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Ed.: An interesting question…and
complicated. You are considered to be
a non-immigrant alien by the ATF (U.S.
Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol,
Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives). As
such, you can purchase, receive or possess
a firearm
if you are in possession of
a (state) hunting licence that is valid and
unexpired, and if you were admitted to
the United States for lawful hunting or
sporting purposes. Otherwise, you need
to receive a waiver from this prohibition
from owning a gun, from the attorney
general of the United States. In addition, a
non-immigrant alien legally in the United
States with or without a non-immigrant
visa may lawfully acquire a firearm only
if he/she meets the state-of-residence
requirements as determined by the
federal government. Have a look at the
ATF website and check Rule 2010-6 and
Q&A form F4473. Then, check your state’s
Dear Bird Talk,
My wife and I go to Florida each year; I
have a question concerning owning a
weapon in the United States.
Over the years, we have made a lot of
good American friends and all of them
own guns for their personal protection.
(Stand your Ground) They are very
surprised that we Canadians do not have
guns for protection.
My question is, what right – if any – do
we as Canadians visiting the U.S. have
regarding owning a gun? If my home or
trailer was invaded while I was sleeping,
I am helpless to protect myself and my
Are we Canadians allowed to purchase
guns in the U.S. if we register them?
God forbid if I shot someone to protect
myself. I will be spending a long time
in the United States before returning to
Canada. If I were allowed to purchase
a weapon, it would stay in Florida and
would never enter Canada.
Mike Power
We know that we can buy a gun easily at
the local gun show, but I would go to your
local police department and discuss this
with them. If possible, get them to give
you a letter saying that it is OK,
OR apply to the attorney general for
approval. This is probably a lot of
paperwork, but it also appears to be a
fairly simple process. Crossing the border
with a gun is another issue but, if you have
a Canadian FAC (Firearms Acquisition
Certificate) and pre-clear it with customs,
you should have little difficulty. Neither
country really wants you to have a gun
for protection, but gun collecting, hunting
and target shooting are all fine. You
would also need an ATT (Authorization to
Transport) from your home province to get
the gun from the border to your home or
gun club.
Featuring the letters & concerns
of our members
Bird Talk, c/o CSANews
180 Lesmill Road
Toronto, Ontario M3B 2T5
or by e-mail:
Bird Talk