forbidden, I fail to see your point here.
My argument is still that the buyer obviously doesn't have any burden of compliance in this scenario, unless I missed that somewhere. The burden is on the dealer to ensure that the requirements of 8 USC 44 § 922(b)(3) are met. Otherwise they would have worded it the way they did, or they would have said "anyone" and used the word "purchase" in there, too.

Edit: FWIW, There could damn well be something I'm missing here, but I don't remember seeing any text in federal gun law which applies liability to the
buyer for the conditions set forth in 8 USC 44 § 922(b)(3). If something like this does exist, I'll gleefully wear the egg on my face. [grin]

You can talk all you want about whether the feds could actually successfully prosecute a federal law, but that's an entirely different argument from whether the federal law exists. Putting the wording, "you can do this" when there is a federal law saying you can't is a half truth at best, and irresponsible at worst.
FWIW, to be perfectly clear, I'm not advocating that anyone break any gun laws. I posted what I posted to illustrate the massive amount of dumbness and insanity inherent to obscure federal gun laws. The people that wrote some of these things obviously didn't have a clue about what would actually fly in court or not. Some of the things in federal gun laws (especially this one) violate a myriad of commonly accepted legal principles.

Because who is going to accuse an FFL of selling a post-ban rifle to a non-resident while in a state without a AWB? Nobody. The only way it would ever cause trouble for an FFL is if the rifle was discovered in a AWB state and was traced back to an FFL in the non-AWB state. Then the feds might be interested in why the FFL sold it illegally to the non-resident.
Maybe, if the moon is full and the wind is blowing in the right direction- but I doubt they'd really care. I can tell you right now, anything other than a jury full of flaming bradyites would not be impressed by the government trying to prosecute a case based on 8 USC 44 § 922(b)(3).

If BATFE wants to shut down an FFL there are far easier vehicles to do it with than 8 USC 44 § 922(b)(3).

-Mike
 
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If what you posit is true, then the BATFE would be able to justify systematically seizing firearms from every otherwise law abiding person who just so happened to buy a gun from a dealer that wasn't on the straight and level. (Perfect example- that guy in Norton who was selling on an expired FFL... ) I'm sure they would just love to do something like that, but reality is that they would get laughed out of court for trying to make the case that a buyer with a clean record that filled out the paperwork, and is otherwise legal for Title I ownership, now all of a sudden owns "contraband" because of the transgressions of the dealer that sold them the thing. At the end of the day it's still just a Title I firearm, even if the dealer screwed up his duties in the transfer process, that doesn't change the nature of the item.
I think you're still missing the point. The gun is not "contraband". I never said that. The point is that a sale is a contract, and a contract that requires an illegal act is null and void. In a case where a seller commits a crime in order to complete a sale, the sale never legally takes place.

So in our case here, the FFL still legally owns the rifle. If the BATFE, for instance, compelled the FFL holder to ask for their property back, your only recourse would be to give up possession of the rifle and get your money back. If the BATFE decided to seize the FFLs property, your only recourse would be to give up the rifle to the BATFE, and attempt to get your money back from the FFL. Whether the BATFE would bother to do such a thing or not in this scenario is immaterial to the legal facts.

You see what I'm saying? You have not committed any crime, nor do you have any 'contraband' in your posession. However, you are also not legally the owner of the rifle you thought you bought. This eventuality that you find yourself in is why I was making the comparison to accidentally purchasing stolen goods. It's the same short end of the stick for you either way.

You go ahead in front of a civil court judge and say that even though the seller had to commit a crime to sell you your gun, you still think the sale should be honored. Especially when you admit under oath that you knew it was illegal for them to sell it to you. See how well that flies...

----

Anyway, while this is actually a fascinating discussion and I am enjoying your arguments, it's a little away from my original intended point. What I was trying to get across in my original post was that you're likely to have trouble being able to purchase a post-ban AWB rifle from an out of state FFL because as soon as you show your MA ID, any FFL who is knowledgeable is going to shut down the sale right there. So, for a summary of interstate purchases, it should be listed as a "you cannot purchase an AWB rifle out of state if you're a resident of an AWB state", even though you actually might be able to if you find an ignorant or defiant FFL.
 
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drgrant

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I think you're still missing the point. The gun is not "contraband". I never said that.
The reason I introduced this into the argument was because, generally speaking, an item has to be one of two things for it to get taken away from you- contraband, or as is more likely in this case, "evidence."

The point is that a sale is a contract, and a contract that requires an illegal act is null and void. In a case where a seller commits a crime in order to complete a sale, the sale never legally takes place.
At least now your argument is starting to make a lot more sense. I don't know much about contract law, and how it intertwines with this, so I'm going
to take your word for it.

You see what I'm saying? You have not committed any crime, nor do you have any 'contraband' in your posession. However, you are also not legally the owner of the rifle you thought you bought. This eventuality that you find yourself in is why I was making the comparison to accidentally purchasing stolen goods. It's the same short end of the stick for you either way.
While the end game might be the same the way you got there might be completely different. It's -logical- to expect that stolen goods would have to be returned. It's not logical to expect that a person would have to return an item based on an error the seller made. I was unaware of the caveat you just mentioned in contract law. I must've
had a partial stroke or something with regards to the fact that the law is not always, scratch that, not usually, logical.

See how well that flies...
I think the plane wouldn't make it off the runway anyways, even if one had an airtight case, mainly because if you had to go to court to try to retrieve a rifle which cost from $800-3000 your legal costs would likely outstrip what the rifle actually cost.

Anyway, while this is actually a fascinating discussion and I am enjoying your arguments, it's a little away from my original intended point.

More like a few hundred miles, and it's mostly my fault. [laugh]

What I was trying to get across in my original post was that you're likely to have trouble being able to purchase a post-ban AWB rifle from an out of state FFL because as soon as you show your MA ID, any FFL who is knowledgeable is going to shut down the sale right there.
Well, or if he's smart, he'll turn you onto something he -can- legally sell you.

-Mike
 
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Titan

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I have a clarification question.

I was under the impression that 'pre-ban' guns or assemblies were the ones we could not buy here and that they were the ones with flash suppressors, adjustable stocks, etc., and that 'post-ban' guns or assemblies were okay to purchase.

It sounds like I may have this exactly reversed.

Can someone help with which is which? Sorry if this is a super dumb question.
 
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Preban guns by definition are OK to purchase in MA. Doesn't matter what features (flash hider, folding stocks, etc). If it was a complete rifle on 9/13/1994, it does not fall under the ban and thus you can have all the features you want on it.

There are two types of postban. The first postban type I would call "ban compliant" which refers to rifles that have had the features removed such that they just have the pistol grip and detachable magazine, or in the case of the M1A, the detachable magazine and the flash suppressor. These are OK to purchase.

The second type of postban (no-ban) refers to rifles built after 9/13/1994 or after the sunset, which have the detachable magazine and more than one of the other evil features. These are NOT OK to possess in MA.

There is absolutely no law saying you can't own preban/no-ban configuration assemblies or parts, but they must be installed on a preban receiver to be legal in MA.

For more info, search the MA gun laws forum.
 

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I
Can someone help with which is which? Sorry if this is a super dumb question.
The problem is terminology is relative here.

"Pre Ban" can mean two things. Made before Sept 13 1994, or it can mean "pre ban style" meaning it has the evil features configuration.

Ironically "Post Ban" means a couple of different things, too. For us poor sods in MA, "Post Ban" really means a "during ban style" crippled configuration. However, guys in the free states may refer to "post ban" rifles as being ones with evil features, because technically in their situation, that's the right term! (Confusing, isn't it?)

To more directly answer your question, the law in MA basically mirrors the old federal ban. You can only have an "evil configuration" (read bayo lug, flash suppressor, collapsible stock, etc) if you have a rifle (or receiver) which was assembled into a complete "evil features" rifle on Sept 13 of 1994. (FWIW, it IS legal to take the receivers from these rifles and build them into a different configuration, just remember that the receiver is the "anchor".

As far as the crippled rifles go, or crippled configs, anyone can buy those or build them whenever in MA, as long as they have an LTC-B or better.

A related note is that if you have magazines over 10 rounds they must all be pre-ban, eg, if you pick up a USGI 30 rounder you want to be reasonably sure it was made before 9/13/94. (sometimes mags have lot numbers/date stamps, other times they'll have LE markings, which are definitely post 9/13/94, and an awful lot of times there is absolutely no way to tell at all. )

-Mike
 

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Pre Ban ?

Preban guns by definition are OK to purchase in MA. Doesn't matter what features (flash hider, folding stocks, etc). If it was a complete rifle on 9/13/1994, it does not fall under the ban and thus you can have all the features you want on it.

Is it legal for a Mass. resident to buy a preban (i.e. AR rifle manufactured before the 1994 date) from an out of state dealer and return it to Mass. Also was the sale of the preban AR legal for the dealer.

I ask because I was in Maine had a preban AR with all the Mass no nos in my hands at a good price, and the dealer said it was illegal for him to sell it to me.
 
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YES, it is legal for you to purchase a preban rifle in another state and bring it to MA, as long as the laws of that state are satisfied.

Don't expect store owners in other states to always know that, though.
 

lupis42

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What, if anything, prevents an MA resident interested in obtaining, say, a bunch of new Glocks, from simply acquiring an FFL and buying them in NH, or direct from Glock?
 
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