USPS Homepage

432 Mailability

432.1 General

Mailers must comply with the Gun Control Act of 1968, all of the provisions of postal law in 18 U.S.C. 1715, and all other all federal and state regulations and local ordinances affecting the movement of firearms. The following also applies:

  1. The Postal Service may require the mailer to open parcels containing firearms or air guns or give written certification that the weapon is unloaded and not concealable.
  2. Short-barreled rifles or shotguns that can be concealed on the person are nonmailable.
  3. No markings of any kind that indicate the nature of the contents may be placed on the outside wrapper or container of any mailpiece containing firearms.
  4. Mailable matter must be properly and securely packaged within the general packaging requirements in DMM 601.1–8.

432.2 Handguns

Handguns and other firearms capable of being concealed on the person are nonmailable unless mailed between the parties listed in Exhibit 432.2, DMM 601.12.1.3, and 601.12.1.5 after the filing of an affidavit or statement described in DMM 601.12.1.4 and 601.12.1.6, and are subject to the following:

  1. Firearms meeting the definition of a handgun under 431.2 and the definition of curios or relics under 27 CFR 478.11 may be mailed between curio and relic collectors only when those firearms also meet the definition of an antique firearm under 431.3.
  2. Firearms meeting the definition of a handgun under 431.2, which are certified by the curator of a municipal, state, or federal museum that exhibits firearms to be curios or relics of museum interest, may be accepted for mailing without regard to the restrictions provided for handguns in Exhibit 432.2 and DMM 601.12.1.3 through 601.12.1.6.
  3. Air guns that do not fall within the definition of firearms under 431.1 that are capable of being concealed on a person are mailable, but must include adult signature service under DMM 503.9.0. Mailers must comply with all applicable state and local regulations.
  4. Parts of handguns are mailable, except for handgun frames, receivers or other parts or components regulated under Chapter 44, Title 18, U.S.C.
  5. Mailers are also subject to applicable restrictions by governments of a state, territory, or district.

Exhibit 432.2 

Mailability Requirements for Handguns

 

432.3 Rifles and Shotguns

Except under 431.2, unloaded rifles and shotguns are mailable. Mailers must comply with the rules and regulations under 27 CFR, Part 478, as well as state and local laws. The mailer may be required by the USPS to establish, by opening the parcel or by written certification, that the rifle or shotgun is unloaded and not ineligible for mailing. The following conditions also apply:

  1. Subject to state, territory, or district regulations, rifles and shotguns may be mailed without restriction when sent within the same state of mailing. These items must:
  2. Bear a “Return Service Requested” endorsement.
  3. Be sent by Priority Mail Express (“signature required” must be used at delivery) or Registered Mail.
  4. Include either insured mail service (for more than $200) requiring a signature at delivery or Signature Confirmation service.
  5. A shotgun or rifle owned by a non-FFL may be mailed outside the owner's state of residence by the owner to himself or herself, in care of another person in the other state where he or she intends to hunt or engage in any other lawful activity. These mailpieces must:
    1. Be addressed to the owner.
    2. Include the “in the care of” endorsement immediately preceding the name of the applicable temporary custodian.
    3. Be opened by the rifle or shotgun owner only.
    4. Be mailed using services described in 432.3a.
  6. Mailing of rifles and shotguns between licensed FFL dealers, manufacturers, or importers are not restricted. USPS recommends these items be mailed using those services described in 432.3a.
  7. Rifles and shotguns may be mailed by a non-FFL owner domestically to a FFL dealer, manufacturer, or importer in any state. USPS recommends these items be mailed using those services described in 432.3a.
  8. Except as described in 432.2a, licensed curio and relic collectors may mail firearms meeting the definition of curios or relics under 27 CFR 478.11 domestically to licensed FFL curio and relic collectors in any state. USPS recommends these items be mailed using those services described in 432.3a.
  9. Firearms which are certified by the curator of a municipal, state, or federal museum which exhibits firearms to be curios or relics of museum interest may be accepted for mailing without restriction.
  10. Air guns that do not fall within the definition of firearms under 431.1a are mailable. A shipment containing an air gun with a muzzle velocity of 400 or more feet per second (fps) must include an Adult Signature service under DMM 503.9.0. Mailers must additionally comply with all applicable state and local regulations.
  11.