California DOJ's California Firearms Application Reporting System (CFARS) system has been experiencing significant outages and issues that may affect or prevent an intended registration of a "Bullet Button Assault Weapon."
The registration deadline is SATURDAY, JUNE 30, at 11:59 p.m. Pacific time.
If you attempt to register a firearm using CFARS, you should document the experience in as much detail as possible (date, time(s), issue(s), etc.), and take screenshots, pictures, or videos if possible.
If you are prevented from registering a firearm before the deadline, or if your registration is rejected or denied by DOJ, please contact our Legal Action Hotline ASAP at https://www.firearmspolicy.org/hotline, by e-mail, or call the Hotline toll-free at (855) 252-4510 (24/7/365).
Our attorneys throughout California will continue to make every effort to protect California gun owners, including through our active litigation and direct communications with DOJ.
NOTE: Some have reported that Cal. DOJ may be using information/photos provided in the firearm registration process to acquire a warrant to search and seize property / firearms. If you are not completely sure about your firearms and the laws that could apply to them and you, it would be wise to seek legal advice.
As history has shown, many of California's hundreds of law enforcement agencies and thousands of police officers are probably not very well trained in "assault weapons" laws and regulations, including what to do with a firearm that is in the process of registration but is not yet registered to the owner.
And remember that a person who transports an unregistered assault weapon "is guilty of a felony, and upon conviction shall be punished by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170 for four, six, or eight years." Cal. Penal Code § 30600.
If you are unsure about your registration status -- i.e., if you do not have affirmative confirmation of a firearm's status as having been registered as an "assault weapon" -- you should take measures to help reduce legal risk, such as by disassembling the action of the firearm. See, e.g., Cal. Penal Code § 30515.
“Action” means the working mechanism of a semiautomatic firearm, which is the combination of the receiver or frame and breech bolt together with the other parts of the mechanism by which a firearm is loaded, fired, and unloaded. 11 C.C.R. § 5471. According to the DOJ's regulations, a weapon clearly designed to be semiautomatic but lacking a firing pin, bolt carrier, gas tube, or some other crucial part of the firearm is not semiautomatic for purposes of Penal Code sections 30515, 30600, 30605(a), and 30900. 11 C.C.R. § 5471(hh).
With regards to an AR-15 style firearm, if a complete upper receiver and a complete lower receiver are completely detached from one another, but still in the possession or under the custody or control of the same person, the firearm is not a semiautomatic firearm. And a stripped AR-15 lower receiver, when sold at a California gun store, is not a semiautomatic firearm. (The action type, among other things, is undetermined.) 11 C.C.R. § 5471(hh)(3)-(4).
IF YOU HAVE ANY LAW ENFORCEMENT CONTACT
- DO NOT CONSENT TO A SEARCH. Do not ever consent to a search, no matter what. Even if the officers are friendly, you think it's just a "simple misunderstanding," or that you can talk your way out of the situation, do not consent to a search and demand a warrant. Remember that police themselves are legally allowed to lie to you in order to get you to consent to a search or provide reasonable suspicion of a crime.
- Ask if you are being detained or under arrest, or if you are free to end the encounter and leave.
- If you are not being detained or under arrest, politely end the encounter.
- If you are being detained or under arrest: TELL THEM (out loud) that you want to speak with your lawyer and that you are exercising your right to remain silent. Then, DO NOT SAY ANY MORE until you have a lawyer present and have been provided legal advice. (Courts have held that even if you tell them you're exercising your right to remain silent, if you keep talking, anything you say may be used against you anyway.)
- Contact an attorney. Some lawyers with California firearms-related criminal / compliance experience include:
- Adam Richards - Northern California
- George Lee - Northern California
- Don Kilmer - Northern California
- Jason Davis - Southern California
- John Dillon - Southern California
- Report the issue to our Legal Action Hotline at https://www.firearmspolicy.org/hotline, by e-mail, or call the or call toll-free at (855) 252-4510 (24/7/365).
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