The Federal Bump Stock Ban Explained

Florida and New Jersey Members: Bump stocks are already illegal under state law. For more information, please call U.S. LawShield and ask to speak to your Independent Program Attorney.

 

The following is a video transcript.

Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker has just signed a national ban on bump stocks, expected to go into effect on March 21, 2019. This prohibition is unlike any previous gun ban we’ve seen, in that it was neither passed by Congress, nor signed by the President. Instead, an administrative agency simply changed one of their definitions in order to institute the ban.

Bump stocks will now fall into the definition of machinegun, found in 27 C.F.R. Parts 477, 478, and 479.

Previously, this term was defined as: “[A] firearm which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily restored to shoot, automatically more than one shot, without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger.” The term also includes any part of a machinegun or anything that may convert a weapon into a machinegun.

Specifically, with regard to bump stocks, the new rule adds: “The term ‘machinegun’ includes a bump-stock-type device, i.e., a device that allows a semiautomatic firearm to shoot more than one shot with a single pull of the trigger by harnessing the recoil energy of the semiautomatic firearm to which it is affixed, so that the trigger resets and continues firing without additional physical manipulation of the trigger by the shooter.”

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This new definition has the effect of criminalizing the possession of all bump stocks.

The new rule has no provision to grandfather in and register the bump stocks that many citizens already own.

Without exception, before March 21, 2019, if you own a bump stock, you must either surrender it to the ATF or destroy it.

You will not be compensated for the money you spent when you legally bought this item. Failure to comply with this new rule is a federal felony, punishable by up to 10 years in federal prison and up to a $250,000 fine for each bump stock in your possession.

There have already been many legal challenges filed and there will be many more to come before March 21. Most ask that the courts block this rule from going into effect so that the issue can be fully litigated before any American has to destroy their property without compensation.

Does this open the door for future regulation and re-classification of guns, ammo, and accessories?

What do you think?

If you have any questions about bump stocks or the regulatory process, call U.S. LawShield and ask to speak to your Independent Program Attorney today.

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Comment section

20 comments on “The Federal Bump Stock Ban Explained

  1. Legislating without legislation?
    Dangerous path.

  2. Bump stocks should never have been legal to sell without an automatic weapon license.

  3. Seems there are 3 factions re: bump stocks. Those who want to ban them and anything else having to do with gunpowder.

    Those who favor the 14th amendment entirely … bump stocks and all.

    Finally, those who back the 14th but poo poo bump stocks as being silly, a waste of ammo, ineffective and don’t care if they are banned.

    I am against the ban on principle. I fought in a war for the US, and got decorated for doing so. Sadly, when my own coutnry turns against me, it becomes an enemy to me. Government confiscation of our legally obtained personal propery is, to me, worse than allowing Communists to take over S. Viet Nam … which, by the way, was another time the Government lied to me. I do not want to be fined or go to Federal Prison, and I will not do either, but with talk about taking away disability benefits from veterans and this ban, .. doesn’t feel like the government is any friend of mine.

  4. When I first saw bump-stocks, I said to myself “oh no”. I own a lot of firearms and I shoot them regularly. The bump stock took advantage of the wording in the law and my sad prediction came true when it was used in a mass shooting. Because of these things, those of us who own firearms and use them responsibly have come under more scrutiny. The bump stock was problem waiting to happen and its far more trouble than its worth. However, they should not be confiscated, if nothing else than to avoid a precedent being set for the government seizure of firearms. Instead, bump sotcks fit nicely under the “any other weapon” clause of the NFA. That gives owners some choices and makes the bump stocks saleable to other parties if the owner cannot legally possess a Title 2 firearm. There should be a one-time waiver of the tax for current owners provided they qualify to own a weapon covered by the NFA.

  5. I actually agree with this new regulation but not the scope. Why not give an owner the opportunity to get a federal stamp just as you would for a machine gun? Then any future sales would require the same stamp.

  6. Regardless of whether one thinks bump stocks should be banned, this change in definition is NOT legal and is tyranny in the purest form. It violates several sections of the Constitution beyond the Second Amendment, not to mention John Locke’s universal definition of basic rights accepted by all the founders: life, liberty, and property.

  7. I believe if you ban this then they need to reimburse the people. It’s not like they dont waste our money on big parties. Two once they start this way they will continue to try and great more things outlawed.

  8. IF this abomination stands – and there are already lawsuits challenging this ‘ruling’ – there is NOTHING to prevent further re-definitions by un-elected bureaucrats for anything that strikes their fancy. The biggest issue at hand is that bum firing is a technique that does not rely on a piece of hardware. It can be accomplished using such “evil” items as shoe strings, rubber bands and even belt loops. NONE of the items ’cause’ a semi-automatic weapon to suddenly morph into a “machine gun” – it still requires the shooter to use a certain sequence of pushing and pulling actions to achieve rapid fire – there is STILL only one shot per trigger pull.
    This is currently ‘targeting’ AR style rifles, if it stands ALL semi-automatic rifles will be in jeopardy.
    And yes, I (as did many others) pointed out these facts during the open comment period. apparently we were simply ignored.

  9. The language used to define the operation of a semi-auto rifle with a bump stock is not correct. The stock allows the shooter to fire such a weapon faster, but the trigger is being manipulated manipulated every time the gun fires. The way I read it, the language says the trigger is only pulled once and continues to fire. That is the way a full auto works. Someone needs to re-read the ban language and get it overturned thrown out.

    Specifically, with regard to bump stocks, the new rule adds: “The term ‘machinegun’ includes a bump-stock-type device, i.e., a device that allows a semiautomatic firearm to shoot more than one shot with a single pull of the trigger by harnessing the recoil energy of the semiautomatic firearm to which it is affixed, so that the trigger resets and continues firing without additional physical manipulation of the trigger by the shooter.”

  10. I see that, on its face, a bump stock will make a semi-automatic weapon function like an automatic weapon. Doesn’t seem like a bad thing to me. But if we are to ban bump stocks it should be by an act of Congress. We know that that would be trouble as it would be a bill loaded with other restrictions or tacked on to another bill because it wouldn’t pass any other way. Let’s fight this at the administrative level.

  11. I think they have overstepped their bounds. I think POTUS and the NRA sold out and I think that it doesn’t matter anymore because things are so out of whack that the lines between us and them have divided too deep that we are right back where we started a few hundred years ago

  12. It would be interesting to see where this takes us however I don’t like how it was done – We’re redefining attachments when we should redefine the trigger. Banning on a per product basis instead of the action taken by the shooter could make the laws really complicated over time.

    What I’d like to see is an amendment to the laws defining automatic weapons to take it from “single trigger pull” to “single input from the shooter”. In this case single input would equate to not moving my finger on a bump stock. It would have the same effect and be cleaner language.

    Thoughts?

  13. I don’t like the slippery slope this could start. I would say it should be a congressional change but I don’t trust them to follow the constitution or listen to us either. While I don’t have a bump stock and never really wanted one, I still don’t like the idea of allowing a purchase while it is legal, then not allowing a grandfather clause if the product becomes illegal. This knee jerk reaction to the vegas shooting can’t change the fact it could have been even deadlier without a single bumpstock or automatic weapon. It’s the evil in the heart, not the tool in the hand.

  14. Since the penalty for simply possessing a bump stocks the same risk as altering an AR15 for fully automatic fire, I believe more people will just choose the much more controllable full auto route.

  15. I don’t even want a bump stock, but I don’t want the government to arbitrarily take away my personal and legally obtained property. OK .. so bump stocks are foolish toys. Whatever. So are hula hoops. The real tyranny is the dissociation between bump stocks in general causing mass shootings and banning them will reduce/eliminate mass shootings.

  16. Trump knows the invalidity of this ban, but wants the extra votes he will get for it.

  17. This new law bothers me on multiple levels. First of all, it is totally reactionary. Why punish law abiding citizens for the action of criminals? This law will not dissuade a crazy person from killing and probably not even reduce the body count, although that could be debated. Rifles, according to the CDC, in the United States from 2010 to 2014 were used in approximately 300 killings per year, while knives were responsible for approximately 1500 deaths per year and blunt objects being responsible for about 500 killings per year in the same time period. It also bothers me because it is systematically dismantling our constitution rights. The “far left” are on a witch hunt and are demonizing guns in general. This is a far more reaching problem than just bump stocks. In addition, it would seem fair to me to allow for exemptions. Like Rick stated above, “give owners some choices that makes the bump stocks sale-able to other parties if the owner cannot legally possess a Title 2 firearm. There should be a one-time waiver of the tax for current owners provided they qualify to own a weapon covered by the NFA.”

  18. Once again the people that suffer are the people that will not be a problem. Do they really think that someone that wishes to do harm will voluntaryily turn there bump stock in? No they won’t but that leaves all law abiding citizens suffering a financial loss through property confiscation by the government. What’s next guns that can shoot more than 10 rounds? More that 6-3-2-1 rounds. The gun control crowd will not stop here.
    These politicians are either very ignorant about guns or they truly want to take down our second amendment right to bear arms. One small step at a time. Now why would they do that? Hum…

  19. I think they should have had a grand-father clause in the new ruling. But that’s too legal for political crooks.

  20. It’s not about bumpstocks, it’s about following the Constitution and due process of law. If this ban stands then get rid of the Congress and the Senate as America doesn’t need these entities anymore. We now have a King residing over it’s ignorant peasants…..

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