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July 11, 2017

ATF Q&A: 4473 Forms

I understand that FFL holders are required to maintain Form 4473 records for 20 years and that the records are to be sent to ATF if the FFL goes out of business. If an FFL remains in business beyond the 20-year holding period, does it still have to maintain the records?

No. The only requirement is to keep the Forms 4473 for 20 years. (See NSSF Factsheet.) The federal firearms regulations allow for licensees to dispose of forms that are older than 20 years. Disposition includes submission of those records to the ATF National Tracing Center (NTC). Submission of these records will allow ATF to more effectively trace crime guns. The NTC requests that licensees enclose a copy of the Active FFL and appropriately indicate that the records are over 20 years old. Records are to be sent to ATF, Out of Business Records Center, (OOBRC), 244 Needy Road, Martinsburg, WV 25405. It is recommended to send your records in a manner that can be tracked, i.e., via Federal Express, U.S. Postal Service, United Parcel Service or any service that provides delivery confirmation. Contact the NTC, Tracing Operations and Records Management Branch, at 800-788-7133, with additional questions on this topic.