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Purchasing a Firearm in California

Are you interested in purchasing a firearm in California? If so, you’ll want to familiarize yourself with California’s gun laws. Otherwise, you could unknowingly break the law and face criminal charges. That said, we’re going to provide a brief explanation of what it takes to purchase a firearm legally in the Sunshine State.

“Generally, all firearms purchases and transfers, including private party transactions and sales at gun shows, must be made through a California licensed dealer under the Dealer’s Record of Sale (DROS) process,” according to the State of California Department of Justice.

Requirements for Buying a Firearm in CA

Under California law, a firearm cannot be released to a purchaser until he or she has gone through the 10-day waiting period. Beyond the waiting period, the following criteria must be met before a firearm can be purchased or transferred:

  • The buyer must be 18 or older to purchase a shotgun or rifle.
  • The buyer must be 21-years-of-age to purchase a handgun.
  • The DROS process requires buyers to present proper identification, which is defined as a current and valid California driver’s license or an Identification Card issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles, or a military ID with permanent duty station orders that show the buyer is posted in California.
  • If the buyer is not a U.S. citizen, he or she must prove that they are in the U.S. legally by showing the firearm’s dealer documentation with their I-94 Number or Alien Registration Number.
  • Buyers must provide a utility bill, residential lease, or property deed to prove their California residency.
  • Buyers must have a Handgun Safety Certificate, and they must be able to complete a safety demonstration with the handgun they recently purchased, or the buyer must qualify for an HSC exemption.

If you are not sure if you are allowed to purchase a firearm because you have a criminal record, or you are considered a danger to yourself or others because of a mental illness, or for another reason, check out this link on firearms prohibiting categories from the California Department of Justice Bureau of Firearms.

A few examples of prohibited possessors:

  • Illegal aliens
  • Drug addicts
  • Fugitives from justice
  • Mentally disordered sex offenders
  • Individuals who have been convicted of felonies

For more information on California’s gun laws, check out this FAQ page on the State of California’s Department of Justice website.

Are you in trouble with the law because of a weapons offense? To fight your charges, contact the Law Offices of Virginia L. Landry, Inc. today!